Which solar panels should you choose?
Not all PV panels are the same—with substantially varying levels of quality, efficiency and price. What matters is their Kilowatt Hours rating—this is how much electricity a system actually produces.
Naturally, Solarbarn will give you all the advice and guidance you need to choose the panels that are best for you.
Whilst we can supply virtually any make of panel on demand, for most domestic customers we fit one of four tried-and-tested quality brands: Panasonic, LG, Sunpower and Solarworld. For commercial installations with a large number of panels, we will generally recommend JA Solar.
Changing DC to AC
The solar panels on your roof create DC electricity which needs to be converted to AC for you to use it or export it to the national grid. That’s the job of your inverter box. We generally supply wall-mounted units from ABB and SolarEdge .
SolarEdge is particularly useful where panels may suffer from shading at certain times of the day, such as on a large array on a complex roof which points in different directions,
Here’s what a day’s performance looks like on a recent large Solarbarn home installation where the panels face in two different directions:
For slate roofs we use the ‘SolarFlash’ flashing system. Invented and produced in the UK by slate roofing specialist Jimmy Hall, ‘SolarFlash’ is the very best way to fix solar arrays to slate roofs without jeopardising the integrity of the roof. As you can see from the newly installed one in the picture to the right, the metal roof bracket stands clear of the slate and is able to flex in high winds without stressing the surrounding slates. It adds a little to the installation price of the overall system but we believe the extra cost is well worth paying for this high-quality fixing.
For roofs with plain clay or concrete tiles, we always use ‘Solar Limpets’ (below). These are really clever UK-made roof hooks that replace a whole tile and provide a strong, waterproof and durable fixing.