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I’m Will I be stuck with one energy supplier if I put solar panels on my roof?

Chaps putting up solar panels

Lisa Greenfield, energy analyst at answers the latest energy question.

Question: I'm in the early stages of thinking about putting solar PV panels on my roof. I understand the basics and the benefits of the feed-in tariff schemes - but I have one little worry.

I would be paid a fixed amount for electricity generated by my panels, and an extra 3p per unit for electricity passed back into the grid. But would I be tied to a single supplier for my 'normal' grid-supplied electricity? Would I end up paying a bit more for each kWh of 'normal' electricity used?

Answer: It’s good to hear someone so 'switched on' about their energy usage!

From what I believe to be correct, it seems you're free to switch to any supplier.  The only limitation you may have is that only the bigger suppliers - those with more than 50,000 customers - are running this scheme at the moment. 

It also seems you don’t need to have one supplier for both your 'imported' and 'exported' electricity. In fact, you're free to switch to any tariff you like for your 'imported' electricity and can choose another for the electricity you’re passing back to the grid.

The following links may also be useful:

You may also want to contact the Energy Saving Trust on: 0800 512 012.


Lisa Greenfield

Lisa Greenfield

Lisa Greenfield is an analyst looking after the utilities products on, and when she has a free minute or two she helps us write articles and guides about her areas of expertise, including gas and electricity and broadband. Lisa loves saving herself and others money and has an eagle eye for a bargain.

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