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Wind turbines for home: What you need to know

Reducing your environmental impact by powering your home with renewable energy is high on the agenda for many UK homeowners. And an increasingly popular option is wind turbines. If you've ever wondered about the installation of home wind turbines at your property, you're in the right place.

With various renewable energy sources available, it’s easier now than ever to find the right sustainable solution for your home.

Solar panels remain a popular option, but perhaps surprising, is the increase in demand for home wind turbines across the UK.

Between 2022 and 2023, homeowners searching for wind turbine installers on Checkatrade increased by a whopping 132%*.

In this post, we’ll look at how wind turbines work, the pros and cons of home wind turbines, the costs and savings involved, and how to find a renewables expert for your project.

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How do wind turbines work?

The blades of a wind turbine turn in the breeze, activating a turbine, which rotates a generator. The generator then produces electricity.

This electricity can then be used to power your home, with any excess providing the opportunity to earn money by selling it back to the grid.

Types of wind turbine

There are two types of domestic wind turbines:

Freestanding domestic wind turbines

A smaller version of a commercial wind turbine, installed on your property at ground level, normally in an exposed position. They typically vary in power from around 1.5 – 15 kW.

Freestanding wind turbines are more expensive to install, but they are more powerful than roof-mounted options, giving you the opportunity to generate all the power you need.

Roof-mounted domestic wind turbines

Installed on the roof of your property to harness as much wind as possible. This type of wind turbine usually varies in power from around 0.5 – 2.5 kW.

Being smaller, a roof-mounted wind turbine might not generate enough energy for your home, depending on how much you need, of course. Many people choose this option as a means to supplement their existing energy supply with a renewable source.

Roof mounted wind turbine

The benefits of wind turbines

There are plenty of compelling reasons to install a wind turbine at your property:

Clean energy

Wind power is clean, green, and sustainable, reducing your carbon footprint and helping to limit your impact on the environment.

Lower electricity bills

Wind turbines can produce power for up to 25 years. Generating your power from wind will significantly reduce your electricity bills over the long term.

Energy independence

Using renewable energy means you’re not reliant on fossil fuels and, therefore, energy price fluctuations. You can also store excess electricity if you have battery storage to use on days when there’s no wind.

Income generation

It’s also possible to earn money by selling excess electricity back to the grid via the Smart Export Guarantee (SEG).

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The disadvantages of wind turbines

There are a few drawbacks to home wind turbines:

Effectiveness

On days with very little wind, your turbine may struggle to generate enough to power your home. Unless you have battery storage, you’ll have to buy energy from the grid.

Cost

Home wind turbines vary in cost depending on the size of your turbine and the specifics of your installation. The initial cost of a domestic wind turbine can be a drawback for some homeowners.

How much does it cost to install a home wind turbine?

The larger the wind turbine, the more powerful it’ll be, and the more expensive it becomes.

Aside from size, there are a selection of other factors that will influence the cost of a domestic wind turbine:

  • Type of turbine. Roof-mounted turbines are cheaper than freestanding ones, but they’re not as powerful
  • How much power you need. The larger your property, the more power you’ll require, so you’ll need a more powerful (and more expensive) wind turbine
  • Scope of the work. The price of installation can vary depending on site-specific conditions and requirements
  • Location. Depending on where you live in the UK, expect labour costs to vary

As a guide, the average cost of a roof-mounted domestic wind turbine is around £2,000.

Conversely, freestanding wind turbines start around £7,000 for a 1.5 kW turbine up to around £70,000 for a 15 kW one.

Are there any wind turbine grants available?

To help reduce the initial cost of installing a home wind turbine, some companies will pay you ground rent for allowing them to install a turbine on your property.

Alternatively, some installers offer the opportunity to split the initial investment 50/50 in return for splitting the benefits.

To find out more about the cost of home wind turbines, take a look at our wind turbine cost guide.

Wind turbine spinning against blue sky

Is your property suitable for a home wind turbine?

It’s crucial to assess the suitability of your property to make sure the financial gain will offset the cost of installation.

An experienced renewable energy consultant will conduct a feasibility study for your wind turbine installation. This looks at factors such as wind speed, location, proximity to neighbouring properties, and visual impact.

It’s also important to understand the local planning guidelines and regulations for home wind turbine installation.

In some cases, installation falls under ‘Permitted Development Rights’, providing it meets certain criteria. It’s recommended to contact your local planning authority in advance to ensure you meet the specific criteria for your area.

Find a renewable energy consultant now

Simply add your postcode to our search box below to find an expert in your local area.

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Are home wind turbines worth it?

Weighing up whether home wind turbines are worth it depends on various factors.

While there’s a significant initial outlay to consider, if your budget allows, a home wind turbine is a great way to:

  • Generate your own electricity
  • Reduce your energy bills
  • Minimise your carbon footprint
  • And earn money by selling the excess energy to the grid

The Energy Saving Trust estimates that a well-sited 6kW freestanding home turbine could typically earn about £400/year by selling the surplus electricity to the grid.

Find a home wind turbine installation expert

Finding the right professional to assess your site, recommend the most suitable wind turbine, and ensure compliance with local regulations is paramount.

We have two options to simplify the process:

1. Use our request a quote feature

Let us do the searching for you. Just add your details to the form and our experts will be in touch with you directly to discuss your requirements.

2. Browse our online directory

Enter your postcode into the search bar below to see who comes highly recommended in your area. Remember, every Checkatrade member must pass up to 12 rigorous checks to be listed in our directory, so you know you’re getting the real deal.

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*Checkatrade internal search data 2023 vs 2022: January 2023 – August 2023 vs 2022

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