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Compare solar panel installation

Solar panels are a valuable addition if you're looking to be greener when it comes to your electricity source. We compare the purchase and installation costs of solar panels to help find the solar panel installation deal that works for you. Enter your postcode below to compare solar panel installation in seconds with Uswitch - get started below.

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What are solar panels?

Solar panels (also known as photovoltaics, or PV) are panels that can be installed on a property’s roof or in its garden to capture energy from the sun and convert into electricity to be used in the property. Solar panels have been in use for decades and represent an environmentally-friendly means of converting solar energy into electricity.

What are the benefits of solar panels?

There are both pros and cons to investing in solar panels, so it's important to make sure you've considered all possibilities before committing to an installation.

  • Lower energy bills

  • Lower carbon footprint

  • High initial outlay

Are solar panels right for me?

Homeowners can be wary of investing in solar panels because of their fairly high initial installation costs along with concerns about their effectiveness. If you’re convinced they’re the right option for you, you just need to make sure you have enough space for the installation to be worthwhile and that you’re actually allowed to install them (mainly a concern if you live in a listed building.

How much do solar panels cost?

According to the Energy Saving Trust, the average domestic solar PV system costs around £5,500. However, the cost could vary considerably depending on a number of factors.

  • Size of array - the bigger the array, the more it will cost

  • Difficulty of roof access - the more difficult access is, the more it will cost

  • Panels or tiles - tiles are integrated into the building itself rather than sitting on a surface like panels do, so this will increase the cost.

Can I make money from my solar panels?

If you’re struggling to justify the cost of the solar panels, you can start recouping some of the cost almost immediately with export payments. There will probably be times when your panels generate more electricity than your property can use. When this happens, that surplus electricity can be exported to the grid for use by others and, as long as you and your supplier are both signed up to the Smart Export Guarantee, you’ll be paid for that electricity.

Do solar panels work when it’s not sunny?

Solar panels don’t actually need direct sunlight to turn into electricity. Cloudy days still generate electricity, though the stronger the sunlight, the more is generated. But living in the notoriously grey UK shouldn’t put you off installing them if you think they’re right for you.

Where can I find reputable solar panel installers?

There are now many companies which install PV solar panels in different areas of the UK. When it comes to putting up your solar panels, in the vast majority of cases you will need to get in touch with solar panel installers. You can find a list of qualified solar panel installers on the MCS website. We also recommend choosing a company that is registered with the Renewable Energy Consumer Code (RECC).

How long do solar panels last for?

Solar panels usually have a 25-year manufacturers' performance guarantee and you should get another 10 to 15 years of use beyond this.

The inverter - the piece of equipment that converts the Direct Current produced by the panels to Alternating Current on which the grid runs - needs replacing after about 12 to 15 years.

How do solar panels work with my gas and electricity supplier?

Nothing will change, except that you'll pay less for your bills. You can stay with your existing energy supplier, who will take readings from your meter as normal and bill you as usual.

FAQs

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How does switching energy supplier affect my Feed-In tariff?

If you have solar panels and a Feed-In tariff, find out how you can switch energy suppliers.

Learn more

Author: Ben Gallizzi | Last updated: 21 December 2023