Homeowners across Ireland are installing solar panels on their rooftops to save hundreds of euros on their annual energy bills, while making a positive contribution to the environment by harnessing the limitless energy of the sun!

Will Solar Energy Get More Efficient in the Future

What are solar panels?

Solar PV panels, usually installed on rooftops, convert sunlight into electricity which can power home appliances, heat water, and be stored in batteries for future use.

Solar panels reduce annual energy bills by hundreds of euros each year, and they pay for themselves over time – with homeowners usually seeing a return on their investment in less than 8 years.

There are two main types of solar panels: solar photovoltaic (PV) and solar thermal. Solar PV panels, which generate electricity, are much more commonly installed in Ireland.

Solar thermal panels are also sometimes installed. While they don’t create free electricity for homes and businesses, they can heat water and are highly efficient.

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How much do Solar Panels cost in Ireland?

Solar panels typically cost between €5,000 and €14,000 for homes in Ireland. In 2024, the SEAI offers a solar panel grant to homeowners of up to €2,100 (previously €2,400).

Installation costs will depend on a number of factors, including how many panels you need to meet your needs. If you want to learn more about how much you will pay for solar panels for your home, check out our detailed guide to the cost of solar panels in Ireland, or our handy solar panel calculator.

Grants available for solar panels

Solar Batteries for Irish Homes

Many people who install PV panels will choose to get a solar battery, which would add up to €4,000 to the overall installation costs.

However, for most people, a standard 5kWh battery would suffice, costing in the region of €2,500. This could save you hundreds of euros per year by maximising usage and reducing the amount of electricity not consumed.

Homeowners can also take advantage of cheaper nighttime electricity rates by utilising electricity stored in the battery from the daytime.

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Solar Panels Grants in Ireland

Solar panel grants of up to €2,100 are available for Irish homeowners. These grants, provided by the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI), are open to all homeowners where their homes were built and occupied before 2021.

The SEAI currently offers homeowners €800 per kW of solar PV panels up to 2kW, and a further €300 per kW between 2kW and 4kW.

There are also solar panel grants available for businesses and farms, and our in-depth solar panels grants page explores everything in more detail.

solar energy grants
Solar System Size Grant Available
2kWp €1,600
2.5kWp €1,725
3kWp €1,850
4kWp + €2,100 (maximum grant for homeowners)

Do solar panels work well in Ireland?

Ireland has more than enough sunlight for solar panels to work well. We get between 1,100 and 1,600 hours of sunshine per year on average.

Ireland’s sunniest months are May and June when we get between 5 and 6.5 hours of sunshine per day, and the sunniest region is (unsurprisingly) the south-east, according to Met Éireann.

Regardless of location, solar panels on Irish rooftops can generate more than enough electricity to justify their installation.

Ireland typically receives between 1,100 and 1,600 hours of sunshine each year

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Benefits of Solar PV Panels for Irish homes

While solar thermal panels heat water, solar PV systems generate electricity. People in Ireland are installing PV solar panels on their homes for five main reasons. We explore these reasons further in our advantages of solar energy page.

A solar PV system sized at 20 square metres (3kW) could potentially generate up to around 3,000kWh of electricity per year, slashing electricity bills by 40 to 50%.

Home solar grants of up to €2,100 are available from the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland, greatly reducing the initial solar installation costs for your system.

Solar PV systems can pay themselves off in as little as 5 or 6 years, and after this they will generate free electricity for at least two decades, possibly with enough excess power to sell back to the grid.

Having solar panels will increase the value of your home, as well as improving its overall BER rating, which is attractive to potential buyers in the future.

Solar panels are a great way to reduce your carbon footprint, i.e. your contribution to polluting the atmosphere with gases from fossil fuels. Using renewable solar energy means you will be making a positive contribution in the fight against climate change.

reasons to consider solar panels

The Solar Panel Installation Process

As well as very little maintenance work being required for 25+ years, the solar installation process itself is fairly straightforward and pain-free.

  • Homeowners get a quote from a recommended solar panel installer, who will outline all costs associated with the installation process.

  • First, scaffolding is set up before solar panel mounts are put in place. The solar panels are then installed by your chosen solar panel installer.

  • The inverter is installed. This can be located outside or inside, however inside is recommended, or anywhere away from direct sunlight and with proper air ventilation. This is connected to the household unit, and a meter should be installed to calculate how much energy your solar system is generating.
  • Your battery, which is optional, is then installed. This can save excess solar energy for nighttime, or winter.
  • Your solar installer will carry out a diagnostics test to ensure your solar panels are working as they should.
  • After care services are provided if needed by trusted and professional solar panel businesses.
Solar Panel Installation Steps

FAQs

The Irish government has removed the requirement of planning permission for solar panels, except for houses in ‘Solar Safeguarding Zones’ near airports, aerodromes and other sites with helipads such as hospitals.

Modern solar panels have a long lifespan of around 25 to 30 years, with minimal maintenance along the way.

Solar panels generally require very little maintenance. Having said that, your residential solar panels should be cleaned at least every year.

To sell electricity back to the grid, a smart meter is necessary, and your electricity provider will offer a rate for excess electricity which you have not used.

The majority of rooftops in Ireland are suitable for solar panels, however south facing roofs with adequate space are ideal to capture as much sunlight as possible.

Solar panels have a long lifespan, and they can be recycled when their efficiency eventually begins to dwindle after 25 to 30 years.

There have been great advances in solar panel technology in recent years, and the most efficient, commonly used solar panels now has almost 25% efficiency.

Solar panels are not only great for homeowners, but farmers which need electricity for machinery can also utilise solar energy to generate free electricity. There are large grants available for solar panels for Irish farms.

Solar Energy Saves Households Thousands in Electricity Costs

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