Solar photovoltaic (PV) power has been around for decades, but in the minds of many, it is still a new and untested technology.
Thankfully, this is changing as scores of homeowners throughout the UK install solar panels and begin enjoying huge environmental and financial savings. When we say “scores,” we’re not talking about tens of thousands of homeowners. We mean HUNDREDS of thousands.
Today, more than 500,000 homes across the UK have solar PV panels and this number is quickly growing.
If you’ve been watching from the sidelines, it’s time to become proactive. Don’t let the following solar power myths prevent you from harnessing free sunshine to:
- Reduce your utility bill
- Grow your bank account
- Protect the planet
Let’s take a look at some of the most popular misconceptions people have about solar energy in the UK.
1. Solar Power Isn’t Strong Enough
When PV technology first came out in the 1950s, it certainly wasn’t powerful enough. But with today’s solar panels, even a modestly sized installation can more than cover your electricity needs.
This is true even in the cloudy United Kingdom.
As of right now, we have enough solar electricity to power the equivalent of 1.5 million homes. Only 6 other countries on the planet have installed this much solar capacity. And nearly all of those other countries have way more sunshine and much larger populations than we do.
If the UK can make solar work, anybody can.
To learn more about solar’s incredible power, be sure to read:
2. Solar in the UK Isn’t Affordable
There’s no denying it. Going solar used to be prohibitively expensive – especially during the 1970s. Now prices are 100 times lower.
How low exactly?
A standard 4 kW system costs between £6,000 – £7,000
Solar has become even more affordable thanks to the UK’s feed-in tariff program – a generous incentive that allows you to earn money from your solar installation.
And if you really want to reduce upfront costs, you can always lease your panels. This strategy allows you to receive a brand-new installation for free.
To learn more about solar energy’s unbelievable affordability, check out:
3. Solar Energy Isn’t a Wise Investment
This is a common solar myth – and it is so easy to debunk. In the UK, a 4 kW solar installation completely pays for itself in about 9 years, thanks to reduced utility bills AND the lucrative feed-in tariff program.
After this payback period, you enjoy decades of free electricity and you’re still able to monetize your solar power for another 11 years.
Solar is actually one of the best investments you can make. It delivers higher returns than almost any other home improvement project imaginable and in many cases, solar outperforms retirement pensions.
To learn more about solar energy ROIs, make sure you read:
4. The United Kingdom Is Too Cloudy for Solar
We have some of the most overcast skies in the world, but even on the greyest of days, UK homeowners are still able to generate enough electricity to cover their needs and generate income. This is because clouds can’t completely block out visible, ultraviolet, or infrared light.
This also explains why we have more solar capacity then sunny Spain. In fact, we installed more solar than any other European nation in 2014.
To learn why overcast skies can’t stop the UK’s solar revolution, check out:
5. Solar Energy Doesn’t Work at Night
This isn’t a myth, it’s completely true. When the sun goes down, your solar panels stop working.
But in the United Kingdom, this doesn’t matter.
You remain connected to the grid, so you always have access to power whenever you need it. And if your installation is MCS accredited, you can enrol in the feed-in tariff and actually monetize the sunshine that it’s your roof. The end result is:
- 24/7 access to electricity
- Smaller utility bills every month
- A bank account that grows with time
To learn more about solar and night-time power, check out:
6. Solar Couldn’t Survive without Subsidies
This one is also true. In the UK, solar power is heavily subsidized, but this funding is nothing compared to what the fossil fuel industry receives. Oil, gas, and coal receive 4 times as much government support than all renewables combined.
In other words, no energy source can exist without hand-outs. The government and utilities are prepared to give you cash in exchange for clean electricity. Why not take advantage of this money while it still lasts?
To learn more about solar incentives and subsidies, check out:
7. DIY Solar Power Is Better
If you install solar panels yourself, you’ll definitely save on labour costs, but we don’t recommend this approach for 2 reasons:
- Your DIY solar kit won’t generate as much electricity. There are many variables to consider when installing solar panels such as, pitch, orientation, shading, losses, ventilation, etc. It takes training and experience to install solar panels to their full potential. Hiring a professional may cost you more in the short run, but will definitely be more profitable in the long run.
- DIY solar installations don’t qualify for grid connections or the lucrative feed-in tariff. This means you won’t save or make as much money in the long run.
To learn more about the dangers of DIY solar, you should read:
8. Solar Panels Aren’t Really Green
It takes a lot of dirty energy to create today’s solar panels. So it’s inaccurate to describe PV technology has 100% environmentally friendly.
But the clean electricity your panels generate is more than enough to cover the dirty electricity used to manufacture them. In fact, the average energy payback period for today’s solar panels is less than 4 years. This is true even in a climate as cloudy as ours.
If you want to make the United Kingdom cleaner and greener, make sure you read:
9. Solar Panels Require a Lot of Maintenance
This is demonstrably false. Solar installations have no moving parts and today’s PV panels come with 25-year warranties. This is why repairs, maintenance, and upkeep are incredibly rare within the industry.
You don’t even need to clean your panels. In the UK, we receive more than enough rainfall to keep rooftop installations in optimal working condition.
When you lease your solar panels, you have even less to worry about. If your rented system ever does need repairs or maintenance, the lessor will take care of everything for you.
To learn more about how hassle-free solar truly is, check out:
10. Solar Installations Don’t Last Long
Again, this is just wrong. Today’s solar panels can last for decades and decades – with almost zero maintenance or cleaning required. This is why 25-year warranties are the standard within the industry. But many solar PV installations last 30 or 40 years.
Don’t believe us?
Ask NASA how often it repair its solar-powered satellites. You can also ask any of the 500,000 homeowners who have already installed panels on their properties.
Or you can just check out the article down below:
11. Solar Panels Are Ugly
This one is largely subjective. Some UK homeowners think solar PV panels are hideous. Others find them beautiful.
For all the haters out there, we offer the following:
- Solar panels come in a wide variety of options. You can even buy “solar shingles” that look just like normal roof tiles. Unless you’re looking for them, they are all but invisible.
- Whether or not you find solar panels pretty is subjective. But you know what isn’t subjective? Having a much larger bank account – and a much cleaner neighbourhood. And this is precisely why so many people go solar to begin with.
If you still need some convincing, be sure to read:
12. If Solar Prices Keep Falling, It’s Better to Wait
This myth seems to make a lot of sense. If solar installation costs keep falling, aren’t you better off delaying your purchase?
The quick answer is no. And here’s why:
- Utility rates keep going up. So while you wait to go solar, you’re still spending a ton of money month after month. Installing panels puts a stop to these skyrocketing electricity bills.
- Solar incentives keep going down. If you install solar panels today, you’ll receive the highest possible pay-outs from the feed-in tariff. Next year, those pay-outs will be smaller. The year after, they’ll be even lower still.
The longer you delay, the more you spend (and the less you make). It’s that simple. To learn more about the dangers of waiting, check out:
13. Solar Will Hurt the Resale Value of My Home
This myth is partially true. If you lease your solar panels, this may actually lower your home’s property value. This is because the next buyer will have to take over the remaining portion of your solar leasing contract.
But if you own your solar panels, the resale value of your home actually goes up – by a lot. In many cases, this property value boost can exceed the upfront cost of your installation.
To learn more about solar energy and property values, read:
14. Solar in the UK Is Just a Fad
Admittedly, this is not the first time the world has gotten excited about solar energy. Remember the OPEC crises of the 1970s?
But this time its different:
- Climate change is real (the world is heading towards an ecological disaster)
- Installing solar panels is much cheaper (and getting cheaper with each passing day)
- Utility rates are on the rise (we’re running out of fossil fuel reserves worldwide)
This explains why the International Energy Agency believes solar will become Earth’s #1 electricity source by 2050.
The UK will likely reach that point much sooner. To learn why, check out:
15. Going Solar in the United Kingdom Is a Hassle
It certainly can be. The UK has become saturated with installers, many of whom are unexperienced and are known as the “Cowboys” of the industry. There is no shortage of horrer stories out there. if you use their services, going solar will almost certainly be a costly and frustrating experience.
If you stick with trusted and rated MCS-accredited solar installers, you’ll definitely be much better off. You’ll benefit from superior workmanship and you’ll also be able to enrol in the UK’s generous feed-in tariff program.
But we make going solar even less of a hassle.
Our system automatically matches you with up to 3 licensed and experienced solar installers. They know they’re competing with one another. So each of these installers works twice as hard to win your business.
All without your having to lift a finger.
Learn how easy we make it to find reputable, certified, and affordable solar installers. Be sure to read:
Still Don’t Believe Solar Power Is Right for You?
Solar is a technology that offers nothing but benefits, including:
- Smaller carbon footprints
- Lower electricity bills
- Larger bank accounts
But if you still have doubts about the technology, let us know. We’re here to answer any questions or address misconceptions you have about solar power.
Just post your question in our Q&A section. And we’ll follow up ASAP.
If you’re ready to move forward, simply request 3 free quotes today!