How many solar panels do I need in Ireland? As electricity costs continue to soar, more and more people are asking this question. As of 2022, an average annual electricity bill for a three-bedroom semi-detached property is around €2,120. For larger detached properties, annual bills are almost twice that amount.
Solar panel technology is a practical way of safeguarding yourself against future price shocks in the energy market. However, only about 30,000 homes in Ireland are currently equipped with solar panels.
Are you looking to make a savings on future energy bills? Investing in domestic renewable energy sources like solar panel technology is the best way to go.
But how many solar panels do I need in Ireland for my home? What options are available? Read on for all the answers you’ll need to help you make the right choice for your property.
How Many Solar Panels Do I Need in Ireland? – Key Factors to Consider
How many solar panels do I need in Ireland? Anyone looking to join the solar power revolution asks this question. However, there’s no one-size-fits-all answer. Ultimately, it’s best to turn to the experts to help you make the best decision possible. However, you can use a few different metrics to get a clearer idea of the kind of PV system your property will need.
How Much Energy Are You Currently Using?
According to the Commission for Regulation of Utilities (CRU), the typical Irish household uses 4,200 kW/h of electricity every year. Generally speaking, an average family living in a three-bedroom property will require a 10-panel array to meet their electricity needs. 10 panels equal a system size of 4 kWp using today’s average panel size of 400 watts per panel.
Obviously, these are only rough guidelines and won’t apply to everyone. For a clear idea of how much electricity you’re using, consult your utility bills. You can also use a smart meter to determine how much electricity your appliances are using daily or hourly.
If you’re looking to curb your energy use before making the switch to solar panels, think about replacing existing appliances with more efficient alternatives.
How Much Roof Space Do You Have?
How many solar panels do I need in Ireland? Your roof dimensions will play a large role in determining the answer to this, regardless of your budget. An average house requiring a 4kW solar panel system will need a minimum of 28 square metres. Even if your roof appears large enough, you’ll need to consider obstacles like skylights and vents that may limit your options.
However, a smaller roof doesn’t mean that solar isn’t for you, smaller systems tend to not have the type of waste as larger systems do with all energy created being put to use. This type of system can be said to be lossless or waste free, resulting in full self-consumption of energy generated, which both feels good and exploits the best investment opportunity.
Best Orientation for Solar Panels
Your property’s orientation can play a big part in deciding how many solar panels you’ll need. Ireland experiences between 5 and 6.5 hours of sunshine every day. In the summer months, regions in the southeast of the country experience an average of 7 hours of sunshine. However, the orientation of a building will determine how much of this sunlight you can efficiently capture with a PV system.
For maximum efficiency, a south-facing roof is ideal. If your roof has a south-facing incline, you’ll be able to make full use of this renewable energy source. However, the surrounding environment can cause issues.
Surrounding trees and foliage can obstruct sunlight, meaning you should consider trimming back greenery when possible. If you’re unsure about your property’s orientation and roof inclination, it’s always best to consult expert advice.
Solar Panel Types and Panel Wattage
Some solar panels in Ireland are more efficient than others. Monocrystalline panels are considered the best-in-class when it comes to PV Panels. They’re incredibly efficient and are the best choice for properties with limited roof space. Multicrystalline panels are a more affordable alternative, but they’re less efficient when it comes to converting sunlight into electricity.
Finally, you’ll need to think about pane wattage and power ratings. In simple terms, this is the amount of electricity you can expect from a single panel. To determine how many panels you’ll need, simply refer to your utility bills to get an idea of your typical energy consumption.
What Support is Available?
Are you worried about the cost of solar panel installation? Almost all homeowners are eligible for an SEAI solar electricity grant. All houses built pre 2021 qualify for a grant these days.
How many solar panels do I need in Ireland? By taking advantage of an SEAI grant, you’re not limited to a small-scale installation. Most installations can benefit from grants totalling €2,400. In simple terms, the SEAI provides grants of €900 for each kWp, covering systems up to 2 kWp.
An extra €300 is awarded for every additional kWp for larger systems up to 4 kWp. The maximum grant is therefore €2400, which was reduced from €3000 in February 2022 when the €600 battery grant allowance was removed.
How to Access SEAI Grants
To access a solar electricity grant, you’ll need to choose a registered SEAI company such as Wizer. Once you’ve done this, you’re ready to make a grant application directly to the SEAI itself. After your application has been received, a formal grant offer will be sent to you within five working days. Any formal grant offer will be valid for a period of up to 8 months.
Once the installation has been finalised, you’ll need to ensure a Building Energy Rating (BER) certificate has been completed. This certificate, along with all installation documents, will need to be submitted to SEAI. Once these have been received, a final application for grant payment can be processed.
In most cases, grants will be issued within 6 weeks. However, you may find yourself waiting slightly longer if any further inspections need to be carried out. But are solar panels worth it in Ireland? When you consider the amount of support up for grabs, the answer is a resounding yes.
The Importance of Professional Installation
Investing in solar panel technology can yield significant savings, but installation should never be attempted independently. Installing solar panels can be dangerous, but also requires in-depth knowledge to ensure optimal placement for maximum effectiveness.
At Wizer Energy, we’ve been installing residential and commercial PV systems for over six years. What’s more, we’ve extensive experience in installing EV chargers for clients across Ireland.
You likely have a tonne of questions too. How many solar panels do I need in Ireland? Do solar panels work when it’s cloudy? Are solar panels worth it in Ireland? At Wizer Energy, we can answer all these questions and more, providing insights on how to clean solar panels and ensure your system works as well as it can for as long as possible.
Calculating the Cost of Solar Panel Installation
If you’re worried about rising energy costs, now’s the time to explore solar panel installation. The scope of your system will depend on a few factors, although the average household will require a 4 kW system consisting of 10 panels, which will set you back around €10,000. However, these costs can be mitigated by applying for an SEAI grant.
That being said, not every property is compatible with a 10-panel system. You’ll need to determine how much free roof space you have. What’s more, the orientation of your building and roof will need to be considered.
Finally, you’ll need to think about the type of solar panels you’re interested in, a good installation company like Wizer Energy should provide you with some options here. The warranty and output are what sets different panel models apart from each other.
Speak to the Team Today
Looking to slash your energy bills? There’s never been a better time to embrace solar panel technology. Need help calculating how many solar panels you’ll need to power your property? Get in touch via the online form or call us on +353 83 080 0855 to speak to the Wizer Energy team today.
No matter whether you’re looking for solar panels in Cork or solar panels in Dublin, we can help. Maybe you need support further afield? Speak to us about installations in Limerick or in Waterford today. Searching for more ways to slash your energy expenditure? Speak to us about the Zappi charger in Ireland installation or our range of infrared heaters.