Solar Panel Size and Weight Guide for Homeowners

Joe Brennan
Mar 14, 2024

Understanding the size and weight of solar panels is a common concern among homeowners looking to harness solar energy. Selecting the right panels involves navigating technical specifications and ensuring they align with your home's structural capabilities and energy requirements. 

Whether you're exploring solar energy for the first time or looking to upgrade your current setup, it's important to choose panels that fit your roof's capacity and meet your energy needs.

Our guide simplifies the process, offering clear explanations and key considerations for choosing solar panels that suit your needs. With expert insights, we provide the solution to selecting the ideal solar panel dimensions and weight for an efficient and sustainable energy system at home. 

So, let’s get started.

What's the Average Dimensions and Weight of Residential Solar Panels

When you start looking into solar panels for your home, you'll quickly find that they come in various sizes and weights. But don't worry; there's a common range most residential panels fall into, making it easier to understand what might fit on your roof. 

Generally, solar panels for homes are about 65 inches long and 39 inches wide. This size is pretty standard, so you can expect most panels you look at to be around these dimensions​​​​.

As for weight, an average solar panel weighs about 42 pounds. However, it's normal to find panels that are a bit lighter or heavier, usually ranging between 40 to 60 pounds​​​​. It's important because the weight impacts how they are installed and what your roof can handle.

What Factors Affecting Solar Panel Size and Weight

When choosing solar panels for your home, it's good to know that several factors can influence their size and weight. So, here they are:

Brand influence

First up, let's talk about the brand. Just like with cars or phones, the company that makes solar panels can affect their size and weight. Different brands might use unique materials or designs, which means the panels can vary in size and weight even if they're meant to do the same job​​.

Types of solar panel

Moving on, the type of solar panel is another big factor. There are three main kinds: monocrystalline, polycrystalline, and thin-film. Each is made using different techniques and materials. For example, monocrystalline panels are often more efficient and can be slightly lighter than polycrystalline ones due to the high-purity silicon they use​​​​.

Home energy needs

Then, consider your home's energy needs. The amount of electricity you use can determine how many panels you need and their size. If your household consumes a lot of power, you might need more or bigger panels, affecting the overall weight your roof will carry​​.

Panel wattage

Lastly, the panel's wattage or power output can influence its size. Generally, panels designed to produce more electricity are larger because they contain more solar cells. However, this doesn't always mean they'll be heavier; it's more about the space they'll occupy on your roof​​​​.

Understanding these factors helps in choosing the right solar panels. It's all about finding the best fit for your roof and your energy needs, ensuring a smooth transition to solar power.

How to Calculate the Roof Space Required For Solar Panels

So, in this section of the article, we will explain how to calculate the roof space required for solar panels and assess if a roof can support the weight of the solar system, including considerations for old or damaged roofs​. So, let's go:

Roof space requirements

Understanding how much space solar panels will take up on your roof is crucial before installation. The average residential solar panel is about 65 inches by 39 inches, meaning each panel occupies roughly 18 square feet of roof space​​​​. 

When planning, you must consider the total area available and how panels can be arranged to maximise sunlight exposure. Ideally, your roof should have enough space to accommodate the number of panels needed to meet your energy requirements without overcrowding, ensuring each panel operates efficiently.

Roof support capacity

Equally important is assessing whether your roof can support the weight of the solar panels. An average solar panel weighs between 40 to 60 pounds, and a typical residential installation might include multiple panels, significantly adding to the total weight on your roof​​​​. 

Most modern roofs are built to handle this additional load, but it's essential to consider the age and condition of your roof. Older or damaged roofs might require reinforcement or repair before installation to ensure they can safely support the weight of the solar system.

Pros and Cons of Different Solar Panel Sizes

Solar panels have their advantages & disadvantages, so let's discover the pros & cons of different solar panel sizes:

60-cell panels


  • More compact, fitting well on smaller roof areas.
  • Easier to handle and install due to their smaller size.


  • Produce less power per panel, possibly requiring more panels to meet energy needs.
  • May result in higher installation costs due to the need for more mounting hardware and labour​​.

72-cell Panels


  • Higher power output, reducing the number of panels needed.
  • Often more cost-effective per watt, making them a good choice for larger installations.


  • Larger and heavier, making them challenging to fit on smaller roofs.
  • More difficult to install due to their size and weight​​.

How Many Solar Panels Do You Need?

Determining the number of solar panels you need depends on your household's energy consumption and the efficiency of the panels you choose. On average, a household in Ireland consumes about 900 kWh per month. 

Considering solar panels' efficiency and your available roof space, a typical home in Ireland may need between 15 to 20 panels to fully meet its energy needs. This calculation varies based on factors like local sunlight conditions, panel placement, and individual energy usage patterns. 

Working with a professional installer like Going Solar can help you accurately assess your needs and design a solar panel system that matches your energy consumption and roof capacity.

Wrapping Up

From choosing the right panels that fit your roof's structure to determining the number of panels required to meet your energy needs, each decision plays a significant role in maximising the benefits of solar panels. 

If you're considering making the switch to renewable energy, remember that professional advice is invaluable. Contact Going Solar today for personalised assistance in navigating solar panels, ensuring that your transition to green energy is smooth, efficient, and tailored to your home's specific requirements. Let's harness the power of the sun together!

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Frequently Asked Questions

What's the average size of a residential solar panel?

Most residential solar panels are about 65 inches by 39 inches. This size can slightly vary between manufacturers but generally falls within this range.

How much does a typical solar panel weigh?

A standard solar panel for residential use weighs approximately 40 to 60 pounds. The exact weight can depend on the specific panel model and manufacturer.

Can my roof support the weight of solar panels?

Most modern roofs can support the weight of solar panels. However, if your roof is older or in poor condition, it's advisable to have it inspected by a professional to ensure it can safely hold the solar panel system.

Do larger solar panels produce more electricity?

Yes, larger solar panels generally have more solar cells, which can produce more electricity. However, the efficiency of the panel and the amount of sunlight it receives are also important factors in its electricity production.

How many solar panels do I need for my home?

The number of solar panels you need depends on your household's energy consumption and the efficiency of the panels. On average, a home may require between 15 to 20 panels, but this can vary based on individual energy needs and roof space.

Does the type of solar panel affect its size and weight?

Yes, the type of solar panel (monocrystalline, polycrystalline, or thin-film) can affect its size and weight. Monocrystalline panels are typically more efficient and may be lighter, whereas polycrystalline panels might be slightly heavier and larger due to their manufacturing process.

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*FYI, parts of this blog post were drafted by artificial technlogy. But rest assured, it's been thoroughly researched, edited, reviewed and me & my team.
Author Fahad Zahid
Founder @ Going Solar

Joe Brennan, the founder of Going Solar, is dedicated to making solar power mainstream in Ireland and meet SEAI objectives. With a focus on affordability and sustainability, he is bringing renewable energy solutions to homes, reducing costs & environmental impact.