We asked Nigel Morris, a solar industry veteran currently working with Solar Analytics, about the essential considerations when buying solar.
Nigel gave us 3 tips. These were:
- You need trust in the company and someone who’s proven trustworthy. This means evidence-based results.
- You need value from your system given by the provider. This means ignoring the flashy, cheap deals and going for something that is better quality and provides value.
- You want financial savings from your system. The best way to get these savings is by monitoring your system through a quality monitoring system. This way, you are readily keeping track of your energy use.
Nigel Morris is a real veteran of the solar industry. Suppose there’s ever a holy grail of solar, Nigel will carry it.
He’s that highly respected. Nigel now works with Solar Analytics. They are one of the best monitor solutions on the market. I caught up with him at the Smart Energy event. He gave me insight into the three most important things to consider when buying a solar system. So take it away. Nigel.
Nigel Morris: Number 1, trust. You need a company you can trust paired with someone who can demonstrate that they can trust you. You also need something behind the system that shows on an ongoing basis that you can trust the results of what that system is showing you, like a good monitoring solution.
The second thing that you need is value. So not everyone wants a BMW. Some people want a Hyundai. That’s fine. But your provider should be able to give you value in what they’re selling you. Be that a certain feature. Be that service, an agreement, or whatever it is. But look for value, right? Don’t look for cheap, but for value that’s built into the system.
Why get a solar system monitoring system?
Nigel Morris: The third thing, which is actually the number one thing that everyone who buys a solar system wants, is savings. How are you going to get those savings? How are you going to validate those savings and observe those savings delivered? The only way to do that is through an amazing monitoring system.
Markus Lambert: And you work for a monitoring company like do happen for monitoring company, right?
Nigel Morris: I do. There’s no point driving a car without a dashboard, without warning or without keeping track of what’s going on. Things change over time. That’s where amazing monitoring is going to deliver incredible value for. It will show you that you can trust that partner on an ongoing basis. And, of course, you’re going to see your savings.
Why is it smart to buy a more expensive solar system?
Markus Lambert: But I’ve seen in the paper many times people’s systems advertised for two or $3,000. Very cheap. Yep. So I’ve got a very low financial risk. So why wouldn’t I follow that path?
Nigel Morris: So, the same reason you could go and buy a ute brand new for $10,000 or you could buy it brand new for $75,000. You know, upfront that that $10,000 is not going to perform the same over the long term. You probably don’t even know the company behind it. It’s most likely a brand you’ve never heard of. Where are they going to be in five years?
Nigel Morris: If you need warranty support, you know the quality of the components and the build quality and all those things. That’s the only way that you can build a $2,000 solar system is by taking all that stuff out. So don’t buy $10,000 ute unless you want to replace it in a year or two, which is stupid.
Why would you want to go through all the effort all over again? Buy something decent, do it properly, and do it once.
Markus Lambert: Here you have it from the solar guru Nigel Morris himself.
Pick a local solar company that checks out all the right boxes. Don’t just go for cheap. Go for an offer that adds value to you, one that is customised for your particular needs. And thirdly, make sure you actually achieve savings. And the way to do that is to monitor the performance of your system closely. That way, you know, really clearly, if there’s an issue, if the electricity that’s been generated is not in line with predictions, etc.
You can also download our trusted local installer checklist to find quality installers. For us here at Yourenergyanswers, the key advice is Go solar, go quality, go local. Want more energy answers? Visit yourenergyanswers.com for quality energy products, tools and calculators and find your local installer vetted by us for their professionalism and their quality approach.