First, we need to identify the 2 main common types of Solar Panel currently available: polycrystalline solar panels and monocrystalline solar panels.
There are a few other types of solar panels available, however these are the main two types used commercially.
Can Polycrystalline Solar Panels be used on Flats?
Polycrystalline solar panels are one of the most common types of solar panels that are best suited for installation on a flat roof, making them an excellent choice for apartment buildings.
This type of Solar Panel is constructed from melted silicon crystals that are cast into a mould, which gives them a blue or black appearance - doing this, however, makes them less efficient than monocrystalline solar panels. Still, they are considered more cost-effective as they are less expensive.
For installing polycrystalline solar panels, there are a few things to consider…
Ensure the roof is in good condition to be able to support the weight of the panels.
Make sure the Solar Panels are angled using a racking system - so they face the sun as much as possible.
Make sure the solar panels are correctly wired and connected to the inverter to allow for the change of current. The inverter is typically located in either the garage or loft.
Can Monocrystalline Solar Panels be used on Flats?
Monocrystalline solar panels are constructed from a single crystal of silicon, which gives them their characteristic blue color. This means they are a lot more efficient than polycrystalline Solar Panels but are considered to be a lot more expensive.
They are, on the other hand, a feasible option for installation for apartment buildings because they can generate a lot more electricity on a smaller scale in comparison to polycrystalline panels.
They can also maximize the amount of energy in areas of lower sunlight - such as areas with frequent clouds, shade, or sun blockages such as trees or tall buildings.
It is always important to check whether planning permission is required, however, it’s equally important to speak with not only the landlord of the flat but also the owner of the apartment building before installing Solar Panels