On the 4th YEA Podcast, Markus Lambert interviews Dan Spence, owner of SolarWide, a solar power company located on the Sunshine Coast, Queensland.
Spence attributes the company's success to prioritising quality in products and installations. His company concentrates on selling high-end solar systems to withstand challenging coastal conditions.
Spence cautions against cheap, unreliable systems and emphasizes that failed solar panels typically need replacing rather than repair. Notably, the demand for solar battery installations has surged due to increased awareness about power security and sustainability.
He believes staff happiness and customer satisfaction drive the company's positive reputation, reflected in numerous five-star Google reviews. He also highlights the growing demand for EV charger installations.
Finally, the conversation alerts customers to misconceptions about battery capabilities and warns against solar shark businesses using small batteries as a lure to upsell. The pair also discuss the environmental implications of poor-quality solar panels and the importance of regular maintenance.
Dan Spence at YEA Podcast EP4
In this podcast episode, Markus Lambert interviews Dan Spence, owner of SolarWide. A solar power company on Australia’s Sunshine Coast. Spence explains that his family founded the company in 2011, inspired by a relative who was working in the emerging solar sector. The business began in a single storage shed and has grown into a larger operation. Spence attributes their success to an emphasis on quality in both products and installation.
He warns against cheap systems that often fail and leave customers stranded when manufacturers disappear. Instead, he advocates investing in high-quality systems that might cost more initially but offer greater longevity and returns.
He explains that the coastal conditions in their area, characterised by high heat, humidity, and salt levels, are harsh on solar panels and inverters. Consequently, they focus solely on selling high-end, quality solar systems.
Spence discusses common issues they encounter with failing systems, including water ingress, framing issues, and broken isolators, often on ‘orphan’ systems left unsupported by the companies that installed them because often the installer companies of cheap crap systems have disappeared.
Can failed solar panels be repaired?
In the podcast, Dan Spence and Markus Lambert discuss the repairability of solar panels and the increasing popularity of batteries. Spence, a solar panel expert, emphasises that most solar panels cannot be repaired and, if malfunctioning, generally need replacing. This can be problematic when the manufacturer has disappeared or a significant amount of time has passed since installation.
Discussing the evolution of solar energy, Spence reveals an uptake in solar battery installations. Their popularity has risen dramatically over the past 12 to 18 months. Starting straight after Covid, driven by people’s desire for power security and sustainable energy.
Dan Spence also underlines the importance of staff happiness and customer satisfaction in his business, noting how unhappy staff can negatively impact customer experience. He is proud of his in-house installation teams and points out the importance of quality over quantity in solar system sizing.
In the podcast, Dan also highlights the impact of electric vehicles (EVs) on the solar industry. The demand for EV charger installations has surged over the last few years, changing the dynamics of solar system sizing. Spence emphasises the importance of selling customers the correct system size for their needs, as opposed to the biggest or most expensive one.
Positive 5-star Google Reviews for solar installs come down to staff training
He explains how he is proud of his company’s high number of five-star Google reviews (over 150 – always 5-star). Attributing them to his staff’s efforts of making sure a positive result and experience is always part of a solar & battery installation with SolarWide.