Going solar is one of the best decisions you can make for your home or business. Not only will you save money on your energy bills, but you’ll also be doing your part to reduce your carbon footprint.
According to studies, the solar panel’s carbon footprint is 20 times less than coal-generated electricity sources. This means your carbon output will significantly reduce immediately after installing a solar system.
But before you can start reaping the benefits of solar power, you need to find a reputable solar panel installation company. With so many options to choose from, it can be difficult to know where to start. Here are nine tips to help you find the best solar panel installation company for your needs:
1. Do Your Research
The first step is to educate yourself about solar panel technology and learn about the different types of systems available. The internet is a great resource for this, so start by doing a Google search.
You can also check out different solar installation company websites for more information. Doing your research will help you understand how solar systems work and what to look for when choosing the right system for your home.
For example, there are two types of solar systems; solar photovoltaic (PV) and solar thermal systems. The PV system converts sunlight into electricity, while solar thermal systems use solar energy to generate heat.
Armed with this information, you can narrow down your list of solar panel installation companies.
2. Assess Your Electricity Needs
When it comes to going solar, one of the first questions people ask is: how many solar panels do I need? The answer, unfortunately, is not as simple as a one-size-fits-all solution.
The amount of electricity you use — and therefore the number of panels you’ll need to generate that power — depends on a variety of factors. These include the climate you live in and the efficiency of your appliances.
For this reason, you need to assess your electricity needs before installing solar panels. You can do this by looking at your utility bills from the past year.
Keep in mind that your electricity usage will likely vary seasonally. So, it’s important to look at an entire year’s worth of data to get an accurate picture.
Once you have your usage information, calculate your average monthly kWh usage. This number will give you a good starting point for determining how many solar panels you’ll need.
3. Ask for Recommendations
Once you’ve done your research, it’s time to start asking for recommendations. Talk to friends, family, and neighbors who have installed solar systems on their property.
Find out if they’re happy with their system and the company they used. If they’re not satisfied, ask them what problems they encountered and whether or not they would recommend the company to others.
Getting recommendations from the people you trust will give you first-hand insights into which companies did a great job and which ones to avoid. Use their recommendations to develop a list of potential solar panel companies in your area that you’d consider working with.
4. Read Online Reviews
Online reviews give you an idea of what other people have experienced with different companies and help you narrow down your options. You can find these reviews on Google, Yelp, and other similar third-party review sites.
You can also find reviews on the solar company’s website. For instance, you can find Blue Raven solar reviews and customer testimonials on their website.
When reading online reviews, keep in mind that some people may be more likely to leave a review if they had a negative experience. So take the reviews with a grain of salt and look for patterns instead of isolated incidents.
A rule of thumb is to check for at least ten reviews before making a decision. You should also steer clear of companies that have a lot of one-star reviews.
If you can’t find any online reviews for a company, that’s a red flag. You should also be wary of companies with fake reviews or testimonials on their website. These are easy to spot because they often use vague language and lack specific details.
5. Check the Company’s Experience
Before hiring any company, make sure you know their level of experience with solar panel installations. How long have they been in business? What kind of experience do they have installing solar panels?
Do they have any special training or certifications? You want to make sure you’re working with a company that knows what they’re doing and has a track record of happy customers.
Additionally, it’s recommended to work with solar companies that have been in business for a long time. The company should also have a strong presence in the community.
While their level of experience might not reflect the quality of their service, it’s generally a good indicator that they’re a reputable business. So, ensure you do your research before hiring a solar company.
If you’re looking for the best solar panel installation company in Portland, consider contacting Blue Raven Solar. With over a decade of experience, they’re one of the most experienced Portland solar installation companies.
6. Consider the Better Business Bureau Rating
The BBB is a nonprofit organization that rates businesses based on customer satisfaction. The website is a great resource to consult when choosing a solar installation company.
You can use BBB’s website to search for solar companies in your area and see their rating. The BBB gives businesses ratings from A+ to F, so you want to make sure you’re working with a company that has a good rating.
A+ is the highest rating a business can get, and it means that the company is reputable and has a track record of happy customers. On the other hand, an F rating means that the company has a lot of complaints, and you should avoid working with them.
The BBB isn’t the only rating system out there, but it’s one of the most well-known. So, when you’re looking for a solar panel installation company, be sure to check their rating on the BBB’s website.
7. License and Certifications
The best solar panel installation companies will have all the necessary licenses and certifications to do business in your area. They should also be properly insured. In Oregon, for example, a company needs to have a General Contractor’s License (CCB) to install solar panels.
This license ensures that the company has met certain standards and requirements, and it protects you in case something goes wrong with the installation. They should also have liability insurance to protect you if someone is injured while working on your property.
Without liability insurance, you could be held responsible if someone is injured while working on your solar panel installation.
Finally, make sure the company has a bond. This type of insurance protects you if the company doesn’t finish the job or if they do a poor job.
You can check if a company has all of these things by visiting the Oregon Construction Contractors Board website. You can also call them to ask if the company is properly licensed, insured, and bonded.
Take the time to do this research upfront, and you’ll be glad you did when your solar panels are installed correctly and without any problems.
8. Check Their Safety Score
A company’s safety score will give you an idea of how well they follow safety procedures. It will also show you whether or not they have had any accidents in the past.
You can find a company’s safety score by searching online or by contacting the Better Business Bureau. The last thing you want is to hire a company that has a history of accidents.
Not only will you put your own safety at risk, but you could also be liable for any damages that occur.
9. Compare Prices
The cost of solar panels has dropped significantly in recent years, making them a more attractive option for homeowners. In fact, the price of solar panels has dropped by 82% since 2010.
However, the installation cost can still be prohibitive. That’s why it’s essential to compare the prices of different solar panel installation companies before making a decision.
There are a few things you should keep in mind when doing this. First, make sure you’re comparing apples to apples. Some companies may quote you a lower price but then try to upsell you on additional products or services.
Additionally, don’t just go with the cheapest option available. Solar panels are a big investment, so you want to ensure you’re getting a quality product and service.
Getting multiple quotes from different companies will give you a better idea of what the average cost is for solar panel installation in your area.
Hire the Best Solar Panel Installation Company
Installing solar panels is a big decision, but it can be a great way to save money on your energy bills.
When you’re ready to install solar panels, follow the above tips to find the best solar panel installation company in your area. Ensure you choose a company that has experience installing panels, is properly licensed and insured, and has a good safety record.
Did you like this article? Check out other posts on our site for more informative tips.