Photovoltaic (Solar) Panels
PV panels are used solely for the purpose of generating electricity from the sun; they are generally fitted on the north-facing side of the roof although they can also be installed on a frame on the ground. Panels are connected to systems; there are two types, grid-connected or off-grid systems. With grid–connected systems surplus energy is sold back to the electrical supplier whereas in off-grid systems the power is stored in batteries for later use.
Generally speaking energy work does not require a building consent; refer s.43 of the Building Act 2004. There are some exceptions to this, but for the purposes of this practice note the installation of PV panels to generate electricity does not require a building consent. However, if the PV panels also form the roof cladding, a building consent will be required for this work.
Regardless of whether or not a building consent is required all work must comply with the NZ Building Code. Note also, that although a building consent may not be required that a resource consent could be if the property in question is in a special interest or heritage zone.