Avoid these traps while buying a solar power system

Purchasing a solar power system can be overwhelming with a mind-boggling number of solar panel options in the market. Here’s your how-to-guide on avoiding some pitfalls while choosing to go solar.

  • Don’t cut back on money while purchasing a solar system, always opt for a well-known brand to buy from. Make sure the dealer is an authentic one, or call the company directly to continue with the order.
  • Take note of what assurances are being provided by the installer. The regular warranty is 25 years. Unknown brands will shut shop before 25 years, and there won’t be a solar module manufacturer around in order for the warranty to be honored.
  • Both the state and central governments offer subsidies on PV solar. Scammers often distort or outright lie about how huge those benefits can be. A reputable company can easily direct you to the websites of government agencies with accurate information. The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy’s (MNRE) State Nodal Body expends subsidies for solar energy installations. This body also acts as a filter and holds back on the subsidy if any of the empaneled companies faulter or fail to perform. Information of accredited businesses can be found on the respective nodal agency website.
  • Do your research on selecting the best branded panels. Otherwise, the company may sell you outdated or defected modules and you will be left with no way of knowing whether the quality is good. Be very wary of very low prices on solar panels. For example, did you know that a high temperature coefficient indicates a poor-quality solar panel? A reasonable number is around 0.5%. The best solar panels have 0.3% coefficient.
  • When you consider solar panels, the strength or width of the frame does not affect efficiency. Efficiency fully depends on the cells. Bigger is not always efficient. Don’t let the sales representative or misguided ads confuse you otherwise.
  • A solar power system’s efficiency can be overstated. For instance, in one part of India, a system of a particular scale will cater to 50% of the average household’s needs. This value may be different in another part of the country given the atmosphere, climatic conditions and irradiance rate.
  • Further, high-performance solar modules maybe required if you have lower roof surface availability. In the case of higher surface availability, solar modules with less output could be an option.
  • Ensure the field mounting or monitoring device is engineer’s certified. A very crucial component is the mounting system and some suppliers tend to cut corners on this piece. Make sure to ask for wind certification as well.
  • When in doubt, ask around. Never start without a contract, get good references from neighbors. Gather a few solar quotes when making a major purchase.
  • Last but not the least, ensure the company offers after-sales support. Most small companies will make the installation, but will fail to provide support on service and maintenance of the system. Investing a little more in a quality solar panels will save you the heartache and, above several imminent costs.

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