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Best solar panel installers in the UK

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Over 229,610 solar panel systems were installed in the UK in 2023[1], but with more than 2,000 solar providers nationwide, identifying reputable companies can take time and effort.

To help you make an informed decision, our solar experts have extensively researched many national installers. We’ve assessed their qualifications, warranties, services, customer support and, of course, how much their solar panels cost. Our detailed guide features the best national solar panel installers out there today, highlighting their standout qualities so you can choose the perfect company for your needs.

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The best solar panel installers compared

The success of your solar system hinges on two things: the quality of the materials and how well the panels are installed. When seeking the best solar panel installer, you need someone who knows their stuff, from choosing the best solar panels on the market to positioning them in just the right place to maximise energy generation. In addition, they need to be qualified in electrical systems to keep everything safe and hazard-free.

Knowing how long the installer has been operating is critical, too. If they’ve been around for at least four years, it usually means they’re doing something right – like keeping their customers happy and building up a wealth of experience that newcomers just can’t yet match.

Our top three national solar panel installers

⚫️ Best warranties: Project Solar

⚫️ Best nationwide installer: Effective Home

⚫️ Best panel choice: Glow Green

How we choose the best solar panel installers

When selecting the best solar panel installers, we examine a variety of critical factors. Reputation is key. We consider how long they’ve been in business, their accreditations and their track record for customer satisfaction. Panel efficiency and power output are also crucial, as these impact the system’s effectiveness and your potential savings. In addition, we evaluate the warranties offered, ensuring they provide adequate protection.

Cost is, of course, another significant factor, balanced with the savings offered. We also check Trustpilot scores and other review platforms to gauge real-life customer experiences. All of these elements combined help us identify the top installers who can deliver quality, reliability and value.

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What is a Microgeneration Certification Scheme accreditation?

The Microgeneration Certification Scheme (MCS) is an independent certification scheme that sets, defines and maintains the standards for low-carbon energy technology products, contractors and their installations. These include solar panels, battery storage and heat pumps.

Our top solar panel installers

Solar panel installerMCS-accreditedInstallation warrantyYears in business at time of writing
Project Solar10 years22 years
Effective Home2 years15 years
Otovo5 years (20-year warranty under subscription plan)8 years
Glow Green5 years12 years
Heatable2 years5 years
Evergen2 years13 years
Solarsense2 years23 years
UPS Solar10 years7 years
Sunsave2 years (20-year warranty under subscription plan)2 years
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How to find solar panel installers near you

Find solar panel installers near you by filling out our short form to receive free quotes from highly-rated solar panel installers.

Project Solar: Best warranties

Project solar website
  • 10-year labour warranty and lifetime panel warranty
  • 24/7 monitoring
  • MCS-certified

Project Solar has carved a significant niche in the renewable energy landscape, performing more than 45,000 solar installations and mitigating 150,000 tonnes of carbon emissions. The company boasts accreditation from several industry organisations, including the Home Insulation and Energy Systems Quality Assured Contractors Scheme (HIES), which focuses on consumer protection. Project Solar is also accredited by the Energy Performance Validation Scheme (EPVS), the National Association of Professional Inspectors and Testers (NAPIT) and the MCS. It has a Trustpilot rating of 4.6 out of five stars, which is classed as “excellent”.

While most reviews are positive, many of the one-star reviews reflect dissatisfaction with the initial consultation or follow-up appointments – including reports of missed dates and poor aftercare service. However, Project Solar responds to every single review – whether positive or negative – showing a commitment to customer service.

Its diverse product portfolio ranges from Evo Super Max solar photovoltaic (PV) panels and innovative PV roof tiles to advanced EV chargers, infrared heaters and smart heating systems. It also uses SunPower Maxeon panels in its installations. Project Solar stands out from its competitors for its 10-year labour warranty (far better than the typical two years) and an industry-leading lifetime product warranty on its solar panels. This warranty is invaluable for providing homeowners with peace of mind.

Read our full Project Solar review.

Effective Home: Best nationwide installer

  • 25-year installation warranty
  • Over £250 million worth of energy-saving measures installed
  • MCS-certified

Effective Home installs heating systems, insulation solutions, solar batteries and PV panel systems throughout the UK. It offers customers free surveys and finance options and supplies Tier One panels from JA Solar, Aiko and Longi.

Effective Home holds several industry accreditations. These include the National Inspection Council for Electrical Installation Contracting (NICEIC), assuring that all electrical parts are installed in line with national standards, as well as HIES and EPVS – with the latter ensuring consumers achieve the promised energy savings. The company has a Trustpilot rating of 4.4 out of five stars, with 73 per cent of reviews awarding it five stars. Its customer service team responds to all Trustpilot reviews and offers to rectify any negative experiences, which shows the company is committed to maintaining customer satisfaction.

Effective Home is planning to introduce a subscription service – with a £99 onboarding fee – which will allow homeowners to benefit from a solar system with minimal upfront costs. Effective Home will retain ownership of the panels and carry out maintenance without charging the customer. Its Energy Shield subscription will offer five-year fixed terms, with customers buying the energy their solar panels generate for prices starting at 19.9p per kWh. You can register your interest on the site to find out about subscriptions when they become available.

EDF, British Gas, Halifax and Lloyds Banking Group have teamed up with Effective Home to offer solar panels to their customers.

Read our full Effective Home review.

Glow Green: Best choice of solar products

glow green website
  • Five-year labour warranty
  • Will match quotes like-for-like
  • MCS-certified

Glow Green specialises in energy-efficient home enhancements, including solar panels, solar battery storage, EV chargers, air conditioning and heat pumps. Its installations use Tesla, PureDrive, Trina, JA Solar and Perlight solar products, and it offers free quotes in as little as 60 seconds. The like-for-like price match guarantee gives Glow Green a competitive advantage. Basically, if you receive a cheaper quote from a competitor, the company will match the price.

Customers have awarded Glow Green 4.5 out of five stars on Trustpilot, but it’s important to understand this takes in all of the company’s products, not just solar panel installations. Still, Glow Green responds to all reviews with offers to help rectify any issues. This combined with its 12 years in business suggests a reliable, professional service.

Read our full Glow Green review.

Otovo: Best leased panel subscription

  • Monthly subscriptions start at £20
  • Installers are regularly assessed 
  • According to MCS, Otovo’s upfront costs are around £1,000 less than the national average

Otovo, established in 2016 and headquartered in Oslo, Norway, focuses on residential solar panel installations across the UK and Europe.

One of the key benefits of Otovo as a provider is its subscription plan, which significantly reduces the barriers to solar energy adoption. Unlike traditional models that require hefty upfront costs, Otovo instals solar panels through a monthly subscription plan, which starts at £20 per month. This covers hardware, installation, maintenance and insurance costs, with no initial investment required. Otovo owns the panels while the subscription plan is running, with ownership transferring to the homeowner upon completion. That said, by paying off the balance at any point, the system becomes the homeowner’s property.

Otovo’s upfront system prices come in at around £4,370 for a two-bedroom home. According to MCS, this price is £1,000 less than the national average, and the company also matches quotes on a like-for-like basis. On top of that, Otovo’s installers and projects are regularly vetted to ensure consistent quality.

Customers award Otovo 4.4 Trustpilot stars, with most highlighting excellent customer service, polite and efficient installers and transparent pricing policies.

Read our full Otovo review.

Heatable: Best after-sales service

Heatable website
  • Two-year labour warranty
  • Fixed online prices
  • MCS-certified

Heatable installs solar systems using REA Solar panels, Enphase inverters and Alpha ESS batteries. It also offers 24-hour performance and storage monitoring and ongoing maintenance. The company is MCS-certified, supported by the HIES Consumer Code and has developed its own online design tool, eliminating the need for a home visit before providing a fixed quote.

Once your system is installed, Heatable provides panel-by-panel monitoring, real-time battery data and 24-hour system performance monitoring.

The company has a Trustpilot customer rating of 4.8 out of five stars, with an impressive 98 per cent giving Heatable four or five stars – though bear in mind only a small number of reviews relate to solar installations.

Evergen: Most efficient panels

evergen screenshot
  • Two-year labour warranty
  • Finance available
  • MCS-certified

Evergen, based in Berkshire, delivers a range of solar solutions, including solar panels and batteries, nationwide. The company is currently installing Aiko panels, which represent some of the most efficient on the market and include a 25-year product warranty.

The company has HIES and EPVS Gold Standard accreditations and operates under the Trading Standard Approved Code. It was also a finalist at the National Energy Efficiency Awards 2023 and for Maidenhead and Windsor’s Best Covid Bounce Back award.

Evergen scores 4.2 out of five on Trustpilot, with 75 per cent of customers giving the company four or five stars. Negative reviews suggest poor customer service and some dissatisfaction with scaffolders, but Evergen replies to every review.

Read our full Evergen review.

Solarsense: Best for social responsibility

Solarsense home page
  • Two-year labour warranty
  • More than 10,000 residential solar systems installed
  • MCS-certified

Solarsense installs and maintains solar panel systems, solar batteries, solar-powered hot water systems and EV chargers. It also offers guidance to customers applying for solar panel grants. Solarsense has a diverse charity programme, carrying out conservation projects across Asia, Africa and the UK. It has also partnered with The Brightwell charity and provided it with solar panels.

Operating as a group of independent contractors, Solarsense isn’t anchored to a particular brand of solar panels; however, it appears to favour products from Q Cells, Solis Solar and SolarEdge. If homeowners want a specific manufacturer, the company says it will accommodate those preferences.

Solarsense has a Trustpilot rating of three out of five; however, this score is based on just three customer reviews, including one that awarded the provider five stars. The negative reviews suggest poor aftercare service but don’t give any detail, and the company has yet to respond to these customers.

Read our full Solarsense review.

UPS Solar: Best customer service

UPS Solar website
  • 10-year labour warranty
  • No upfront payment required
  • MCS-certified

UPS Solar is a nationwide company that installs solar panels (mostly from Sharp, Q Cells and JA Solar), batteries and various inverter models. Its product catalogue allows for a completely tailored package for each installation. UPS Solar also offers ongoing maintenance, a 10-year labour warranty and a deposit-free installation, which means you only pay once the job is complete.

UPS has gained a reputation for providing clear and prompt customer communication. Many of the company’s Trustpilot reviews highlight this trait, awarding UPS Solar 4.7 stars on Trustpilot – with 90 per cent of customers giving four or five stars.

UPS Solar installations are backed by the Independent Warranty Association (IWA) and the company holds accreditation from Renewable Energy Consumer Code (RECC) and MCS. It also operates under the guidelines of the Trading Standard Approved Code.

Sunsave: Best solar panel subscription service

  • 20-year full system warranty
  • Subscription payment scheme with no upfront costs 
  • MCS-certified  

Although Sunsave has only been in operation since 2022, it’s already made a name for itself in the solar industry. The company specialises in solar power generation and storage, offering supply, installation, monitoring and maintenance.

With the Sunsave Plus scheme, homeowners can pay for their panels via a monthly subscription service. Free of upfront costs, the fee starts at £69 per month and the scheme also includes a free out-of-warranty replacement battery.

Customers have awarded Sunsave 4.7 out of five stars on Trustpilot, with 91 per cent of reviews being five stars. The feedback reflects homeowners’ experiences from sale to installation. To date, the company has replied to every negative review after two or three weeks.

Read our full Sunsave review.

Benefits of hiring national solar panel installers

Hiring professional national solar panel installers comes with many benefits compared with attempting a DIY installation or opting for less experienced labour. The advantages include:

  • Expertise and experience: a professional company will have the experience to ensure solar panels are installed correctly, which is essential for maximising energy production and the lifespan of the system
  • Safety: installing solar panels involves working with electrical systems – often at a height. Professional technicians are trained to handle these risks and have the necessary equipment to carry out their work safely
  • Warranties: most reputable solar installation companies offer warranties on their workmanship
  • Efficiency: experienced installers can complete the job faster than someone who is inexperienced or attempting a DIY installation. This means your solar panels will start generating electricity sooner
  • Maximised energy production: a professional will ensure the panels are optimally positioned to capture daylight, considering the angle, orientation and potential shading issues
  • Access to materials and equipment: professional installers have relationships with manufacturers and distributors in the solar industry, allowing them to source high-quality panels, inverters and mounting equipment – often at better prices than retailers
  • System monitoring and maintenance: many solar companies provide monitoring systems that allow you to track your solar energy production. They may also offer maintenance packages to ensure your system remains in top condition throughout its lifespan
  • Cost-effectiveness: while hiring professionals might cost more in the beginning, the efficiency, longevity and performance of a professionally installed system can mean more significant savings over time

How to choose the best solar panel installers or companies

Solar panels are a long-term investment, so making sure you choose the right company from the outset can save you a lot of trouble down the line. Below are several factors to consider when evaluating a potential installer.

Certifications

Certifications are a good way to determine whether an installer is competent and adheres to recognised standards. Some to look out for are:

  • MCS certification: if the company is certified by the MCS, it meets specific standards for solar panel installations. Bear in mind that your chosen installer must have this certification if you want to benefit from Smart Export Guarantee (SEG) payments
  • RECC membership: membership of the RECC means the installer has agreed to comply with a consumer code that covers all aspects of selling and installing solar panels
  • Solar Trade Association (STA) membership: the STA  sets policies relating to solar panel installers, and many of the best installers in the UK are members of this organisation

Experience

The experience of a solar panel installer can significantly impact your installation’s efficiency, safety and longevity. While newer companies can also provide exceptional service, a company with over four years of experience has stood the test of time and has adapted to the evolving industry.

A company’s portfolio can also provide a snapshot of its expertise in real-world scenarios. For insights into the quality of the installer’s work, review the range of projects it already has under its belt.

While companies often showcase their best testimonials, diving deeper can provide a more comprehensive view of the customer experience. Rather than relying fully on testimonials provided by the company, check out reviews on sites such as Trustpilot. If multiple reviewers praise the company’s customer service or the durability of installations, it’s a positive sign. On the other hand, repeated negative feedback on a particular aspect of the company’s services warrants attention.

Cost

While the cost of solar panels is an important factor for many homeowners, it’s just as important not to compromise on quality. As with any product or service, the cheapest option isn’t always the best. High-quality panels and installation might cost more upfront, but they tend to provide better efficiency and a longer service life.

Be sure to request multiple quotes from different installers. This will give you a benchmark and help as you negotiate prices. Make sure each quote includes a breakdown of costs so you can see what exactly you’re paying for – panels, inverters, labour and any additional services.

Warranties

Warranties indicate the company’s faith in its products and services. There are a number to look out for:

  • Workmanship warranty: this covers the installation work. A standard installation warranty lasts between one and 10 years, but some companies offer extended warranties
  • Product warranty: solar panels typically come with a product warranty that lasts between 10 and 25 years. This warranty covers manufacturing defects or any other problems with the panels themselves
  • Performance guarantee: most manufacturers also provide a performance guarantee, ensuring the panels will produce a certain percentage of their rated power for a specified time – typically 25 to 30 years
Jina Kwon Otovo circle close-up

We spoke to Jina Kwon, Otovo’s General Manager for the UK and Ireland, to get her advice on choosing the right solar panel installer.

 

She stressed that the best residential solar companies will carefully design a system tailored to your unique electricity consumption. They will also value your input and encourage you to provide a year’s worth of energy bills so they can accurately gauge your household’s energy usage.

Jina recommended being wary of installers who try to oversell you on a larger battery than you’ll need – a 3kW battery should be sufficient for most households. Keep in mind that battery storage can easily be increased later if required, meaning you don’t have to bear this extra – and potentially unnecessary – expense in the beginning.

What should you avoid when choosing a solar panel installer?

When deciding who should install your solar panels, there are several red flags to watch out for. Keep the following tips in mind:

  • Don’t rely solely on pricing: while it’s tempting to go for the lowest quote, the cheapest option may not always offer the best value in the long run. Low pricing could reflect compromises in panel quality, installation standards or service
  • Choose quality over cost: invest in high-quality solar panels and a reputable installer. The initial price might be higher, but the long-term benefits in efficiency, durability and lower maintenance costs are worth it
  • Avoid hard selling tactics: steer clear of installers who pressure you into making a quick decision. A reputable company will understand the importance of this investment and give you the time and information you need to make an informed choice
  • Seek fixed price quotes: this guarantees the price you’re quoted is the price you’ll pay, eliminating any unexpected costs after the project begins
  • Consider after-sales support: after installation, you may need help with system monitoring, maintenance or addressing potential issues. Choose an installer who offers comprehensive after-sales support

How long does installation take with a solar installer?

The lead time from your initial consultation to installation will vary according to how busy the company is and whether the system components are in stock. On average, a solar panel installation takes around two days; however, there are a number of factors that could affect the timescale:

  • System size: the size and capacity of the solar panel system will directly affect the installation time. Larger systems with more panels generally take longer to install
  • Complexity of the installation: challenging roof layouts, additional wiring or integration with existing electrical systems can add to the installation time
  • Weather conditions: weather can play a significant role in installation time. Inclement weather can delay the process
John Gilham (1)

What the expert says

We spoke with John Gilham, Group Technical Director and Co-Founder of Green Building Renewables about what to expect from the installation process. 

 

He explained: “During the installation of roof-top solar panels, you can expect to see installers arrive at your home the day before the panels are attached to the roof to fit the scaffolding, allowing them roof access. The scaffolding should take around a day to be put up.

 

“Next, the panels will be fitted to your home, and depending on the number of panels and size of the home this may take a couple of days. Installers then connect and fit the battery system and show customers how they can monitor the system on the app.”

Why are DIY solar panels a bad idea?

Opting to install solar panels yourself might seem like a more economical option. However, it’s fraught with challenges and potential pitfalls that can turn it into a risky, if not dangerous, undertaking.

Safety risks

First and foremost, safety is a paramount concern. Installing solar panels involves working with electricity – and any mishandling can result in electrical shocks or fires. Professionals in the field are trained to deal with these risks and ensure a safe installation. Meanwhile, DIY enthusiasts lack the requisite knowledge and experience, potentially putting themselves and others in danger.

Warranty issues

Another significant consideration is the potential voiding of product warranties. To maintain warranty coverage, many manufacturers require that their solar panels and inverters are installed by licensed professionals. DIY installations can result in the forfeiture of these warranties, leaving homeowners unprotected against potential defects or malfunctions.

Performance complications

An incorrect installation can lead to a variety of performance issues. Panels might not be optimally angled or the wiring could be incorrect, resulting in inefficiencies and diminished energy production. This underperformance can compromise the anticipated benefits and cost savings, undermining the whole reason for adopting solar energy.

Impact on property value

While a professionally installed solar panel system can increase a property’s resale value, a DIY job may not meet the same standards. Potential buyers might be wary of the quality and safety of a non-professional installation, which could affect the property’s marketability and value.

Can you get free quotes and consultations from the best national solar panel installers?

When selecting a national solar panel installer, be sure to explore your options and compare quotes before making a final decision. Ideally, get at least three different quotes, considering each installer’s cost, experience and credentials. Avoid settling for the first quote that comes in, as this doesn’t allow you to determine whether it’s a good deal.

Invest time in making a well-informed choice and don’t feel pressured by aggressive sales tactics. Be wary of an installer who tries to push a time-limited offer. Remember there are many installers available, each offering their own deals, so take the time to find the one that best suits your needs.

As well as comparing quotes, it’s a good idea to take advantage of consultations, which should be offered free of charge. A solar panel consultation clarifies the installation process and allows you to address any queries or concerns.

Sources

[1] Data from The MCS Data Dashboard, updated April 2024.

Frequently asked questions about solar panel installers

Quotes for your solar panel installation typically include labour costs, so there’s no need to arrange this separately.

The labour cost for solar panel installation can vary widely depending on several factors, including the size and complexity of the system, the property’s location, the type of roof and the company providing the installation services. Typically, based on one solar technician per day, the costs are between £300 and £500, but it could cost £1,800 for a more significant, two-person installation taking three days.

While electricians can have the basic electrical knowledge needed to install solar panels, not all have the necessary qualifications. For example, solar panel installers should be certified under the MCS accreditation scheme. This is a nationally recognised quality assurance scheme that certifies both products and installation companies, ensuring installations meet a set standard of quality and compliance. Hiring a certified installer is also necessary to benefit from the SEG scheme.

Remember that solar panel installation involves other tasks too, such as roof mounting and connecting the system to the national grid, which require specialised knowledge beyond standard electrical work.

In the UK, residential properties typically don’t require planning permission for solar panel installations, as they are generally considered permitted development. However, there are exceptions – for example, if the property is listed or located in a conservation area.

Before proceeding with a solar panel installation, it’s good practice to check with your local planning authority to confirm whether you need any permits. A professional solar installation company can also help guide you through the regulatory requirements and approval process.

Solar panels calculator

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The data used to power this calculator is sourced from various solar companies and industry bodies, including the UK government, the Energy Saving Trust and Ofgem. Please note that costs are estimated and based on a UK average, and should not be taken as the exact price you would pay. If you’d like to get an accurate quote for solar panels, then you can use this form to get an estimate from one of our trusted partners.

Katharine Allison

Energy Saving Writer

As Independent Advisor’s energy saving expert, Katharine, a keen advocate for sustainability, is an authority on solar panels, double glazing, and cutting-edge renewable energy technologies. Her dedication merges with a commitment to enlighten and steer readers toward embracing eco-friendly solutions and the latest trends in sustainability.

With over 10 years of experience, she has worked with some of the UK’s leading companies and publications, including the Federation of Master Builders, Architectural Digest, and Denon Construction. 

Katharine is particularly passionate about consumer causes and animal welfare and has art, philosophy, and psychology degrees. She lives with her sled dogs in East Sussex.