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Solar panel

Solar electricity

Solar panels are the most popular renewable energy system for homeowners because of their fantastic energy-saving and carbon-reducing benefits.

Photovoltaic (PV) panels are installed onto the roofs of properties, normally facing south or southwest to receive the most direct sunlight. However, they work perfectly well in overcast conditions too.

Solar panels are made from two layers of semiconducting material and when this comes into contact with sunlight, an electrical charge is created. This is converted into usable electricity for the home

Benefits of solar power

By installing solar panels you can benefit from:

  • A free source of electricity for more than 25 years. Solar PV installers often provide lengthy warranties and the technology is proven to last well over 25 years.

  • An escape from the rising prices of gas and electricity. Energy prices have been rising regularly in recent years, so by utilising renewables you’ll be saving even more – up to £220 a year.

  • Added value to your home. With the energy saving potential solar panels provide, the value of your property will increase and potential buyers will see the income earning opportunity as an attractive deal.

  • Low maintenance levels for the efficient running of the system. Solar panels for your home are often referred to as a fit and forget technology, and all you need to do is ensure trees don’t cast them into shadow.

  • Reduced carbon emissions. Carbon is responsible for the increased problems associated with global warming and solar panels help to reduce emissions.

Solar panel quotes

A solar panel installation is one of the best ways to reduce your electricity bills and reduce your carbon footprint.

If you’re interested in reducing your bills and helping the environment at the same time, just complete our quick form and we’ll match you with up to four MCS-registered solar professionals.



Average Solar panel cost

According to the Energy Saving Trust, the typical domestic solar panel system is 4kWp and costs about £6,200 including VAT, however there may be companies that charge slightly less or more than this. If you're looking at a 3kWp system, this could set you back an typical of £3,000.

Average price per Solar panel job in 2021

Avg. price low

Avg. price low
£3,550

Avg. price

Avg. price
£5,820

Avg. price high

Avg. price high
£7,710

£8300

£6225

£4150

£2075

£0

Prices based on actual Solar panel costs for your area, as reported by local Quotatis members.

Solar panel installation cost in your area 2021

Labour cost £4,340
Material cost £1,550
Waste removal £310
Time frame: 2-3 days

Advantages for Solar panel

  • Solar panels can produce electricity almost anywhere where they is sunlight
  • Solar PV panels provide clean – green energy
  • Operating and maintenance costs for solar panels are considered to be low
  • You are paid for any excess electricity your solar panels produce
  • You will lower your electricity bills by around 30-50%

Disadvantages for Solar panel

  • Solar energy has intermittency issues - when the sun is not shining at night no electricity is produced
  • Excess electricity not used needs to be store in batteries or distributed back to the National Grid
  • For the best efficiency solar panels should be installed on south facing roofs without any shading
  • Solar panels are large and will take up a lot of the roof space on a house

Solar panel Manufacturers

Solar panel FAQs

How much energy does a solar panel produce?

If you’re looking to purchase and install a solar system for your home or property, then knowing the amount of energy a solar panel can produce can go a long way to help you determine just how much solar panels that’ll be needed to power your entire house. In this article, we’ll give you an idea of the amount of energy that can be generated by a solar panel to help you make informed decisions going ahead.

First and foremost, you should note that each and every solar panel is rated by how much direct current power they’re able to generate under standard testing conditions. The output of a solar panel is given in watts units (W) and it stands for the theoretical power generation of the panel under direct sunlight as well as temperature conditions. Generally, several domestic solar panels possesses power output ratings which ranges from 250 watts to 400 watts. And as you would have expected, the higher power ratings are preferable when compared to the lower power ratings. What’s more? The total wattage of your solar panels will greatly influence a major part of your overall solar system cost.

Assuming you’re able to get just about 5 hours of direct sunlight every day, you can determine the output of your solar panel in this way - 5 hours x 290 watts ( wattage example of a premium solar panel) = 1450 watts-hours or approximately 1.5 kilowatts per hour (kWh). hence, the individual solar panel output in your array should be able to generate about 500 to 550 kWh of energy every year. This is sufficient energy to power some small appliances without problems.

Do you need planning permission for solar panels?

In a similar way to other major home improvement projects, some specific requirements must be met to allow for the installation of solar panels. The main reason why these standards and regulations were established is to minimize the risk of the solar system becoming an issue or potential hazard in the unforeseeable future. So if you’re thinking about buying and fitting new solar panels, you’ll probably want to know whether or not you’ll require to submit a planning permission application for approval before you can proceed.

Generally, solar panels are covered under what’s called “Permitted Development” which gives you the freedom to install your solar panels without having to apply for a planning permission. However, there are some exceptions to this rule. These exceptions include if your house is a listed building or if your house is located within a conservation area. In these exceptional cases, it’s possible that you’ll need to apply for a planning permission, but this will largely depend on the discretion of your Local Planning Authority. What’s more? Solar panels are usually subjected to normal building regulations which includes examining the roof to make sure that it can support the additional weight. You can call in a MCS certified installer to carry out this check for you.

In order to install your solar PV on your roof, you must follow these guidelines:

✓ Your solar panels shouldn’t go beyond the highest point of the roof (excluding chimneys).

✓ The solar panels shouldn’t project beyond 200mm off the roof’s edge.

✓ The solar panels should be removed once they’re no longer used to produce electricity

✓ The solar panels should be installed such that the area and building’s appearance change is minimized.

How much can I save on my electricity bill?

The more you’re at home during the day, the more you can save on your electricity bill, since solar panels generate electricity during the day. The Feed-in Tariff scheme (FITs) ended in March 2019, but the new Smart Export Guarantee (SEG) pays you, via your energy supplier, for the electricity you export back to the grid. With the savings involved in generating your own electricity and SEG payments, you can expect to save up to £390 per year on your electricity bill.

How does Solar PV on my house work?

If you’re looking to install some new solar panels in your home or property, then you’d probably want to know how it works. This is one of the most frequent questions asked by homeowners when it comes to solar panels and in this article we aim to give you a good insight on the operations of solar panels. Let’s have a look!

Generally, solar panels work by absorbing the energy of the sun and then converting it into electricity. It functions by allowing photons from the rays of the sun release the electrons free from atoms within the photovoltaic or solar cells in order to produce a flow of electricity. There are several solar cells that are connected together ( usually 60 or 72 ) in each panel. Individual cells comprises both a negative layer and a positive one which combines perfectly to create an electrical field in which the energy is generated.

The boron that’s within the bottom layer generates the positive charge, while the phosphorous found in the silicon layer produces the negative charge. In order to convert the sun’s rays into the energy that’s going to be transported from the panels to the inverter, the two field will interact with one another.

In other words, solar panels work by turning photons from the sunlight into direct current which is transmitted to the inverter. Once it gets to the inverter, it’s then translated to alternating current and send this current to to your electric box which powers the entire home. If you do not wish to reduce the high bills that’s associated with renting power from the grid, the solar energy system is an efficient and affordable way to achieve this aim.

What are solar panels made of?

Solar cells , also referred to as photovoltaic cells (PV), absorbs energy from the sun and converts it to generate electricity. This, however, should not be confused with photovoltaic thermal cells or PVT which operates to generate heat for water in homes. Solar cells are linked electrically and also carefully organized into a large frame which is popularly called solar panels. Generally, solar cells are produced or made of silicon semi conductors which works to absorb sunlight and then turn it into electricity for use at a home. A solar panel comprises of either 60 or 72 solar cells which are electrically interconnected in series and parallel and also positioned in between glass and plastic which is then framed.

At present, solar panels incorporated for residential or domestic purposes only possesses the capacity to make use of only about 20 percent of the sunlight they’re able to absorb and convert it to electricity - also called solar efficiency. Available in the market are also a wide range of solar cell available for both industrial and commercial purposes. This type of solar panels have an efficiency rating of about 40 percent which will also automatically make them more costly than the domestic types.

One great thing about the solar industry is the fact that it keeps improving in such a way that raises both its efficiency as well as overall quality. And with further research and development, this is expected to even increase as the years go by. What’s more? As these aspects keep rising, it’s also expected that the solar panels price should be on a decrease. That way, they’ll become available to a wider range of individuals who’ll also like to save money on electricity bills and go greener.

How many solar panels do I need?

When you’re about to transform from the standard electricity to solar energy, what determines your solar system’s size is the amount of solar that’s required. The amount of solar that you’ll need, on the other hand, requires considering the end goal, be it to increase money savings, reduce environmental contamination, maximize Returns On Investment ( ROI), or just to copy what the neighbour’s done.

In order the determine the number of solar panels that is needed, the first step would be to calculate the number of kWhs that’s currently being used. A kWh is what’s used to determine the amount of energy that has been incorporated over time which the utility uses to bill you. What’s strongly recommended to create a suitable range is a 6 to 12 months average of your household electricity bill. Other factors that can play a key role in the determination of the number of solar panel needed include the following:

✓ Sunlight exposure hours. In order to know just how much energy your solar panels will generate, there’s a need to know the number of direct sunlight hours you should expect on a daily basis. For example if you stay in a region that’s usually very sunny, then it’ll be reasonable to expect more energy production per panel than regions that are usually cloudy.

✓ Angle and size of the roof. Roofs with a lot of workable space may require to let go of some efficiency opting for larger and cost effective panels to achieve the targeted energy. However not all homeowners have sufficient roof space or shade coverage for the solar panel they actually want. Also, the degree at which the roof slants will also determine if the sunlight is hitting the panels well enough and the amount of energy that can be generated thereof.

Are solar panels worth it?

Solar panels are a great source of energy with numerous benefits that comes with it. However, the main thing that puts off most homeowners or potential buyers is the fact that the equipment are usually very expensive. So if you’re planning to purchase solar panels to be installed in your home, then you’d probably want to know if it’s actually worth the investment or otherwise. In this article, we aim to give you a good insight into how solar panels works and if its a viable investment.

Generally, the length of time it will take for your solar panels to payback and whether you’ll be able to make money from them will be based on the following factors:

✓ The solar panel PV system’s cost.

✓ The amount of the generated electricity that you’re able to use.

✓ Whether as well as the amount you’re paid to the electricity you’re able to generate and export.

To know whether your solar panels are truly worth it, then a higher initial cost to fit the system will require to be settled with the amount you’re able to save through the use of the renewable electricity it produces, rather than making purchases from your electricity company. In other words, the more renewable energy you’re able to use, the more savings you make. If you’re registered for the FIT and paid per kWh of electricity produced, for 50 percent of that, which is assumed to be exported to the grid. Therefore, if you’re able to use more than 50 percent, you’ll be able to benefit from the investment.

What are the benefits of installing solar panels?

Not only will you reduce your electricity bill by generating your own electricity with solar panels, but you can also earn money through the SEG which is offered by large energy suppliers. They’ll pay you for the electricity you export back to the grid. You’ll also reduce your carbon footprint, lessening your impact on the environment.

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