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The Power of the Sun: How Solar PV Can Revolutionize Your Household Energy Usage

Solar panels capture the sun's energy and convert it into electricity that you can use within the comfort of your own home.


A solar panel consists of many cells made from layers of semiconducting materials, but this is mostly silicon. However, it's important to remember that solar does not need direct sunlight, as the panels can work effectively on a cloudy day, but more sunlight will generate more electricity.





Do I need planning permission for solar?

Solar PV is generally considered 'permitted developments' and usually does not require planning permission. However, if you live in a listed building, conservation area or national park then additional restrictions may apply. If you're unsure or need help, please get in touch with us.


Do you have enough space for solar?

Space is an important factor to consider when it comes to solar PV. At Neutral Energy Solutions, we will assess your energy needs and suggest ways you can reduce your costs. An unshaded, south-facing roof is ideal for maximum electrical output. Furthermore, north-facing roofs would not be recommended due to the amount of sunlight.


Tall trees or neighbouring buildings could block the sun at certain times of day, reducing the amount of light that reaches your solar panels. While a bit of shade here and there is usually no big deal, too much can definitely impact your system's productivity. When scoping out the sun exposure, look at things from all angles - an obstruction on one side might sneakily make its presence known at sunrise or sunset. But don't stress too much; with smart planning and placement, your panels can soak up sunshine even in the shadiest of locations. A solar specialist can help ensure your system is optimized to capture every ray.


Grants


Eco4 Scheme-

The ECO4 scheme is a government initiative aimed at reducing carbon emissions and improving energy efficiency in homes across the UK. It stands for Energy Company Obligation 4 and it is the fourth stage of the ECO programme. The scheme is funded by energy suppliers and it offers financial incentives to homeowners to make energy-saving upgrades to their properties.


The scheme is targeted at low-income households and those living in properties with poor energy efficiency ratings. It aims to make homes warmer, more comfortable, and cheaper to run, while also reducing carbon emissions and improving air quality.


ECO Flex scheme-

The ECO Flex scheme is a government initiative aimed at making homes in the UK more energy-efficient. The scheme provides funding to help homeowners and landlords reduce their energy bills and carbon footprint by retrofitting their properties with energy-efficient measures. The ECO Flex scheme offers a range of measures, including insulation, heating upgrades, and renewable energy technologies, such as solar panels and wind turbines. These measures are designed to make homes more comfortable, reduce energy bills, and help the environment by reducing carbon emissions.


To be eligible for the ECO Flex scheme, homeowners and landlords must meet certain criteria. For example, the property must be in England, Scotland or Wales, and the applicant must be in receipt of certain benefits or on a low income. Landlords must also ensure that any improvements made are cost-effective, and they must provide evidence of their tenants' eligibility for the scheme.





Home Upgrade Grant-

The Home Upgrade Grant is a UK government scheme that provides financial assistance to homeowners who want to make energy-efficient improvements to their homes. The grant is designed to help homeowners reduce their carbon footprint, save energy, and lower their energy bills. The scheme covers a range of energy-saving improvements, including insulation, heating upgrades, and renewable energy installations.



The Smart Export Guarantee (SEG)-

It is a scheme launched in the UK in January 2020 that encourages the generation of renewable energy by small-scale electricity producers, such as solar panel owners. Under the SEG scheme, these producers can sell any excess electricity they generate back to the National Grid, and receive payment for it. The payments are made by energy suppliers, who are required by law to offer a tariff to small-scale producers.


0% VAT on Solar-

If you are considering installing solar panels in your home or business, you may be eligible for a 0% VAT rate on the purchase and installation costs. This is because the UK government offers a reduced VAT rate on renewable energy products, including solar panels, in an effort to encourage more people to switch to clean energy sources.





Are solar panels worth the investment?

Yes, solar panels are a great investment for households across the Southwest as they can generate free energy and are an excellent way to reduce utility bills and carbon footprint.




Solar panels can also allow households to earn money back through the 'smart export '. The smart export guarantee allows producers to sell any excess electricity they generate back to the National Grid, and receive payment for it. The payments are made by energy suppliers, who are required by law to offer a tariff to small-scale producers.


Get in touch with our Exeter, Devon renewable energy specialists to find out more! We're always happy to help.




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