Installing a solar system is a popular home improvement. There are close to a million solar PV systems on houses around the country, and nearly 100,000 solar thermal.
A typical system will likely include 10-14 solar panels. The panels connect directly to the house’s electricity system, so the power they produce can be used in its appliances. If there is a surplus, this can be sent to the national grid, helping to power other homes as well. Many solar systems are now also installed with a battery. This means that surplus power can be stored and used later.
Solar panels can be installed on a flat or sloping roof. Many systems are installed facing south, although recent improvements in technology mean that solar systems now generate significant power when installed facing in any direction.
Residential solar systems in the UK must be accredited by the Microgeneration Certification Scheme (MCS) in order to be eligible for a Smart Export Guarantee. MCS creates and maintains standards for the certification of products and installations used to produce electricity and heat from renewable sources, including solar power. Solar Energy UK recommends using an MCS-accredited company to ensure a high-quality home solar system.