Spring into action and put solar panels on your roof
For those thinking about making improvements to their home and cutting their bills this year, why not put solar panels on the roof?
That’s the suggestion of Midlands green energy expert Ron Fox who says now may be a good time to go green as energy bills are set to soar from Easter while the cost of solar systems have fallen for an average home from £6,000 to between £4,000 and £5,000 in the last five years.
Around one million British homes have solar panels and the rate at which they are being installed is increasing with 7,113 installations in November last year, up by 27 per cent on the 5,611 in the previous month of October.
“The advantages are that they are an environmentally-friendly choice as sunlight is free, energy bills can be reduced by around £300 a year on a typical home and householders can make money by selling any excess electricity back to the National Grid under the government’s Smart Export Guarantee scheme,” said Ron, of Noreus Ltd.
Also, residents won’t need planning permission, although there are some requirements needed if the house is a listed building or in a conservation area.
But Ron points out that because of the initial outlay it will probably take at least 11 years or longer to recoup that cost.
As well as solar panels which capture energy from the sun to turn it into electricity for the home, Ron said there are two other types of solar systems.
Firstly, a solar assisted heat pump or thermodynamic solar system which absorbs heat from the atmosphere using an aluminium collector fitted to the wall or roof to provide hot running water 365 days a year whatever the weather. It can also be used to heat the home as an alternative to gas or oil central heating.
Secondly, solar thermal systems are hardened glass collector panels that absorb energy from the sun which heats up water inside a collector and is then pumped through a cylinder to provide hot water when the taps are turned on.
But not all properties are suitable for solar panels. The roof should not be totally in the shade during the day and householders will get maximum benefit if it south facing. A typical home will have 10-14 solar panels on the roof.
“People are well advised to contact an expert first to decide what type of solar system would be best for their home before spending thousands of pounds,” said Ron, of Noreus Ltd on the University of Keele Science and Innovation Park in North Staffordshire.
If you are not sure which solar power solution is right for you or you want more information call Ron on 0845 474 6641.
Caption: A timely reminder – Putting solar panels on the roof will help householders to go green and to cut their energy bills.