What The Dishonest Solar Salesman Isn’t Telling You
Updated: Jun 11, 2019
Complaints about the solar industry have skyrocketed over the last years. This is due to dishonest salesmen using tactics to rip you off. So here’s what you need to know in order for you to be able to see through these sales tactics and choose a quality solar system that provides you with the maximum return on investment.
1. A System With A 4kW Inverter Is Not Always A 4kW System
In order to make a system appear like a bargain, we have seen advertisements selling the size of the inverter rather than the output of the system. This is misleading and against the guidelines of the Clean Energy Council. You must ensure you are not buying 5 panels and expecting the output of 20. An inverter does not generate power, it simply converts DC power to AC power. Whether you have 5 panels or 15 panels, getting an big size inverter will not save you an extra cent off your power bill.
2. The Performance Warranty Is Not The Product Warranty
Another tactic that dishonest salesmen use is not to clarify which warranties come with the panels and what these warranties cover. In reality, there are different warranties that you get with your solar system: the performance warranty, the product warranty and the warranty on workmanship.
We at Econnect Solar offer a lifetime workmanship warranty so if there is ever an issue due to installation of your system, it will be covered by this warranty.
The product warranty guarantees that the solar panels are free from defects in materials and workmanship that have an effect on module functionality under normal application, installation, use and service conditions. The performance warranty on the other hand promises that the performance of your solar panels doesn’t fall below a certain level.
For quality solar panels the performance warranty should promise that your panels provide 80% or more of its initial output after 25 years. Quality solar panels these days have a product warranty of 10-12 years and a performance warranty of 25 years.
3. Not Determining What Size Of System Is Right For You
Reputable solar installers that you can trust will sit down with you, take their time and complete your personalized energy assessment. They analyze your electricity usage habits before they provide you with a quote. They help you choose the right size system for your needs. A trusted solar company will tailor the system to your needs. They will consider your electricity bill, your property and your daily usage. They will not offer you a standard package advertised on a website. The system will be one that is best for your particular energy usage habits.
4. Providing You With A Very Cheap Quote
Choosing solar systems on price alone is a recipe for a disaster. In the solar industry, margins don’t allow for big discounts. We recommend getting a few quotes to get a good idea of a reasonable cost for a quality installation. If you are receiving a quote that is much cheaper than others, the salesman might use one or more of the following tactics.
He might promise you good quality components that the company will then swap for cheaper no-name ones. This will be covered by the conditions of sale which state that the supplier is allowed to swap the components for ‘equivalents’. The salesman might also try to get you with a low price based on cheap no-name panels and inverters and then try to upsell to more expensive ones. The company might also cut corners with the solar system installation. Often the contractor is paid per job (not per hour) so they may rush complex or tricky jobs to maintain profitability.
At Econnect Solar our electricians maintain a high standard of workmanship ensured by our continuous training and strict quality control.
5. Not Training And Employing Their Own Electricians
Many solar companies are project and sales managers. They don't train and employ their own electricians. They outsource install labour to one company, the engineering to another company and the electrical portion to yet another.
How does this create a problem for you?
This ultimately puts the return of your investment at risk and makes your install dependent on the performance and availability of subcontractors.
So what are the advantages for you to choose a complete solar solution?
Should there be system performance issues, outsourcing companies are pointing the finger at each other, leaving you with the issues unresolved. With Econnect Solar it’s always just one phone call. This is only one advantage of having your solar system installed by a solar company that does everything in-house. If you want to find out more about the risks that come with a solar company that is outsourcing the installation, click here.