How to improve your EPC rating with solar panels

What is an EPC rating?

EPC stands for ‘Energy Performance Certificate.’

An EPC rating is a measure of a property’s energy performance. 

The better your rating, the less carbon dioxide your home will emit or take to heat or power.

They are sometimes also known as ‘Energy Performance Certificates,’ EPCS.

The introduction of EPC ratings is meant to try to reduce the carbon footprint of the UK. It is part of the government’s aim to reach net zero by 2050. EPC ratings encourage energy-saving homes powered by renewable energy.

  • An EPC rating assesses a home’s energy efficiency rating. An independent body carries out EPC surveys.
  • Following a brief review of the property, the EPC appraiser will assign the house a colour-coded rating from A to G.
  • The most efficient band is A, which has the lowest fuel bills, and the least efficient is G.
  • An EPC rating is usable for ten years after it is issued.

You might have seen similar energy rating stickers on appliances, like your fridge or washing machine. 

epc rating and solar panels smart energy

How can I increase my EPC rating from E to C?

Solar panels are an easy way to increase your EPC rating, reduce your bills, and add value to your home. Benefit in numerous ways with the addition of a solar PV system on your roof.

Depending on the size of your system, you could increase your EPC rating by over two levels, which could take you from an E to a C.

Do solar panels improve EPC?

You might be wondering if solar panels improve your EPC rating. The good news, they do improve your EPC rating. This is because they are a renewable energy source, and so will reduce your carbon footprint.

Other factors might also improve your rating. However, solar panels have the added benefit of saving you money on your bills.

 A 4KW system can add up to 15 points to your EPC rating.

Do I need an EPC for solar panels?

You do not need an EPC for solar panels. Previously, you needed an EPC rating of at least a D to access the FIT (Feed in Tariff) scheme. The FIT scheme has since been scrapped and replaced with the SEG scheme. The SEG scheme does not require any minimum EPC grade.

Do I need to redo EPC after solar panels are installed?

You do not need to redo your EPC after installing solar panels.

If you’re looking to sell or rent your house out at any point in the future, you will need to get a new EPC rating before you can sell or rent. The addition of solar panels will have a positive effect on your EPC rating and consequently will add to your house value.

In order to rent your house to others, you need an EPC rating of at least an E.

From 2025, you will need a minimum rating of a C to rent a property out, meaning that improving your home’s energy performance is becoming more and more important.

How much will solar panels help EPC levels?

Solar panels could increase your EPC rating by over two levels. You might have to increase your EPC rating to make your house sellable in the future due to minimum ratings.

Some studies suggest that solar panels could add over 4% to a  home’s value. 

Solar panels increase a home’s energy performance by making it more carbon efficient. 

A higher EPC rating often means a home is easier to heat, making it a more comfortable and appealing living space. In the case of solar panels, you’ll be saving money on your electricity bill using green energy, meaning you can power electric heaters with your solar, or use your savings to pay for gas heating. Either way, heating your home becomes more accessible and easier than without solar panels. For this reason, solar panels are very cost-effective as they can greatly reduce your energy bills.

You can also add a solar hot water heater, like an iBoost, that can use the solar energy created by your system to heat water for your home.

How else can you improve your EPC rating?

Other ways of improving the energy rating of your home include: 

  • Upgrading your boiler or heating system
  • Replacing lightbulbs with more energy-efficient ones, such as LED lights.
  • Replace single pane windows with double-glazed windows
  • Improve the insulation of your home, for example, insulate your loft