With the growth of the renewable energy market and in particular that of the consumer solar panel market, unfortunately one thing will always come hand in hand “rogue” or “cowboy” solar panel installers.
The Renewable Energy Assurance Limited (REAL) – set up by the Renewable Energy Association has reported increasing amounts of reports from disgruntled consumer solar panel installations. More and more companies seem to be setting out to take the consumer for a ride, these sorts of businesses are targeting poor consumer awareness, giving false hope, providing poor equipment or setups and pressurising clientele into taking out installations with them.
If you’re considering or have been considering any sort of solar PV system follow our tips below to safeguard yourself from the cowboy cliche!
Our top tips for any new solar panel installation
- Do your research! Don’t be fooled by a rogue trader. The only way you can be sure of what you are getting is by looking into it yourself, shopping around, asking friends and contacts. Opinions count for a lot.
- Some people can be a bad judge of character, but be weary of traders who are seemingly over eager, or pressuring you into making a decision. You need to feel comfortable with your installer, the minute you don’t, find another.
- Make sure you check out a Solar PV calculator from various online sources, a particularly good one can be found at Marble Solar
- Go out and get at least 3/4 different quotes from both local and further afield companies.
- Don’t just go with the cheapest option, somewhere in the middle is usually the best But research into what you are getting for your money.
- Trust testimonials only when they are genuine. It’s pretty easy to spoof a testimonial on your website. Perhaps consider trying to get hold of one of the so called testimonial characters.
- Make sure you can trust the company, check they are a formed company, companies house, online, importantly find their house number -> Duedil is a fantastic free tool for this
- Get a full quote, with the final payable price on it before making any commitment.
- If you have a question, do not, UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES, feel afraid to ask it! It’s your house and your money, ask away. If they don’t want to answer your questions, find another installer!
- REAL advises on their website to never pay more than 25% of the contract price before completion. Also don’t forget to see that you will be protected by insurance.
- By UK law you are entitled to the right to cancel the contract within 7 days without incurring any penalty for doing so. BY LAW. Remember to push this.
If energy company Ofgems reports are anythiny to go by Solar production is the most widely used renewable energy source in the UK. It looks like it will have a bright future!