Q How many panels do I need for a house?

Q Where do they need to be sited?

A How many solar panels, tubes or tiles you install will depend mainly on the space available. In all probability you will not have the necessary roof space to generate all your hot water or electricity - the idea is to cut the amount you buy in from power companies.

Not surprisingly the best results are attained from a site which gives you maximum exposure to the sun.

For that, you are looking at roof, or even wall space, that faces within 90 degrees of south.

Five square-metres of roof space is recommended, although smaller panels can be used if that kind of area is not available. If the roof faces east to west through south then it will receive sunlight for most of the day.

The less shade near the panels the more solar radiation they will be able to absorb, and;

The angle of the slope the panels are mounted on should be 30 to 45 degrees as the optimum.

In reality the best way to ascertain how many panels can be installed is to call in an expert, who will also be able to give you an indication of what your site could generate in the way of electricity or hot water.

Q How long will solar panels last

A You should be looking for a product with at least a 25-year guarantee. Most people hope to get longer from their panels, and it isn’t unknown for some photovoltaic installations to last 40 years.

As this is a long-term purchase it is a good idea to ask an installer the terms of the guarantee and assess the kind of deal that is offered.

Q Is there a choice of designs to suit different houses?

A The choice is limited and most people opt for panels. There are alternatives in the shape of tiles and slates. Tiles and slates are often recommended when a house is being re-roofed or for a new-build property as they are easier to fit then.

Q Will my roof be strong enough to carry solar panels?

A Solar panels can be heavy, you need a qualified installer to advise on whether the roof of your home can take the load - especially if panels are to be fitted over existing tiles.

Q How much loft space will installing solar panels take?

A That depends on the system - if you shop around and compare different designs you ought to be able to find something that doesn’t require any more space that your present water heating system.

Areas We Cover:

England - South East
Bedfordshire, Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, Essex, Hampshire, Hertfordshire, Kent, London East, London West, London North, London South, Middlesex, Oxfordshire, Surrey, W Sussex

England - South West
Cornwall, Devon, Dorset, Somerset, Wiltshire

England - East Anglia
Cambridgeshire, Norfolk, Suffolk

England - Midlands
Derbyshire, Gloucestershire, Herefordshire, Leicestershire, Lincolnshire, Northamptonshire, Nottinghamshire, Shropshire, Staffordshire, Warwickshire, Worcestershire

England - North East
Durham, Northumberland, Tyne & Wear, W Yorkshire
England - North West
Cheshire, Cumbria, Greater Manchester, Lancashire, Merseyside

Aberdeenshire, Angus, Central, Dumfries & Galloway, Fife, Highlands, Scotland Islands, Perth & Kinross, Scottish Borders

Clwyd, Dyfed, Gwent, Gwynedd, Mid-Glamorgan, Monmouthshire, Powys, South Glamorgan, West Glamorgan

Benefit from the money saving energy efficiency solar power can provide you and your home – Learn about insurance schemes, DIY opportunities, choosing a trustworthy installer and supplier, gaining grants from government schemes, selling on spare energy, costs of systems and much more.

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