Frequent Questions

Here are some of the most common question we are asked.

If you have a question that we have not covered here then please let us know and we’d be happy to discuss it.

You can call us on 0800 0248482 or click on the button below to send us an email.

Do I need planning permission?

PV roof systems fall under permitted development rights and so do not require planning permission. However if your building is listed or is in an area of outstanding natural beauty, please consult your local council planning department for advice before proceeding with installation.

Will my roof be strong enough?

Most roofs are strong enough to support a PV installation without any reinforcement, but the installer will perform a site survey and make an assessment  prior to installation.

How long will the installation take?

Installation normally takes 2 – 3 days.

Do panels need cleaning?

Usually dust and dirt washes off when it rains if the panels are installed at an angle of at least 15 degrees. In extreme cases, dirt may cause a power reduction of about 10%.

How long do PV panels last?

Our PV panels have a product warranty of 10 years, expected lifetime of up to 40 years, performance of 90% for 10 years and 80% for 20 years.

What are the effects of shade?

Shading is critical. Minor shading can result in significant loss of energy because the cell with the lowest illumination determines the operating current of the series string in which it is connected.

What happens at night?

PV panels do not produce energy in the dark and so electricity is drawn from the grid in the normal way.

Are there different types of solar systems?

There are two distinct solar systems:

  • Solar thermal – for hot water production
  • Solar PV – for producing electricty

We offer solutions for both types of solar sytem.

Will I need to inform building control?

Yes, you should speak to building control about your intentions and they will advise you if you need to take any further action. Your installer should instruct you to contact building control.

Do I need to inform my electricity supplier?

For systems less than 4kW peak power your installer will inform them once your installation is complete. For larger systems, permission will need to be gained in advance from the network operator.

How does a solar PV system work?

Solar panels generate electricity using energy from the sun. Because the panels produce energy from daylight and not solar radiation they still produce energy on cloudy days. The direct current produced by the panels is converted by the inverter to alternating current for use in the building.

The electricity produced is either consumed directly by appliances in the building, or if more power than required is generated it is exported to the grid. At night or when the system is not producing enough energy, power is supplied by the grid in the normal way.

Do the PV panels need direct sunlight to work?

Solar PV works from daylight and not direct sunlight, but more power is produced on a sunny day as opposed to an overcast or cloudy one.

What happens if there is a power cut?

Our PV systems are entirely connected. If there is a power cut the system is automatically switched off as a safety measure to ensure power does not leak onto the grid in order to protect personnel working to restore the power supply. There will be no power to the building during the power cut.

Can I buy a system and install it myself?

Our PV systems are available only from specialist distributors, electrical wholesalers and renewables merchants and must be installed by an MCS Accredited Installer. If the system is not installed by an MCS Accredited Installer it will not be covered by our warranty or eligible for the Feed-in Tariff.

Do you have any questions?
Feel free to contact us!

0800 0248482