Are solar panels right for me?

Is your home suitable for Solar PV?

  • Your roof faces South, East, or West
  • You have more than 3sq meters of roof or ground space
  • Your roof in good condition
  • Your roof is free from significant shading
  • Your home has an EPC rating of "D" or above

Orientation and Tilt Angle

In the UK, south-facing Solar PV systems generate the most electricity, while the ideal tilt angle ranges between 30 and 45 degrees relative to the horizontal axis.

Nevertheless, your Solar PV system will still produce a substantial amount of electricity even if it faces faces East or West, or has an inclination of 65 degrees.


Calculation table

The following table shows performance levels for all types of system installations. Use the table to estimate the efficiency of your installation site based on orientation and tilt angle.


efficiency table of solar panels


If even a small section of a panel is shaded by the branch of a tree or telephone pole then there will be a large reduction in power output from the panel. This is because a PV solar panel is typically made up of three substrings of cells connected with one another.

The output of the whole panel is limited to the output passing through the weakest cell. If one cell (typically out of 60 cells in a module) is shaded, it will affect the power output of the whole panel.

In addition to a loss of power output, shading can have much more serious effects on photovoltaic solar panels – shading can cause hot spot damage to cells in which a shaded cell or cells overheat and potentially burn out.

However, each substring is usually protected by a bypass diode, which protects the cell against the formation of hotspots. They can also be effective in mitigating shading losses by “bypassing” the affected substring of cells, allowing the other substrings to perform at full power.

If there is a lot of shading on the roof, it might be beneficial to add optimisers to the panel array to mitigate the shading losses. These optimiser allow each individual module to operate separately from the other modules.