1 Kw solar panel systems consist of arrays of several panels according to output, so for example 5 x 200w or 8 x 125w panels. These small systems normally cost around £5,400 to buy and are a good way to save money on energy bills, while obviously not meeting as much of typical household’s energy requirements as the larger 2.5Kw systems do. As a guide, a 1 Kw system can power a 20 inch TV or a laptop. The best systems can produce around 5000w per day. A good 1Kw system will generate 750Kw hours (Kwh) per year in the UK. If we assume an average household uses between 3000 and 4500 Kwh per year, a 1 Kw PV system will therefore cut that amount by 16 to 25%. In terms of cost, a 1 Kw system could cost you anywhere between £3,000 and £7,000 depending on who you approach and which system you use.
In terms of panel performance Suntech Solar is one of the largest solar panel companies in the world and produce mono-crystalline solar panels which are more than 14% efficient. Sharp and Trina are also highly recommended, particularly because of their competitive prices. Sanyo panels are also among the best available and have received many awards over the years.
As an indication, the Solar PV Systems website is offering a 1Kw system for £3,392. This kit consists of 6 MCS approved Sharp solar panels each rated at 185w, an SMA Sunny Boy SB1200 grid tie inverter, MC4 solar cable couplings, a roof fixing kit, Kraus & Naimer isolation switches, double insulated solar cable and an ofgen approved total generation meter.
A 1Kw Caymax set of solar panels will cost around £5,499 according to the Renewable Savings website. These panels are high efficiency and come with 25 years guarantee. Energy Saving Shop recommends the myPlanet solar PV installation kit which includes panels, cables, mounting and which can be used on a Feed-in Tariff. The entire package costs around £4,700. Stone, Wind & Solar offers a 1.2Kw kit which includes 6 x 200w multicrystalline panels, a Steca Grid inverter, isolating switch, generation meter, mounting kit, cables and connectors for £4055.27.
Stand-alone systems are also available, but they require battery banks for operation which adds to the maintenance costs.