Solar Reliability

Hi All, I have seen numerous posts about solar on here but I really wanted to understand a few more things before committing to getting them installed.

  • How reliable are they in general? I have been quoted Solar PV system for 5k for 12 modules (which is so much better than any other quotes I have had) will the warranty really matter?
  • Cleaning: is this recommended? we have a number of trees to the back of the house which like to make our cars green on occasion throughout the year.
  • Has anyone had experience with them failing? how easy is it to diagnose if there are issues with them or not?
The only concern with this quote is that the inverter has just a 5 year warranty, what would be your suggestion on this?

thanks in advance :smile:

Comments

  • gefnew
    gefnew Posts: 865
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    All warranties can be extended, never cleaned mine in the eleven years of install.
    Some members have had some failures but seem to get them sorted.
    Also more detail of your quote would help the members reply, if it good or bad deal.
  • Jebelious
    Jebelious Posts: 11
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    Quote is for all work £5000 for a 10 panel 3.2/3.6KW Solar PV system, no battery as of yet will be adding this later. They are the Black mono panels.

    This will include all work from what I am seeing for install with the Warranty explained above.
  • Rheumatoid
    Rheumatoid Posts: 869
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    Jebelious said:
    Quote is for all work £5000 for a 10 panel 3.2/3.6KW Solar PV system, no battery as of yet will be adding this later. They are the Black mono panels.

    This will include all work from what I am seeing for install with the Warranty explained above.
    You might want to consider getting the battery now to benefit from the VAT reduction
    16 Panel (250W JASolar) 4kWp, facing 170 degrees, 40 degree slope, Solis Inverter. Installed 29/9/2015 - £4700 (Norfolk Solar Together Scheme); 9.6kWh US2000C Pylontech batteries + Solis Inverter installed 12/4/2022 Year target (PVGIS-CMSAF) = 3880kWh - Installer estimate 3452 kWh:Average over 6 years = 4400 :j
  • Jebelious
    Jebelious Posts: 11
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    Jebelious said:
    Quote is for all work £5000 for a 10 panel 3.2/3.6KW Solar PV system, no battery as of yet will be adding this later. They are the Black mono panels.

    This will include all work from what I am seeing for install with the Warranty explained above.
    You might want to consider getting the battery now to benefit from the VAT reduction
    I did try but the supplier the person i am using is not able to get them, they have discontinued the current 8kwh battery and replacing with a new 9kwh one however they do not have a release date for them. I am assuming he has a battery company he prefers to use. I would love to get it all at the same time but we may need to defer. 
  • 94JDH
    94JDH Posts: 142
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    Jebelious said:
    Jebelious said:
    Quote is for all work £5000 for a 10 panel 3.2/3.6KW Solar PV system, no battery as of yet will be adding this later. They are the Black mono panels.

    This will include all work from what I am seeing for install with the Warranty explained above.
    You might want to consider getting the battery now to benefit from the VAT reduction
    I did try but the supplier the person i am using is not able to get them, they have discontinued the current 8kwh battery and replacing with a new 9kwh one however they do not have a release date for them. I am assuming he has a battery company he prefers to use. I would love to get it all at the same time but we may need to defer. 
    Those sizes will be the Givenergy ones, and are available from June according to their Facebook page - but can be ordered now.
    18 x 390W (7.02kW) East/West split over two flat roof areas at 10 degrees inclination.
  • Heedtheadvice
    Heedtheadvice Posts: 2,421
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    Panels, providing they do not get damaged , are generally very reliable. Even if the odd panel fails or performs poorly they are not a big cost to buy another (plus installation). Expect a long life, maybe 20 years plus.

    The Inverter is the biggest risk; a ten year life (or more) should be expected for a good one. Like all electrical/electronic equipment they ought to be very reliable so I would be looking for a manufacturer that provides a longer warranty than five years to give an indication that their product has a long life which it should if well designed.
    I put more emphasis on the manufacturer rather than the seller/installer's guarantee but that is affected by how long either company remains in business and would thus prefer a good local established electrical company with solar experience rather than a nationwide company just existing on solar sales, and of course would choose a member of a recognised trade body and listed as a competent by one of the schemes such as NICIEC.
     
    The inverter is also the single most expensive bit to buy if it does fail. So maybe have several hundred pounds in reserve after the warranty period expires - the cost to replace it. Best positioned at installation in a location that is not hot to keep it cool running.

    In terms of the technical aspects of a solar PV installation it would be well worth doing a bit of research online so you understand things like panel shading for string arrays (and options) so you get best value from your installation, maximise number of panels and positioning, understand any planning implications (normally no problem but could be in conservation areas etc.) and ensure that your building structure is surveyed by the installer (or his contractor) to ensure suitability.
    All my personal view of course!

    Probably a lot more to think about so expect more posts from experienced members, there are plenty on here.
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