At Aldridge energy we have a great personal interest and passion towards green technologies and renewables. We continue to grow in this area. We are thrilled to be able to offer domestic and commercial Solar PV and battery storage installations working in partnership with Oval Renewables Ltd. Working with Oval Renewables enables us to deliver MCS approved installations, installed to the highest quality along with excellent customer service both our companies are renowned for.
Solar PV Energy
Solar electricity panels, also known as photovoltaics (PV), capture the sun’s energy and convert it into electricity that you can use in your home. By installing solar panels, you can generate your own renewable electric.
How do solar panels work?
A solar PV panel consists of many cells made from layers of semi-conducting material, most commonly silicon. When light shines on this material, a flow of electricity is created. The cells don’t need direct sunlight to work and can even work on cloudy days. However, the stronger the sunshine, the more electricity generated.
Solar PV systems are made up of several panels, with each panel generating around 355W of energy in strong sunlight. Typical systems contain around 15 panels and generate direct current (DC) electricity. Because the electricity used for household appliances is alternating current (AC), an inverter is installed along with the system to convert DC electricity to AC. This electricity can be used throughout your home, or exported to the grid.
Do you have enough space?
Space is a key consideration. The average system size is around 4.2kWp and this will typically take up around 25m2 roof area.
An unshaded, South facing roof is ideal for maximum electrical output. East or West facing roofs could still be considered, but North facing roofs are not recommended. A system facing East or West will yield around 15-20% less energy than one facing directly South.
Any nearby buildings, trees or chimneys could shade your roof and have a negative impact on the performance of your system.
Finding an unshaded spot is best, however sometimes shading is unavoidable. Some solar PV systems can minimise the impact of shading using ‘optimisers’. If you don’t have shading, the use of optimisers is not necessary or beneficial, other than the increased monitoring opportunities they offer – they won’t generate more energy.
Do I need permission to install a solar PV system?
Solar PV panels are considered ‘permitted developments’ and often don’t require planning permission. However, exceptions apply and it’s best to check with your local planning office for guidance. If you live in a listed building, conservation area or national park, additional restrictions may apply.
If you’re planning to install a solar PV system in your home, you must register it with your Distribution Network Operator (DNO). The DNO is the company responsible for bringing electricity to your home. Usually, your installer will register the device for you.
The UK Government has advice on how to register your new energy device in England, Scotland and Wales.
An energy storage system allows you to capture heat or electricity when it is readily available, typically from a renewable energy system, storing it for you to use later. The most common energy storage systems include electric batteries, heat batteries and thermal stores.
What is energy storage and how does it work?
Home energy storage systems store generated electricity or heat, so that you can use the energy when you need it. Electricity can be stored in electrical batteries, or it can be converted into heat and stored in a heat battery. Heat can also be stored in heat batteries or in thermal storage, such as a hot water cylinder.
Energy storage can be useful for people who generate their own renewable energy, as it allows them to use more of their low carbon energy.
Battery storage (for electricity)
Electrical batteries help you make the most of renewable electricity from solar panels, a wind turbine. For example, electricity generated during the day by solar PV panels could be stored in an electric battery for you to use for boiling the kettle or watching TV in the evening when your solar PV panels are no longer generating electricity. The battery size and its cost will depend on your current energy use and the size of any generation technologies you have installed. You may also want to plan around future electricity use if you are intending to purchase an electric vehicle (ev) or heat your home with a heat pump.
What are the benefits of battery storage?
As well as storing the electricity generated by your home renewable technology, a battery can also be used to store electricity bought from the grid at cheaper times of the day, with new smart dynamic tariffs that vary in price throughout the day. This can reduce your reliance on more expensive electricity during peak periods, with some tariffs even allowing you to ‘sell back’ during those periods. Most electricity storage systems offer smart management, allowing you to track energy usage online.