Are Solar Panels For Your Shed A Good Idea?
Using solar panels as a power source has gotten even more popular nowadays. They’re now more accessible, given that solar panels are up to 70% cheaper than they were around 13 years ago. It’s now easier than ever to make annual savings on your energy bills! But are solar panels viable for small, free-standing structures like your shed? Yes, they are! Solar power installations have a lot to offer, even for your shed. Scroll through to learn more about solar panels for sheds, their benefits, average costs, and more!
Is It Worth Putting Solar Panels On Your Shed?
Are you planning to build a shed to use as a workshop, for gardening, or storage?
Depending on what you plan to use it for, your power demands may be less demanding. If you don’t want to go through the painstaking process of establishing electrical cables, go for solar panels.
Using solar power for sheds may be initially expensive, but it’s a good return on investment in the long run. Switching to solar systems helps the environment, too.
At the end of the day, your goal goes back to using a power that’s convenient, cost-efficient, and good for long-term use.
Essentially, using a solar system to power your shed is an excellent option compared to other alternatives. But we’ll tell you more about all that below.
Why Are Solar Panels A Better Option Than Other Power Sources?
First, using solar panels for your shed saves you from the tedious process of connecting to your home’s electrical system. Sourcing power from your home’s electrical panel may not be the most convenient option as it poses several disadvantages and dangers.
For example, using electricity from your home’s wiring system can be pretty dangerous if not properly installed by a professional. Thus, it’s not an easy do-it-yourself project that you can work on overnight.
Not to mention that underground cabling can be pretty costly, too. At the same time, we don’t recommend electrical connections if you plan on reducing your electrical consumption. Connecting to your home’s electrical system causes your electricity charges to spike.
Meanwhile, using a generator may come in handy, but it’s not suitable for indoor spaces. It emits harmful fumes that are detrimental to respiratory health.
Plus, generators require proper maintenance and protection. Exposure to too much heat or water easily affects their performance and increases the risks of fire or explosion.
Aside from that, imagine having to refill them with fuel from time to time! They’re not fit for long-term and heavy usage either.
Solar panels, on the other hand, are an efficient way to save on electricity costs, and can last for several years.
What Are The Pros And Cons Of Installing Solar Power For Your Shed?
Despite solar panels seeming like the most suitable power source for sheds, they present some disadvantages, too.
Still not sure if getting a solar panel installation is right for you? To evaluate, we list some of its benefits and downsides:
The biggest advantage of solar panels is that they reduce your electricity bills in the long run.
According to the Energy Saving Trust, solar panels can reduce your bills significantly, but factors like consumption or the type of solar panel will influence that.
Aside from significantly reducing your bills and being a convenient backup power source, here are more advantages of using solar panels:
Fit For Long-Term Use
If you wish to use your shed for a long time but want to avoid expensive energy bills, then look no further.
As energy costs are becoming more expensive as time goes on, investing in power generation that serves its purpose even after many years is crucial.
That said, did you know that solar panels can last for 25 to 40 years with proper maintenance and care?
At the same time, solar panels come with performance warranties that range between 10-25 years, depending on the provider.
The performance warranty guarantees that your solar panels will perform optimally, with 80-90% efficiency over the first half of their life span.
With the detrimental impact of burning fossil fuels on the environment, choosing solar energy is a significant leap to reducing carbon emissions that damage the environment.
Solar panels as a form of renewable energy are independent of fossil fuel use. This helps to significantly reduce your carbon footprint as a household when switching to solar energy.
Durable And Low-Maintenance
Unlike electrical cables that can deteriorate or fail over time and eventually cause fire hazards, solar panel parts are durable and require less maintenance.
They can withstand up to 140 mph of wind speed and temperatures up to 65°C.
Furthermore, maintenance costs are relatively low compared with electrical cable connections.
Performs Well In Different Weather Conditions
Let’s debunk the popular belief that solar panels don’t work during periods of heavy rains or snow.
Sunlight may be limited during rainy days or winter, but your solar panels can still harvest solar energy from the sun, although not as much. Thanks to the technology that made photovoltaic panels more efficient; they can generate power even from indirect sunlight!
Apart from sourcing energy from indirect sunlight, solar panels can store energy on batteries you can use as a backup power source.
Serves as an Alternative Energy Source During Outages
Thanks to solar batteries, available with ESE Group, you no longer need to fuss about troublesome power outages.
Solar panels can store excess energy in solar batteries. As a result, you have a power backup that comes in handy during power outages or when your solar panels don’t generate as much energy from the sun.
Despite its striking benefits, solar panels present some disadvantages too:
Expensive Up-Front Cost
Solar panel installation isn’t cheap, as installation constitutes labour costs, permits, and more. It also depends on the type of solar panels. For example, polycrystalline panels may be less expensive than monocrystalline solar panels.
Furthermore, the break-even point may take 10 years or more. It’s a good investment, but given the initial costs, a solar panel for your shed may not work for you right now.
Some Aren’t DIY-Friendly
Are you a DIY enthusiast? Unfortunately, some solar panel installations (even solar kits) may not be suitable for inexperienced people.
Installing solar panels may need high-quality equipment that homemade alternatives won’t suffice.
Doing installations by yourself can cause injuries or malfunctions that may require expensive repairs in the future. Always stick to expert installation with ESE Group.
May Not Be Suitable For Some Roofs
Not all shed roofs can support solar panels. Wooden roofs, for example, get brittle and may not be able to ultimately hold the weight of your solar panels. Solar panels can weigh up to 21 kilograms.
The direction and angle of the roof may affect power generation. Therefore, roofs facing southward are better for maximum sunlight exposure.
Fixed Solar Photovoltaics (PV) System To Power Your Shed
PV solar systems are the UK’s most widely used solar energy generating system. They capture solar energy from the sun using their silicon cells, either made with polycrystalline or monocrystalline. Next, they convert energy into electrical current.
Thanks to modern advances, PV solar panels nowadays harbour energy both from direct and indirect sunlight. They can function independently from your power grid as well.
This setup is most suitable if you plan on using your shed for a workshop or may need to use more than just basic lighting. PV systems can support complicated devices or appliances intended for heating, broadband connection, and more.
Considering that, we at ESE Group offer some of the best PV solar panels you can find on the market. Our solar panels come with a 10-year warranty, professional installation services, and a range of optional extras that can make your solar system work for you.
Polycrystalline vs Monocrystalline: Which Solar Cells Are Better?
Two types of cells make up a solar panel, and both types differ in terms of colour and longevity.
First, polycrystalline solar panels are blue and are much cheaper than monocrystalline solar panels. The reason polycrystalline panels are much more affordable is that it’s less efficient.
Monocrystalline solar panels, on the other hand, are made with high-grade silicon. Therefore, they have a longer lifespan but are more expensive.
They’re space-saving and up to 20% energy efficient compared to polycrystalline panels which are only between 13% to 17% efficient.
Can I Use Solar Kits To Power My Shed?
Shed solar panel kits can power basic functions like lighting, simple electronics, or recharging of a few gadgets like your mobile.
However, some solar kits can now support heavy power usage like your roof-mounted PV solar panels.
While solar kits are compact and more DIY-friendly than roof-mounted solar panels, they can be less efficient and less durable.
What’s Included In A Solar Kit?
A solar kit comes with compact solar panels, inverters, a battery, charge controllers, and cables, among others. Note that inclusions vary per distributor so you must check on that before purchasing. Often solar panels are a better option, though, especially for those requiring more solar energy to power their appliances in workshops and sheds.
Solar Panels For Sheds FAQS
Here are some of the frequently asked questions about solar panel installation on sheds:
How much solar power does a shed need?
The amount of energy you’ll need for your shed will depend on the number of appliances or gadgets you have, plus the wattage they consume.
An LCD television requires 200W, a smartphone charger needs at least 5W, and 50W to 100W for a laptop. Some complicated electronics need as much as 5,000W.
Typically, a 50W solar panel can provide enough power for basic lighting and charging minor gadgets.
How much do solar panels cost?
Solar panel installation costs start around £1,000 and can go up to £11,000. Installation costs vary depending on the following factors:
- Size and type of the panels
- Labour costs (vary per location)
- Additional components
- Solar batteries (type and life span)
How to get more power out of your solar panels?
Check out these basic tips to maximise energy generation from your solar panels:
- Install solar panels in a less-shaded area
- South-facing roofs allow for more sunlight exposure
- Keep solar panels clean from dust, leaves, and other debris as much as possible
- Check with your providers for regular maintenance and monitoring – ESE Group offers excellent solar panel maintenance services
Solar Panels For Your Shed Conclusion
Solar panels are an excellent option if you want to go off-grid for your shed. It produces clean energy that allows you to save on electricity costs in the long run. Depending on your shed needs, you may choose solar panel kits or roof-mounted solar panels which are more efficient, durable, and suitable for long-term usage.
Ideally, a solar panel installation package with a solar battery and a 10-year warranty saves you from the hassle and dangers of DIY solar kits. Contact our team today; we’re more than happy to help!