While PV technology is still hugely expensive, free electricity is a long way off for most of us


A bolt-on solar panel or ‘tiles’ that replace your existing roof fabric both create energy from the sun’s radiation – turning light (photo) into electricity (volts). Although the technology is still extremely expensive, it must get cheaper in the future. So unless you’re in the market for spending mega bucks, it’s probably better to invest your money in more efficient areas. Solar panels should fixed facing within 90˚ south to be effective.


  • Electricity for free.

  • Any extra that you generate can, in theory, be sold back to the National Grid.

  • Most people won’t need planning permission for

  • photovoltaics (PV), but it’s still worth checking with your local council.


  • Very, very expensive, up to £24,000.

  • Even a £2,500 grant from the Low Carbon Buildings Programme is still a financial pill to swallow.

Useful Contacts

National Energy Foundation:
Low Carbon Buildings Programme:
Energy Saving Trust:
The Centre for Alternative Technology:


Word: Dominic Murphy Image: The Centre for Alternative Technology

Useful Tools

firsttime tradefinder mortgagecalc

Latest Press Releases

Latest Products, Services and Tradesmen from our Trade Finder

Expert videos

expert video2 2