If you’re thinking of installing PV solar panels in the United Kingdom, you may be wondering what exactly it is they do and what the process is for installing them.
PV solar panels, or photovoltaic panels, convert photons from the sunlight and turn them into electricity. It’s important not to confuse these with thermal solar panels, which use the sun’s energy to heat up water.
These are only useful if you want your solar panels to heat up an immersion tank to keep your showers, baths, and taps warm.
The price of installing solar panels really does depend on how many you will need, according to your roof space.
If you have a small home, with a limited amount of roof space, you can expect to pay far less than someone who has a sprawling home with a larger roof to cover.
For example, for 8 metres squared, you should expect to pay in the region of £640. Stretching to 28m2, however, could see you pay just under £7,000.
Are solar panels effective in the UK?
Of course! So long as the sun emits light, solar panels will work. This, in turn, means that solar panels do not work in the night time. What could prevent your solar panels from working is trees or towering chimney stacks.
Essentially, anything that casts a shadow onto the panels themselves, and this will change during the day as the sun rises and sets.
If you have tall trees surrounding your home, you may need to consider whether solar panels will be effective.
It’s also worth knowing that solar panels are less effective on cloudy days, although they do not stop working.
It’s always important to note that you will not be able to run your entire home off of solar panels. Rather, it is more a case of booting your energy supply and cutting your electricity bills.
Using PV solar panels will soothe your conscience knowing that at least part of your home is running off the sun’s rays and not the electricity grid.
Will my home be a building site?
Truthfully, the answer to this is yes and no. The interior of your home will require little engineering work; however, it is extremely likely that scaffolding will need to be constructed to get the installation carried out.
The installers will mark out where the frame to hold the panels needs to go and then they will secure this to your roof. Then, they can successfully attach the panels themselves.
Once they are in place it is a relatively simple process of wiring them to your DC inverter. This will then be connected to the rest of your home’s electricity supply, so you can start to benefit from your brand new solar panels!
The costs vary for PV solar panels, and most of that cost will depend on just how large your roof is.
To make the most of your new panels, it is important to check that they will actually be able to absorb the sun’s energy or whether you have too many obstructions in place.