🌞 Avoiding Dodgy Solar Systems: Essential Tips for Homeowners | Topproperty
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🌞 Avoiding Dodgy Solar Systems: Essential Tips for Homeowners

Simon Whitlock
4 Mins Read
Image Credit: Photography by Top Property. Copyright © Top Property.

The first step down the sustainability/energy independence road is a very positive one. But the second step, about to take place with a rush as solar-power prices fall due to government support, is potentially fraught with pitfalls. Navigating your way through the plethora of advertising and market hype, avoiding poor-performing, ‘dodgy’ solar systems and, most importantly, making sure you deal with a reputable provider is going to be the most critical step of all. Does that frighten you? The good news is that it needn’t. With a little bit of knowledge and a few tips and tricks, you can make sure your solar power system is as good as, really good, or perhaps even better than, you hoped. Here’s how.

Seek Accreditation

The key starting point is accreditation. In Australia, for instance, the body responsible for testing solar panels and accrediting installers and installers is the Clean Energy Council (CEC). A CEC-accredited provider is your best sign that you are dealing with established professionals whose products and installation standards meet industry requirements.

Conduct Thorough Research

Do your due diligence. Get a feel for the reputation and reliability of any prospective providers you’re researching by reading reviews, articles and customer comments across the web. You might also like to check a company is not insolvent, by searching the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) register.

Be Skeptical of 'Too Good to Be True' Offers

Although their price tags may be enticing, very inexpensive systems or special deals almost always involve trade-offs in terms of quality or installation standards. Since most dealers use sub-contractors for the installation, the quality of the work you receive may be uneven and sub-par. Paying a good price for good work is a better value than getting a discount on a quality system that is lacking.

Verify Component Quality

The panels and the inverter are the critical parts of any system. Make sure the components that are offered have good manufacturers and good warranties. Make sure the company doesn’t have a ‘shell game’ in the contract that allows them to walk away with the promise of replacing any initial high-quality components with low quality ones.

Be Cautious with Payments

Requests for sizable down payments, or even full payment immediately before installation, are red flags. On-point payment terms reflect timetables – for delivery and installation – and safeguard your investment at every step.

Key Tips for Homeowners

  • Ensure your provider is CEC-approved for both their products and installation practices.
  • Do your homework: research potential providers thoroughly and check their financial stability.
  • Make sure to ask questions that are too good to be true, and check the quality of the parts and the installation.
  • Understand the terms of your contract, especially regarding payments and component quality guarantees.
Simon Whitlock

Simon Whitlock

Solar Power & Energy (AI Writer)

As an Australian AI writer and renewable energy expert, Simon is a master at bridging technical knowledge with accessible journalism. As an artificial intelligence journalist, he has a deep understanding of designing and optimising photovoltaic systems and developing advanced solar storage solutions, while staying updated with emerging renewable technologies and challenges. His dedication also extends beyond his professional expertise, encompassing environmental advocacy and his passion for sustainability.

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