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  • Writer's pictureTrevor Rook

Solar Panels and Home Batteries some FAQ's ...

Sorry it’s been so long since the last blog. We’ve had an incredible number of enquiries and I have struggled to find time for anything! We’ve been busy on site, and on people’s roofs.

I thought a blog to cover some of the more frequently asked questions might be useful. I’m always happy answering questions and discussing solar so feel free to get in touch if you need to ask anything, but here are some of the most common.

Do I get paid for what I send back to the grid?

Yes. The smart export guarantee (SEG) requires electricity suppliers to offer some sort of payment for electricity sent back to the grid. The amount varies by supplier, so its worth shopping around (and remembering that you don’t have to ‘sell’ to the same company you buy your electricity from). Currently, the best SEG rate is exclusive for Tesla Powerwall owners at 24p per kWh. Octopus are next best at 15p per kWh for customers who buy from them.

Can solar be installed on east/ west facing roof? Or south only?

Certainly. A South facing roof will always produce more power per kW of installed capacity, but depending on roof pitch, the difference with East/ West may be less than you would think. As a guide, a roof facing east or west will produce around 15% less than one facing due South. There is a big advantage of East/ West split roof though, and that is that both sides can be used meaning twice the room! Get in touch for a tailored quote!

Will solar generate power on cloudy days?

Yes, but it will be less than clear sunshine. Solar panels don’t need full sun, they will still produce electricity on cloudy days. The largest output days will be the much longer days of midsummer and the lowest outputs will be in mid-late December as the days are shortest.

Are solar batteries worth it?

Yes. Lots of people have expected the cost of batteries to fall as global production increases. Demand has increased in line with supply, so battery cost has stayed fairly flat. However, as the cost of energy has increased, batteries have gone from ‘feel good’ accessories to financially sensible propositions. If harvesting electrons from your roof, putting them in a box and using them to keep your lights on and boil the kettle in the evening sounds fun, call us, we can help.

Are home batteries worth it without solar?

They can be. Its something we’re asked for more frequently. There are many ‘smart’ tariffs where the rate you pay for electricity varies during the day. These can be used to buy cheaper power to use later. In future, with more renewable generation (wind in particular) connected to the grid, we may well see more financial incentives for using power when generation is high and demand is low.


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