Solar panel sales soar

Published:  01 September, 2010

LONDON: A record number of homeowners had solar panels installed last month according to energy regulator Ofgem.

The devices were fitted to 2257 homes in August, up from 1700 in July and 1400 in June.

More than 6,688 homes have had solar panels fitted since April, when the government's scheme to reward people who generate their own energy altered.

The feed-in tariff system now enables homeowners to receive 41.3p for every unit of energy they generate. This replaces the previous system, under which people could obtain grants to help cover the cost of installing the green technology.

According to the Energy Saving Trust, solar panels usually cost between £6000 and £12000 to buy and install, depending on their size.

The panels most commonly installed by homeowners, consisting of eight panels able to generate up to 2.5kW, cost between £10000 and £12000.

The Trust calculates such panels could generate about £700 a year from the feed-in tariff, as well as saving homeowners about £100 a year on energy bills.

In addition, people could make about £25 to £30 through selling unused energy back to the National Grid.

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