Advantages of Solar Panels for Small-Scale or Commercial Businesses


Businesses stand to benefit from adopting renewable technology to power their needs. It makes sense to switch to renewable solar PV considering that the business sector is the biggest consumer of power in the UK buying up 56% of all electricity according to E.ON. On a commercial scale, solar energy offers attractive benefits providing clean and renewable fuel, reducing operating costs and creating a source of income. As the cost of installing panels becomes cheaper and effective, businesses and offices turn to solar as a source of energy despite the recent energy subsidy cuts imposed by the government. Here are the reasons why.

Renewable and a Source of Clean Energy for Good Business Practices

Available data from SolarCentury suggests that there are at least 400 commercial PV installations in UK businesses and offices that are ground or roof mounted. These panels generate electricity for commercial purposes. Solar power is a source of clean fuel emitting low to zero carbon emissions that won’t harm the environment. There are nearly 250,000 hectares of (south) facing commercial property in the UK according to the UK PV Solar Strategy. Assuming the installation of solar panels on commercial buildings and roofs, these PV panels could provide up to 50% of electricity demands in the UK (estimates of BRE National Solar Centre).

Reduce Maintenance Costs

Once installed, solar panels are nearly self-sustaining. They require little maintenance apart from regular annual inspection & testing and cleaning. The average lifespan of a PV is 20 years and the panels are expected to deteriorate at 1% a year (National Renewable Energy Laboratory). Dirt and debris may also collect on the panels and hence,  several times a year, panels are washed to maintain efficiency. Solar PV saves you money on expensive maintenance or repair activities. Installing solar panels also minimises administrative expenses.

Source of Revenue

Another convincing argument to switch to solar is that the government offers incentives to businesses in the form of Feed-in-Tariffs. Not only is your business going to produce its own electricity but the extra energy you make can be sold back to the grid for a specific price per kilowatt. For small-scale enterprises, the return on investment (ROI) is comparable to gains on a home installation. But if you have the land or space, you could build more solar panels and the ROI is higher. On top of reducing operational costs and making use of roof space, installing clean renewables is also another source of income.

PV installations are reliable sources of energy that can power the needs of businesses and offices. Technology is constantly improving making it easy for enterprises to make the switch as costs of installation become cheaper and PV efficiency in energy production increases.


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BDC 309 : Oct 2023