Renewables

Brigstowe Electrical LTD

Helping the south west achieve a cleaner energy future

At Brigstowe Electrical Services Ltd, we aim to design and install the right systems for you. Regardless if you’re a domestic or commercial customer our aim is to help you or your company reduce your energy bills and help to reduce your carbon footprint.

We can achieve this by specifying the correct size solar pv system to suit your needs and look at the additional benefits of Battery storage and EV Charging Options.

Why Brigstowe Electrical Services Ltd?

We take a proactive approach and pride ourselves in our ability to combine bespoke solutions with best value for money. All of our work is undertaken in-house, this allows us to pay attention to the detail and deliver technical excellent solutions at a very reasonable cost. Having installed systems for almost 12 years, we built strong links with our equipment suppliers and can recommend the best technology for each individual client.

We’re MCS approved Solar PV installers – a specialist company that has installed projects across the South West of England, typically with a value of £1000 – £500k

We’re also specialists in Renewable Energy and Storage Systems. So we continuously analyse the batteries and chargers available on the market to ensure we are offering our customers best-in-class technology.

How much does solar cost?

Solar panels usually cost around £1400-£1750 per kWp installed, depending on roof access costs, roof covering and pitch. A standard domestic 4kWp system will cost around £5,600 inc VAT.

As 4kWp typically saves around £400 per year on energy bills, the payback time is around 13-15 years. The panels will last 20+ years or so (with one inverter replacement). The % return over 20 years is usually in the order of 9% (IRR%).

This is non-taxable, so compares very favourably to any other investment, especially one that depends only on the sun coming out.

The grid cost is 16p+ per unit for the typical homeowner, and rising… and rising… Including maintenance costs, the unsubsidised cost per KWh of solar energy is only 8p.

Last year saw the Feed-in Tariff closed to new applicants, leaving a very different landscape to the heady days of 2010, when the Feed-in Tariff scheme was first launched and the subsidy was 43p per kWh. In October, solar tax rates also got a shakeup, meaning not every installation is eligible for 5% VAT.

So, are solar panels worth it today?

Speaking purely from a financial point of view, the answer is a resounding yes. Of course beyond the financial, there are many other environmental benefits to be gained from installing solar, installing residential Battery Storage, driving an electric vehicle etc. Not least because they all contribute directly or indirectly to tackling air pollution and the climate crisis.

Back to the financials. The solar subsidy may have fallen, but so has the cost of the technology. Overall the cost of domestic solar electricity is now around 8p per kWh. This is well below the 16p average domestic import cost from the grid (which, by the way, increased by 6% in the last 12 months…).
The economics of solar in 2020

A typical 4 kWp solar system (10-13 panels) now costs around £5,600 inc 5% VAT. There will be some maintenance costs over the life, and a probable inverter replacement required, total cost around £1,750 in today’s money. So the true all-in cost of the system is around £7,350.

On average a system will generate an average of around 3,500 kWh a year, allowing for a modest degradation over time. In its 25 year life, it is expected to generate about 88,000 kWh of electricity.

Exporting power

Obviously to get maximum benefit from electricity that costs only 8p per kWh, you need to be using as much of it as possible on site, displacing imported electricity which could cost as much as 18p per kWh (on a time-of-use tariff), or 20p per kWh on a typical Economy 7 tariff. These time-of-use tariffs will then allow you to buy cheap electricity at night (at 8p per kWh, say).

If you don’t use the solar electricity (or store it), it won’t be worth that much to you – it will only be worth the Export Tariff, around 5p per kWh.
So with a time-of-use tariff, you will gain around 10p per kWh by displacing expensive daytime electricity, and lose around 3p per kWh on anything you export. Without a battery, as long as you use at least 50% on site you are going to be ‘£££ in’.

Solar plus domestic battery storage

With a battery and a time-of-use tariff, you will easily use 70-80% on site, and open up the potential to top up your battery (and your car) with cheap overnight electricity, whilst avoiding altogether the high daytime tariff inherent in a time-of-use tariff.

The stored electricity will cost you a bit more than 8p per kWh (more like 20p per kWh all-in), because of the cost of storage, but you will minimise export, still benefit from the cheap overnight rate of the time-of-use tariff to charge your car and top up your battery, and, with the Tesla Powerwall 2 for example, you have the added bonus that your lights will still be on in a power cut.

Conclusion: solar is still a very good investment!

As long as you use at least 50% of your power on site, then, with a judicious choice of import tariff, solar will make sense. The more you use on site, the greater the savings. Using everything on site gives a cost well below the average home’s grid electricity cost of around 16p per kWh, and even further below a typical peak time-of-use tariff of 18p per kWh 

What’s more the cost of grid electricity is rising. According to page 11 of the Government’s latest “Quarterly Energy Prices” publication, domestic electricity bills rose by 6% when comparing 2019 with 2018…

On a financial return basis, the internal rate of return (IRR%) from an investment in a solar system is typically 9% over the life, non-taxable and linked to inflation. How many other investments yield 9%, dependent only on the sun continuing to shine?

Why Commercial Solar?

Solar makes seriously good sense for any business or campus (university, college, school, hospital or business park), with a decent roof or plot of land and a long-term intention to stay in their premises for 10+ years. Ideally the business should own the freehold of their premises, Or have a long-lease over the property. The lifetime cost per kWh of solar electricity is now 5.5p per kWh… this compares to 10-12p for electricity purchased from the grid.

In the right business, the system will more than pay for itself, should be financeable if necessary and will significantly improve your company’s impact on the environment.

Cost and Financial Returns (ROI%)

Rooftop solar panels usually cost between £650 and £1200 per kWp installed, depending on roof access costs, covering and pitch.

A 50kWp system will cost anywhere between £35,000 and £55,000 plus VAT.

A kWp typically gives a saving of around £110 per year, so £5,500 for a 50kWp system, giving a payback time of between 6 and 10 years. The panels will last 25 years or so (with one inverter replacement expected during this time). The return over 20 years is usually 9-16% (ROI%).

Most of the return comes in the form of a reduced electricity bill – for a typical business, each kWh generated by the solar system is worth around 12p if used on site, and 5p if exported to the grid.

On average over 20 years (taking into account degradation of panels), a kWp will generate 750-900kWh a year. That’s around 20,000 kWh over the life. So the cost per kWh of solar energy is only around 5.5p per kWh. Now that’s something to shout about!

The grid cost is 12p for the typical business, and rising…

Solar contractor services

  • Free initial consultation and quotation.
  • Free completion of tender documents.
  • In depth feasibility studies and system design with performance estimates and system optimisation.
  • Liaison with other project designers: structural engineers, M&E and sustainability consultants.
  • DNO liaison and G99 compliance.
  • Technology integration – on-grid and off-grid solar, storage, lighting controls, EV charging and voltage optimisation.
  • Installation using in-house installers, servicing and maintenance.

New build Properties

We have worked with many housebuilders, large and small.

We are able to provide a whole range of on-roof and in-roof solar PV systems, as well as building integrated PV and customised panels.

Electric Vehicle chargers are becoming more and more prevalent, and we expect to see battery storage incorporated at the design stage, either in individual properties, or to provide cost savings and / or back-up across a development.

Why is regular servicing important?

All electrical systems should be inspected and tested periodically to safeguard your investment.

  • Maintain optimal system performance.
  • Achieve anticipated financial returns.
  • Check for damage to cables and connectors.
  • Pre-empt problems with monitoring.

Defects causing reduced output in one or two strings of a solar PV system could go undetected for a long period of time, finally manifesting as a marked deterioration in output and income loss. Faults can also pose a fire or shock risk.

We offer servicing, maintenance and monitoring packages for solar PV and battery systems. We can also provide one-off services as required.

Why clean your solar panels?

On most pitched roofs, rainfall is sufficient to keep solar panels clean. But on flat roofs, or in areas of high debris or pollution, we recommend having panels cleaned every year or two.

This will increase the amount of light reaching the solar cells and maximise generation. A study by Google found that annual cleaning increased the yield on a flat roof system by 36%.

Cleaning must be done carefully to avoid any damage to the solar panels. If possible, we can clean them from the ground with a long lance, low-pressure washer and deionised water. Otherwise, we can use a cherry picker or harness lines already on the roof.

Commercial Energy Storage

Cost effective energy storage has arrived! Your business can:

  • store electricity from solar panels for later use on site;
  • reduce peak electricity costs by avoiding 'time-of-use' surcharges
  • earn income from support services like firm frequency regulation and capacity market payments to the National Grid;
  • install a reliable commercial UPS battery backup (replacing diesel generators);
  • avoid costly grid upgrades e.g. to support EV charger rollout;
  • reduce its carbon footprint by minimising transmission losses (when used with on-site generation) and eliminating further grid investment in fossil fuel generation.

The typical payback time for a commercial battery storage system is around 5 years, with IRR% over 15 years running at 5% – 20%.

Domestic Energy Storage

Store excess solar power to use at night.

  • Become more grid independent
  • Protect against rising electricity prices
  • Buy cheap, use peak
  • Reduce your carbon footprint

Tesla Powerwall 2

The best all round residential solar storage product on the market is Tesla Powerwall 2, which we recommend for several reasons:

  • Design and efficiency.
  • High capacity (13.5kWh) and high power output (5kW).
  • Quality control and safety.
  • 10 year warranty.
  • Lowest lifetime cost per kWh.
  • Beautiful design, wall hung or ground-mounted, and weatherproof.
  • Off-peak charging (buy cheap, use peak) as well as storage of excess solar.
  • Backup in the event of a power cut.

Electric Vehicle Homecharge Scheme (EVHS)

Electric Vehicle chargers are becoming more and more prevalent, and we expect to see battery storage incorporated at the design stage, either in individual properties, or to provide cost savings and / or back-up across a development.

The UK government, specifically the Office for Low Carbon Vehicles (OLEV) currently offers consumers a 75% contribution to the cost and installation of a single home chargepoint up to a maximum of £350 per eligible vehicle.

Key features

The key features of the OLEV grant scheme are as follows:

  • The grant is set as a 75% contribution to the cost of one chargepoint up to £350.
  • The scheme will run until the funds are used up.
  • Electric vehicle owners must provide evidence of keepership, lease, or be named as the primary user of an eligible electric vehicle in order to be able to qualify for the grant.

Who is eligible?

The scheme is open to individuals who:

  • become registered keepers of new and second hand electric vehicles from 1st October 2016 onward;
  • are assigned an eligible company vehicle for at least 6 months from 1st October 2016 onward;
  • lease an eligible electric vehicle for at least than 6 months from 1st October 2016 onward;
  • eligible commercial fleet vehicle and are named as the primary user for at least 6 months from 1st October 2016 onward;
  • order an electric vehicle and are in receipt of the vehicle from 1st September 2016 onward.

Vehicle eligibility

An electric vehicle is eligible if it appears on the OLEV eligibility list for the Plug-in Car and Van Grants.

Property eligibility

In addition to being the registered keeper, leasing or have primary access to an electric vehicle you must have off street parking facilities suitable for chargepoint installation.

If you do not have off street parking, your Local Authority may be able to help via a central Government grant to install recharging infrastructure.

The Electric Vehicle Homecharge Scheme (EVHS) requires each grant claim to be accompanied by a form which includes a customer declaration. The customer declaration is an important part of the grant claim and any missing information will make the claim invalid and payment will not be made.

As the resident and registered keeper (or in some cases the lessee or primary user) you should read the form carefully to make sure you can answer all of the questions and provide all of the necessary evidence

Chargepoint installers are required to collect data on each charging event and to send anonymised summary data to OLEV, or its representatives, every quarter. Data handling is fully compliant with the provisions of the Data Protection Act.

For each charging event, the following data will be collected:

  • chargepoint ID;
  • start date and time;
  • end date and time;
  • total energy drawn (kWh).

Chargepoint eligibility

Eligible chargepoints must be ‘smart’. This means chargepoints must be able to be remotely accessed, and capable of receiving, interpreting and reacting to a signal.

OLEV approved installers

To qualify for the grant, you must use an OLEV approved installer, such as Brigstowe Electrical Services Ltd.

Workplace Charging Scheme (WCS)

The Office for Low Emission Vehicles is offering a non-repayable grant of up to £14,000 towards the cost of installing workplace EV chargepoints.

The scheme pays up to 75% of the cost of a charger, with a limit of £350 per charger and 40 chargers per business.

All you need to know about commercial EV chargers.

  • Plugin electric vehicles are predicted to make up 30% of the market by 2025, with many people expecting to charge at work.
  • Opportunity to cut fleet costs, earn income from charging, reduce your carbon footprint and improve your green credentials.
  • Chargers available from EVBox, Garo, Rolec, Tesla etc etc.
  • Functionality is key: monitoring and metering, auto-payment settlement, access restriction and employee benefit analysis.
  • Active load management may be necessary to prevent overloading of your grid connection.

How do Voltage Optimisers work?

Voltage optimisation can achieve significant energy savings and also extend the life of electrical equipment. This is because voltage supplied from the National Grid into homes and businesses (average 240V) is higher than that required by most electrical appliances (220V).

This excessive voltage results in electricity bills that are higher than they need to be and means that appliances are overpowered and at risk of overheating.

By taking thousands of measurements per second, voltage optimisation units continually adjust the voltage from its source of supply to reduce it to the voltage that electrical equipment needs to operate efficiently. This eliminates excess voltage and reduces the associated energy consumption and costs as well as reducing the risk of equipment becoming overpowered and overheated.

How much could I save?

The savings can be significant as voltage optimisation can cut electricity bills by up to 15% while savings can also be realised through lower maintenance costs on electrical equipment.

As a simple solution, voltage optimisation units can be installed quickly and easily; by our qualified installation team.

Home Automation

We offer a full range of ‘smart’ products that can automatically switch on and off at pre-set times and temperatures or even ‘think’ for themselves to save energy whilst maintaining ideal conditions in your home or office. All our home automation products can be controlled via remote or on the go with your mobile.

How can home automation save money?

These systems are not only convenient for the user but are also exceptional energy saving devices. By making energy adjustments based on your location and need, home automation systems manage your energy usage on an ongoing basis so you don’t have to.

Some of the latest generation of smart controls can even show you your energy costs and usage.

Why not use home automation to take advantage of Economy 7?

Use your phone to set a timer for your dish washer and washing machine, putting you fully in control of your home while cutting your energy bill. Whether for a home or office, home automation can save you money while reducing hassle.

Why switch to Domestic LED lighting?

LED lighting uses up to 90% less electricity than halogen or incandescent lighting which can mean much lower bills and big savings in energy. LED light bulbs also last much longer than standard halogen bulbs, often lasting up to 20 years so replacement costs are lower as well.

LED lighting is also safer; by working at lower temperatures than halogen bulbs, there is a vastly reduced fire risk. Further, LED light bulbs contain no harmful substances like Mercury which are often found in CFL and halogen bulbs. As such, LED light bulbs are safer around the home and are 100% recyclable.

As well as the financial and environmental benefits, LED lighting can give you much better control. LED lighting systems can be configured to give you control over individual LED bulbs allowing you to create an ambience to match your mood.

Can I save money by installing LED lighting?

  • Exceptionally quick return on investment. Can be less than 12 months 
  • Outdated incandescent and halogen bulbs waste 95% of their electricity input by turning it into heat
  • Efficient energy conversion technology enables LEDs to easily achieve the same light output of an incandescent or halogen bulb with a much higher wattage (a 5W LED bulb can emit a greater brightness than a 50W halogen bulb) 

LED Lighting For Commercial Properties

Lighting accounts for 40% of your energy bill. Commercial Properties can used to have an annual lighting bill of £4000 from the old, outdated incandescent panels and bulkheads.

On average, companies can also spend £100 every month on calling out electricians to replace these dim bulbs. After a simple installation of brighter LED bulbs across a Business. You could start seeing savings of £3000 each year on lighting bill and be in a cash-flow positive situation.

Commercial companies can not only save up to 90% on their annual energy bill, but can also cut replacement costs and minimise lighting maintenance, all by buying a product that is off-settable against tax.

Tax Benefits LED lighting is also part of the Energy Technology List, meaning that, after installing LEDs, companies can claim an Enhanced Capital Allowance (ECA) to benefit from a 100% accelerated capital allowance that delivers all available tax relief in the first year – that’s equivalent to 5.5 times the benefit of standard tax relief in the first year of purchase.

Return on investment Due to their immense energy savings, most Commercial LEDs pay for themselves within one to two years.

With a life expectancy exceeding at least 20,000 hours, our range of Commercial LEDs are guaranteed to reduce your lighting bill by up to 95% for years after their return on investment.

Comprehensive and Cost Efficient

What we offer

AN EXPERIENCED ELECTRICAL COMPANY YOU CAN RELY ON

Get in touch

Want to discuss your next project with us? Or simply need a quick fix? Contact us today, we’d love to hear from you.