The Renewable Energy Hub Forum

Renewable Energy => Solar PV => Topic started by: Heather on August 26, 2014, 10:34:23 PM

Title: Is it easy to install solar panels?
Post by: Heather on August 26, 2014, 10:34:23 PM
How long does it take?  Can it be done by someone on a DIY basis or should it always be done by a professional firm?
Title: Re: Is it easy to install solar panels?
Post by: RBurdett on August 28, 2014, 03:15:42 PM
Hello Heather,

Solar panels can be installed by a competent DIY'er with some very good electrical knowledge.
However that said there are some very big reasons why this is not recommended.
1. If you wish to earn an income from the FIT (Feed In Tariff) then you wont be able to claim for it.
2. If you are not careful you could damage your roof and cause costly damage to your home.
3. if the system is not certified properly you will find it extremely hard to sell or re-mortgage your home and if and when this time comes your cries for certification may very well fall on deaf ears (I have heard of this happening before).

There are more reasons why but I'll leave that to the installers to explain.

All the best.

Title: Re: Is it easy to install solar panels?
Post by: GemmaRowlands on September 30, 2014, 09:42:19 AM
I am sure that there are people who would be able to manage it on their own, however I would suggest that you hired a firm to do it for you - because it's the only way that you would be able to know for sure that it has been done properly, and that it's going to work. Even if you end up having to pay a bit more for it, I think it's much, much better than trying it yourself when you're not really sure what you're doing.
Title: Re: Is it easy to install solar panels?
Post by: Mark Haslam on September 30, 2014, 02:35:39 PM
Definitely get someone else to do it for you. There's no way I'd even be remotely tempted to fit them myself. You're messing about with power, and that type of thing can be very dangerous unless you have the right type of training.
Title: Re: Is it easy to install solar panels?
Post by: TechforEnergy on April 05, 2015, 12:53:53 AM
Apart from the power aspects of it, all roof mounting systems are engineered products, designed to cope with calculated wind and snow loads.

Tile types determine what installation methods are used to maintain waterproofing.

Timber types and roof types determine what installation methods are used to comply with building regulations and to prevent timber damage.

There are many, many other considerations - shading analysis and string design and many other design considerations that a competent DIY'er will be completely unaware of.

In short - this is a job for a professional company to ensure professional results.
Title: Re: Is it easy to install solar panels?
Post by: Shivam on August 12, 2018, 07:08:37 AM
Yes, you can install a solar panel on your own, but the DIY solar concept works well if you want a small off-grid system to power a small cabin, a small boat or tiny cottages. If you want to sell extra electricity generated by your system to a grid, then DIY solar project is not a good idea. In order to get tax credits for setting up a solar system, you need to install a solar panel that is fully compliant with your system and is in accordance with your state laws.
If you are still planning to install the DIY solar system and looking for some information about its installation and requirements, check out this blog  However, it is recommended to verify all the connections from a professional in order to avoid damage to your solar panel.
Title: Re: Is it easy to install solar panels?
Post by: DietPony on March 13, 2019, 11:04:08 AM
Would be better to find someone knowledgeable in solar to design, measure, and install a home solar system. Of course if you know more yourself, the less expensive are the costs. Trying to connect a solar system to the power grid is no easy task for an average Joe and it may lead to injuries, accidents and mistakes. Ask a certified installer if you don't anything on solar systems.
Title: Re: Is it easy to install solar panels?
Post by: linesrg on April 03, 2019, 09:17:36 AM
Good Morning All,

While I don't want to preach anarchy it is well within the capabilities of an averagely competent DIY person to install Solar PV however there are an array of what can only be called 'limiting' regulations making this quite difficult.

As a 'non-certified' installer your local DNO would probably want to come and inspect/ check your install. Up here SSE reserve the right to inspect the first three installations of a 'new' installer before accepting any further applications from said installer. When I asked about extending my 4kW system, I was told yes I could but if using a 'non-approved' i.e. myself that would charge me 585.

There is also a requirement about electrical installations and being done by 'approved' electricians in recent years.

Having said this there are plenty of sources of information on the interweb which will provide more than sufficient information. The most challenging part is the installation of the panels which is risky and with modern large panels quite challenging. Downstream of this the inclusion of the, two pole, DC isolator switch before the inverter, the inclusion of a, 2 pole, AC isolator after the inverter and the wiring in of a suitable MCB into the consumer unit is actually pretty straight forward to be honest.

The inverters won't connect if it sees any of a number of faults and equally the MCB/ RCD in the consumer unit will operate to 'protect' if necessary.

My only faux pas of recent was installing an SMA Energy Meter after the main Solar PV isolation switch to input into Sunny Portal but only using a 6A MCB to protect the Energy Meter. Given the whole Solar PV system is connected to a 32A MCB I don't know what I was thinking. After it had tripped 3 times as the sun climbed in the sky and the power out of the Solar PV system rose the penny dropped.

As I say incorporate the necessary protection devices and you are pretty well protected.


Title: Re: Is it easy to install solar panels?
Post by: HomeFarm on August 09, 2019, 07:54:36 AM
I would definitely suggest going with a qualified MCS-certified installer to ensure that your system is installed and configured correctly.
Title: Re: Is it easy to install solar panels?
Post by: derefip on September 11, 2019, 11:01:11 AM

I also want to install solar panels myself. So, as I understand it, you need to carry out the installation correctly, for better functioning.