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Solar Panels Vs Wind Turbines

Solar panels
(image credit: ell brown)

When it comes to deciding which type of renewable energy package to purchase to provide electricity to your home there are two realistic options – solar power or wind power. Let’s have a look at the pros and cons: –


Solar panels take up less space. Most people install solar panels on the roof of their home – a structure that is already in place. The solar panels lie flat on top of the roof sitting very close to the tiles. A wind turbine that is of a full-size would often be seen in a sizeable area of land in an open space – an additional structure stretching high into the sky. You are not likely to see one in someone’s garden on a modern housing estate as surrounding properties are going to divert some of the wind away from the wind turbine.


“Silence is golden” when it comes to solar panels. Quite simply, you cannot hear a thing because all they do is absorb sunlight. However, a wind turbine will make a whirring sound of some kind.

Planning Authorities

It seems to be harder to get approval to have a wind turbine installed than it does solar panels. Perhaps this may be because of concern for the local community in view of the structure of a wind turbine being an eyesore or the noise created.

wind turbine
(image credit: mutednarayan)


In the main, all you need to do with solar panels is keep them reasonably clean by using a special cleaning kit periodically to ensure they perform at their best. A wind turbine has moving parts that will need to be checked on occasions and are more likely to be damaged due to wear and tear than a solar panel that sits stationary on top of your roof.

Storm damage

A wind turbine is more likely to be damaged as a result of extremely high winds and is more at risk of being struck by lightning than solar panels.

Value for money

In a location where the wind speed averages less than around 10mph wind turbines are less likely to be as effective as solar panels. It is also believed to be easier to predict the energy that is being generated with solar panels.

Yes- there is a place for both types but solar panels perhaps have the edge in most cases.

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