Green Deal for Solar Panels
Green Deal for Solar Panels
July 19, 2016
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About Installers

about installers

Solar Installers -The basics

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MCSProbably the most important thing that is essential to for you to confirm about installation companies & contractors is that the work carried out will be Microgeneration Certification Scheme (MCS) compliant and certified.  It is also beneficial for the installer to be an active member of a trade association, such as The Renewable Energy Association (REA).  Members of the REA abide by a written code of conduct, which provides an additional level of consumer protection concerning the quality and content of service provided by the solar PV installer.

After installation, If your system is not registered & certified by the MCS you will not be able to claim the feed in tariff 

Warranties & Guarantees:

The 2 main areas of warranty cover refer to the labour and the equipment.

  1. Labour is generally covered under a warranty, usually lasting 2 years.
  2. Equipment is covered under broadly 2 headings, which can be described as“damage”& “performance”.

The damage guarantee is essentially “if it’s broken, you get a replacement”, the performance guarantee is more complex and usually based on how the equipment performs against its original condition.

  • It is not unusual to see identical performance warranties for many different brands of solar pv panels.

 What you should look for

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By making sure you get the same information from each solar panel installer that provides you with a quotation, you can then compare “like for like” and make the process easier. A good quotation should cover all the factors impacting on pricing, including the things that may influence your decision to install solar pv for your home.

Quote contents (suggested minimum)

  • Name of installer, Date of quote, validity of quote (7/10/14 or 30 days etc.)
  • Name of client, address of installation (your details).
  • How many PV panels are to be installed, including the make & power output of the panels.
  • The full cost of the installation, (VAT is normally 5%) including all equipment and extras (such as scaffold).
  • SAP calculation – this is the method of estimating how much power the system will produce, how much feed in tariff you may earn. The SAP should be relevant to your property location / conditions

Don’t forget to ask about any shading on the property which may affect the performance of the solar PV system, details of any workmanship warranties and details of any genuine special offers or incentives (avoid obvious sales gimmicks)

Comparing quotes:

  • Price per kilowatt hour – if you divide the total output (kWh) by the cost of the installation, you will arrive at a cost per unit.
  • Preferred manufacturer – if you prefer German / Japanese / Chinese, simply exclude the manufacturers you don’t like.
  • Warranties – they differ from installer to installer, even for the same type of system.
  • Customer testimonials – previous unhappy clients will always let you know.
  • Installation date – how soon can the solar PV system be fitted.

The installer should be able to offer a deposit guarantee or at least confirm that client funds are held in a separate account – that ensures there is no ambiguity about your payments.

Deposits are taken as standard prior to any work being carried out, the proportion can vary from installer to installer, but it is generally accepted that around 60% to 80% of the total cost of the work may be paid in stages with the balance being paid upon satisfactory completion of the work (and registering your system with the MCS).

Nationwide Panel of Installers

we can arrange for professionally qualified and reputable companies to carry out free surveys on your property, ensuring that your system is designed, priced and fitted to your individual requirements.