3 Tips For How To Choose The Right Solar Installer

It’s never been more important to choose the right solar installer. As the solar industry matures, there are fewer panels and inverters to choose from, making the product selection easier, but the decision of which installer to choose is a lot more difficult.

If everyone is offering you the same solar system, why not just go with the cheapest quote?

The solar power industry is currently in a price war. You’d think this would be great for the consumer, but it always turns into an absolute disaster just like in previous years.

What’s wrong with a great price on good quality panels, you may ask? A lot.

It’s very easy in the solar industry to strip $500-$1000 out of an installation, sometimes even more. In previous years the dodgy installers would only offer no-name products that we called ‘cheap solar’, however, at the moment these installers are now offering better quality products, hoping to hide behind the brand names included in the system whilst offering a rock-bottom price.

The thing is you aren’t getting a $1000 discount on these systems. You are getting a service that is costing the installer $1000 less. The real question then becomes; what are they leaving out to offer you a cheaper price?

Often it’s the quality of the components such as the mounting kit, the experience of the installers, and the post-sale support that you end up missing out on.

From faulty systems to leaking roofs, cost-cutting can often cost households thousands of dollars to fix… after all a system is designed to last decades, which means a top-quality installation, local support, and high-quality components are all just as important as the panel brand.

And when we say faulty systems, we aren’t talking about a solar panel underperforming slightly. It’s a lot worse than what many people would imagine.

We are getting dozens of calls a week at the moment from people desperately looking for help to get their system fixed… or even to get the system working at all as it wasn’t even turned on when the system was installed. Some of the stories we hear defy belief. Here’s an email we received recently:

You’re right, I went with one of theses this year and they 

  1. flat out stole the “free” pannels
  2. After providing me with a plan (requested because I saw on Product review that they had sold systems that did not fit), the installer knew nothing about the plan and just did the job off the cuff. 
  3. It was not working when they left
  4. The installer just throw the “dongle” into the garden, when he vanished
  5. I was screamed at down the phone at by the sales women when I very calmly and politely advised I was not going to pay for a system, that could not be installed, for plans that were wrong and I wanted it addressed.

I finally got it to work but talk about a stressful customer experience. My recomendation is to avoid them.  

(Mr O’Brien, NSW)

The bad news for many of these households is the money it costs to fix a bad install is typically thousands of dollars – a lot more than the money they saved by going with the cheapest quote.

So how do you choose the right solar installer for your installation?

Choosing The Right Solar Installer

There are a number of important things the top solar companies get right. Here are 3 tips to help you on the right path:

1. Customer Service

Perhaps most importantly, the best solar installers offer industry-leading customer service. It starts with finding the right solar system for your needs without any high-pressure sales tactics, this includes both the system’s size and product selection. The system then needs to be designed to get the most out of your roof, taking into account any potential issues such as shade from trees or a chimney.

Most companies obviously offer great customer service pre-sale, however, watch out for pushy sales staff putting tight deadlines on you. We have found that it is often the companies that go for the hard-sell that end up letting their customers down during and after the installation. They often don’t stay in business all that long, something that is a real issue in the solar industry to the point where an estimated 1 in 3 systems no longer have support because the original installer is no longer in business.

Instead of giving you all the information you need to make the right decision, certain solar sales staff going for the hard sell will often try to confuse you and pressure you into making the wrong decision. They put tight deadlines on you to sign a contract and will make unsolicited contact with you multiple times a day.

Our advice here is to take your time, make sure you have all the information you need to choose the right system for your needs.

Another important factor is that the install and support teams should be local. Our staff are all based in Australia. We don’t use call centres and we will give you the direct line to the person you need to speak to, whether it be for a question about an upcoming installation or a technical question about an existing system, we have a great team of staff here in Australia ready to help.

We also don’t pass on the responsibility of the installation to a sub-contracted 3rd party, something we often see with the cheaper quotes. Solaray will always be your contact point and we take full responsibility for your installation.

2. A long history of happy customers

Online review platforms can be a bit of a nightmare. There have been a number of large solar installers in Australia that have been caught and fined large sums of money by the ACCC for posting fake reviews or paying people to leave a good review. It’s not enough to go looking for a good rating on an online review platform such as Product Review, because the dodgy installers have that too!

One of the most important things to look for is a long history of happy customers. This ensures you aren’t choosing an installer that has recently changed their name, leaving previous customers high and dry.

Solaray has been in business for over 10 years now, and in that time we haven’t had to take a single system off a roof because it wasn’t working.

3. Awards from the top solar companies

The top solar installers not only have thousands of happy customers, but they also win awards.

Solaray has strong partnerships with two of the most advanced and high-quality solar companies in the world; LG Solar and Enphase.

LG Solar has recognised Solaray as Australia’s Installer of the Year 3 years running, while we have been the Enphase Installer of the Year 5 years in a row.

To be recognised as the best in Australia, we need to offer outstanding customer support, expert system design & configuration, and of course high install standards. We are happy to go the extra mile for all of our customers, and we are recognised by our partners for this.

Australia's Best Solar Installer

Why Solaray Is Recognised As The Best Solar Installer In Australia

When you choose Solaray to install your solar system, you can trust that we will do everything we can to make sure you get the best system for your needs, and in the very rare case where something goes wrong, we will be there to fix it. Here is a summary of why we are now recognised as Australia’s best – by the world’s best solar companies:

  1. No high-pressure sales, just great advice. Our experts will provide you with all the information you need to find the perfect system for your home or business.
  2. Talk with real people on your terms. Whether you prefer a phone call, a home visit or an email, we are here to help.
  3. High-quality products. Solaray only works with the best products available to maximise output, reliability and longevity.
  4. Solar that looks as good as it performs. Scroll down to see some of our install pics – from neat cabling to perfect rows of panels, we want your solar system to look amazing
  5. Industry-leading install standards. In over 10 years we have never had to remove or replace a system because it wasn’t working.
  6. Fast & friendly customer support. Our support team is local (no call centres) and the best in the business. All Solaray installations come with full technical support and warranty service. In the unlikely event that there is a problem – we always fix it. This level of service is something almost no other solar installer offers and it is why we are awarded by the world’s leading solar companies as the best installer in Australia, year after year.
  7. All of this at the most competitive pricing available in the industry!

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