SOME Harrow residents are going to be in hot water if their new power initiative is a success.

Solar panels are currently being installed in 20 homes in the borough, with another 20 planned for next year. The council is hoping to lead the way with renewable energy, and have the most solar powered homes in London within the next two years.

Scottish and Southern Energy offered last year to install the solar thermal heating equipment in homes for just £500 - and had more than 400 enquiries, and this is the first batch to be installed.

Shirley Decosimo, 73, from Kenton, said: "My electric bills just kept going up so when I saw the advert I thought go for it."

The panels are linked to the house's water boiler, and will provide 90 per cent of a household's hot water in the summer, 50 per cent in the spring and autumn, and 20 per cent in winter.

Councillor Susan Hall, portfolio holder for environment, said: "The response was overwhelming but demand currently outstrips supply and we are seeking further funding to extend the scheme.

We are delighted so many people have taken an interest and will do all we can to secure further external funding."

The solar panel can be fitted to an existing hot water system, and will last twice as long as a gas boiler. Any home with a south-facing, unshaded roof could benefit from a solar panel, and will provide up to 70 per cent of energy to a home during the summer months. You should contact Harrow Council for more information on solar panel installation.