If you are considering moving to solar energy, good for you. It is a smart investment for many reasons. But you are bound to have questions for your solar panel provider. You likely have done a lot of research on your own, but there are bound to be areas that have you concerned.
Make a list of the questions you have and make sure you are satisfied with the answers you get. This is a big investment, so you want to be sure you have hired the right company for the job.
Solar Panel Questions
These are a guideline for you, you likely have questions that are specific to your own situation.
How Much Will it Cost?
This is a logical question. Solar panels are expensive but there are certain government incentives available, so be sure to ask about that too. Get a price in writing and make them stick to it.
Is My Roof Strong Enough?
If they don’t offer to inspect your roof and make sure the roof is strong enough, that could spell trouble. Your roof needs to be in good repair, so make sure it is inspected.
Get as much information as you can about the warranty. What does it cover? How long is it for? Is there a contact person or company? What happens if you are not happy, or it’s not working properly?
Are You Insured?
We never like to think about what could go wrong but things do. It’s important to understand what is insured and what isn’t. You don’t want to be held responsible for something that happens that has nothing to do with you.
Licenses and Experience
Always ask about certifications and licenses. Also ask about their experience, how many of installations have they done, and even ask for references. Don’t be afraid to call a past customer and ask for their opinion.
How Big of a System do I Need?
Any reputable company will do an energy audit and tailor your system to match your needs. Don’t just allow them to sell you something that is beyond your needs. The most expensive system doesn’t mean it’s the best.
This is not an easy calculation so they need to understand how much energy you use and when. Every home will be different. They need to factor in how many people, peak hours, and so on.
How Long Will They Last?
The warranties on Tier 1 solar panels all guarantee that your panels will produce a specific amount of power over the next 25 years. That being said, your panels could very well last 35 to 50 years, or longer! The key is to understand that they put out less power than the day they were installed 25 years ago- but all you have to do is add a few solar panels to make up the difference and voila, you’re right back up to your original power production.
What About Maintenance?
Solar panels and equipment are built to live the entirety of their lifespan outside, and everything is built with that in mind. Solar panels are built to withstand rain, snow, high winds, and even damaging hail. All-in-all there is really no annual maintenance that needs to occur for solar panels themselves- just install them and watch the savings start rolling in.
Generally speaking, solar panels don’t need to be cleaned. If you live somewhere where there is excessive smog, dirt, and debris in the air you may consider having them cleaned. Good examples are people who have systems near gravel roads or near farm grounds when crops are harvested; dry and dusty conditions that occur during droughts can also exacerbate this problem. If you do need your panels cleaned, and they’re mounted to your roof it’s best to call a professional. Ask your local installer and they’ll be able to recommend someone to help you out.
Call The Professionals
When you need a job done right, don’t risk hiring the guy who will do it cheaply. It will always be more expensive in the end. You want to hire someone who has a lot of knowledge and experience with solar energy.
Contact us at Live Smart Construction for an energy audit or with questions about solar panel installation. We can determine exactly the type of system that will be the most beneficial for your needs and suit your budget.
We can tell you how much to expect in savings over the coming months and years.