Solar PV consultancy FAQs

A well-installed system should present no problems to your roof. A solar PV system is designed to maintain the strength and integrity of your roof, whilst remaining watertight. However, a poorly installed system can present a myriad of problems further down the line. To ensure quality, the ChargeWorks project management service means we work for you, not the installation company.

Yes. With the onset of record-high electricity prices, commercial solar PV installations typically show very attractive returns on investment. In addition, solar PV is a straightforward and measurable way to reduce your carbon emissions and further your organisation’s net zero ambitions.

The payback period will depend on many factors unique to your situation. However, we are currently seeing extremely short payback periods, for some this may be as little as 2 years.

The precise time of an installation payback period will depend on many factors unique to the resident’s situation. We typically expect this to be less than 10 years, though some individuals may achieve as little as 4 years.

Occasionally, there may be instances where we recommend waiting for a particular product if your particular requirements demand it. However, in most cases, it is not necessary to wait. Solar PV technology has long been proven to be a reliable and robust technology and whilst there are almost continual improvements these are incremental. Holding out for the next best thing is almost certainly going to cost you money in lost savings. 

Yes. While south facing roofs tend to generate more energy across the year an east/west system may generate a similar, or in some cases, more power when both sides of the roof are used. Very occasionally north facing roofs can be used if the pitch of the roof is very shallow. Where the space is available, ground-mounted systems can sometimes offer a better alternative if the roof is unsuitable.

Potentially. Analysing the severity of the shading will be critical. There are systems available that can reduce the effect of some shading. One of our Solar PV consultants will be pleased to assess this for you. 

For systems up to 50 kWp (approximately 125 panels), planning permission is typically not required unless the building is listed or it is located in a Conservation Area or National Park. Nevertheless, it is always prudent to check with the relevant authorities. For larger systems planning permission is highly likely to be required. Also, most ground-mounted systems will require planning consent.  ChargeWorks would be happy to assist with any of these applications.

Predominantly yes. There may be a short period of time when power will need to be cut in order to maintain the safety of the installers. However, with careful planning, this need not interrupt operations. In high-footfall areas, exclusion zones may be required or in the case of schools, installations may need to be planned during the holidays. 

Yes. A common misconception is that the UK does not get enough sunshine for solar generation to be effective. The UK actually has a very consistent level of sunshine year on year. 

You will need to have a conversation with your landlord and consider your options. One option might be to install the solar as a tenant’s improvement (but consider your lease length), another could be to ask the landlord to do it and sell the solar electricity to you. We would be happy to discuss these and other options with you.

In most cases we recommend solar PV (electric) instead of solar hot water (sometimes called solar thermal). The main reason is that typically, solar hot water requires much more maintenance than solar electric.