☀️ You can fit around four to six solar panels on a standard garage roof in the UK
☀️ You must get your garage roof’s structure assessed beforehand to avoid damage
☀️ You don’t normally need planning permission for solar panels on garage roofs
Are you considering transforming your garage roof into a small energy generator? This simple, often ignored space is ideal for capturing the natural sunlight in a more discreet way – and with solar panels becoming much more affordable over time, it’s very easy to install them.
We have prepared everything you need to know about placing solar panels on your garage roof – from the practical aspects to the advantages and disadvantages. And when you are ready, just fill out our contact form for a free, no-obligation quote on your new solar PV system.
Can I put solar panels on my garage roof UK?
Garage roofs are excellent for solar panels. You can make the most of your space and reduce your environmental impact at the same time with the right location and installation.
Most types of garage roofs, whether flat or sloped, attached or detached, get plenty of sunlight and can support solar panels safely. So, if you want to switch to solar and have a garage roof available, you are all set.
Can a garage roof support the weight of solar panels?
A standard solar panel usually weighs between 18 kg to 20 kg per panel (around 5 kg to 10 kg per square metre). This extra weight is normally within the capacity of most garage roofs, but you need to have an installer check the roof’s structure before you proceed.
If the roof’s structural integrity is uncertain, your MCS Certified installer should seek advice from a professional structural engineer to ensure your solar panels can be installed securely.
Can garage roof solar panels power your property?
Yes. Even though you have solar panels on your garage roof, they can produce electricity that can supply your whole property, not just the areas connected to your garage.
How many solar panels can you fit on a garage roof?
The average roof size for a medium single garage in the UK is about 2.7 m x 5.5 m.
This size can accommodate around four to six solar panels, assuming each panel has the average size of 2 m². With a power rating of 350 watts each, these panels could produce around 1,060 to 1,590 kilowatt hours (kWh) of electricity per year based on typical output.
The average annual energy output for a one to two-bedroom home is 1,590 kWh, so your garage roof solar panels could potentially generate enough energy to cover a large part of your household needs.
How are garage roof solar panels connected to your property?
The connection process for garage roof solar panels and house roof solar panels is very similar.
Garage solar panels connect to your home in the same way as house roof ones. They send the solar energy to an inverter that changes it into usable power, which then reaches your fuse box and gets spread across your property to power your appliances and lights.
How much do solar panels for a garage roof cost?
The price of putting solar panels on your garage roof can change, but based on our research in October 2023, the average cost for a three-panel system is £3,100. For a bigger system of six panels, the average cost is £3,600.
Since the typical garage roof can fit four to six panels, you can estimate an average cost between £3,000 and £4,000.
Keep in mind, these prices are averages – actual costs may differ based on factors such as the specific panels selected, installation difficulties, and any possible roof reinforcement requirements.
The pros and cons of having solar panels on your garage roof
- Make the most of the unused roof space on your garage
- Keep the aesthetics and style of your house intact
- The panels are easier to access for cleaning and maintenance
- Potential shade from the main house, trees or other properties
- The garage roof may need to be reinforced to take the weight
- You may need extra wiring to connect the panels to the house
Putting solar panels on your garage roof boosts your property’s overall green energy output, but also offers some privacy for those who worry about the appearance of solar panels on their house.
Also, because they are lower than house roofs, tasks like maintenance, cleaning and inspection will be simpler and safer.
On the other hand, not all garage roofs are fit for solar panels – as we said before, they need to be strong and ideally located to get maximum sunlight. If your garage is in a dark spot because of the main house or nearby trees, that might lower the panels’ efficiency.
Also, installing solar panels on a garage roof could need extra wiring to connect the power produced to your house, adding another level of difficulty and potential cost to the installation process.
Is your garage suitable for solar panels?
We have discussed the main factors you need to consider before installing solar panels on your garage roof.
- Check the roof’s direction. A south-facing roof is best for getting the most sunlight in the UK. Then look at the angle – 30 to 40 degrees is often ideal for capturing the most sunlight.
- Evaluate the roof’s structural strength. Can it handle the extra 15-20 kg per square metre that solar panels and their mounting hardware add? If you are not sure, it’s smart to consult a structural engineer.
- Shade is another factor. If trees, the house, or other obstacles block the sun from the garage, this will lower solar panel efficiency. Ideally, the garage should have a clear, open view of the sky for the best solar results.
- Your garage’s distance from the house can affect the difficulty and cost of installation. If it’s too far, you’ll need more wiring to connect the solar panels to your home’s electrical system, and this could raise costs.
Take your time to think about all these factors to determine if your garage roof is suitable for solar panels.
Do you need planning permission to put solar panels on your garage roof?
You usually don’t need planning permission to install solar panels on your garage roof in the UK, thanks to the ‘Permitted Development’ rules around solar panels that started in 2008.
You can install panels without permission as long as your garage is not a listed building or in a conservation area. But, you still have to follow some important rules:
- Solar panels shouldn’t stick out more than 20 cm from the edge of the roof.
- Any unused panels must be taken away quickly.
- Installation should avoid changing the appearance of the building and affecting the surrounding area.
- Your solar array – the group of panels that are connected – shouldn’t go above the highest point of the roof (not counting the chimney).
We’d strongly advise that you follow these guidelines for a hassle-free solar installation without needing extra planning permission.
Using the natural energy of the sun with garage roof solar panels is a clever move, offering both environmental and financial advantages. But remember to check suitability, weigh the pros and cons, and get professional help.
Feeling motivated and ready to make your garage roof useful? Want to learn more? Your best option is to talk to one of our friendly solar energy experts on 01268 928 690 or click on the ‘Enquire Now’ button below and we will help you find the right fit for your home and budget.
Frequently Asked Questions about Solar Panels on Garage Roofs
Installing solar panels on a garage roof is possible. It’s a great way to use the often neglected space. But, for the best results, don’t forget to think about factors like your roof strength, angle, direction, and distance from the house before you install.
Putting solar panels on a detached garage roof is an option. This can be a good way to use the space and create more power. Just remember that the distance from your main property may affect the wiring difficulty and costs, so it’s best to get advice from a professional before you start planning.
You can put solar panels on buildings like sheds, barns, or workshops, as long as they’re not protected buildings or in a conservation area. Just check that the building roof is strong and gets enough sunlight – and remember its distance to your main property.
No, you don’t normally need planning permission for solar panels on a garage roof. As in most cases, solar panels do not require planning permission as they fall under permitted developments.
Sheds and garages that require a bit of power or light are ideal for installing solar panels, especially if they’re situated on your property that’s considerably far away from your main house.
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