6 Questions you Should ask a Solar Panel Company before Installing Panels

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It seems like the number of people investing in solar panels to provide energy for their homes has risen in recent years

It’s no secret that burning fossil fuels has a devastating impact on our planet’s environment, which is one of the reasons so many homeowners are turning to solar energy. Solar energy is both renewable and sustainable, and unlike burning fossil fuels, it does not produce any greenhouse gases. 

Reducing your carbon footprint is one of the benefits of using solar panels, but cutting the cost of your utility bills is another reason so many homeowners are getting excited about going green. By installing solar panels, you can significantly reduce the amount of cash you spend on electricity each month. Many believe that the panels will pay for themselves, due to the amount of money they have managed to save on utility bills. 

  1. Is My Roof in Good Enough Condition to Support the Panels? 

Before spending your hard-earned money on new solar panels, it is of vital importance that you find out whether or not your roof can support them. 

A solar panel company should inspect your roof before installing the panels. A reputable company will provide a thorough examination to ensure the roof can support the panels, and that the roof won’t collapse once the panels have been installed. If your roof is damaged, then the roof might collapse, often causing serious structural damage. This could also lead to someone inside the house sustaining a serious injury, or even dying. Even if you think your roof can support them, leave it up to experts who understand the panels, and the installation process, to determine if your roof can support the weight of the solar panels. 

If the roof is damaged, or you plan on replacing it in the near future, consider waiting to install the panels until the new roof has been installed. Dismantling the panels from your old roof, and reinstalling them on a new one is a big job, and it can cost homeowners a pretty penny. 

  1. Are there Different Methods of Payment Available?

The cost of solar panels can put a lot of homeowners off. A lot of folks don’t have the kind of money needed to pay for the panels outright, which is why a lot of solar panel companies provide their clients with a leasing option. 

Companies that lease solar panels often include maintenance fees and repairs without any extra costs. Some companies don’t ask clients to pay any upfront costs, which can prove highly beneficial, especially for those struggling financially. If you decide to lease the panels, you will want to know if you can purchase the system down the line. Also, whether or not you can transfer the lease. 

Although you won’t be able to save as much money by leasing the panels, it is an easy way to enter the solar marketplace without having to spend a fortune on buying the panels. The leasing company will be responsible for the panels, so even if they do get damaged, you won’t have to worry about getting hit with an outrageous bill. Most companies take full responsibility for the panels they have leased to their customers, which can help put your mind at ease. 

  1. How Long will the Panels Last?

Before you start splashing the cash, you will want to know how long the solar panels are going to last. In the past, a lot of homeowners were reluctant to invest in solar panels, because many people found them problematic. However, due to the demand for solar energy systems, the demand for solar panels is far greater than it once was, and with technology constantly improving, the average solar panel system should last for at least 25 years. 

Unfortunately, not all solar panels will last as long as 25 years. Some tend to have a much lower expected lifespan. It’s crucial that you find out how long the panels will last before investing in a new system. 

However, there are top-of-the-range panels readily available too. Although these panels might cost you a fortune, some are expected to last up to 50 years. For those in a healthy financial position, consider asking solar panel companies about these panels. 

  1. How Much Does the Installation Cost?

Just because you have bought solar panels, don’t assume that the installation fees are included in the cost. You will have to pay extra for experts to install the system. Often the price of the installation will depend on the solar panel system you have purchased. 

Consider asking multiple solar panel experts for a quote. To avoid getting hit with hidden charges, ask them to send you a detailed quote. However, instead of hiring the company that charges the lowest installation fees in your area, consider doing a little research about the company first. Honest reviews posted to the web can give you an insight into the solar panel companies that provide an installation service in your area. If you’re struggling to find genuine reviews on the internet, why not ask your others that have installed solar panels for help?

After purchasing solar panels, you might be tempted to install them yourself to save cash. However, installing these devices can prove tricky, so if you don’t have any experience, you should hire experts who have undergone professional training to take on the task. People who decide to go down the DIY route, often leave wires exposed, which could cause issues.

  1. How Long will it Take?

Because not all solar panels are the same, trying to determine how long the installation process will take can be difficult without expert advice. The size of the panels, how to mount the panels, and the structure of your home will all affect the installation process. However, experienced solar panel companies should have the entire system installed within a few hours. 

A lot of people think that they will have to replace the wiring in their homes when installing a solar panel system, but you won’t have to. 

  1. Do the Installers have a License and Insurance

Just because the solar installers claim their company is the best in your area, it might be worthwhile checking to see if they have their business papers and license in order. These documents should have been issued by the state, so if they are reluctant to show you them, run away! They should be able to provide you with their license number without any hesitation. 

There are a lot of risks when installing a solar panel system, especially when the installers are working on your roof. If they have an accident while working on your property, you will want to make sure that they are fully insured. Ask to see a copy of their insurance policy before they begin work. If their current policy doesn’t cover them while working in your home, then you should consider hiring a different company. Often, solar panel companies are forced to hire a master electrician to help them connect the system to your home. If this is the case, you will want to make sure that the electrician has insurance too.