What Solar System Should You Get For Your House?

What Solar System Should You Get For Your House?

Solar systems are set to change the face of the UK, and with the greener energy grants coming into fruition, it’s only a matter of time before solar panels are being attached to the roof of every home and business in the country.
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The energy produced from solar panels can be used to heat water, power lights and even charge electric vehicles if you have a battery charging system put in place.

You see, solar panels take advantage of one of the most powerful but free resources of nature: sun-generated electricity. Using semiconductor technology, solar panels, also known as photovoltaic systems, transform energy from sunlight into electricity that can run your household for free.

GreenMatch has compiled the most useful knowledge about solar panels to help direct the transition to solar energy, including:

  • The overall solar panel prices in the UK
  • Financial motivations to help you make the most of your investment
  • Practical information on processes for installation and costs
  • Efficiency-impacting solar panel functions and the best ones out there

Over the years, solar panel prices have steadily decreased as experts have continuously been finding ways to make components of solar energy more efficient.

For the average UK home, a 4kW solar panel system is a common size. It has a production per year of 3,400 kWh and costs about £ 6,000. If you equate this to a household’s average annual electricity usage, which is about 3,200-4,100 kWh, solar panels in ideal conditions will cover 83-106 percent of your electricity demand. This depends, however on the hours of sunlight and the use of electricity. Further down, you can find a more detailed breakdown of seasonality and monthly energy production.

Moreover, you can also receive cash for surplus energy exported back to the grid with rewards like the Smart Export Guarantee (SEG)!

Interested in Purchasing Solar Panels?

If you have been looking into buying a solar panels system for your UK home, and you want to learn more about how to turn to renewable energy, we are here, and we are happy to help.

How Do Solar Panels Work?

It is important to differentiate between two key types when speaking about solar panels:

  1. Photovoltaic panels that generate power
  2. Thermal solar panels which are used for heating purposes

What Are Solar Photovoltaic Panels?

Photovoltaic solar Panels

Solar panel systems in the UK are widely used in photovoltaic (PV) systems. Photovoltaic systems directly transform sunlight into electricity.

Solar cells are made of semiconductors that absorb sunlight and turn it into electricity, such as silicon.

In a frame, generally known as a solar panel, solar cells are attached electrically and packed together. They shape a solar array when you attach multiple solar panels together. And then when you install the wiring, the brackets, the inverter, and so on the solar panel system shapes the whole system.

Positive and negative terminals are connected to the electric conductors, thereby creating an electrical circuit. The electrons can be absorbed from there in the form of an electric current (electricity). Together with the voltage of the cell (which is the product of its built-in electric field or fields), this current determines the power (or wattage) that can be generated by the solar cell, and how solar panels turn sunlight into electricity.

Grid-Connected vs Stand-Alone PV Systems

To ensure you are never without power, grid-connected systems make use of the local energy grid. The surplus energy can then be transported back to the national grid if your domestic solar panel system produces more electricity than your household needs in a day. On the other hand, the grid will provide this if you need more energy than your solar panels have provided.

Stand-alone PV systems aren’t connected to the grid, but a solar battery system charges instead. The energy that your panels produce is retained by these batteries. The stored energy from these batteries would be used to power your appliances. In places that can not be connected to a grid, stand-alone systems are used, which are usually more costly than grid-connected systems because solar batteries are still very expensive.

Solar Battery Storage Systems

Solar Battery Storage

Solar batteries store electricity produced by the sun’s energy and allow you to use it in the evenings when electricity is not generated by your solar panels. If you are connected to the grid or not, you can make use of solar batteries.

Depending on the size and power, solar battery storage device costs are not modest, ranging from £ 1,200 to £ 6,000. Technological advances, however, are leading year after year to new technologies and are likely to lead to a decrease in solar battery prices.

Solar Thermal Collectors

Sunlight is used by solar thermal panels to heat up water contained in a cylinder. This can then be used for your home heating needs. Similar to solar PV panels – solar thermal panels are roof-mounted, but look somewhat different, as they have several pipes heating up water instead of cells. Thermodynamic plates, which remove heat from the ambient air, are a related technology.

It is possible to use both solar thermal and thermodynamic panels for space heating, but they most generally provide the household needs for domestic hot water (DHW).

Are Solar Panels Efficient in the UK?

solar panels uk

Yes. Although the efficiency of solar panels on sunny days is higher, direct sunlight is not required for them to function. On cloudy days and during colder months, solar panels can also generate a significant amount of electricity.

Solar panels are, in fact, more suited to cooler temperatures. In hot countries, solar panels can overheat, and that reduces their performance. UK weather is also suitable for the optimum operation of solar panels.

SOLAR PANELS ARE EFFICIENT IN SNOWY CLIMATES

Even in snowy climates, a phenomenon is known as the ‘albedo effect’ causes solar panels to be extremely successful. Snow actually reflects sunlight, so it is possible to generate more energy, just as skiers and snowboarders would easily get sunburned on the pistes. Naturally, in order for the system to operate, the snow needs to be cleaned off the solar panels first. It will decrease their performance if your panels are covered by something.

The efficiency rating of a typical commercial solar module is 15-20 percent . One significant challenge for the PV industry is to increase the performance of the solar module and at the same time, to keep the cost per cell down.

There are, of course, several variables that can influence the effectiveness of your solar panels, from solar panel type to angling and seasonality.

The graph below shows the average energy output produce by solar panel systems that are south-facing at a 40-degree angle throughout the year. Solar panels are of course at their best and most effective throughout the summer months, as you can see, but still generate enough energy during the winter season to power 33-51 percent of a house.

In kilowatt-hours, the capacity of solar panels is calculated (kWh). Individual figures are illustrated by putting the cursor over the columns in the graph. Add together the minimum range and the average range to find the average energy output. Add all three together to find the full performance.

4 Factors Affecting The Efficiency of Solar Panels

Get the best out of your investment in solar panels investment and cut your spending on utility bills, you’ll want to optimise your solar panel power. Place, angling, orientation, roof suitability, solar panel system capacity, and correct maintenance are key factors to take into account.

Location, Angle, and Direction

Is the PV system positioned and angled so that the maximum amount of sunlight can be absorbed by solar cells? In the UK, from 9 am to 3 pm, you want to ensure that your solar panels are open to sunlight.

Assessing the suitability of your roof to house solar panels is a key step in evaluating the system’s effectiveness. Your roof’s orientation and angle have a lot to do with how much exposure to sunlight your panels can receive.

The optimal orientation is south-facing for solar panels, as it would mean that the solar panels are exposed to direct sunlight for as long a longer period. A 34° roof tilt angle is said the best location in the UK for solar panels, according to Stanford University.

You can add brackets to change the angle slightly if your roof doesn’t have the ideal orientation and angle. Get this tested by a qualified MCS installer, though.

Roof Suitability

It is necessary to take into consideration whether the roof is strong enough to withstand the solar system’s weight when considering solar panels for your roof. For, e.g., a 4kW device usually has 16 250W panels, adding up to approximately 280kg of total weight.

Many materials are now ideal for carrying solar panels, which can be too fragile for slate and wooden roofs.

Furthermore, consider whether your roof is large enough to have solar panels on it. You would need at least 30 cm of space around your solar panels, so when measuring how much roof space you have, you need to take this into consideration. A 4kW system with 16 panels, for example, needs at least 29 m2 of roof space.

Size of the Solar Panel System

Solar cells come in various shapes and sizes. The larger the system of solar panels, the more electricity is produced. You’ll get a better idea of what size panel you need after you have measured your electricity needs.

The most powerful type of solar panel on the market is considered to be monocrystalline panels, meaning you would need fewer panels (and thus less roof space) to produce as much electricity as a polycrystalline system will.

Maintenance

To optimise the lifetime of your device, it is necessary to carry out the right solar panel maintenance. Fortunately, during their lifetime of 25-30 years, solar panels do not need much maintenance.

On a regular basis, have your panels tested by your installer or another approved service provider. If you do this yourself, in the event, you damage your panels in the process. You will void your warranty.

What you should do yourself is to ensure at all times that your panels are clean. This includes removing leaves and branches from the solar panel system and rinsing them with a garden hose, stopping them from sponging or touching them.

How Many Solar Panels Do You Need To Run Your House?

number of solar panels

A 4kW solar panel system would need approximately 16 solar panels with a power output of 250W, while 20 solar panels would be composed of a 5kW system.

A few things depend on how many solar panels you need to power your home:

  1. Your actual use of electricity
  2. Your energy priorities (how much of the consumption you plan to cover)
  3. Your potential usage area on the roof
  4. The number of hours of sunlight in your area

As these variables vary from home to home, it is necessary to evaluate each household uniquely.

Identifying your current energy usage is the first step. In kilowatt-hours (kWh), you measure this, and it is vital to take the appropriate time to calculate this as accurately as possible.

How To Calculate Your Solar Needs?

To obtain your power usage, review your electricity bills (in kWh). For an annual figure, you can either calculate month by month or combine your monthly/quarterly intake together.

Decide how much you want to cover your energy bills with your solar panels, which can be anywhere from 10-100%. The system size and costs would be influenced by your decision.

Calculate how many solar panels your roof would actually suit. The average solar panel occupies approximately 1.44 m2 of roof space. Don’t forget to add at least 30cm to the edge of the roof. If you know that you do not have enough room for all the panels that you have measured, change the system size.

How Much Does The Average Home Solar System Cost?

how much do solar panels cost

It costs £5,000 to £10,000 for the typical residential solar panel system. The cost of solar panels depends heavily on the number of panels that you need for your house, which depends on your energy usage.

Generally speaking, the more costly the system, the more power it can produce, and thus the more savings it can provide. The following table shows the annual savings per device size on your energy bills, how much you can receive from payments from the Smart Export Guarantee (SEG), and finally, how long it can take to break even.

Using a 3kW solar panel system, which costs in the region of £5,000-£6,000, a small house with 1-3 inhabitants can sufficiently cover their electricity costs. With that device, thanks to the free energy generated by your panels, you can save £160 a year on your electricity bill. What’s more, you can also receive £ 75 a year using SEG payments.

A household with a family of 3-4 individuals will typically have a 4kW device mounted, which has a price range of around £ 6,000-£ 8,000. You can save around £ 270 on your energy bill annually in this case, and can also earn £ 100 a year on top of that.

A 6kW solar panel system will be needed for bigger homes that house 4+ individuals, from £ 8,000 and up. You will save a whopping £430 on your energy bills per year with a 6kW setup and also receive £151 from SEG payments.

However, you are not only limited to these three options. The size of the system is determined by the number of panels and the wattage of each panel, so you can adjust the size of the system according to your needs, such as getting a 3.5 kW solar panel.

Is A Home Solar System Worth It?

In addition to the obvious environmental benefits, you can break even with solar panels much quicker with SEG profits, making solar panels financially worth it. In addition, solar panels are becoming increasingly affordable with continuous technology enhancements.

Solar panels have a life span of around 25 years, and most reputable manufacturers offer product warranties of 10-25 years. With the costs, savings, and earnings mentioned earlier in mind, you can break even within the lifespan of the systems on your solar panel investment.

For instance, you can break even after 21-25 years with a 3kW system. You can break even after 16-22 years with a 4kW system. Lastly, you can break even after 19-23 years with the larger 6kW system.

So if you’ve ever wondered if it’s worth investing in solar panels, the answer is yes, they are.

Do Solar Panels Reduce Your Electricity Bills?

Solar panels help lower your bill for electricity, which is another reason why it is worth getting. Where you live depends on the amount you can save on your bills.

You could save an average of £ 100-£ 270 on yearly electricity bills in London, for example. You can reduce the cost of your bills by more than £100 per year in other areas, such as Stirling or Manchester.

Will Solar Panels Increase My House Price?

As they make your house more energy-efficient, solar panels can increase your home’s value. This is absolutely one of the best home improvements that you can invest in or get a green homes scheme voucher for to make your home more attractive to potential buyers, as reduced electricity bills can benefit the new owners equally.

Naturally, the size of the solar panel device will influence how much the value will increase, and bear in mind that various families will have different energy spending habits. That means that for some families, one system may be adequate and inadequate for others.

For certain consumers, solar panels are not a valuable addition to a house, but it does rely on personal choice.

Is It Worth Buying Cheap Solar Panels?

Indeed, solar panels can be costly, and some will want to find the cheapest alternative. Cheap solar panels can make setup costs more affordable, but in the long run, they may not be worth it. Inexpensive solar panels are likely to have reduced lifetime and lower performance, and for that reason, your savings may be less important.

When considering installing solar panels – solar panel prices should not be the sole consideration. In the long term, investing in high-quality panels and particularly in a premium inverter from an MCS-certified installer with a good reputation in your area will pay off.

Can You Get Solar Panels for Free?

In the UK, it is no longer possible to get free solar panels. In the past, solar panel manufacturers provided a free solar panel system at the height of the Feed-in Tariff (FIT).

Providers of solar panels will provide free installation of solar panels, enabling homeowners to use the electricity generated to power their homes. The FIT payments would be collected by these providers in return, making it a profitable arrangement for the company.

This setup became less financially profitable for suppliers as the FIT payment amounts deteriorated over time. When the FIT was fully completed in 2019, after this – solar panels were no longer available free of charge.

What Grants Are Available for Solar Panels And Installation In The UK?

Via various solar panel financing options, you can earn cash on your solar panels in the UK. There is actually a Smart Export Guarantee and a Feed-in Tariff (which is closed for new registrations).

The Feed-in Tariff was one of the governmental solar panel grants that promoted the use of renewables in the UK, and solar PV was one of these. It was introduced in 2010 and provided homeowners who developed and exported renewable energy with a tariff (a payment).

This scheme was closed in 2019 by the government. Many currently still enrolled under the FIT continue to collect their payments in compliance with their arrangement, but no new applications are approved.

The Smart Export Guarantee (SEG) has been effectively replacing the FIT since 1 January 2020. With the SEG, by exporting surplus energy back to the grid, UK homeowners can earn money.

The SEG demands that a tariff for electricity sold to the grid be provided by all energy suppliers with over 150,000 customers. There is a lot of flexibility for individual energy suppliers as to how they want to set up a tariff, but it needs to be above zero. 4-6p/kWh is a decent export tariff.

What Are The Pros & Cons of Having Solar Panels in the UK?

The benefits of solar panels are many, and they play an important role in the development of sustainability. The UK used solar power to generate 3.9 percent of its total electricity in 2018, and more than 1 million solar PV installations are currently in service. Over the years, the solar potential of the UK is only going to increase.

Solar cells, in addition to being environmentally friendly, deliver substantial savings on your energy bill. Although solar panels have drawbacks, the long-term benefits of investing in solar far outweigh the disadvantages.

Over the years, there has been a small rise in sunlight hours, ensuring you will get more and more out of your investment in solar panels. The graph below illustrates the steady rise in hours of sunshine in the UK.

Solar panels can be a perfect way to cover the energy needs of your household free of charge, but there are downsides to solar panels that must also be considered. A list of the key advantages and drawbacks of this renewable energy source is given below.

Advantages of Solar Panels

PROS

  • Cheaper electricity bills
  • Earn money back
  • Reduce your carbon footprint
  • Year-round efficiency
  • Low maintenance
  • Independent from the grid

Cheaper Electricity Bills

A rise in utility bills comes with an increase in electric gadgets. By installing solar panels into your home, you can reduce your energy bills.

The energy created by solar panels is fully free of charge, and surplus energy can always be stored or transferred back to the grid for future use.

Earn Money Back – Feed In Tariff

You will make money by selling surplus energy back to the grid with the Smart Export Guarantee (SEG). The SEG needs all energy suppliers with 150,000 or more customers to give homeowners an export tariff, and the tariff must be higher than zero.

This means it would be possible for small-scale solar PV generators to see a return on their investment. Only new facilities can, however, register for the SEG, while those already registered under the Feed-in Tariff would be bound by those conditions.

Reduce Your Carbon Footprint

As it is a green and sustainable source of electricity, converting to solar energy decreases the carbon footprint significantly. Solar power does not emit toxic carbon dioxide (CO2) or other contaminants, unlike conventional energy generators, such as fossil fuels, coal and oil.

Estimates also show that domestic solar panels will save approximately one ton of CO2 each year, suggesting that only one installation would offset around 25 tonnes of CO2 over its lifetime.

Year-Round Efficiency

All year round, solar panels can work effectively. Although they function optimally during the sunny months, during gloomy days and in the winter season, they still generate a significant amount of electricity.

Solar panels don’t need heat to be effective, contrary to common belief. They need sunshine, simply. That means that even on cloudy days, solar panels can be successful, and certainly during the winter months, too!

Low Maintenance Required

The projected lifetime of solar panels is 25-30 years and needs limited maintenance over the years. A better quality inverter might need to be upgraded every 10-15 years, but under normal conditions, apart from that you can sit back and enjoy the solar benefits.

In the event of any cabling problems or loose brackets, it is a good idea to have your installer come and check your system periodically.

You should also periodically clean your solar panels to make sure no leaves or branches are on them. In turn, roof-mounted solar panels are self-cleaning, as rainfall will help clean the system from dust.

Finally, as this would decrease their effectiveness, make sure that there are no trees casting shadows over your panels.

Independent from the Grid

In remote areas where it would be too costly to extend power lines to communicate with electrical power grids, solar panels are perfect. In rural areas of the world, solar PV systems are an inexpensive, efficient solution for remote homes.

The possibility of incorporating solar batteries into your solar panel system still exists. The power collected by solar cells is stored by solar batteries, storing it for rainy days or for use during the night.

LONG-TERM INVESTMENT

While it is possible to consider solar panels to be costly, you can produce electricity for free. Furthermore, the use of rewards, such as SEG will lead to an earlier break-even point.

Disadvantages of Solar Panels

CONS

  • High initial costs
  • Dependent on sunlight
  • Specific solar panel placement

High Initial Costs

It can be costly to invest in solar panels. In up-front expenses, you can expect from £5,000 to £10,000. While by selling electricity to the grid, you can gain cashback on your solar panels, some can find it difficult to meet the high setup costs.

Only Works During Daytime

Solar panels are sunlight-dependent. Though they do not need direct sunlight to function, if they are not completely exposed to sunlight, they lose productivity. Furthermore, during the night, they do not generate energy and are less successful during dark winters.

Switching to the main power grid at night is an important solution to this. Homes with a grid-independent device can alternatively store energy during the day in solar batteries, which can then be used at night.

Solar Panel Placement

Inaccurate positioning of solar panels will dramatically reduce the efficiency of the production of electricity. The effectiveness of your solar panels would be very limited when you live in an environment surrounded by large buildings or tall trees.

Ensure the sunlight is not obscured by buildings or trees, and that the panels still clear the branches and leaves.

What Types of Solar Cells Are There?

The most popular types of domestic solar panels are monocrystalline panels, polycrystalline panels, and thin-film solar panels. Additional types of solar panels are available on the market, but these three are most widely used for domestic purposes.

All of these three types of solar panels generate electricity from sunlight, but it is important to be conscious of their main differences.

Monocrystalline Solar Panels

Monocrystalline Solar Panels

As they are made of one piece of silicon, monocrystalline solar panels get their name. They are known on the market as the most powerful type of solar panel, and their sleek black appearance will identify them.

When made – single-crystal silicon is the material that is used, which is then cut into wafers. This makes it possible for electrons to flow freely, resulting in high rates of efficiency. This makes them the most costly form of domestic solar panel as well.

Advantages:

  • At 15-20%, they have the highest efficiency rates.
  • They, due to their high-efficiency rates, are space-efficient.
  • They work better than polycrystalline panels at low levels of sunlight.

Disadvantages:

  • They are the market’s most costly silicon solar cells.
  • As temperatures go up, the standard of output suffers. Compared to other solar cell forms, however, the loss is still smaller.
  • During the processing of monocrystalline panels, more waste is created. The initial silicon used ends up in waste as each of the four sides of the cells is cut out (which, nevertheless, can be used in the production of polycrystalline panels).

Polycrystalline Solar Panels

blue Polycrystalline Solar Panels

By melting bits of silicon together into square moulds, polycrystalline solar panels are formed, forming the solar cells. There is less space for the electrons to travel around, since there are several crystals in each solar cell, resulting in a lower performance rate compared to monocrystalline cells.

Polycrystalline panels are simpler, and thus cheaper, to manufacture than monocrystalline panels. Instead of the black hue of monocrystalline frames, they normally have a blue look.

Advantages:

  • They are cheaper than their equivalents, monocrystalline.
  • During manufacturing, less waste is produced.

Disadvantages:

  • Polycrystalline panels at 13-16 percent have lower energy efficiency.
  • Because of their lower energy efficiency, they are less space-efficient than monocrystalline panels. In other words, in order to generate the same amount of energy, you need more physical panels.
  • As they are slightly less resistant to temperature changes, they have a shorter life than monocrystalline panels. This disparity is small in reality, however.

SOLAR PANEL RECYCLING

These solar panels are recycled as monocrystalline or polycrystalline solar panels hit the end of their lifetime. 95% of glass, 85% of silicone, and all the metals are reused. However, this comes at an expense, since thermal and chemical processing is used at high temperatures. It is also possible to recycle thin-film panels using a particular industrial process.

Thin-Film Solar Panels

Polycrystalline Solar Panels

As they need fewer materials, thin-film solar panels are easier to manufacture. They’re the cheapest form of solar panel on the market for that reason. Thin-film solar panels are manufactured on a substrate by placing films of one or more PV materials and can be transformed into a flexible sheet. Thin-film cell types, including silicon, cadmium, and copper, are common.

On the market, thin-film panels are the least powerful and need the most space. They are more immune to high temperatures, making them perfect for warmer nations.

Advantages:

  • They are the cheapest available form of a solar panel.
  • They can be modular, opening them up to new types of applications, such as the installation of motorhome solar panels.
  • Temperature-tolerant.

Disadvantages:

They are four times less effective than panels that are monocrystalline.

Also, low energy efficiency means that they are the least efficient for space.

Of the three forms, thin-film panels appear to have the shortest lifetime.

What Are the Best Solar Panel Systems Homes?

It can be difficult to find the finest solar panels on the UK market, as there are so many brands and designs to choose from. What are the best solar panels for homes? ‘is going to vary from household to household. Whether you are concentrating on performance, strength, scale, or durability depends on it.

We have compiled a list of the ten best solar panels in the UK to support you.

  • SunPower Maxeon 3
  • SunPower P19-320-BLK
  • Yingli PANDA Bifacial 72CL
  • LG NeON R 365
  • Sharp NU-AF
  • Q. Cells Q.Peak Duo BLK-G6
  • Panasonic HIT N340
  • Panasonic HIT N300
  • Amerisolar AS-6P30
  • JA Solar JAM6 (K)(BK)

How to Choose the Best Solar Panels

When you are looking for the right solar panels for your house, there are several considerations to evaluate.

  1. Type: There are two different types of solar panels: monocrystalline and polycrystalline, which dominate the market.
  2. Power: A solar panel’s ‘power is calculated in watts (W). In Normal Test Conditions, this figure reflects the energy production of a panel unit.
  3. Efficiency: The efficiency of solar panels, calculated as a percentage, measures how much sunlight can be turned into usable electricity. The efficiency of most domestic solar panels is 15-20 percent.
  4. Power tolerance: This variable specifies how much the device can deviate from its prescribed power (watts). You may convey this deviation either in percentages or watts. If the power tolerance of a 100W panel is +3 percent / −0 percent, the actual power can vary between 100-103W. If the power tolerance is +5W / −0W, then under real-world conditions, the actual performance varies between 100W and 105W.
  5. Temperature coefficient: You need to know how much temperature rise can affect the performance of your panel. The temperature coefficient represents the percentage decrease in the output of power per 1 ° C temperature rise (after 25 ° C).
  6. Size: The physical size of a panel might be your top priority if you have limited roof space. L ⁇ W ⁇ H lists the dimensions of the top 10 solar panels.
  7. Weight: It is important to know how heavy your solar panel system would be. You will need to get light-weight panels if your roof is not very solid.
  8. Product Warranty: Manufacturers of solar panels give warranties on their products, guaranteeing that they can last. Warranties range from 10-25 years on our list.
  9. Performance degradation: Over its 25-year lifetime, every solar panel will experience some kind of performance degradation. There is normally a 2-3 percent decrease in productivity after the 1st year and 0.2-0.7 percent per year after that.
  10. Max wind load: You want to withstand every kind of weather in the UK, including heavy winds and hurricanes, with your solar panels. This tolerance is checked and expressed in Pascals by manufacturers (Pa). The greater the amount, the greater the resistance of the wind, but most panels are rated to withstand 2,400 Pa, equal to 140 mph.

How To Install Solar Panels?

how to install solar panels

To get the absolute best out of your solar panel system – the solar panel installation process must be performed correctly; otherwise, your panels will not achieve their peak efficiency rate.

An MCS-certified installer can come and test your roof prior to installing your solar panels. They will look at key factors such as angling and roof orientation, roof size, and how solid your roof is (to know how much weight it can hold).

Follow our easy-to-understand 7-step guide to give you an idea of the solar panel installation process:

Step 1: Erect the Scaffolding

Scaffolding will be erected around your house to ensure protection for the installation team.

Step 2: Attach Roof Anchors

The installation team arrives after the scaffolding is set up. The team begins by adding the anchors to the roof, which will keep the solar panels supported. The types of anchors used depend on the type of roof tile that is installed in your home.

Step 3: Attach the Frame

It is time to attach the frame, which is made up of aluminium bars after the anchors have been mounted. It is important to fit the bars in a straight direction and parallel to each other.

Step 4: Install the Solar Panels

The installation of the solar panels will begin once the frame has been attached. In order to provide some room to change them slightly later, the panels are then clamped to the aluminium frame. They are then securely fixed to the frame until all panels are set up in their place.

Step 5: Wire the Solar Panels

The next move is to wire them in now that the panels are firmly fastened to the frame. In most instances, the manufacturer wires the panels. However, the inverter, which would usually be in the attic, must be attached to these wires.

The inverter is a solar array component that transforms the panels’ absorbed energy into AC electricity; this can then be used to power household appliances.

The supply of electricity to the household would need to be cut off during the time of the wiring installation.

COMPONENTS THAT MIGHT NEED REPLACEMENT

Inverters are the shortest lifespan component of a solar array. Inverters of good quality need replacement every 10-15 years. Depending on a variety of factors, solar PV inverter replacement expenses vary but usually start from £ 500.

Step 6: Make Final Consumer Unit Connections

The final connections to the consumer device will be made after the panels are connected to the inverter. A generation meter, which calculates how much electricity your panels actually generate, will also be connected.

Step 7: Test the Solar Panels

The installation needs to be checked after the plates, the inverter, and the generation meter are all wired together. When this is over, the installation phase of the solar panel is complete.

Do I Need Planning Permission For Solar Panels?

You are not allowed to apply for any planning permits in England, Scotland and Wales for most domestic solar panel installations, both for PV and heating installations.

However, there are limitations on installations of such types. You will need to apply for approval first if your solar panels protrude more than 200mm from your roof.

Furthermore, you would need to adhere to certain planning permission rules if your building is within a protected area.

Do Solar Panels Affect House Insurance?

In most situations, the policies should protect you under the new terms when you mount solar panels on your roof. However, as the installation of a solar panel results in a shift in the home layout, before continuing with the installation, it is always advisable to contact the current insurance agent.

It is important to remember that your home insurance will not cover any harm caused by your solar panel or device theft. It is also necessary to check with your insurance company that it will indeed protect your panels.

For both homes and enterprises, installing solar panels is a worthwhile investment. They are a big step towards sustainability, reducing energy costs, and can also be a way for you to earn money back.

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