Can solar power charge an electric car?

Have an electric car and wish you could charge it with solar? Well, you’re in luck because you can!

There are a couple of different ways that you can charge an electric car with solar. No, they don’t involve duct-taping solar panels to the roof of your new Tesla either.

Electric cars allow you to plug them into an outlet at your house to charge. If you take this approach and want to power your vehicle with solar, you’d install a grid-tied solar system.

With this strategy, your entire house can be powered by solar, and you’re tied into the grid. You’re not necessarily going to be generating power straight from the sun and pumping it into your car. Instead, you’re just offsetting a certain percentage of your usage with solar.

If you charge your car at night, that power is going to be coming straight off the utility grid. However, if you have a big enough system, it should’ve put energy onto the grid for you during the day.

The other way is to invest in a solar car charger unit. Some of these have solar panels right on them.

They are fully self-contained units that collect sunlight during the day, have batteries to store the power, and you can plug your electric car directly into them. These are less common, but it is possible to charge your vehicle directly with solar power by using them.