I'm Eligible for Fully Funded PV up to £10K & Replacement Boiler
I have just discovered I am eligible for a PV and / or hybrid ASHP installation, fully funded up to £10k via the current Green Homes Grant scheme, available in conjunction with the government, local authorities and E.ON. I'm currently awaiting contact from nominated installers. I have been informed I would fully own any system / equipment installed. The scheme: https://www.eonenergy.com/green-homes-grant.html
I am interested in PV mainly, but wondered if my house would be suitable. My house is a bungalow, with a main roof facing SE of circa 29m2, and another facing SW of circa 16m2, neither with any obstructions.
I have full loft / cavity insulation, & DG windows. I have no CH, my gas boiler is circa 40 years old and long since defunct. I only use gas for my hob. Shower is electric, hot water I get from my kettle! I only heat one room during the winter with an oil radiator. My average annual electric usage has been circa 1100kWh for the last 8 years. House has an EPC rating of D.
Would my house be suitable? What would the likely cost be for PV, what are the pros / cons, and what other things I should take into consideration?
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For £10k you should be aiming at a 10kW array as a starting point for discussion.
You'll be exporting a huge amount of power, but that'll give you a good chance to have negative energy bills and if you go for a heat pump later it will help that too.
There aren't many cons to PV, some people don't like the look and it's a large investment. But since it's funded by others it's just down to appearance.
It will slash your electricity bill, and if you get 5kW or more it will probably make the energy company pay you on average over a year.
You could get a battery to be 'self sufficient'. It's nice but the returns are worse than for PV. A battery that costs £4,000 will save you less money than an extra 4kW of panels. Despite my comment above you probably can't get 10kW on your roof, so if you still have money left over after filling it then a battery would be nice.
And with that extra money you're getting from generation means you can run a storage heater in the winter months and be more comfortable. You're clearly surviving on heating a single room, but in a sane world no one should need to worry that they can afford to keep their whole house warm over winter. You could be a glimmer of sanity.
I'd go for the full PV system with any insulation improvements they're willing to "throw in". My understanding is that the scheme will permit more than one improvement, dependent on survey. Congrats and remember to persevere should be told that you may not received the benefit at any point during the wait.
- 40% of panels in an East/ West rooftop orientation.
- Viessmann 200-W on Advanced Weather Comp. (the most efficient gas boiler sold)
The scheme doesn't fund storage (batteries), only the PV array & associated equipment. I did ask about the subscription levels, and she said that there was plenty of availability for my region (Staffordshire), but couldn't give me any numbers.
I wonder if there is a limit on the size of array they would install, up to the £10k limit, but I suspect my roof space would be the limiting factor.
I feel sure I'm a minimal user with my 1100kWh annual consumption. I don't see the point of heating unused rooms, I see it only as wastage. My bathroom is unheated, but the shower soon warms one up, and then a quick dash to the bedroom! I also have a heated blanket, bliss during winter. What else does one need?!
I wonder what a 4-5kW array would do for me, and what I could potentially feed back? I guess I could get hot water via my immersion heater (never used before!), and possibly incorporate a storage heater?
Much to learn still...
You'd break even in terms of generation and use over a year (in kWh) with a 2kW system.
But due to details of when you generate power and when you use it you'll export most of it, everyone without batteries does. You sell your power for less than you buy it so you'd still be paying for electricity overall with a small array.
But if you export enough power then it doesn't matter. There have been very recent changes to the Solar Export Guarantee available which means you can sell power for 15p a kWh, which isn't much but if you're exporting 5,000 kWh a year (assuming a 5-6kW system) then that's £750 payment on top of the saving you make by not buying as much electricity.
I do have an existing HW tank with an immersion heater.