FAQ

How much does a solar system cost?

The price of solar systems may vary quite a lot depending on witch state you live in and what the local regulations may require, Sure Solar Has all the expertise to assist with all aspects of local distribution requirements. Saving you time and money as well as being clear on what cost are involved in your solar system.

The upfront cost of your solar PV system can be affected by some of the following factors, including:

  • government incentives and support schemes available
  • Differently constructed installation rates.
  • Brand and number of solar panels installed.
  • Brand and size of inverter (The inverter price can vary quite dramatically. One of the main reasons for big price differences in systm prices.) Sure Solar only uses brands that have a long history in the industy and have been proven to work in the Australian Climate.
  • Brand of framing equipment and other system components. (Again Sure Solar only use quality product backed by local distributors for piece of mind.)
  • The style and design of your property. eg. A tile House would cost more to install on as a tin roof due to the different type of racking needed.
  • any after-­sales service agreements (Sure Solar always recommend that your solar pv system be maintained yearly to maintain all the old and new safety requirements) As a very rough guide, the total cost of getting a home solar system up and running is between $2400 (for a small 1.5 kW system) and $11,000 (for a top­ of ­the ­line 5 kW system). For businesses, the approximate cost of installing solar ranges from around $14,000 (for a 10kW system) to more than $200,000 (for a high ­capacity 100 kW system).

What is a solar feed­in tariff (FiT)?

A feed in tariff is a rate (Kw/h) paid by your electricity retailer for the export of your excess solar power produced. For example is Queensland the average rate is 6c per Kw/h. It is advised that customers shop around for the best rate available to the usage in their household.

How much money will I save installing solar panels?

The amount of money your household could save on power bills by going solar is affected by a number of factors, including:

  • How much energy your household consumes witch can be located on your electricity bill. and the size of your solar power system. Use our free online solar calculator as a guide to see how much you can save.
  • Your feed­in tariff – this is the amount your electricity retailer pays you for any excess power your solar panels generate. Eg. in Queensland the average buy back rate is 8c per Kw/hour.
  • Your usage consuption patterns – The way different household use electricity and the type of appliances you have can vary your savings greatly. The best way to save the most money in Queensland for example would be to use as much of the solar power generated as possible by having larger appliances such as washing machines and pool pumps running during the day.
  • Where you live – some areas of Australia receive a lot more sunlight than others, so a solar PV system in Brisbane will usually generate more power than one in Sydney
  • Quality of product. Is their a difference between good solar panels and bad ones? Short answer yes! When a quality solar panel is made it goes through more testing and screening than a poor quality panel. This means that the better quality panels will last longer and produce more power over the longer term then the cheaper alternative. The old you get what you pay for expression is no different in the solar game.
  • The best way to find out what your potential saving can be is to talk to one of our representitives with years of experience in the solar industry. We have seen what works and can be the difference between hundreds of dollars a year in savings.

Can I add more panels if I am on the 44cent or 50cent QLD Feed In Tariff.

The short answer to this question is YES!!!!!!

BUT BEWARE!!!!!

There are very strict rules and regulations when it comes to adding more panels to your existing solar system on the high QLD 44cent or 50cent feed in tariff.

Below is what you need to know to ensure you don’t loose your high feed in tariff:

  • Know what size inverter you have
  • Find out what size inverter you have installed. You can tell buy looking on the side of the inverter. The best bet if to take a photo of this and send it to our solar consultant for conformation.

You may also be able to find all of the inverter information in the paperwork that was provided to you at the time of installation. From this information the inverter will have a nominal rated AC output rating. ( This is key to what you are allowed to do when it comes to upgrading) For example if you have an inverter with a rated output of 5kw then as per the CEC design and installation guidelines you can install to a maxuim of 33% over the maximum capacity of the inverter. So for this instance you could have a total of 6.65Kw of panels on your roof.

The reason we can overload the inverter is to have the inverter run closer to the maximum of the inverters potential. As you may already see on your inverter the power produced is always less then the maximum of the panels you have on your roof.

How many panels to you already have installed on your roof. Now we have worked out what the maximum amount of solar we can have on the roof is. Its time to work out what we already have up there. The easiest way is to find out is from the paperwork you have from time of installation. If your really unsure its best to contact us and find out for sure.

What happens if I change my inverter?

Now this is the part where you need to be really careful.!!!!!!

In QLD Energex areas if you don’t change your inverter and you have capacity to do so it will not affect your feed in tariff. If you do Replace your inverter it MUST be of the same or less nominal AC power output of the inverter installed (not the original contract size) and NO more. If it is more you will LOSE your high feed in tariff. And don’t think they wont find out.

They will and will not go easy on you.

If you are still unsure please contact us to talk to one of our professionals on the matter.

How do i choose a quality solar inverter?

A solar inverter is like the engine to car. You can have the body of a sports car but if the engine is cheap and inefficient to its conditions and climate it just wont perform. So remember you get what you pay for.

Ok so how do I tell the good from the bad?

Here are my tips on identifying a quality brand of inverter.

If a manufacturer has support offices in the country It shows that they are here to build a reputation for quality and support. Where as cheaper manufacturers who are offshore are seen to be trying to get a quick sale in the market and be able to exit leaving end customers high and dry and with no warranty should something go wrong or they need support.

It is very easy to see how committed a manufacturer is to the country just by their website and activities they perform in the country such as research and development and installer training. As well as independent customer support. A good solar inverter manufacturer will not be scared to talk to the general public. You should be asking yourself the question if you cant contact them can they really be trustworthy enough for you hard earned money.

Having evidence to back up quality is the best way to tell if the product you are about to invest in is going to run smoothly and efficiently for the term of your investment. All quality products will never be shy of telling you how great they are and show you plenty of projects and research in different environments and countries. So If you cant find case studies or evidence of studies in the Australian environment ask yourself can the be trusted and work efficiently in your area.

When you invest your money you need to be sure that in the unfortunate event that the inverter fails the problem can be fixed or replace in a fast and easy manner, minimizing time that your solar system is down. Time is money and its no different with a solar inverter. The longer its down the more money you loose. I can speak from experience in serving hundreds of solar system with all types of inverters and can tell you that the cheap inverters can having you waiting for months at a time where as a quality brand will have the issue fixed withing a week or even a few days.

If you are still unsure speak to us on how we process warranty claims with different brands.

So all In all Quality counts!!!!!! and having our quality installation team and customer service team looking after you, you can be confident that the product you get will be carefully picked and give you the support you need throughout the life of the system.

What do i do if i have birds nesting underneath my solar panels?

If you have ever looked up at your roof and seen birds and pigeons around or on your solar panels? What may look innocent enough could tell a very different story underneath your solar panels. Birds can make quite a mess underneath panels and not only cause damaged from their droppings, but sticks and movement underneath panels could cause quite the fire hazard to your home with you being unaware.

Ok so you see birds on your roof! What can you do to fix the problem?

We have incorporated a quality bird proofing system designed just for solar and to be installed by qualified solar installers making sure your system is protected and performing at its best.