27 Feb IS MY HOME SUITABLE FOR SOLAR PANELS?
Most houses can integrate solar panel modules, the most common option being to use standard modules in a frame, fixed to an existing pitched roof or a tilted frame on a flat roof.
The solar panels may protrude slightly from the roof tiles, but will still be in keeping with the shape of the house.
Solar panels arrays are made up of modules of about 1.5 square metres, which means most roof shapes can be accommodated. In the UK, a typical installation is around 14 or 15 square metres.
If you are replacing your roof you can now buy solar panel integrated roof tiles and slates that can form part of the weatherproof membrane or structure.
Solar panel modules can also be mounted vertically and horizontally allowing the system to form part of the wall and roof structures in new properties, although performance will be reduced with these tilts.
Ideally your roof should face due south at a pitched angle of between 30° and 50° from the horizontal to give the best overall annual performance. Installations facing anywhere to the south of due east and due west are feasible, although output will be reduced. Installation is not recommended on roofs facing north.
There is also a difference in performance the further north you are, since the strength of sunlight diminishes. However, in the UK the differences are not significant and an installation will still provide excellent benefits.