A leading UK solar power resource site has just launched their first application for both iPad and iPhone, and great timing: the heat wave sweeping much of the US right now not only has many of us staying inside with the air conditioning running, but also dreading the utility bill that’s going to follow. A solar system may be looking like a pretty good investment, and Solar Panels UK’s new “Solar Panels Suitability Checker” app (which works around the world) can help you find out how well your home is sited for installation of solar panels.
That’s right: solar panels won’t work on every building. Many of you are saying “Duh,” but I get this all the time: someone tells me they’d love to install a solar system, but they don’t have a south-facing roof, or have trees shading the best spots for solar panels much of the day. This free app lets you know immediately if you’ve got a solar sweet spot for your home: just download it, and use your phone’s GPS system to send your location to the app’s database. It will return a Google Maps satellite image, and with a little fine tuning, an overlay that shows the best areas for solar at the location (pictured above) – it’ll even show you which section of your roof is best for those solar panels. Easy peasy. You can also check other addresses by inputting them directly (in case you’re in the market for a home, and want to check its solar suitability). Version 2.0 of the app – which is in the works – will factor in sun time data for the location, as well as slope/tilt of the roof.
Revolutionary technology? Not really – these kinds of applications have been around for a while. Useful, though? Definitely, if you’re thinking about spending the $20-40,000 required for a solar systems before incentives. And you can’t beat the price…
Used this app, or others like it? Let us know about your experience with it. For more information, visit their website here.
Image credit: Solar Panels UK