An LG Authorised Dealer from the Camberwell Electrics Solar Power Team, will visit your home for a site inspection, checking the roof position, discussing your electricity usage pattern, discussing monitor options and, where applicable, conducting a shade analysis, to ensure that the right quantity of the right panels are placed in the optimum position.
We strongly advise buyers to insist that their installation company undertakes a physical site inspection.
Many variables require consideration, with many difficult to spot from satellite images or from photos of your home.
As a result, we strongly advise that you buy your solar system from a local company and not an internet-based solar sales agent.
Historically (when internet solar sales were rapidly increasing) consumers purchased solar systems without site inspections, only to have their installer highlight the need for special roof brackets or a total switchboard upgrade before the solar can be installed. These additions added unexpected costs and time delays to the consumer.
Before making your purchase decision, check who you should contact if you have questions after your installation or if something isn't working and make sure that you to ask for a written warranty from the installation company for the cabling and installation work, not just the panels, inverter and mounting frame.
The key components susceptible to failure in your solar system are the solar panels, the inverter and some components like fuses and isolators. This is often because cheap lower quality products have been sold at low prices, but have been made to look like high quality via long "warranties" and other claims.
High quality solar products overall tend to have longer life-cycles as they undertake more quality control steps, use higher quality cells and solders, have stronger UV protection on backing sheets and ensure the water sealing of panels withstands decades of weather induced deterioration. Very low cost panels with less UV stabilised backing sheets, cheaper sealants and more fragile framing can deteriorate faster and some have failed in Australia in as little as 2-3 years.
Cheap inverter solutions also have higher failure rates than quality solutions.
Unfortunately often lengthy warranties on cheap products have been unobtainable as both manufacturers and installation company have avoided liability by going into liquidation e.g. Sunnyroo or Aearosharp inverters.
In Australia over 500 installation companies have liquidated their business and escaped warranty obligations since early 2011*.
The key warranty for solar panels is the Manufacturer's Warranty.
High quality panels cover transport of the replacement panel, the replacement panel and the labour to take the failed panel down and replace it.
Cheaper panels often do not cover transport and replacement labour.
Make sure you enquire what is covered in the warranty and ask for the detailed warranty document.
Standard Manufacturer's Warranties are usually for 10 years, and for LG Solar panels it is 12 years.
A few years ago many buyers of residential solar did not consider the efficiency of their panels. If they wanted a 5 kW system they could buy 20 panels with 250W or 23 less efficient 220W panels. Most customers never imagined they would in the future need more than 5 kW of solar and in many homes around 20 to 32 panels will fit on the roof. That was the old solar.
But with the emergence of battery storage as a smart way to harvest the sun during the day and then to use this electricity at night, panel efficiency has become a very important consideration. Considering that the future of electric cars is coming fast, with Volkswagen for example announcing many electric car models in a few years; one might want to expand ones solar system in the future to power the electric car.
The worldwide CO, reduction could be enormous if we are able to utilise our roofs to generate some of the fuel for our cars. In short in the future one might want 4-5kW of solar system for day use and 1-2 kW of solar for the batteries to use at night and then to fuel the car one would need another 4-6 kW of solar to power the car(s) via solar. Overall suddenly there is the need for a 10 -12 kW system. With 260W panels this would mean one needs to fit at least 40 panels. On the other hand with the highly efficient 320W LG NeONTM2 one would need only 32 panels.
LG is working to deliver in a few years 360 and 400W panels on the same size as the current generation, meaning if you can save 8 spots now — you can have another 3.6kW solar system for your batteries or cars, which you would not be able to fit otherwise.
So it is important nowadays to buy a system with future expansion capability in mind, both for batteries and future Electric Vehicles.
Buy now with the needs of the future in mind. Choose high efficient panels and save roof space for future expansion.
Please don't hestate to call Richard on either (03) 9835 4343 or 0457-860-113 to discuss any questions about how to get the best solar power installation.