PV solar panels have caught your attention. You want to capture and harness the energy of the sun, reduce bills and get some green credentials, but where will they go? More than likely, it’s on the roof but where on that roof? Here’s a few pointers that should help you whittle things down substantially.
Is Your House And Your Roof A Good Candidate For Solar Panels?
The rooftop of most buildings is the ideal place to install a solar system but we need to be sure that A. you can capture the maximum amount of sunlight possible and B. the roof is capable of holding that weight.
A good installer will look at pitch angle, direction, the shape and the size of your roof. In an ideal world every roof would have zero obstruction and offer a 30-degree angle but it’s not an ideal world so we need to work with what we have, as best we can. Solar panels can work from 15-40- degrees and even flat roofs can produce a decent amount of energy if it captures sunlight well.
The larger the roof, the larger the system can be, the greater the energy yield. However, it’s worth paying attention as skylights, windows and pipes can all impact space.
How Old Is Your Roof?
We’ve written about the lengthy lifespan of solar panels being upwards of 25 years. Recent studies suggest they just keep on going after that point, albeit at a slightly reduced efficacy. It’s worth knowing how old your roof is and if it’s likely to need replacing. Removing and reinstalling panels will eat up the savings they enable you to make in the first place. It can be worth fixing/upgrading your roof before a solar installation.
Does Your Roof Have Access to Light?
Light is vital for your solar panels so what’s throwing shade? Trees, next door’s chimney, buildings in close proximity? This will all need to be taken into account when figuring out the placement of your system. Again, a good assessment will answer all these questions but this should start narrowing down the possibilities for placement. Obviously, some things, like the trees, can be removed/cut back but knocking down buildings and neighbouring chimney stacks is probably not going to go in your favour.
You might feel removing a tree is still a big thing to do from an environmental standpoint but you can weigh this up against the benefits of switching from being so reliant on fossil fuels to going green with solar power.
After reading down through this, you should be able to start isolating the areas that a solar panel system would best suit. However, if you want a little more certainty or if you feel some creative planning is required to make it work, give us a call and we will talk you through the various options available.
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