Solar Thermal

Harnessing the Sun’s energy using solar panels is a great way to reduce energy costs and heat the water you use in your home or business.

Solar Hot Water (or Solar Thermal) can provide an income stream of its own for over 20 years, thanks to the Non Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) for Commercial Solar Thermal installations. For domestic installations, the Domestic renewable- heat-incentive is available to help reduce upfront costs in the meantime.

What is Solar Thermal?

A Solar Hot Water or Solar Thermal system captures solar energy and uses it to heat water, displacing the use of fossil fuels in heating up a hot water cylinder, heating system, swimming pool or industrial process. They are used in conjunction with existing heating technologies to ensure you have hot water whatever the weather.

Panels can be installed on pitched or flat roofs or on a groundmounted frame. They can also be integrated into buildings as part of innovative facade systems and canopies. They will gain most energy when facing south but are also effective when oriented anywhere between east and west.

Is Solar Water Heating suitable for my home?

To tell if solar water heating is right for you, there are a few key questions to consider:

Do you have a sunny place to put solar panels?

You’ll need around 5 square metres of roof space which faces east to west through south and receives direct sunlight for the main part of the day. Alternatively, if you do not have a south facing roof and if you have space, you could install two panels, one facing east and one facing west – but this will make installation more costly. The panels don’t always have to be mounted on a roof; they can be fixed to a frame on flat roofs.

Do you have space for a larger, or an extra, hot water cylinder?

If a dedicated solar cylinder is not already installed then you will need to replace the existing cylinder, or add a dedicated cylinder with a solar heating coil.

Is your current boiler compatible with solar water heating?

Most conventional boiler and hot water cylinder systems are compatible with solar water heating. If your boiler is a combination boiler (combi) and you don’t currently have a hot water tank then a solar hot water system may not be compatible.

Do you need planning permission?

In England most solar water heating systems don’t need planning permission, but it is always best to consult your local planning office if you live in a Listed Building, or a building in Conservation Area or World Heritage Site.

Interested in Solar Thermal?

Our experienced and friendly staff will always be happy to assist.

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