Solar panels

Living in one of the sunniest cities in the world, many City of Karratha residents choose to install solar panels to help manage their energy costs and promote sustainable power use.  

A solar panel, also known as a PV panel or module, is a device that collects sunlight and converts it into electric current. Panels can be fixed to existing roof structures or ground mounted on frames. 

A Building Permit approval is required to install solar panels, applications are generally submitted by the contractor undertaking the works, signing as the nominating builder taking responsibility for the works. 

A registered builder is not required for the installation of solar panels, however installation must be undertaken by a licenced electrician. 

Download the solar panels information guide to learn more. 

Is a Building Permit required for the installation of solar panels?

A building permit is required for the installation of any solar panels under the Building Act 2011 as the City of Karratha is located withing a Region D wind zone. 

While they may be exempt from needing a Building Permit in other parts of Western Australia, the City’s wind zone classification means a Building Permit is required. 

Who submits the application?

Generally, the application should be submitted by the contractor undertaking the works. The contractor signs the application as the nominated builder and takes responsibility for the works. 

What plans and specifications do I need to submit with my application for a Building Permit?

Please submit along with your application:  

  • roof layout plan – detailing the number of panels and the proposed location of them in relation to the edges of the roof 
  • site plan, for on ground arrays – detailing the location within a land parcel and providing setbacks to any other buildings on the site 
  • technical data sheet and engineering certification for the proposed panels 
  • installation information and engineering certification for the proposed racking/fixing system. 

Additional information

Approval is also required from Horizon Power, along with your Building Permit from the City, before any work is undertaken. 

It’s not essential you use a registered builder, but all installations must be undertaken by a licenced electrician. 

Planning approval will generally only be required for on ground installations. 


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