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Solar panels offer a way for homeowners to reduce their electricity costs over time. The panels also offer a way to reduce a home’s environmental impact over time. That may help explain why around 46% of homeowners have considered installing solar panels.
Of course, the jump from consideration to a decision isn’t always an easy one. One of the biggest stumbling blocks you face is picking a solar installer. Unlike the solar equipment itself, you get way fewer objective facts on which to pick an installer.
If picking an installer has kept you from making the decision, keep reading for a quick guide on how to choose the right one for your needs.
Right from the outset, you want a company with solid experience in solar panel installation. Ideally, you want a company that has experience installing your preferred brand of solar panels. Otherwise, you risk a botch installation.
At best, a botched installation will make your solar system useless. The worst-case scenario is that the botched installation will damage your electrical system.
An experienced installer will know how to safely and correctly install the panels and connect them to your existing electrical system.
Appropriate Credentials and Insurance
While regulations vary, most solar installers will have at least a general contractor’s license and electrician’s license. If you’re not sure about local regulations, look into them.
Many locations have strict rules that forbid electrical work by anyone other than a licensed electrician. Some electrical work also requires permits. Failure to use licensed electricians or to secure permits can hold up a future home sale while you get the work inspected.
The company should also have insurance. At a bare minimum, they should maintain a general liability policy. Many contractors also carry an error or omissions policy that covers liability above and beyond a standard liability policy.
Check the Reviews
You should also take a look at any available reviews of the company and its work. Don’t get hung up on a single bad review. Look for patterns of complaints with a given company.
If you see a lot of reviews that complain about the same thing, that’s a good indicator that the company has an ongoing problem. At that point, you have to decide if the problem is a deal-breaker for you.
Rude workers might prove obnoxious, but it doesn’t mean the work is bad. Consistent complaints that the installation needed repair probably means you want to avoid that company.
Parting Thoughts on Picking the Right Solar Installer
You should use the same kind of process to pick a solar installer that you’d use with other service providers.
Look for a company with experience installing solar systems. Make sure the company has the right licenses and insurance. Take a look at the reviews.
If a company passes on all counts, they’re probably a sound choice for working on your home.
Looking for inspiration or more advice about upgrading your home? Check out some of the other articles on this site.