Frequently Asked Questions

Find the answers to your questions about Solar Panels, Heat Pumps and other Renewables

Solar PV

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You'll probably find the answer in here, but if not, get in touch with us via our Contact Page. No matter what it is you'd like to know about our renewable technologies, we're happy to help.

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Can I export my excess generation?

Any electricity that you don’t use will be exported back to the grid, which you’ll get paid for. For smaller systems, you can be paid an assumed rate of 50% of your whole system generation. For larger systems, or if you think you’re exporting more than 50%, you can install an Export Meter to provide an accurate reading.

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Do I need planning permission?

For an on-roof system you won’t require any planning permission, so long as your property is not a listed building or is in a conservation area.

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Are there any grants available?

Unfortunately, not anymore, but they have been replaced with the Feed-In Tariff (FiT), which is a government-backed scheme where your electricity supplier will pay you for the electricity you generate. It doesn’t even matter whether you use that electricity or not, you’ll be paid either way.

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Can my Solar PV panels provide hot water?

With the use of a Smart Switch, any un-used electricity can be used to provide your home with free hot water.

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Do I need to talk to my electricity provider?

You don’t need to worry about this side of the project, we’ll sort out all of the paperwork and make sure your provider knows exactly what’s happening.

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Does it take long to install the system?

A typical 4kWp system (our most popular) can be installed and operational within a day.

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How long does a Solar PV system take to pay itself off?

A typical 4kWp south-facing system will pay itself back in 7 years - after that the system will generate pure profit. It can be a little longer for smaller systems or those at poorer orientations, but we can confirm your estimated payback time during your no-obligation site survey.

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Will I be eligible for the Feed-In Tariff (FiT)?

We’re MCS approved, so all of our installations are eligible for government incentives. Your final rate can still depend on your property's EPC however, so best to check that.

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How much does a Solar PV system cost?

That depends on the size of the system you’re after. Our smaller systems can be installed from as little as £3500, with our 4kWp systems starting at £4,500 (inc. VAT)

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What type of panels do you use?

We typically install SunPower solar panels, which are the most efficient in the world. Due to our commitment to quality and consistently high customer satisfaction, we’re privileged to be named SunPower Premier Partners. However, we do also stock panels from a variety of other suppliers, to ensure that you get a system that fits your property for the perfect price.

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Do I need an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC)?

To get the full Feed-In Tariff you’ll need an EPC rating of D or above. If your property does not achieve this, it’s possible that adding Solar Panels or a few other measures could improve your grade, making you eligible for the government incentives. For lower grades, you can still benefit from the FiT, it’s just at a slightly reduced rate.

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What is an inverter?

Panels produce Direct Current (DC) electricity, but your property and the grid run on Alternating Current (AC). An Inverter is a piece of equipment that changes AC to DC, allowing to make use of your generated electricity.

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How much can I generate from Solar Panels?

A south-facing roof with a 4kWp solar system can generate over 4000 units (kWh) per year. On average, a household will use around 3200 units per year, so with a good system you can run your home completely free.

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For how long will I receive FiT payments?

You’ll receive FiT payments for 20 years from when you register. The rate you receive will stay the same from when you started, no matter if there are future cuts, and it will even adjust for inflation.

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How do I use the power from my panels?

If you’re generating electricity from your panels, your property will always use that free electricity before it draws from the grid. You can continue to use your appliances as normal.

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What if my roof isn’t south facing?

South facing roofs are typically the best, but your system will work on any roof that receives light. If you’re concerned about your orientation, get in touch so we can calculate how much you could generate.

Heat Pumps

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Is a Heat Pump right for me?

Heat Pumps are most cost-effective for new build properties that are well insulated and make use of underfloor heating. But you can also see huge benefits in older, retrofit properties. If your Oil & LPG bills are high, you could save a huge amount with a well sized Heat Pump. To ensure you get the perfect system, we’ll carry out a full heat loss survey throughout your property.

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Do I need a backup boiler?

The right sized Heat Pump will satisfy all your heating and hot water needs, so you shouldn’t need a backup boiler.

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Should I install a ground source or air source heat pump?

A Ground Source heat pump is more efficient, but you’ll need a little excavation to fit the ground-loop. This means new builds are perfect as they’re usually already excavated. Air Source is perfect for retrofits or when you don’t have a lot of ground space.

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Will my radiators work with a Heat Pump?

We’ll need to double check the size of your radiators during your site visit, but yes, most systems will work with your existing radiators.

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What is a Coefficient of Performance?

A Coefficient of Performance (COP) relates the amount of heat energy produced per unit of electricity. The higher the COP, the more efficient the system.

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How do I know what size Heat Pump I need?

This can be different for every customer, it’s really down to picking the perfect fit for your property and can depend on factors such as the size of the property and your insulation quality. During our site survey, we’ll perform a full analysis to ensure you get the right system.

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Do Heat Pumps require a lot of maintenance?

A properly installed Heat Pump requires next to no maintenance. We simply recommend an annual service to ensure that everything is running as expected.

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Do Heat Pumps provide my property with hot water?

Our Heat Pumps will provide your property with all the hot water you need throughout the whole day

 

Tesla Powerwall

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What is Powerwall?

Powerwall is a rechargeable battery for your home, that stores energy, either from the grid or a Solar PV system, and makes it available on demand. It’s compact, sleek and easy to integrate into your property.

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Can I add a Powerwall to my existing solar system?

Adding a Powerwall to your property with an existing Solar PV system is the perfect way to boost your investment and reduce your bills. Any excess generation will be stored for later use, helping you to get the most out of your system.

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What makes up a Powerwall system?

A Powerwall system is made up of at least one Powerwall battery and a Gateway. The Gateway monitors the system, provides energy management and metering, and can work with up to 10 Powerwall batteries. It can also receive over-the-air updates, so your system will always be up to date.

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What can I use Powerwall for?

There are a variety of applications for Powerwall. If you have a Solar PV system, you can store your excess generation during the day and use that energy to power your property at night. You can draw from the grid at times with a lower rate, and then use that energy during more expensive times to reduce your bill. You can even monitor your real-time energy usage with the Tesla mobile app.

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Can I fit multiple Powerwalls together?

Yes. Multiple Powerwalls can be used together to create a higher-capacity system. They can either be mounted side-by-side, or stacked front-to-back when floor mounted. We’ve fitted several combined systems, so get in touch if you’d like to know what it could look like.

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Where can I install a Powerwall?

Powerwall units are rated for use indoors and outdoors, so you can usually install them wherever is convenient for you. Humidity and rain aren’t a problem, but it’s best not to install them in areas that could flood, or next to water sources.

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How does Self-Powered mode work?

When you’re producing excess solar energy, Powerwall will use this to charge. Then, when your home is using more power than your Solar system can produce, it will discharge to offset your use. If your Powerwall is fully charged, any excess Solar generation will be exported to the grid, and if your home needs more than Powerwall can provide, it will import from the grid. All done automatically.

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Can I monitor my Powerwall operation?

With the Tesla app, you’ll be able to see exactly how your home has been using energy, and where it’s all been coming from, as your Powerwall system has an active internet connection.

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Can I charge my electric vehicle with Powerwall?

There’s no direct connection between Powerwall and your EV charger, but yes, you can use your stored energy to charge your electric vehicle just like any other appliance.

Want To Know More?

If you'd like to know more about how you can benefit from any of our renewable energy solutions, don't hesisate to get in touch. Our staff are happy to help you pick the perfect system to suit your needs, and we can be contacted via email or phone. Alternatively, you can drop by the office to discuss your green future and make the most of the office biscuits.

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