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Business
28 May 2024

10 ways commercial solar panels can benefit your business

Molly Govus
Health Sector Specialist
blogPost

Both homeowners and businesses are turning to solar power more and more with each passing year. Across the globe, seven countries now generate 100% of their energy from renewable sources, with solar power being the most widely available source. The UK is somewhat behind, but with the drive towards Net Zero by 2050, solar panel installation is on the rise. There’s been a lot of focus on residential solar panels, but what about commercial spaces? 


If you’re wondering whether commercial solar panels are a good fit for your business, read on. We’re going to explore the benefits of solar panels for businesses of all sizes. 


Are solar panels suitable for small businesses?

We recognise that the concept of commercial solar panel installation can seem like a vast undertaking, suitable only for large businesses. However, solar panels can be a great investment for small businesses, too.


With solar technology becoming more affordable and accessible — especially with the availability of solar panel grants and financial incentives — even small enterprises can benefit. Small businesses and SMEs often have lower energy demands, making solar installations more affordable and quicker to install. After all, you won’t need as many solar panels to keep your premises running.


Benefits of commercial solar panels

So, what are the main advantages of commercial solar panels for businesses of all sizes? 


1. Lower business energy bills

One of the most significant benefits of commercial solar panels is the reduction in energy bills. By generating your own electricity, you can significantly cut down on the amount of power you need to purchase from the grid.


This not only lowers your energy costs but also protects your business from fluctuating energy prices. Over time, the savings on electricity bills can offset the initial investment in solar panels, leading to substantial long-term financial benefits.


2. A reduced carbon footprint

Installing solar panels helps reduce your business’s carbon footprint. Solar energy is a clean, renewable source of power that doesn’t produce harmful emissions. 


By switching to solar, you can significantly decrease your reliance on fossil fuels, contributing to the fight against climate change. This commitment to sustainability can improve your business's environmental impact and support global efforts to reduce carbon emissions.


3. Energy independence

Solar panels provide your business with greater energy independence. By generating your own electricity, you reduce reliance on external energy suppliers. This can be particularly beneficial during energy price hikes or supply shortages. With the addition of a solar battery, you can also store excess energy generated during the day for use at night, ensuring a continuous power supply.


Take a look at our guide to learn more about how solar panel batteries work


4. A better corporate image

Investing in solar energy can enhance your business's corporate image as customers, partners, and investors are increasingly valuing sustainability. By adopting solar power, you demonstrate your commitment to environmental responsibility. This can attract new customers, retain existing ones, and improve relationships with stakeholders who prioritise sustainability.


5. Financial incentives

The UK government offers several financial incentives to support businesses investing in solar energy. From the zero VAT rate on solar panels which reduces the upfront cost to the Smart Export Guarantee (SEG), which allows you to earn money by selling excess electricity back to the grid, these incentives make solar power a financially viable option for many businesses.


6. Tax benefits

In a similar way, businesses can also take advantage of various tax benefits when installing solar panels. These include capital allowances, which let businesses deduct the cost of solar panel installation from their taxable profits. 


Some local authorities may also offer additional tax incentives, further reducing the overall cost of your investment.


7. Increased property value

Did you know that solar panels can boost your commercial property’s value? Just as residential solar panels can increase your home’s value, commercial buildings with renewable energy systems are more attractive to buyers or tenants, leading to higher property valuations


This investment can offer a significant return if you decide to sell or lease your property.


8. Minimal maintenance

Solar panels require minimal maintenance once installed. Regular cleaning and occasional inspections are usually enough to keep them operating efficiently. This low maintenance need translates to lower ongoing costs compared to other energy systems, making solar panels a hassle-free investment.


9. Job creation and local economic support

Investing in solar energy supports local economies by creating jobs in the renewable energy sector. This includes roles in manufacturing, installation, maintenance, and sales. By supporting the local workforce, your business contributes to economic growth and sustainability in your community.


10. Scalability

Solar energy systems are highly scalable. You can start with a small installation and expand it as your business grows. This flexibility lets you adapt to changing energy needs without significant overhauls or disruptions.


The average cost of commercial solar panels

The cost of commercial solar panels in the UK varies based on the size of the system and specific requirements. 


  • For small systems (10kW - 50kW), prices typically range from £13,000 to £60,000 (excluding VAT).

  • Medium systems (50kW - 250kW) cost between £39,000 and £200,000.

  • Large systems (250kW - 1MW) can range from £250,000 to £1 million or more.


These costs generally mean you can expect to break even on your investment within 5 to 10 years, depending on your company’s energy consumption and your energy supplier’s tariff. 


As with any business investment, there are several factors that affect your overall solar panel bill. You’ll want to consider the complexity of the installation, the type of solar panels chosen, and any additional features such as battery storage. 


To learn more about commercial solar panel prices and the factors that influence them, please feel free to explore our business solar panel guide


Which solar panels are best for your business needs?

Choosing the right solar panels depends on your business's specific needs and goals. As a general rule of thumb, monocrystalline panels are highly efficient and ideal for businesses with limited roof space. They have a higher upfront cost but offer better long-term performance.

 

Polycrystalline panels, on the other hand, are more budget-friendly and suitable for larger installations where space is not a constraint.


Then there are thin-film solar panels. These are flexible and lightweight, making them suitable for installations where weight and flexibility are concerns. They perform well in low-light conditions but require more space. 


And finally, solar tiles integrate seamlessly into your building's roof, preserving aesthetics while generating power. They are more expensive and less efficient but are ideal if appearance is a priority.


How to find your ideal commercial solar panels with SpotDif

Finding the right solar panels for your business can be challenging. SpotDif simplifies this process by allowing you to compare different solar panel providers and products quickly. Our comparison tool helps narrow down your choices to help you find the ideal commercial panels for your building, from top-rated suppliers.


By using SpotDif, you save time and money, ensuring you get the best deal on solar panels that meet your business's needs. We provide detailed information on different types of solar panels and offer insights into the best products and services available in the UK market. Let us help you navigate the solar panel market and find the perfect fit for your business needs.

author
Molly Govus
Health Sector Specialist
My goal is to help you make the most informed decision for your health needs. No smoke, no mirrors — just research-led guidance and money-saving advice.
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