With soaring energy prices, the cost of powering your home continues to rise year on year. If you’re fed up with paying astronomical bills, you might have looked into renewable power and might’ve stumbled upon solar power… which, given the UK’s climate, mightn’t be the best option.
Although the UK might be notorious for its lack of sunshine, there’s certainly plenty of wind to be had – meaning domestic wind turbines might be a great option if you want to go down the renewable energy route.
Wind turbines don’t always require planning permission, making them easy to get up and running – and, when they’re installed correctly, you can turn that blustery weather into power for your home!
In this article, we’ll be talking about how much domestic wind turbines cost, what affects the cost of building a domestic wind turbine, how to save money when building a domestic wind turbine, what’s involved in building a domestic wind turbine and how to find and hire a professional to build a wind turbine.
If you want to start using our bad weather for good, then looking into renewable energy from domestic wind turbines can be the way to go. Let’s get started.
How Much Does a Domestic Wind Turbine Cost?
Domestic wind turbine prices change depending on the size you opt for, and whether or not you choose a freestanding or mast-mounted turbine.
|Wind Turbine Size||Estimated Cost Including Installation||Estimated Annual Output|
|1kW Roof-Mounted Micro Turbine||£1,500 to £3,000||1,750kWh|
|1.5kW Pole-Mounted Turbine||£7,000 to £10,000||2,600kWh|
|2.5kW Pole-Mounted Turbine||£12,500 to £18,000||4,400kWh|
|6Kw Pole-Mounted Wind Turbine||£23,000 to £34,000||9,000kWh|
The Energy Saving Trust (EST) estimates domestic wind turbines, including VAT and installation, will cost the following:
Roof-Mounted Micro Turbine – Generating up to 1kW, a small roof-mounted turbine should cost around £3,000. Though these are cheap, they’re not very efficient, so aren’t the best return on investment out there.
1.5kW Pole-Mounted Wind Turbine – A mid-priced model, generating 2,600kWh per year and coming in at between £7,000 to £10,000 to be installed and built.
2.5kW Pole-Mounted Wind Turbine – One of the most popular models, this wind turbine will cost between £12,500 and £18,000, generating up to 4,400kWh per year.
6Kw Pole-Mounted Wind Turbine – An option if you want to generate a lot of power, up to 9,000kWh per annum, costing between £23,000 and £34,000.
What Affects the Cost of Building a Domestic Wind Turbine?
It’s important to remember that the cost of a wind turbine, including its installation, needs to be weighed up against the long term savings. These are the main areas that’ll affect the price you pay to get your domestic wind turbine up and running.
Your Choice of Wind Turbine
There are two main varieties of domestic wind turbines; freestanding pole and mast-mounted turbines, and roof-mounted ones. Though most will be hooked up to the National Grid, you can have stand-alone systems which are used to power batteries.
These are normally used to charge batteries, and generate anything up to around 0.5KW.
Small Pole-Mounted Turbine
Generating around 2.5kW, these are generally the most affordable and accessible for domestic use.
Large Pole-Mounted Turbine
If you want to generate a lot of power, you could opt for a large model. These turbines create between 5kWs and 6kWs.
Cabling, Installation, and Inverter Costs
Though the installation and cabling costs are included in our cost table above, replacement inverters aren’t. Inverters are likely to need replacement during a wind turbine’s lifetime at an average expense of £1,000 per unit.
Depending on the size of the turbine, you’ll be looking to spend between £100 to £200 per year to keep everything working as efficiently as possible.
While planning permission isn’t always required for domestic wind turbines, if you proceed with building without checking first you could be fined and asked to take it down. It’s always best to check here first and speak to your local council for information in your area.
Your home insurance may be affected by your wind turbine, so it’s important to check potential costs before you go ahead with the installation. Some providers will cover theft, replacement and theft of turbines, but your premium could change as a result.
Local Wind Speeds
It’s essential to check with assessors that the average local wind speeds will generate enough electricity.
Turbine inverters use mains power constantly, regardless of whether the turbine is turning. Average annual wind speeds need to be a minimum of 5m/s (metres per second); otherwise, your turbine could use more electricity than it generates.
How Can I Save Money When Building a Domestic Wind Turbine?
Domestic wind turbines have the potential to reduce your energy bills and make your home more environmentally friendly – but that doesn’t mean all installations are straightforward and give you savings as soon as they’re built.
With high installation costs, here’s what we suggest you do before embarking on building to make sure you’re not spending more money than you need to.
Do Your Research
One of the best ways to save money with domestic wind turbines is to simply do some background checks. Before spending any money or booking in a professional, find out if your home is suitable for installation; if you’ll be breaching any planning permission rules, and if your wind speed is high enough to create enough energy to balance out the running costs.
If the wind speed in your area is too low, you can end up spending more electricity than you can create, making the endeavour fruitless.
Similarly, you might not have enough space to have a wind turbine on your property, or planning permission in the area mightn’t allow the building of them. Whatever the case, it’s best to find out these particulars before getting started on anything to save you from wasting money in the discovery process.
Speak To Your Insurers First
Your home insurance will likely increase when you have domestic wind turbines on your plot – but in some cases, they might already be included in your building insurance premium.
It’s best to speak to your provider first to find out what fees are associated with the installation, and then make a judgement call as to whether this is a good financial decision for you.
Get The Right Size
Although bigger turbines will generate more power, they’re not always necessary for your home. In some instances, you may end up paying more in maintenance and running fees than the equivalent energy you can produce from your turbines.
If you’re not sure about what size and output you need for your property, speak to a professional to give their assessment based on your geographical location and wind speed to make sure you’re choosing the right product for you.
What’s Involved in Building a Domestic Wind Turbine?
Which? suggests the following steps when installing and building a domestic wind turbine:
As already mentioned, where you position your wind turbine is especially important to comply with planning permission, distance from your property and ensuring it is on as high ground as possible to optimise the wind.
This is an essential step, as without this you may end up building a turbine in an area where the wind speed isn’t enough to counteract the cost of electricity to run the turbine itself.
The UK wind speed database can give you an indication of this when you use your OS grid reference.
Checking in with the council is important – it’ll stop you from being issued fines for going against compliances. This is also a good time to check in with your neighbours to make sure there are no objections on their end.
Speak to National Grid and Your Insurers
Although you’re creating energy, you’ll still need the help of National Grid – so it’s best to contact them during the planning phase to make sure there are no problems or objections, as this also will carry a fee.
Similarly, get in touch with your insurers now to find out what implications this has on your premium, as it may well raise your rates.
Find a Professional
After this groundwork is done, now is the time to get in touch with a professional to get the domestic wind turbine installed.
How Do I Find and Hire a Professional to Build a Wind Turbine?
A good place to start is to check in with local businesses who use wind power, or neighbours if they have similar setups in place.
This may prove harder than finding someone who has had an extension done so you can get the name of their builder; but if you can find someone who a local contact has used, this can save you from a long and arduous search.
Where this isn’t possible, you can use online tools like HouseholdQuotes to help shave time off your search by consolidating your search results onto one page for you to easily compare.
This will save you switching from website to website to find the best deal in your area – and in most cases, will help to save you up to 40% on your final fee.
Ensuring the Professional Is the Right Fit
All jobs start with a written quote – this will make sure you both know what’s included in your job and what’s not, so there’s no room for confusion when it comes to settling the bill.
Seek out your trader’s experience to make sure they’re a good fit for you and your needs, as well as their references and any photos or videos of previous work to see if the standard is what you’re looking for.
Finally, double-check they have relevant insurance to cover themselves and you in the event of any problems, and find out if the turbine carries a manufacturer’s guarantee to help you save money if anything goes wrong with your turbine soon after it has been built.
If you want to harness the power of the weather to fuel your home, domestic wind turbines are a great option. Here’s what you don’t want to miss when planning it for your property:
- Do your homework: make sure you check if your site is suitable for wind turbines
- Check with the local council for any planning permission
- Find out what your wind speed is and if it’s enough to make the turbines a viable solution
- Ask your neighbours if they have any objections
- Decide on freestanding or mounted, depending on your space and needs
- Find and hire a professional using HouseholdQuotes to help you save up to 40% on your bill.
Frequently Asked Questions
How Do Wind Turbines Work?
An inverter is used to transfer the energy into your mains supply, so you’re not only able to use it in your home but sell it back to the National Grid. Turbines don’t normally work as a stand-alone system, so your home will require mains power, too.
Do I Need Planning Permission to Build a Wind Turbine?
How Long Does a Wind Turbine Take To Pay For Itself?
If you’re looking for long-term investment and want to generate power in an environmentally friendly way, they can be ideal. They can also be a better option than solar panels because, as long as it’s windy, they’ll generate power day or night, allowing you to sit back and relax with peace of mind your energy bill is going down.
What Is the Feed-in-Tariff (FiT)? Is It Still Open to New Applications?
Unfortunately, as renewable energy generators (solar panels and wind turbines, for example) become more affordable, the government has reduced its FiT payments.
Closed to new applications in April 2019; only individuals who pre-registered or received preliminary accreditation for their turbine on/before 1 March 2020 are eligible for ongoing payments.
How Much Space Do You Need for a Wind Turbine?
Are Domestic Wind Turbines Noisy?
In high winds, roof-mounted turbines can also vibrate. As such, you might need to add soundproofing in lofts and attics; an additional cost that needs to be factored in.