Solar PV & Batteries

As electricity prices have more than doubled in the last couple of years and solar PV technology has become more common, hence reducing their cost, payback has dropped significantly.
SolarPV payback

Though the UK is not famously sunny, we do have enough sunlight for solar panels to work. They don't need direct sunlight - although they'll produce most electricity when they get it.

Solar panels also work when it's cloudy or overcast. But they shouldn't be shaded or north facing. Check that any nearby trees or neighbouring buildings don't cast shadows onto your roof, and aren't likely to in future.

You'll need a mainly south-facing roof to get the best power output. West & east-facing will also be fine, though you may get less power.

South facing
East west

The average cost of a 4kW solar PV system including installation, is currently around £5,000. With the additional cost of a battery to consider c£5k. These costs should come down further once supply gets the better of current demand and as the cost of the technology continues to fall.

If you generate electricity that doesn’t get used, it can also be sold back to the grid through the Smart Export Guarantee. The rates vary but are typically around 5.5p per kWh.

It’s important to note that it’s more cost-effective to store the low-cost solar energy in a battery system, rather than to export it to the grid.

You will need to check with your local planning authority if you need planning consent, especially if you live in a listed building or conservation area.

We've recently featured the following local businesses:

Green Building Renewables

Heron Electrical

The Renewable Energy Enterprise