Solar panels have a variety of benefits and are crucial to the development of sustainability. There are presently more than 1 million solar PV installations, and in 2018, the UK generated 3.9% of its total electricity using solar energy. Over time, the UK's solar power capacity will only rise. Solar cells are not only good for the environment, but they can help you save a lot on your electricity cost.
Solar panels have drawbacks, but overall, investing in solar technology has many more advantages than problems. Over time, there has been a little increase in sunshine hours, which means your solar panel investment will continue to pay off. The graph below depicts how the UK's sunshine hours have been rising over time.
A excellent option to completely free up your household's electricity usage is using solar panels. But it's also important to take into account the drawbacks of solar panels. An outline of this renewable energy source's primary benefits and drawbacks is provided below:
Cheaper Electricity Bills
The use of electric appliances has led to an increase in utility costs. Installing solar panels in your home will save your electricity costs. Solar energy is entirely free, and excess energy may always be exported back to the grid or stored for later use.
Earn Money Back
You can make money by reselling extra electricity to the grid thanks to the Smart Export Guarantee (SEG). The SEG mandates that all energy providers with 150,000 or more consumers must provide homeowners with an export tariff; the export tariff must be higher than zero. Thus, small-scale solar PV generators will be able to recoup their initial costs. However, those already enrolled under the Feed-in Tariff will be subject to existing terms; only new installations may register for the SEG.
Solar panels can function effectively year-round. While they operate at their best during the summer, they can generate a sizable quantity of electricity in the winter and on gloomy days. Contrary to common belief, solar panels do not need heat to be effective. They simply require sunlight. That means solar panels can be effective even on cloudy days, and certainly during the winter months, too!
Low Maintenance Required
Solar panels often last 25 to 30 years and only need minimal upkeep throughout this time. You may need to replace a high-quality inverter every 10 to 15 years, but aside from that, you can benefit from solar power in a typical setting. Regular system inspections by your installation are a good idea to look for any loose brackets or cabling problems. Additionally, you should frequently clean your solar panels and make sure they are free of debris like twigs and leaves. Since rain can help remove dust from the system, solar panels put on roofs virtuall take care of themselves. Lastly, make sure that no trees are creating shadows on your solar panels, as this would decrease their effectiveness.
Independent from the Grid
In remote locations where building power lines to link with electrical power grids would be too expensive, solar panels are perfect. For isolated households in rural sections of the nation, solar PV systems provide a practical and economical answer Additionally, you might incorporate solar batteries into your solar panel system. The energy generated by solar cells is stored in solar batteries so that it can be used at night or on cloudy days.
Long Term Investment
Even though solar panels may be pricey, you can still produce electricity for nothing. Additionally, utilizing incentives like the SEG may result in a quicker break-even point.
Reduce Your Carbon Footprint
As solar energy is a green, sustainable source of electricity, switching to it considerably minimizes your carbon footprint. Solar power does not emit damaging carbon dioxide (CO2) or other pollutants, in contrast to conventional electricity generators like fossil fuels, coal, and oil. A single installation of household solar panels may offset about 25 tons of CO2 over its lifetime, according to estimates, saving about one tons of CO2 annually. It would take 25 years for 50 fully grown trees to absorb that much CO2. In other words, switching to solar energy can help! Start by choosing your region from the list below.
High Initial Costs
Solar panel purchases can be pricey. You should budget between £5,000 and £10,000 for upfront expenses. Even though you can recoup the cost of your solar panels by selling energy to the grid, some people may find it challenging to cover the high setup fees.
More Efficient During Daytime
Sunlight is a requirement for solar panels. Although they don't need direct sunlight to function, if they aren't fully exposed to the sun they become less effective. Additionally, they are less effective during the long, dark winters and are unable to produce energy during the night. To combat this, switching to the main power grid at night is a practical solution. As an alternative, households with a system that is not connected to the grid can store energy in solar batteries during the day so that it can be used at night.
Solar Panel Placement
Solar panel installation errors can significantly lower the efficiency of power output. Your solar panels' effectiveness will be severely constrained if you reside in a neighborhood with tall buildings or trees. Make sure there are no structures or trees in the path of the sunshine, and keep the solar panels free of branches and debris.
Best overall service | Scottish and Southern Energy.
Best at resolving complaints quickly | EDF.
The largest supplier | British Gas.
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