SERVICES

SOLAR PHOTOVOLTAIC


Solar panel electricity systems, also known as solar photovoltaics (PV), capture the sun's energy using photovoltaic cells. These cells don't need direct sunlight to work – they can still generate some electricity on a cloudy day.

The cells convert the sunlight into electricity, which can be used to run household appliances and lighting.



The benefits of solar electricity

  • Cut your electricity bills: sunlight is free, so once you've paid for the initial installation your electricity costs will be reduced.
  • Get paid for the electricity you generate: the government’s Feed-In Tariffs pay you for the electricity you generate, even if you use it.
  • Sell electricity back to the grid: if your system is producing more electricity than you need, or when you can't use it, you can sell the surplus back to the grid.
  • Cut your carbon footprint: solar electricity is green, renewable energy and doesn't release any harmful carbon dioxide or other pollutants. A typical home solar PV system could save over a tonne of carbon dioxide per year – that's more than 30 tonnes over its lifetime.

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How do solar panels (PV) cells work?

PV cells are made from layers of semi-conducting material, usually silicon. When light shines on the cell it creates an electric field across the layers. The stronger the sunshine, the more electricity is produced. Groups of cells are mounted together in panels or modules that can be mounted on your roof. The power of a PV cell is measured in kilowatts peak (kWp). That's the rate at which it generates energy at peak performance in full direct sunlight during the summer. PV cells come in a variety of shapes and sizes. Most PV systems are made up of panels that fit on top of an existing roof, but you can also fit solar tiles.

Solar tiles and slates

For systems where the user would prefer that the roof retains a ‘traditional’ look and feel, solar tiles are designed to be used in place of ordinary roof tiles. A system made up of solar tiles will typically cost around twice as much as an equivalent panel system, although you will save the money you would have spent on roof tiles or slates. Solar tile systems are not normally as cost-effective as panel systems, and are usually only considered where panels are not considered appropriate for aesthetic or planning reasons.

Bespoke services

  • Optional In-Roof Solar tiles system, for better aesthetics
  • Choice of full or part roof systems
  • Suitable for facades, in addition to roofline
  • Can be produced to exact dimensions, with option of triangle or rhomboid shaped panels
  • Solid Renewables will size and design a scheme customised to your individual requirements, upon receipt of the basic information, providing a detailed, itemised quotation.

Likely Costs

The average domestic solar PV system is 4kWp and on average costs between £6,000 and £7,400 (including VAT at 5%). Costs have fallen significantly over the last year. Other factors that affect PV installation costs are:

  • The more electricity the system can generate, the more it costs but the more it could save.
  • Larger systems are usually more cost-effective than smaller systems (up to 4kWp).
  • PV panels are all around the same price per kWp, but PV tiles cost much more than a typical system made up of panels.
  • Panels built into a roof are more expensive than those that sit on top.

Expected Savings

If your system is eligible for the Feed-In Tariff scheme it could generate savings and income of around £750 a year. You will get paid for both the electricity you generate and use, and what you don't use and export to the grid.

When applying for FITs you will need to show evidence of your property's Energy Performance Certificate and this will affect what tariff you can get.

Off grid

"Off-grid" means that you are not connected to an electricity grid or network. It is very common in rural areas where electricity companies have been unable to connect domestic, commercial, industrial and institutional consumers.

When planning for an off grid renewable energy system, it is vital to assess your specific requirements ... i.e. what appliances - lighting, heating, cooking, refrigeration, pumping etc - you want to power from the installation.

The power requirement of these functions must be determined, as well as their frequency of use (and in some circumstances the likely timing of their use, so that the peak requirement at any one time is known). It is necessary to carefully match the individual parts of the system - batteries, inverters, generators etc.

This process enables us to make the most efficient use of the energy available, and to have energy available at the time(s) it is needed.

Commercial Grid Connected

Our Solar Photovolatic proposition also extends to large-scale roof mounted systems, ideal for offices, industrial units and public buildings. As with our other PV solutions, Solid Renewables will ensure all products and installations qualify for the relevant Feed-in-Tariff payment schemes to provide a healthy return on investment, as well as a reduction in the cost of electricity bills.

Solid Renewables offer turnkey installation of larger scale roof mounted solar PV, offering systems of 10kW - 250kW as standard and larger on request. The UK Government has chosen to maintain its support for roof top solar PV while it is trying to discourage large-scale ground mounted equipment. This means it is still an attractive prospect, particularly on projects with high electricity demand during daylight hours.

These systems require DNO approval which will have a longer lead time and can have a charge attached as well, so contact us early to avoid any changes in the Feed in Tariff. Structural and site surveys are usually required, so Solid Renewables would conduct an initial feasibility before a full survey is conducted – but the return on investment can be up to 15% on these systems in the right areas and with an optimised angle.

Our Domestic Service

We offer a full design and installation service for solar panels, tiles or slates – as appropriate - from 1.0kWp right up to 4.0kWp systems on a single phase, or up to 17.0kWp on a three phase system.

An initial consultation will enable us to fully understand our customers’ individual requirements, after which we will be in a position to recommend a bespoke solution to fit in with your property and budget limitations.

You will be provided with a report clearly illustrating projected annual savings and income, set against up-front installation costs – enabling you to be comfortable with the decisions you make.

As with all Solid Renewables projects, we will keep you fully informed all the way through the design, installation, commissioning and handover process; using only fully qualified and accredited staff.

We aim to exceed our customers’ demands and requirements and all contractors/staff have sound training to install our systems; every installation is undertaken to the highest standard.

Our Commercial Service

Saving you money in the short-term, making you money in the long-term and helping you to meet business sustainability targets – investing in solar just makes good commercial sense.

We can work with your business directly, taking the installation all the way from design to delivery, or join you at a particular stage of your project. Our service covers:

You will be provided with a report clearly illustrating projected annual savings and income, set against up-front installation costs – enabling you to be comfortable with the decisions you make.

As with all Solid Renewables projects, we will keep you fully informed all the way through the design, installation, commissioning and handover process; using only fully qualified and accredited staff.

We aim to exceed our customers’ demands and requirements and all contractors/staff have sound training to install our systems; every installation is undertaken to the highest standard.

  • Design and consultation
  • Installation and project management
  • Paperwork: Planning and Code for Sustainable Homes requirements, grant funding applications, Feed-in Tariff and Renewable Heat Incentive applications, grid connection applications, Energy Performance Certificates
  • Operations and maintenance
  • System monitoring
  • Handovers and staff training in system management and monitoring

We are also happy to support you as part of a bigger team, working through construction, Mechanical engineer and Electrical contractors, or alongside architects and energy consultants.

Solar for Farms

Do you have land or buildings that can be utilised to reduce your energy spend and create a revenue stream?

Farms make fantastic sites for solar. Vast roofs and expanses of unused land are ideal locations for large systems that can offset high daily electricity consumption, as well as provide an income stream through the Feed-in Tariff (FIT).

Do you have a high hot water demand? Dairies, food processing units, abattoir facilities and campsites are ideal beneficiaries of Solar systems. Thanks to the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI), a well-designed Solar installation will allow you to control your operating costs and provide a reliable income.

As a high-energy user, the savings alone often provide an adequate return on your investment; however, with the FIT and RHI, your combined return on investment is likely to be as much as 10%.

Solar PV Battery Storage

Solar PV panels will – obviously – only generate electricity during daylight hours. Until recently, this meant that users had to revert to electricity from the grid after dark.

However, the new range of solar PV battery storage systems supplied and installed by Solid Renewables will enable you to capture the energy generated by your solar panels, store it and use it at any time of the day or night - which means that you can now make the most of every bit of free electricity your solar PV panels produce, and further reduce your dependence on traditional power providers.

Solid Renewables are approved installers of Tesla Powerwall batteries, which – unlike many other battery storage solutions – provide 100% usable stored energy and come with a 10 year warranty.