To qualify for this exemption, the size of all the solar panel arrays must be a maximum of 40 square metres (this size includes any existing ground-mounted solar panel arrays).
To qualify for this exemption, the size of all the solar panel arrays must be a maximum of 40 square metres (this size includes any existing ground-mounted solar panel arrays). The size of solar panels must be measured (including the existing ones) according to the actual size of panels installed.
Before you begin, please read the notes for ground-mounted solar panel arrays.
If using this exemption, a homeowner must engage a chartered professional engineer to design the necessary fixings to support the solar panel arrays greater than 20 square metres and not exceeding 40 square metres and subsequently, the work must be carried out in accordance with that design. Some suppliers and manufacturers of proprietary products have pre-engineered kit-sets with a unified sign-off from a Chartered Professional Engineer.
What is exempt
- An owner of urban-based dwelling intends to build 35 square metres of ground-mounted solar panel arrays on their land. Council maps indicate the location of the owner's property is in a high wind zone. The owner will engage a chartered professional engineer to design the structural supports, connections, fixings and foundation and the subsequent, building work will also be carried out in accordance with that design.
What needs consent
- An owner of a dwelling in an urban zone wishes to erect a 45 square metres of ground-mounted solar panel arrays on their land. A building consent is required because the size of solar panels exceed 40 square metres.
- An owner in an urban area intends to erect a 35 square metres of groundmounted solar panel arrays on their land. The council wind maps indicate that the owner's property is in an extra high wind zone. A building consent is required because the wind speed zone exceeds a "high" rating.
What the law says
48. Ground-mounted solar panel arrays exceeding 20, but not exceeding 40, square metres in size (outside rural zones)
1. Building work in connection with a ground-mounted solar panel array outside a rural zone if—
(a). the array is supported by a frame or structure that is on the ground; and
(b). the frame or structure is attached to the ground by more than a single post; and
(c). the distance from the top of the array to the ground does not exceed 4 metres; and
(d). the array exceeds 20 square metres in size, but does not exceed 40 square metres; and
(e). the array is at least 5 metres from any residential building, public road, railway, or legal boundary; and
(i). the design wind speeds do not exceed 44 metres per second (calculated using Verification Method B1/VM1); or
(ii). the array is located in a wind zone no greater than high (as defined in Acceptable Solution B1/AS1).