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Clearing the fog on installing solar panels!


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You’d love to get solar panels installed. You’ve started looking into it and perhaps found it’s a little bit daunting… Lots of unfamiliar words and mysterious terminology, different brands which may not mean anything to you, not to mention huge variations in price. Yes! It’s confusing. 

We try to simplify the process for our customers; we explain the technology behind solar systems, the installation and after sales processes in layman terms to make it easy for you to understand and decipher everything that you’re hearing and reading. 

So in this article, we’d like to lift the fog on installing solar and address some of the most common questions our customers ask us.

Everybody wants a quality system, installed professionally and properly, at a fair price, with no smoke and mirrors and no high-pressure sales techniques.

That’s exactly what you will get with 4Shore Solar. Let us break it down for you.

 

WHAT IS A QUALITY SYSTEM?

Simply put, you want equipment that will last the test of time. There’s plenty of ‘cheap’ systems out there, many of which you may have seen advertised on social media. The promise of a good quality 6.6kw solar system for $3,000  may seduce you. Be warned your solar panel installation will be the next parody to appear on the facebook page Crap Solar.

The old adage ‘you get what you pay for’ applies here as well. 

Buying better quality gear; Tier 1 solar panels and European built inverters. But also other installation componentry such as cabling, racking (what your panels are mounted on) and isolator switches - will generally add to the longevity and performance of your system. A well designed and installed system will minimise and ultimately dictate the performance. If you’re price-driven, there are still quality options.

 

INSTALLED PROFESSIONALLY

There’s ‘installs’ and there’s ‘installs’. Know what I mean? 

Plenty of solar companies sub-contract their installations. Sub-contractors that don’t have any investment in the future of your system will sometimes take the quickest path to complete your installation, especially on a Friday. The quickest path may not be the best path.

At 4Shore Solar, we do not sub-contract. The owner of the business Jason is onsite for every installation. Every job, done right the first time. We do not install it the easiest way. We install it the best way for longevity and performance. This might mean running cabling via internal walls or individually grounding roof tiles so brackets fit perfectly. The little details can make a world of difference.

For some homeowners, aesthetics play a crucial role when pondering the possibility of installing a home solar panel system. We understand this being professional solar installers and can manipulate systems to work with optimum efficiency without impacting the overall look of your home. 

 

FAIR PRICE 

We price fairly, not cheaply. This is for good reason. We guarantee our workmanship, so we want your system to outperform a super cheap system that might only last a few years. We want you to have a set-and-forget system that will work for the next 15 years, long after your return on investment has been achieved.

We price competitively based on comparative equipment. While plenty of solar companies come and go, we’re a local family-run business operating since 2010 and not going anywhere.  You can be sure we’ll be here if you ever need us into the future.

 

THE QUOTE PROCESS

No sales pressure from us. We treat people how we like to be treated; honestly, transparently and with the highest professionalism. Our job is to present the best option for your specific needs.

We’ll arm you with all the information you need. We tailor a solar system suited to your property, your energy usage and your extended requirements, including recommendations on the kW size. We won’t twist your arm, and we’ll be around to answer any questions you have, even if it’s after the supply of your quote. 

Two things you need to discuss with any company quoting you:

  1. Discuss if a meter upgrade is required, and if so, will you be charged for this upgrade?
  2. Discuss the ‘electricity plan’ that you will be on once you have solar installed; as you will now be paid for power you don’t use.  Also known as your ‘feed-in tariff’.

If you’re meter DOES NOT need an upgrade --> solar is ready for immediate use.
If you’re meter DOES need an upgrade --> solar is ready for use after the meter is upgraded by your electricity retailer. 

The quote process with us is simple. 

  • We will book a time to visit (no vague overseas call centre consult).
  • At this time we will check your meter box for compliance.
  • We will come prepared with a tailored quote and report specific to your address.
  • We will explain the quote; including realistic projected savings and return on investment based on your current usage, available bills and electricity rates.
  •  We are available during your decision period to address any other questions you may have.

You may be getting several quotes; to help with your decision process do your own research. Fact check what you’ve been told for peace of mind. With both equipment and company; customer reviews are your friend. Complete an ABN search to verify how long an installer has been in business. This will help to reinforce any decisions you make.

Once you have booked your job with 4Shore Solar: 

  • We will liaise with the network before, during and after the installation.
  • We will complete all government regulated documentation on your behalf. 
  • We will organise for your meter to be upgraded (if required).
  • We will also monitor your system once it is installed to ensure it is performing as expected. 

So, we do everything! The only thing we cannot do is choose your energy provider / electricity retailer. We can help advise and give you some tips along the way, but the selection process is completely up to you.

 

WHAT ABOUT GOVERNMENT INITIATIVES? DO I QUALIFY? 

You may have seen advertising around; drawing customers in with postcode or other qualifiers for 'Solar Rebates' and STC (Small-Scale Technology Certificate) expirations. The simple fact is, virtually every solar system qualifies. It is not postcode specific, it is not means-tested and applies to residential and commercial solar systems. The total amount of the government funded financial incentive depends on the size of the system you’ll be installing and the location of the installation.

  • The quote 4Shore Solar supplies is your out-of-pocket cost after the government initiative is applied. 
  • This amount will be detailed on the quote and explained during the quotation process.
  • The small scale renewable energy scheme is due to expire in 2030 and reduces slightly on the 1st of January each year.  

 

WHAT NEXT?

Give us a call or drop us an email and we’ll be in touch to discuss your needs and book a convenient time to make an appointment.

 

Further reading material:  

http://www.cleanenergyregulator.gov.au/RET/Scheme-participants-and-industry/Individuals-and-small-business/what-you-need-to-know-if-you-are-installing-solar-panels 

https://www.energymadeeasy.gov.au/benchmark

https://solarcalculator.com.au/solar-rebates/ 

Posted in: Gold Coast Solar Advice at 22 July 20