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Ponthir Group: Hereford Renault

Business Battles Against
Soaring Energy Costs

This was certainly the issue for Herefordshire based car dealership, Ponthir Renault whose energy costs were closing in on £0.73/kWh in an already difficult enough time for both running a business and the world of electric new car sales.

Taking Action. The Herefordshire based dealership knew it was time to take action against their rising bills, and in line with the rise of greener travel in the form of Electric Vehicles it seemed only sensible to venture down the route of renewable energy in the form of Solar PV.

Project Details

Project in Motion

The Challenge

Dealer owner, Mike Jeffrey, approached InspireGreen with his energy conundrum – how do you run and maintain a business where nearly every cost is increasing? One of the largest being energy costs. 

Mike requested help in designing a system fit for purpose and built with the future in mind.

We were keen to help and agreed and initial consultation was required to understand the energy needs of the dealership and whether there were any limitations from National Grid, given the location of the property.

Phase One: Design & Stakeholder Management

Within a week of the first conversation, we had agreed the principal design for the roof space and provided estimations for the energy output. We explained how much the dealership could yield from this array, as well as how this would play against their current energy bill.

Next liaised with our appointed structural engineer to create a report around the capability of the structure and the maximum load bearing.

Note: Any kind of solar installation creates additional roof load and we would also recommend conducting a structural report prior to any roofing works that will add weight load, to ensure the stability and safety of all involved.

We also initiated conversations with National Grid, as the DNO in this instance to understand the capability of the local infrastructure and if there were any limitations to the amount of solar energy we could install and that we would be able to export back to the Grid. 

In this installation, we were limited with the load we could export to 10kW.

All illustrations presented are purely for illustrative purposes. Final placement and design may vary subject to barriers 

Phase Two: Project Planning​

The second phase of the project includes the key parts of project planning. This phase was used to conduct the erection of the scaffolding and arrange the delivery of material to the site.

In this instance, the scaffolding was completed by a local Herefordhsire-based company and took a total of one working day to erect. We ensured that this did not affect the continuity of the business, which is one of the main attributes we will consider when undertaking any job.

All materials were delivered to the site and stored in the pre-agreed location. Once all materials were delivered to site and pre-checks were completed, we could then commence our work.

Phase Three: Commencing Works & Commissioning​

Now that all materials were in place we could commence of work by installing the solar panels and the accompanying electrical equipment.

During this phase, we installed a 30kWp array to the South West facing roof, which in this instance was the most optimal roof space. As with any job, we take care to route all cables meticulously and in line with the pre-agreed plans with the customer. Where there were any key intervals to note, we involved the customer.

While our team worked outside to fix and lay the panels in place, our expert installation team worked to install the 30kW inverter.

It took a total of 3-days to install and wire the system together. As with any installation of this size or where an export limitation is requested by the National Grid, we then had to wait to commission the system.

The commissioning of the system took place 7-days after the installation.

Customer Feedback.

Very efficient service on a large commercial installation. Good communication throughout all phases of the project and the work was completed bang on schedule in spite of atrocious weather conditions.

– Paul Pearce (Head of Business).



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Meet The Author.

Josh Powell
In 2019, I launched InspireGreen, driven by a commitment to environmental sustainability. With a background in technology and a passion for actionable change, my aim was to guide individuals and businesses towards effective decarbonization.

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