What To Know Before Installing Solar Panels in Your Home – Griggs Homes
What To Know Before Installing Solar Panels in Your Home
There are many benefits to implementing solar power in your home, including reduced energy bills and a lower carbon footprint. However, before making the change, there are many things to consider carefully.
For example, an average-sized UK home with a 4kW solar panel system will cost around £6,000 - £8,000 to install but you could expect to save roughly £270 on electricity bills per year and it can increase the value of your home.
How Do Solar Panels Work?
Solar panels (also known as solar photovoltaic / PV panels) convert energy from sunlight into electricity. This electricity is used to power your house and any surplus energy is exported to the grid.
Are Solar Panels Worth It?
Solar panels can be a worthwhile investment, especially for those living in areas with high energy rates and a sufficient solar rating.
With solar panels, there is an initial high investment yet it can work out to be far more cost-effective in the long run. Plus, there are grants available to homes that can supply their own energy. See also Green Home Grants.
Taking taxes into consideration, you could be saving a lot of money long-term if you choose to lay out the initial investment associated with solar panels.
How Many Solar Panels are Needed to Run a House?
Of course the cost of solar panels will depend from house to house based on the size and the electricity usage. Taking into account an average house (1500 square feet approximately), a typical electricity bill is around £60-£100 monthly. To cover these costs with solar power, you will need approximately 15-18 solar panels. According to Renewable Energy Hub, for optimal solar energy generation in the UK, panels should ideally face south at an angle of 32 degrees without any shade.
Can a House Run on Solar Power Alone?
Before choosing to run your house on solar power, you need to know how effective this method actually is and whether solar power alone can power your home. Solar power is such an effective method that it can in fact power an entire house.
What is the Electricity Use In a Solar Powered Home?
With a home solar system, your electricity bill will take into account the number of kilowatt hours that you have used from the grid. This does not factor in any electricity from the solar panels themselves. This means that if you have only used power generated by the solar panels, your electricity bill would be zero-cost.
Do Solar Panels Need Batteries to Work?
Your home solar system will need a battery in order to work during a power outage. The tax credit from solar is designed for energy storage costs as long as the battery is being charged by the solar panels.
What Happens After Installing Solar Panels?
After the panels are installed, you will need to undergo an electrical inspection from a state authority within 10 days of the installation. You will also need to have a metre upgrade.
Following this, the installer will share any necessary documents for you to take to your electricity retailer.
Can I Install Solar Panels Myself?
Solar panel installation requires professional experience and should not be carried out by amateurs due to the high-voltage wiring. There is a very high risk of injury during the installation process. Not only that, but done incorrectly, installing solar panels can cause long-term problems to your home and the electrical wiring.
How Often Should I Clean My Solar Panels?
Experts recommend cleaning solar panels approximately every six months to reduce the build up of dirt. If you feel that they are becoming very dirty very quickly, you may need to clean them more frequently.
How Often Should I Replace My Solar Panels?
Part of the cost-effectiveness of the solar panels is their durability and low-maintenance nature. Even though there is an initial layout, they can last for a very long time with little to no maintenance.
The lifespan of solar panels for housing is around 25-30 years, on average, although some can last up to 50 years without the need for maintenance.
After this time, the solar panels are less efficient. Over the years, there is a degradation rate for the solar panels and you will need to assess their efficiency. That being said, after 25 years of usage, approximately 4 in 5 solar panels are still operating at 75% efficiency.
How Can Solar Panels Affect Your House Value?
Well-installed solar panels can help to increase the value of your house. Prospective buyers can see a solar-powered home as a way to reduce their monthly utilities and therefore save them a great deal of money in the long-run. For this, it is likely that they are willing to pay more upfront.
If installed poorly, solar panels can cause major damage to your roof. However, if carried out by a professional this is unlikely.
Are There Disadvantages to Solar Energy in the Home?
Like everything, there are of course disadvantages associated with solar power in the home. Aesthetically speaking, solar panels are not for everyone and may affect the appearance of your home.
At a logistical level, not all roofs are appropriate for installing solar panels (for example the shape or the amount of weight it is able to support). This means that solar powering your home may not be a possibility.
The initial cost of the solar panels, as well as the installation cost, may be a deterrent for many. However, weighing up the long-term cost, solar panels can be a cost-effective solution to power your home.