MORE homes should be fitted with solar panels after thousands of properties had all their energy needs met by the Sun last month, according to environmental campaigners.

There was more than enough sunshine throughout April to meet more than 100 per cent of a property's electricity needs.

The data, provided by English-based analysts WeatherEnergy, found homes fitted with solar photovoltaics (PV) panels relied on no other source for their electricity and spare energy of around 8.5 per cent on average.

The charity WWF Scotland now wants more households to fit the devices to roofs. The surey also found that 99 per cent of the homes monitored had its hot water requirements met.

WWF Scotland Director Lang Banks said the findings underlined the potential money-saving power of green energy, while reducing pollution.

He said: "For the tens of thousands of Scottish households that have already installed solar panels, there was enough sun to effectively meet all of their electricity or hot water needs, helping to reduce our reliance on polluting fossil fuels.

"With these sorts of figures, every home or business with a south-facing roof should seriously consider switching on to the full potential of solar power. Similarly, there is no reason why Scotland should not be home to commercial-scale solar farms."

Last month, it was announced that work on Scotland's largest solar park will start later this year in Angus as the Holyrood government aims to meet all of Scotland's energy needs from renewables by 2020.

The project, based at Carmyllie, near Arbroath, is said to have the capacity to produce enough energy to power 6,670 homes and is expected to start generating electricity early next year.

The WeatherEnergy figures also found that wind turbines in Scotland generated enough electricity on average to supply electricity for two thirds of Scottish households.

"During the month, Scotland's wind turbines generated enough output to supply the electricity needs of over 1.5million homes. So, as we approach the period of the year where winds are less powerful, it's great to see the potential of solar to also contribute our energy needs.

"With the announcement last week by Tesla of a new type of battery to store solar energy, more of the barriers to powering our homes and businesses using 100 per cent renewable energy are finally being removed."

WeatherEnergy's Karen Robinson added: "Scotland has long been leading the charge when it comes to wind power. However, despite misconceptions, Scotland also has potential for sun-loving renewables too.

"The data clearly shows that there's plenty of sunshine to meet a significant proportion of an average family's electricity and hot water needs for most months of the year.

"With hundreds of thousands of roofs, it would make sense for more Scots to tap the Sun's power."

There are said to be more than over 35,000 homes and 600 businesses currently fitted with solar PV arrays in Scotland.

It is estimated that an average 4kWp system can save the average household between £610 to 740 each year.

However, the cost of installing such a system can range from £5,000-8,000 and government loans have since been discontinued.

The Energy Saving Trust argues there are additional benefits to having solar panels if the property is eligible for the Feed-In Tariff Scheme.

They say some homes will actually be paid to produce their own electricity, even if they use it, and can even sell excess power back to the national grid.