Solar Panel Disadvantages

Solar panels are a renewable energy source used to generate electricity to power the home, solar panels are becomming a popular occurance on many rooftops accross British homes. The UK Governement aim to ensure that renewable energy accounts for 15% of the energy produced in the UK by 2012 - The Governemnt has given us the incentive to use more renewable energy souces such as using power from the wind and sun to generate electricity for the home through the Feed In Tariff Scheme (FIT's). The Feed In Tariff Scheme pays you a set amount per unit of energy your solar panels generate even if you use the energy to power your home! Furthermore under the FIT's you will also receive an additional premium for the energy your solar panels produce that are sold back to the grid! This sounds great! Although be aware that the Feed In Tariff rate is likely to reduce after 2012, as the government aims to meet their renewable energy target of 15% by 2012.

The Feed In Tariff does sound very exciting, but before you decide to install solar panels at your home it is best to understand the full picture of solar panels both the good and the bad about solar panels.

Disadvantages Of Solar Panels:

  • Cost - Solar panels are expensive, depending on the size of your home and the quality of your roof they can cost anywhere between £5,000-£15,000. It is best to seek the advice of a qualified solar panel surveyor to assess your home for solar panels.
  • Maintenance - Although solar panels require little maintenance and they can also work for up to 25 years. If something was to go wrong with your solar panels it would be expensive for a call out from a qualified solar panel engineer. Alternatively if you are a bit of a handy person yourself and believe you can have a go at resolving the issue with your solar panels this may be a more cost effective solution.
  • Climate - Solar panels work by absorbing the suns natural sunlight and converting this into electricity. Solar panels will still work on overcast days or wet days although they will not be as effective.
  • Space - If you choose to use a battery pack with your solar panels, the battery can take up a lot of physical space.  Batteries are good to rely on, on cloudy and overcast days when the sun is not out, batteries can take up a significant amount of space. If you are connected to the grid you will not need any batteries as you can always use solar panels during the day and the grid power at night.
  • Physical appearance - The solar panels appearance is a personal preference but many people do not like the physical appearance of solar panels, believing they look unsightly on rooftops. 
  • Disposal - Solar panel and their batteries must pe properly disposed of as they contain toxic lead and sulfuric acid, as well as telluride these toxic materials are used in the manufacture of solar panels and their batteries - Therefore they must be disposed of in the correct way.