BEWARE SOLAR SCAMS!
I was horrified last week when inspecting a site for a wiring upgrade, to discover that the property owners had been visited by an out of area solar company sales representative and talked into signing up for a 1.5 kw solar system at a cost of $7,500!
‘Costs of solar panels and inverters have been falling for many years. A good 1.5 kw solar system, with panels and inverter from reputable suppliers should cost approximately $4,000 – $4,500 before rebates (STC’s).
If you are being quoted significantly less than that, then I would be questioning what panels and inverter are proposed as there are lots of cheap imitations from fly-by-night companies. If it is much more, then someone is preying on your good nature and desire to do the right thing.’
Luckily, the people in question had only paid a $50 deposit which they were happy to lose in order to save $3,000 but we are really concerned that others are being scammed or pressured into paying more by professional sales people using high pressure techniques.
We researched the inverters and panels being sold by the company in question and found that the Inverter manufacturer in the UK was already in receivership – which means that if anything goes wrong with the inverter now or in the future, the consumer has no protection whatsoever. A number of large & high profile solar companies have folded over the past few years, leaving customers with no recourse if something fails or goes wrong.
To help customers understand more about solar terminology, technology and traps and pitfalls, we have a free pdf you can download from www.gedmccarthy.com.au to educate yourself about good quality inverters and panels if you are interested in solar
‘Please be careful, solar is after all a power source, and therefore is an electrical installation. You don’t take chances with your stove or wiring, don’t take chances with solar. Talk to reputable local firms who offer good service, warranties and experience.’
‘People want to deal with honest locals they can trust, but these door knocking salespeople are very persuasive and before you know it, they have your signature and money in their hands!’
Ged is a licenced Builder, Electrical Contractor and Solar expert who has been living and working with solar for over 15 years and has survived both the boom and bust years of the Solar Industry. Founding member and past President of the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA), Founder of the Australian Renewable Energy Consumer Alliance (ARECA).