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How Do I Avoid Solar Sharks?

Investing in a solar system for your home or business can be confusing.


There are a range of dealers and manufacturers a click away who can give you best price and best solutions to your solar requirements. The trouble is, how do you tell the good from the bad? Who do you trust for long-term service and quality? It can be a minefield.
 

Solar sharks exist

Currently there are over 500 solar companies who are listed on the ASIC website since 2011 as being closed, in liquidation, administrators appointed or proposed de-registration.

If you invest with a manufacturer who leaves the industry, your follow up service will be difficult. You can find  the list of deceased solar companies here.

You see the comprehensive list of companies that are either bankrupt, closed, acquired, sold or restructured. And this list is not complete! 
 

So how do you avoid these solar sharks?

In most cases, it’s quite simple. You get what you pay for. The cheap option is not always the best option.
A few key steps to successful solar installation are: 
 
  1. Do your own research first.  Understand the benefits of having a solar PV system installed including what will happen to your meter, your electricity tariff and your electricity bill if you have a PV system installed. Use our range of handy solar calculators, or contact an authorised solar panel installer who can assist you in these calculations.
  2. Contact quality solar installers to arrange a quote. Use our dealer locator to see who installs solar in your area. CEC accredited installers meet latest industry requirements. Ask for the installer’s name and accreditation/licence numbers.
  3. Check the warranty offer. Long warranties are great - only if the company you’re investing in will still be around in that time too! Avoiding unknown brands and keeping up with the latest news in the solar solar industry will help you identify the less financially stable solar suppliers.
  4. Find out how the solar rebates will work for you and how it will be applied - eg as an upfront deduction from the price of the solar power system?
  5. Ask who will complete the connection and approval process for your electricity retailer and electricity distributor. This process varies between states and territories. Ideally you want the solar installation company to take care of this and have all associated meter connection fees included in your final price.

Examples of poor quality solar

You can see Australian examples of poor solar installation practice here and below. Buyer aware!