Three things to consider before you go solar

Installing solar panels on your home is a significant investment that can yield substantial rewards. But there are several key factors to consider before taking the leap. 

This blog covers three essential considerations to keep in mind when going solar, as well as a bonus tip to ensure your installation meets your energy needs.

Tip one – MCS certification

MCS – the Microgeneration Certification Scheme – is a nationally recognised, Government-backed  quality assurance scheme for small-scale renewable energy installations. It certifies that the installer, the products they use and the system they install meet rigorous design, performance, quality and technology standards. There are more than 4,000 MCS-certified installers in the UK and more than 1.7 million domestic solar installations on its database. Electrical Innovations is certified; you can view our listing here – search for our certification number, NIC-600297.   

Ensuring you can receive reliable export payments for the excess energy your solar panels generate is one of the primary reasons to choose an MCS-certified installer. Many energy companies will offer export payments to only homeowners whose solar installations are MCS-certified, as this guarantees the system meets the necessary quality standards.

And if you decide to sell your home in the future, having an MCS-certified solar installation can make the process much smoother. Prospective buyers will have confidence in your solar panels, making your property more attractive and potentially increasing its value. Opting for a non-MCS-certified installer can significantly limit your options when it comes to export payments and future sales. While a few companies may offer payments without MCS certification, your choices will be restricted, and you may face challenges when trying to sell your home.

Tip two – Research the installer

Selecting the right installer is just as important as ensuring they’re MCS-certified. You want to work with a trusted, reliable local company with a proven track record of quality workmanship and excellent customer service.

Start by reading online reviews from previous customers. Platforms like Checkatrade, Google Reviews and Facebook can provide valuable insights into the experiences others have had with the installer. Pay attention to comments about the quality of work, communication and customer satisfaction. Ask potential installers for examples of their previous work and case studies of past projects. A reputable company will be happy to showcase its successes and provide references from satisfied customers.

Check their social media profiles to get a sense of their day-to-day activities and engagement with customers. Look for posts highlighting customer testimonials and informative content that demonstrates their expertise in the field. Don’t just look for recent projects – look at what they’ve been doing for the past few years to see if they have a good track record in the industry.

Take the time to thoroughly research potential installers. Don’t be afraid to ask questions. A quality company will be transparent about its processes, products and pricing. They’ll be happy to address any concerns you may have. At Electrical Innovations, you can literally ask us anything about our solar services. We’ll be delighted to chat with you to answer your queries and offer advice.   

Tip three – Research the equipment

Understanding the equipment your installer plans to use for your solar system is the third essential consideration. Don’t settle for vague descriptions or generic assurances. Insist on knowing the specific details of the panels, inverters and batteries they plan to install on your property. 

Once you’ve chosen your installer and they’ve given you a quote, ask for information about the manufacturers, features and benefits of the solar panels, inverters and batteries they use. Research these companies to ensure they have a solid reputation for producing high-quality, reliable products. Make sure you understand the warranties, guarantees and technical information provided by the manufacturers and the installer. A reputable company will offer robust warranties that protect your investment and give you peace of mind. Also, find out who’ll be responsible for providing ongoing  support for your solar installation. Will the installer handle any issues that arise, or will you need to contact the manufacturers directly?

Ensure you have a clear understanding of the support process and what’s covered under warranty. If an installer is reluctant to provide specific details about the equipment they plan to use, consider it a red flag. A trustworthy company (like us) will always be transparent and upfront about the products they recommend and will take the time to explain why they’ve chosen those particular components for your installation.

Bonus tip – define your energy requirements

Your home’s size and the number of rooms it contains will significantly impact your energy requirements. A larger home will generally require a more extensive solar installation. Homes with a higher number of energy-intensive appliances will also have greater power needs.

So, consider the number and type of appliances you use in your home, such as washing machines, dishwashers, electric ovens, TVs, laptops and mobile chargers. Electric heating systems require more power than gas systems. And if you’ve got an electric vehicle, you’ll need to generate enough electricity to power the charging point.

The number of people living in your home and their energy usage habits will also impact your overall power requirements. A family of five, for example, will likely use more energy simultaneously than a couple living alone.

All these things – and more – will affect your energy consumption. So, before installing solar panels, it’s essential to assess your specific energy requirements. Gather data on your current energy consumption by reviewing your past utility bills, and consider any planned changes or additions to your home that may affect your future power needs. Then, work with your installer to design a solar installation that’s tailored to your specific energy requirements.

A reputable company (like Electrical Innovations) will take the time to understand your unique needs and recommend a system that will optimise your energy production and savings.

How can Electrical Innovations help?

A well-planned solar installation is an investment in your future. You’ll enjoy significant energy savings and a reduced carbon footprint while contributing to a cleaner, greener planet. Considering the key factors listed above and making informed decisions will ensure your solar installation provides long-term value and satisfaction for years to come.

So, if you’re ready to take the first step towards solar, give us a call. From solar PV panels to battery storage systems, we can help you harness the power of sustainable energy to save money and reduce your environmental impact. To find out more and for a free, no-obligation consultation and quote, get in touch today.