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Is Solar Thermal Worth It?

Thermal boiler and solar heater panels

Whether or not solar thermal is worth it depends on a few factors. The first consideration is cost. Solar thermal panels are more expensive than traditional solar panels, but the cost of installation and maintenance is lower. Additionally, solar thermal systems can provide heat for hot water and space heating, which can result in significant savings over time. Ultimately, the decision comes down to your situation and whether you expect to see a return on your investment.

Solar Thermal Technology

Solar thermal is a relatively simple technology typically used to heat water. It involves using solar panels to collect the sun’s energy for heating water in a cylinder, which is then used for hot baths and showers.

With this energy solution, you can enjoy green energy superior to other renewable alternatives. Currently, solar thermal remains mainly a water heating option.


Solar thermal costs in the UK vary depending on the length of the pipe run and the roofing material. Typically, installing a solar thermal system for a house with three bedrooms will cost anywhere from £3,000 to £5,000. Meanwhile, installing two or three panels equipped with a 200-litre or 300-litre cylinder is expected to cost between £4,000 and $7,000. The solar thermal cost per m2 also varies. For a 3m2 solar thermal panel, the benchmark cost is around £3,000. And for a bigger 6m2 system, it can cost as much as £4,500.

Energy savings

Solar thermal systems can provide significant savings, but the numbers can be hard to calculate. They’re also highly dependent on many factors, such as the amount of the initial installation, energy source being replaced, available solar resources in your location and your energy needs. For instance, if the energy source you’re replacing is coal, your estimated energy savings is £55. If you’re replacing LPG, your estimated energy savings is £100.

Installing solar thermal panels can allow you to save £1,410 over your lifetime. Lasting an average of 25 years, they’re relatively low maintenance compared to gas boilers. You’ll also be reducing your carbon footprint by around 6.6 tonnes in this timeframe.


With a properly installed system, little maintenance will be necessary. A few things, though, will require periodic attention. These include checking the pump fluid pressure annually and monitoring the PH levels and antifreeze fluid. Weather and environmental conditions will affect most maintenance issues. If dirt builds up on the panels, a light cleaning may be required.

Installing Thermal Solar Panels

Solar thermal benefits include reduced energy consumption and a smaller carbon footprint. The return on your investment will vary according to how much hot water you consume. Generally, the bigger the house, or the greater the number of residents, the faster the return.

If you’re in or near Swindon and in the market for thermal solar panels, look no further than CentraHeat. We can supply and install thermal solar panels for your heating needs. Contact us today.

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