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How to choose the right solar energy partner

Solar installation is a long-term investment, so it’s critical that you choose a solar company to handle your system design and installation so that you get maximum returns from your investment, a quality system, a safe and compliant installation, from a provider that will be around in 5, 10 or 20 years’ time to provide the back up support, maintenance and warranties on your system.

Other than cost, there are many other crucial factors which you must evaluate in identifying a solar partner that simple cannot be related back to cost alone, but are invaluable when choosing a solar company.

Here are some important considerations when choosing your solar partner:

  • Buying a cheap system on a deal that’s too good to be true, probably is. Buying down on quality is likely to be an expensive purchase at the end of the day – the efficiency of the system will be compromised and before long the system will not provide output required to make a significant enough impact on reducing your utility bill – the whole point of why you bought it in the first place. There are many cheap imports flooding the market, and everything about their performance and components is cheap too. Buyer beware!
  • Bigger is not always better. A higher capacity solar PV system or battery back-up may not be the best solution for your needs – finding the right solution for your unique needs requires a proper needs analysis, energy usage and peak demand analysis, as well as other aspects such as energy requirement, space available, geographic location and a host of other parameters. Be sure that your solar partner has your best interests at heart, and not their sales targets.
  • Your solar PV system needs to perform for at least 20-25 years – be sure that your provider uses panels, inverters and batteries that come with comprehensive warranties and that the installation is done to standards to ensure that warranties and insurance are not voided due to faulty installation. Make sure the solar company you choose uses tier 1 manufacturers who have the financial strength to stand behind their warranties for years to come.
  • Getting as energy efficient as possible and reducing your reliance on the grid is a journey – use a solar company that provides end-to-end solar solutions and can manage everything from start to finish, including analysis, design, project management, equipment procurement, installation, getting solar finance if you need it, as well as provide back up support and annual servicing to keep your systems operating at optimal levels.
  • Choose a provider that has the backing of a national group, the training and financial stability to honour all warranties, back-up and service level agreements your investment demands. If you cannot get an installer out to even visit you for a sales call, what are your chances of getting them there for a back-up call? Dealing with a reputable supplier with a good service ethic that you know is going to be around for years to come to honour warranties and service calls is important.
  • Ensure that the company doing your installation is covered by public liability insurance. Ask for the insurance certificate before installation commences.