There is always a lot to keep up on with solar power, but if you do your research you will be able to figure out who is talking “which makes sense” and who is just making a sale. Here are 10 things to consider before going solar, so you don’t get caught “napping”:

Make sure you understand your consumption and utility retailer’s rates.

In most areas, there are different “stages” of usage and each has a different formula to calculate cost. For instance, energy usage during peak have higher rates than energy usage in off peak. In these schemes you pay more as your energy demands increase. Therefore, the more you are spending on electricity currently, the higher the return on investment you will enjoy on an installed solar system.

Get an accurate idea of the amount of energy your home uses each month.

A growing family generally means increasing energy needs, but if you are childless or have college-age kids ready to leave the nest, you can expect your energy costs from grid to go down, and stay down. Making some energy efficient changes in your home can also help you control your normal usage, such as replacing incandescent bulbs to LEDs and replacing your old machines (fridge, Washing machine, etc.) to energy efficient machines or making other energy-saving changes and upgrades, can lower your costs even further. Request a Free Solar assessment from a local installer to help you accurately calculate your usage & size your solar power system.

North Facing Roof Area or Bust? No.

Ideally, solar systems should be on the North, North west-facing area of your roof. Truth be told, the direction on the solar panels can be critical to harvest good production but it’s not as important as you may think (or salesmen may insist). Positioning the panels to face east or west will also work, and even south east and south west give acceptable results, too.

Solar Batteries, No Rebates!

You should not consider going batteries unless you are constructing a self-contained home or your property in an area where grid connection is not viable. If you consider staying “on the grid”, you will continue to receive power at night from the grid, just like you are getting now.

Probably of more important is the fact that most rebate incentives don’t trigger unless your system is connected to the grid and no rebate makes your project finished at a higher cost than usual.

Do I need an approval from council to install solar panels?

No, you are not required to obtain authorization for installing solar panels on your roof except you are altering a heritage property but It is advisable to get approval from strata management if you live in a strata managed property.

Considering Insurance for Solar

After installation, you may need to contact your home insurance company to amend your policy with newly installed. You may need to pay a bit extra by covering solar panels in your policy, but protecting your system from fires or other damage is critical.

Study Your Solar Warranties

Many kind of warranties offered by solar installers now a days but studying warranties can protect you from future disappointments.

    Solar system warranties that are normally offered:
  • Solar Panel Performance Warranty - 25 to 30 Years
  • Solar Panel Manufacturer Warranty – 10 to 12 Years
  • String Inverter Manufacturer Warranty – 5 to 10 Years
  • Micro Inverter Manufacturer Warranty – 12 to 25 Years
  • The installers should also offer a warranty on the quality of their work, which means guaranteeing they made no holes in your roof likely to lead to leaks for a specified period, from two to 10 years, normally.

How long do Solar Panels Last

Solar panels do not have any moving parts and do not attract any wear and tear. In general, a solar panel will last 30 years or more and lose half percent (0.5%) conversion efficiency annually. Little maintenance like hosing the panels off a few times during the year and keeping obstacles off solar panels will help generating steady output.

Will Panels Harm my Roof?

The panels will not harm your roof in any way when properly installed. Honestly, they protect the areas located directly beneath them from the ravages of weather, light, and heat. You may even find that the room(s) of your home directly beneath the panel installations will remain cooler in summer and warmer in winter, regardless of the other insulation. You can save heating and cooling costs when you install your panels wisely. Proper home preparation, and choosing the right installer will go a long way to ensuring a job done right.

Your Roof Type Can Influence Cost

The kind of roof you have makes a big difference in installation costs. It will definitely be costlier to install solar panels on terracotta tiles than on plain interlocking tiles roofs. terracotta are far more brittle than any other tile types, so additional time-intensive care is needed to ensure that any attachment points penetrating the roof are completely and properly sealed. This extra time can add 10% to 25% additional cost to the installation job.

Always talk to a few solar companies before you commit to a solar panel installation. You may find that pricing is similar, so you will have to base your final decision on other things, including solar installer reputation, the amount of help you get figuring out the government solar rebates, and so forth. If a salesman is honest and his company reputable, he will likely give you this last piece of advice, too. Conserve energy first then decide how to augment your home with solar power. Learning how to conserve is free, but you have to take the time to study up a bit.

After you have conserved all the energy you can, you can take the next steps in determining how best to install a solar system.

All the best & happy shopping.