If you are thinking about getting solar panels installed you will probably want a ball park figure on how much it is going to cost. You will want to know a complete figure rather than the cost of an individual panel and find out if they are a financially viable investment.
There are several reason people choose solar PV or photovoltaic panels. These are the panels that turn light into electricity. Untilrecently the overriding factor has probably been environmental considerations. You want to reduce your carbon footprint and make a green statement.
Recently however people have been installing a solar PV system from purely financial reasons with ethical considerations not even playing a factor. So does it make sense to pay to get them installed? Will you recoup your initial investment or even save money over the long run?
Let's first look at the cost of a typical set up. You must remember however that the price will vary as some companies may have special offers or use different technologies. There are different types of solar panel with different levels of performance. Generally the more you spend the better the system you will get.
So let us take a typically standard installation of 2.5kWp which many standard households would typically install. You could fit a larger system which would produce more electricity but obviously cost more. An average cost is about 15,000 UK pounds. You could however get quotes anywhere from 11,000 to as much as 20,000 UK Pounds.
It is important to take into consideration the type of panels you are getting. To you and me two panels that look exactly the same may perform very differently. Some turn more of the sunlight into electricity whilst others perform better in lower light conditions or under shading. This is one of the reasons the price can vary quite dramatically.
With our typical system you can expect on average to produce about half of all the electricity that you need. The reason only half is that the panels do not work at night. Also many families are not at home during the day as so cannot take advantage of the electricity their system is producing.
So let's do some number crunching. According to the Energy Savings Trust over a 25 year period you can earn a tax free sum of at least 20,000 pounds. This includes payments you will get from the feed in tariff, selling back your unused electricity to the grid and savings on your electricity bill. This will easily cover the higher end cost of a system.
Remember this is a minimum amount, it is also tax free and does not take into account inflation. This means most homes should benefit by a higher payment than our conservative estimate.
Find out how you can get free solar panels or find out more about how much solar panels cost if you want to claim the feed in tariff payments yourself