Are you considering solar power? Not only is it a fantastic eco-friendly way to produce energy for your home, it could save you some money too. There are two different types of panels – solar PV where the sun’s energy is turned into electricity, and solar thermal panels, which capture energy from the sun to heat your hot water.
We’ve already looked at the cost of solar PV, but what about solar thermal panels? Here’s our guide to what you’ll pay for, and the savings you can get in return – through both your bills and the renewable heat incentive (RHI).
What you can expect to pay
According to the Energy Savings Trust, the cost of solar thermal panels is between £4,000-£5,000 (including VAT at a reduced rate of 5%) for an average–sized system (3.6m2). That includes installation and all parts – such as your solar collectors, control panel, pipes and hot water tank.
The exact cost for you will depend on:
- The size of your family – you’ll need at least 1 square metre of panel per person, and a tank that has capacity for 50 litres of hot water per person
- Type and quality of panels – you can get a typical well-insulated twin coil cylinder system from £1500 as part of a bespoke Evergreen Energy package
- Your home – depending on the particular specifications of your house, you may require more plumbing work or scaffolding based on how much space is available on your roof.
- Your hot water system – you can integrate your solar thermal panels into your existing hot water system or install a whole new system to modernise and boost efficiency
How much money will I save with solar thermal panels?
While there’s an initial shell out with solar thermal panels, you’ll get a return on your investment in two different ways. Not only will you save money on your bills because the sun is heating your water for free, but you’ll also be paid by the government for the energy you make.
1) Your savings on bills will add up over the years – and protect you from the rapidly rising cost of conventional energy. The table below shows how much the Energy Savings Trust estimates your solar thermal panels will save you compared to your current energy source.
|If you switch from:||You’ll save:|
|Gas||£55 per year|
|Oil||£70 per year|
|Coal||£65 per year|
|Electricity||£65 per year|
|LPG||£95 per year|
2) The Renewable Heat Incentive pays you back every quarter for the renewable energy you produce for 7 years after installation. The tariff changes every three months (it’s 21.09 pence per kilowatt hour from April to June 2019) and is linked to the retail price index so won’t be eroded by inflation. As an estimate, you can expect to make back between £200-£500 a year for those first 7 years.
So, is it worth the initial cost? As well as being a clean, green energy choice, our calculations show you can expect to recoup your initial investment after 10-15 years!
Would you like a quote?
If you’d like a quote for your own solar thermal panel installation, we’re here to help. Simply contact one of our Technical Account Managers today with a brief description of your intended project and a daytime telephone number.
A member of the team will soon be in touch soon for a quick chat about your solar thermal panels, before providing you with a detailed quote and performance estimates.