Frequently asked questions

Solar PV
The total installed cost of a PV system will depend upon the size of the system and how it needs to be mounted.
Most properties will not need planning permission, but you should contact your local authority at an early stage to notify them of your proposed installation.
This depends on the number, orientation, angle and shading of the PV panels, as well as the latitude of the location. As a guide using PVsol we can offer the following approximations: For residential properties: A typical 2.8kWp domestic system will generate 2,415kWh per year, saving over 1 tonne of CO2. We can mount panels onto roofs or in gardens using mounting structures, plus planning permission isn't usually required. For commercial properties, including schools: A typical 10kWp commercial system will generate 8,000kWh per year, saving nearly 5 tonnes of CO2. We recommend that small and medium sized businesses contact The Carbon Trust as they may qualify for a loan to help fund installation.
Solar PV Systems are designed to work all year round. Solar panel manufacturing technology has now advanced to a point where the system can now produce power on an overcast day.
You can be generating your own electricity within hours, as a normal solar PV install typically takes just 1 - 2 days.
Your solar PV panels are all linked together and connected into an inverter which converts the DC power that they generate into mains voltage compatible AC. Any power that you generate will first be used by you. If you generate more power than you use, the surplus can either go to the grid or be exported to a battery thereby reducing your electricity bill.
 Battery storage
Having solar batteries installed alongside Solar Panels, lets you make the most out of your green energy. With Solar Batteries you can store any excess solar energy that has been produced by your Solar Panels to use when your home later requires it.
Solar batteries are regularly stored in a Garage, loft, utilities room, a cabinet, under the stairs or even outside. Most home owners select to store their solar batteries somewhere carefully out of the way.
Solar batteries can be used separately of solar. You are able to charge your home battery from the electricity you buy from the grid. By using certain off peak tariffs you can charge your batteries when the electricity rates are at their lowest-over night, then use that energy to power your home when needed. This is mainly helpful if you are looking to get an electric vehicle. However, to benefit from this your home may need a smart meter.
A solar battery system is still grid tied, as any extra energy your battery storage cannot store will be sent back to the grid. Most Solar battery systems have the ability to work in Electrical Power Supply (EPS) mode. This means when the grid falls short, you will still have some energy through your home battery storage.
The storage facility your home will need is reliant on your latest electricity usage. Your monthly energy bill will show how many kilowatt hours you spend on a monthly basis. To work out the battery storage you require, we will take this amount and from there will be able to determine your energy needs. 
 EV charging
You can charge your car by using a standard 3-pin socket, though you will need a Electric Vehicle Supply Equipment (EVSE) cable. The disadvantage of charging an EV via a 3-pin socket is that it’s very time-consuming. By having a dedicated electric car charger you will be able to charge about three times more faster, and the charging cable is locked in place, making the whole charging process secure.  
A tethered charger has a cable permanently attached. An untethered charger also known as a universal or socketed charger, does not have a cable permanently attached.  
If you have both solar PV panels and an EV charging point, you can charge your car with electricity from solar. Your car needs to be plugged into its charger while the sun is radiating. You can get charging points which have a ‘solar mode’, which will only be charge when there is excess solar electricity available.  
Yes, there is a £350 grant off the overall cost of the charger and installation including VAT. To qualify, the main conditions are having off-street parking, install an OZEV-approved charge point, use an OZEV-approved charge point installer and the date of installation must not be more than 4 months ahead of the date of delivery or date you become the registered driver of the electric vehicle.  
EV chargers are usually quick to install. It generally takes a morning. If the cable run between the charger and the fuse box is extensive or complicated, the installation can take a day.