How to get the best solar deal

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Many homeowners who want to save money on energy expenditures and lessen their carbon footprint choose solar energy. When considering a solar energy system, it's crucial to pick a trustworthy manufacturer and a nearby source or installer.

Obtaining numerous bids for comparable equipment is also a good idea. Finally, be careful in examining each quote, paying attention to specifics like pricing, equipment included, and guarantee.

How to secure the best solar deal?

When considering the integration of solar energy into your home, a thoughtful approach ensures you make informed decisions. Here’s a detailed guide to help you navigate this journey seamlessly:

Begin with thorough research and arm yourself with knowledge about solar technology.

  • Understand the nuances of different panel types and system sizes. Utilise online resources and customer reviews to gauge the performance and reliability of various solar products. This knowledge empowers you to distinguish between high-quality systems and those that may fall short of your expectations. This allows you to distinguish between the reputable brands and the cheap products.
  • Don’t settle for the first quote you receive. Reach out to multiple solar installers to obtain comparative quotes. Prices, warranties, and additional services can vary among installers, and comparing quotes allows you to evaluate the overall value they offer. Be vigilant about potential hidden fees and inquire about any additional costs to gain a comprehensive understanding of the financial commitment involved.
  • Finally, choose quality local installers: While price is important, it should not compromise the quality of your solar system. Ensure that your chosen solar installer uses high-grade components and provides reliable warranties. Choosing a high-quality solar system may have a higher initial cost. However, it is worth the investment in the long term. This is because it offers better performance and has a longer lifespan.

Follow these three tips to get the best solar deal for your home. This ensures a balance between cost-effectiveness and a long-lasting solar investment. By doing so, you guarantee the installation of a high-quality, customised solar system that meets your energy needs.

1. Only go with reputable brands

Now that solar has been operating in volume in Australia and New Zealand for nearly 15 years, we can judge the brands that have stood the test.

Regarding panels, the Tier 1 label is meaningless and is usually used by cheap solar panels to try and look like a quality product. So please do not be misled by the Tier 1 label – when it comes to panels – ignore it – it’s not a label for quality.

Solar panel brands like Qcell, REC, and Sunpower are top-quality panel products. While they cost a little more, they also deliver more in hot weather and generally have fewer warranty claims and better after-sales service.

In the inverter and optimiser space Fronius, SMA, Solar Edge, and Enphase are known to be the most reliable brands, with Sungrow being a Chinese inverter manufacturer growing in reliability. However, Solis and Growatt are lower-cost Chinese-made inverter brands that have not been in Australia for ten years. Therefore the verdict is still out.

Get multiple quotes

Like any project involving large financial input, getting several quotes will ensure you get the best solar deal.

When you get multiple quotes, ensure you do not get quotes for vastly different equipment because it will be difficult to compare apples with apples. Instead, research which solar panels and inverters are appropriate, and then ask the installer if they can supply this equipment. Go with quality – not with the price for the best solar deal.

Then when you get differing quotes, you get them for similar equipment, which makes it easier to compare the prices.

Sometimes the company with the slightly higher price will do a better job as they break fewer tiles and follow the standards and requirements.

Ask each company why you should choose them and make notes of the answers. Then, check out reviews and give a solid tick to the local company that has been in business, preferably for over a decade, employing local staff.

women in business meeting as she just got the best solar deal
Invest in long-term reliability and savings by contracting experienced installers close to your home

3. Go local and likely get a better long-term deal

The solar industry works on tight margins so getting the best solar deal can be difficult. Some solar companies claim they obtain discounts through bulk purchases and transfer those cost savings to you, the customer.

While this sounds logical, it is often not the case. Buying in bigger volumes also means higher storage costs, cash flow costs, and staff overheads.

We here at Your Energy Answers recommend long-established local companies less than 80km from your home who are clean energy council accredited. That way, when you need a service call, this work can be undertaken by the original installation company, as they will be willing to come out and attend to the issue.

Getting prompt service can be challenging if you pick a far away energy retailing company or a national company with HQ far away. By not having offices in every region, large-volume solar companies need to subcontract via a network of electricians. Sometimes it will take a long to book a reliable electrician to bother and come out to your site.

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