How to choose the right solar panel for UK homes

If you like the idea of paying less for energy throughout the year, solar panels are the answer.

You’ll need to find the right solar system to meet your home’s electricity needs before you can reap the many benefits of solar panels. This guide will show you how to select solar panels for your home from a variety of available options.

Why put solar panels in?

If you’re interested in installing solar panels on your home, you probably already know about the advantages. Nevertheless, there are a few good reasons to consider solar panels:

  • You’ll save money on energy costs.
  • Reduce your home’s carbon footprint.
  • Charging an electric vehicle (EV) for free
  • It will last a long time.
  • No running costs.
  • Low maintenance cost
  • You’ll get paid through the Smart Export Guarantee (SEG).
right solar panel

How to Choose Solar Panels for Your Home

There are a few things to keep in mind when selecting solar panels for your home:

  • Solar PV or solar thermal panels
  • Type of solar cells
  • Power output
  • Number of panels
  • Panels Efficiency
  • Mounting
  • Costing

Solar thermal or photovoltaic?

Solar thermal panels are a solar water heating system, while solar PV panels generate electricity for the home’s appliances. A property must have a hot water cylinder for a solar thermal system to be installed.

Types of solar cells

Solar panels are typically constructed of silicon, and there are two types to choose from: polycrystalline (poly) as well as monocrystalline (mono). While they both use sunlight to generate free, renewable energy in the same way, there are some key differences to keep in mind.

The black monocrystalline panels are generally regarded as the more fashionable option of the two. Even though they have a higher price tag, they are the most popular choice in the UK because they can achieve higher levels of efficiency.

Despite their lower cost and blue color, polycrystalline panels are not as efficient as their more expensive counterparts.

Number of panels

Solar arrays in the UK typically range in size from 1 kW to 4 kW and can include anywhere from 2 to 16 individual panels.

The amount of power required from the solar panels and the roof space available will determine the required number of panels. You can determine how many solar panels you might need to use: For example.

The average home in the UK will get about 4.5 hours of sunlight per day over the course of a year; this number will be higher in the summer and lower in the winter.

We need to figure out how much electricity a solar panel can produce each day. We need to divide the power output of the solar panel by the number of hours of sunlight during the day.

Power output

The power output of solar panels, which is measured in watts (W), shows how much energy they can produce. Most solar panels produce power between 250 and 360 watts, though there are also models that produce 400 watts.

It all comes down to how much electricity you use to choose the appropriate power output for your home. Simply take a note of how much electricity was used over a certain time in kilowatt hours (kWh) using a recent electricity bill.

A typical household in the UK consumes between 8.5 and 10 kWh per day, though this number varies depending on the type of house and the number of people living there. In other words, a solar panel with a power output of 250 watts would produce 1,125 watts per hour (Wh) in four hours of direct sunlight, or 1.1 kWh per day.


A solar panel’s efficiency rating indicates how effectively it converts solar energy into electricity. The panels’ efficiency is shown as a percentage, and the higher the percentage, the better they are. Most solar panels have efficiencies between 10 and 20 percent, but there are also models that are 25 percent efficient.

The efficiency of solar panels does decrease over time, about 0.5 percent annually, and because their lifespan is so long (20-25 years), manufacturers offer power warranties that guarantee a certain level of efficiency after a certain amount of time. You can get a sense of how well different panels will perform in the future by comparing power warranties.

The location, shading, roof angle, frequency of cleaning, and outdoor temperature all has an impact on solar panel efficiency (efficiency can decrease in extremely high temperatures). The best position for installing solar panels can be suggested by a solar installer.

Warranty of the panels

There are two warranties included with solar panels: a power warranty and a product warranty. As previously stated, the power warranty is a representation of the efficiency of the solar panels after they have been installed for some time.

The length of time for which the manufacturer will cover you in the event of a problem with the solar panels is known as the product warranty.

When it comes to mounting, the solar panels should be positioned at an angle so that they face south and are away from any large trees that might shade them.

There are several mounting options available to assist in positioning the solar panels in the most effective position.


While it may be tempting to go with the cheapest option, you probably won’t get as much return on your investment. The cost of the solar panels will undoubtedly be the deciding factor for many homeowners.

Prices for each kind of solar panel will be different, and the total will be determined by how much electricity your home uses.

Fortunately, solar panels are generally at their lowest prices in several years, ranging from £6,000 to £7,000.

When it comes to choosing the right solar panels for your home, you should talk to a professional solar panel installer.

Savings with Solar Panels

Producing your own free, renewable energy will make you less dependent on your supplier, which will result in lower energy bills.

Even though solar panels work best in the summer, they can be used all year round, even on cloudy days, which is good news for homeowners in the UK.

Solar panels reduce energy costs by 40 to 50 percent for many homeowners, resulting in a solar payback period of 11 to 12 years, depending on where you live and the cost of the panels.

If you include a solar battery in your solar PV system, you could save even more money.

Solar Batteries

No matter how big the solar PV system is, it will always produce more energy than the house can use. You’re missing out on a lot of the energy generated by your solar panels because this excess energy is automatically sent to the National Grid.

When you add a solar battery to your solar photovoltaic (PV) system, you will be able to store unused energy during the day and use it when your solar panels stop producing energy after sunset.

In addition, the average household’s energy consumption in the UK peaks between 6 and 7 p.m., when the sun isn’t shining much during most of the year. If energy is stored during the day, it will be available for use in the evening when the panels are not producing energy.

In the event of a power outage, some solar batteries can serve as a backup power source; in some cases, this is an optional extra. Installing a solar battery with a power cut backup feature will ensure that you will still have power even though solar panels will not function during a power cut.

Frequently Asked Questions

How does solar power work?

The photovoltaic (PV) effect converts sunlight into electricity. When photons from the sun knock electrons out of their atomic orbit and channel them into an electrical current, this phenomenon is known as the PV effect.

Using PV solar panels, sunlight can be used to power everything from calculators, homes to outer space stations.

How does solar power work at night?

Because the photovoltaic (PV) cells in solar panels need to have access to sunlight to generate electricity, solar panels do not produce power at night.

Do solar panels work on cloudy days?

Yes, on cloudy days, solar panels still produce electricity, but not as effectively as on sunny days. Solar panels can capture both direct and indirect light (light that shines through clouds), but when it’s cloudy, they only work at 10 to 25 percent of their normal efficiency.

But cloudy days can be good because rain cleans the panels and makes them work better as a whole.

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