Solar panels


We are working with a company called Empower Community to install solar panels to as many of our homes as possible.

This is to help improve the energy efficiency of your homes and to help you save money by reducing electricity bills. The good news is that you won't have to pay a penny; a government backed payment called a 'feed-in tariff' will be received to us for every unit of electricity the panels generate, and we'll use this money to help pay for the project and re-invest back into your community.

Solar panels use sunlight to make electricity, so if your home is suitable, you'll be able to use the electricity that the panels generate.


Your house will need to have met some criteria before it can be considered for solar panels:

  • Your home faces the right direction to get the most sunshine
  • The electrical network provider Northern Power Grid must approve the connection of the property
  • Your roof is at the right angle to put solar panels on
  • Your roof is strong enough to take the weight of the solar panels
  • Your home isn't overshadowed by other buildings and trees

However, even if your home meets all of the criteria, the electricity companies decide how many homes (and which homes) we can connect to the grid, which could mean that other homes in your area might not be able to have the solar panels installed.

You'll receive a letter from us if your property is suitable which will confirm when you can expect us to carry out the works.

If you'd like to know more about solar panels, just view the content below by clicking on each of the headings.

How much money will I save?

The amount of money you can save depends on a number of things:

  • The sun- the sunnier it is, the more power the panels can generate, but electricity can still be generated on cloudy days
  • The time of year- the panels make more electricity in Summer than in Winter
  • Your energy use- how much you use, when you use it and how much you currently pay for it

We estimate that the average house, with average energy use could save between £100-£200 a year.


Fitting solar panels

If your home is suitable for solar panels, we'll arrange for some qualified installers to come and install a box of electronics, which is usually fitted in your loft, if there's space, so don't worry about clutter. (Always ask to see identification cards).

The panels are fairly easy to install and the installers will put up scaffolding to get onto your roof. We'll try to fit as many as we can to help save you even more money. Installers will also need access to your loft to connect the wires, but you can be sure that disruption will be kept to a minimum, so you can go about your everyday tasks as normal.

A second electricity meter will also be fitted to count the units of electricity that the panels generate, but it won't affect the existing meter, so you don't need to contact your electricity supplier, and your electricity bill will still look the same.

Solar panels can be installed with any meter, but if you have a prepayment meter and you run out of credit, your solar panels will stop generating electricity, so it's wise to stay in credit to stop this from happening.


Using your solar panels

We'll look after the maintenance of your solar panels, so you don't need to worry about a thing.

Since solar panels need sunlight to generate electricity, they're not able to make any at night. So if it's a really cloudy day or it's night time, you'll be charged for electricity in exactly the same way before you had the panels fitted.  And, if there's a power cut, the solar panels won't work, but will come straight back on once the power cut is over.

Don't worry, solar panels are designed to withstand all normal weather conditions, but if you do notice any damage, please give us a call straight away on 01724 279900.

You can change your electricity supplier in exactly the same way as you can now, just be sure to let us know.


More info on solar panels (video)

If you'd like to know more about solar panels work, and how they are installed, just watch this video.



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