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  • Writer's pictureMiriam O Sullivan

Everything You Need to Know About Solar Panels

Updated: Nov 10, 2023

Solar panels are the talk of the town, and it's no surprise! These amazing devices harness the sun's power to create electricity. In this easy-to-follow guide, we'll explore everything you need to know about solar panels, their benefits, and installation in Ireland. Whether you're thinking about adding solar panels to your home, farm, or business, we've got you covered. Let's dive in and answer some common questions along the way.

What Are Solar Panels & How They Work

Solar panels are devices designed to convert sunlight into usable electricity. They are constructed with transparent photovoltaic (PV) glass and PV cells responsible for this conversion process. In addition to generating electricity, solar power can also be harnessed as thermal energy through concentrators and reflectors. This versatile source of energy can be used to power homes, farms, and businesses throughout Ireland, providing a sustainable and eco-friendly energy solution.

Is it Worth Getting Solar Panels in Ireland?

Solar energy in Ireland is a topic often met with curiosity…One of the most common questions we get asked about solar panels in Ireland is whether they are worth the investment, given the often cloudy and rainy weather. The good news is that modern solar panels are designed to work efficiently, even on overcast days. While they are most productive under direct sunlight, solar cells function primarily using light, not heat. Therefore, they continue to generate power during suboptimal weather conditions.

What Type of Home Can Have Solar Panels Fitted?

Solar panels can be a great fit for various home types, but assessing your roof's suitability is crucial. What matters most is the available space on your roof and its orientation. Ideally, a south-facing roof is best, but even roofs facing southeast or southwest can yield good results. During the assessment, your installer will evaluate these factors and offer solutions if your roof needs adjustments to accommodate solar panels.

How Much Does It Cost to Install Solar Panels in Ireland?

We can’t really answer that, as the cost of solar panel installation can vary – but it's important to consider it as an investment in long-term energy savings. Factors affecting the cost include the size of the system, the quality of the panels, and any additional equipment required for the installation. It's also worth noting that there are grants available in Ireland to help offset these costs.

Can You Sell Electricity Back to the Grid in Ireland?

Yes, in Ireland, you can sell excess electricity generated by your solar panels back to the grid. This not only helps you save on energy bills but also contributes to a more sustainable and efficient energy grid.

Can Solar Panels Heat a House in Ireland? And What About Water?

Yes, indeed! Solar panels in Ireland serve multiple purposes, including providing hot water solutions. Utilising advanced technology, these solar hot water heating systems can efficiently supply up to 70% of your hot water needs using clean, free solar energy. It's worth noting that the latest systems use intelligent devices to divert energy to your existing immersion to heat water.


Additionally, while solar panels do not directly heat your home, they can significantly impact your heating bills, particularly during the winter months. They work to offset energy costs associated with systems like air-to-water or heat pumps, or they can power convection heaters if that's your heating method.

Is There a Grant for Solar Panels in Ireland?

Yes, there are grants available for solar panels in Ireland. The Solar Electricity Grant, administered by the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI), provides financial assistance for purchasing and installing solar photovoltaic (PV) panels for your home. Additionally, the TAMS Grant and the Solar Capital Investment Scheme (SCIS) offer grant opportunities for farmers to invest in solar panels and batteries.


* *Eligibility for solar panel grants in Ireland varies, but typically, homeowners looking to install solar panels are eligible for grants. It's advisable to check with the relevant authorities and grant schemes for specific eligibility criteria.

How Many Solar Panels Are Needed to Power a House in Ireland?

The number of solar panels needed to power a house in Ireland varies based on several factors, such as energy consumption, location, and panel efficiency. On average, a typical Irish home may require a 4kW solar system consisting of 12 to 18 solar panels designed to meet its energy requirements.

How Long Do Solar Panels Last?

Another question we’re often asked. Solar panels typically have a lifespan of 20 to 30 years. While they continue to generate electricity beyond this timeframe, their efficiency gradually decreases. This reduction in efficiency is based on the manufacturer's assessment of optimal average production.

The Benefits of Solar PV

Installing solar panels offers numerous advantages, including:

  • Dramatically reducing your electricity bill

  • Providing clean and sustainable energy

  • Offering an excellent solution for heating water, reducing the need for other, more expensive heating methods.

  • Access to grants for installation, making solar panels more affordable.

  • Minimal maintenance requirements.

  • The ability to sell excess power back to the grid.

  • Reducing your carbon footprint.

  • Increasing the overall value of your home.

Conclusion

In summary, you now have a good grasp of how solar panels work and their importance. Investing in them is a big decision that requires research and preparation, as it can help both the environment and your finances.


If you're in Ireland, Fusion Solar in Tipperary is here to assist you. We have a team of experienced electricians who can install high-quality PV Solar systems for homes and businesses across the country. With over 20 years of expertise, we are the go-to choice for Solar PV Installation. So, if you want to cut down on your energy costs and switch to cleaner solar power, don't hesitate to contact us.

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