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  • Tom Clarkson

Solar Panel FAQs: Your Solar Panel Questions Answered by the Experts

Updated: May 1

How do solar panels work?

When the sun shines onto a solar panel, energy from the sunlight is absorbed by the photovoltaic (PV) cells in the panel. This energy creates electrical charges that move in response to an internal electrical field in the cell, causing electricity to flow. This electricity (direct current, or DC) is then converted in to the type of electricity used by most homes (alternating current, or AC) before running through your fuse board and being distributed throughout your home in the same way that electricity from the grid would be.

Is my home suitable for solar panel installation?

If your roof faces south, east or west your home is perfect to have solar panels installed. North facing roofs will not receive as much sunlight and therefore won't be as efficient.

The pitch of your roof should be between 20o - 50o.

What is the best roof direction for solar panels?

South facing roofs are able to generate the most electricity as they are exposed to the sun for the longest period of time. They are also exposed to the sun when it's at it's highest intensity.

However, if your roof is east or west facing you can still benefit hugely from solar panels, on average they would only loose around 15% of generated electricity.

North facing roofs are not recommended for solar panels in the UK.

How long does it take to install solar panels?

The installation process usually takes one day to complete for domestic projects. Larger commercial installations take longer and depend on the system size. Our team will let you know how long your installation should take during consultation.

How much money can I save by installing solar panels?

Solar and battery technology has become very efficient, so you are now able to make savings of up to 80% off your energy costs. With the current situation around increasing energy prices there has never been a better time to switch.

How much sunlight is required for solar panels to work?

It is a common misconception that sunlight is required for solar panels to work. Solar panels operate on daylight, not sunlight. Even on a cloudy day your solar panels will be generating electricity.

Do I need planning permission?

Having solar panels installed to your home is classed as a "permitted development" and does not require planning permission. You only require planning permission if you live in a listed building or area of outstanding natural beauty.

What are integrated solar panels?

Integrated Solar Panels, or In-roof Solar Panels, are designed to sit flush with your roof as opposed to on-roof solar panels which sit on top of an existing roof and protrude above the roof line.

To achieve this result, integrated solar panels require the existing roof tiles to be removed, unless of course they are being installed on a new build. This is to allow the panels to be embedded within the roof and sit flush with the roof tiles.

Is it worth getting a battery with solar panels?

While having solar panels installed is a great step, having solar batteries really enables you and your home to get the most out of the energy generated from your solar panels. Solar batteries store surplus solar energy that isn't being instantly used and can therefore be used later, for example overnight when the panels are not able to generate energy but you are still using appliances in your home. It's also great during the winter when daylight is limited. Because of this, batteries help you reduce those energy bills even further by reducing your reliance on the grid and allowing you to be more energy independent.

How many solar batteries are needed to power a home?

The solar battery capacity your home requires depends on your current electricity usage.

This usage is measured in kilowatt-hours (kWh), you will be able to see how many kWh's you use on a monthly basis by looking at your energy bill. You can send a photo or copy of your latest energy bill to us on the contact form on this page and we will be able to calculate the battery storage suitable for your home needs.

Looking to install a solar PV system on your home or business premises? Contact our team today for expert advise and a free, no obligation quote and solar design.

01733 601698

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