10 Tips when buying a Solar Power System

Following a recent spike in interest, driven by the upcoming reduction in Federal Government support, the Clean Energy Council has reminded consumers to take care when purchasing a solar power system.

Clean Energy Council Acting Chief Executive Kane Thornton said solar power is a great way to reduce household power bills, but urged consumers to do their homework.

“The Clean Energy Council has developed a comprehensive guide for people who are interested in going solar, to make sure they ask the right questions and buy a system that is right for them. It’s free and you can download it from www.solaraccreditation.com.au,” Mr Thornton said.

“Solar companies will be advertising ahead of the drop in the Solar Credits scheme from July, and it’s important that people go into any major purchase with their eyes open. Support under the Solar Credits scheme will be reduced by a third as of 1 July this year.”

Euro Solar has developed a solar calculator to helps consumers better understand the benefits of a solar power system. The Clean Energy Council also recommends that consumers follow these 10 tips when buying a solar power system

Be an informed consumer.

Research your options, be clear on your needs and compare quotes.

Know your daily electricity consumption.

By understanding what you use, you can assess how much you would like your solar system to generate, depending on your budget.

Get an estimate of how much energy your system will generate.

Your contract should include an estimate of the average daily output of your system in kilowatt-hours (based on where you live and the size and position of your system).

Check with your electricity retailer.

Never purchase a solar system without knowing what rate you will be paid for the electricity you generate and whether this will affect any hourly rates in your electricity bill.

Always use a Clean Energy Council Accredited Installer.

You can check your installer is accredited at www.solaraccreditation.com.au

Avoid signing up on the spot.

You should not feel pressured to sign a contract on the spot. Take the time to understand up-front costs, warranties and pay back of your solar PV system.

Use products that meet Australian standards.

Your installer must provide proof the panels and inverters meet the standards. You can also check the product list at www.solaraccreditation.com.au

Check the conditions of product warranties and work guarantees.

Know who is providing the warranty (manufacturer or importer) and how long it lasts.

Keep the documentation.

A copy of your contract is necessary to resolve any disputes down the track.

Remember, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

Visit solar PV system guide for a copy of the Clean Energy Council’s Consumer Guide to Buying Solar Panels for residential and commercial purpose.

Majority of Content supplied courtesy of Clean Energy Council