Solar Gone Wrong – Broken Solar System

 

In the last month alone we have received multiple calls from homeowners that have broken solar systems installed by companies that are no longer in business, or companies that aren’t accountable for their installs and their products. We want to educate consumers on the many companies that are looking to make a quick buck and then wash their hands of the install.

This particular story stuck out to us at Palomar Solar and we wanted to share the importance of choosing a reputable solar company when installing solar. Whether it be your home, business or church. This isn’t the first system from this now defunct company that Palomar Solar has had to inspect and do maintenance on but this was definitely one of the most unsafe, shoddy installs that we have ever seen.  The sad thing is if the homeowner had done just a little research on the company they would have avoided all this in the first place.

At our initial inspection we immediately noticed that the solar system was not producing at all, it was not even turned on.  In fact, it couldn’t be turned on, because the rooftop disconnects were wire incorrectly and resulted in the breakers tripping rather than providing power to the system.  The customer thought his solar system was up and running and had no idea what was really happening. On his roof, there were exposed wires, panels weren’t grounded, loose wires touching the roof and there was no map of the inverters or a monitoring system hooked up, the list continues. Not only did the system look terrible, but more importantly this was a downright unsafe install.

The customer wanted so badly to reap the benefits he was promised – lower electric bill and per panel monitoring with Enphase microinverters. He agreed to the additional work that would be required to make the system safe.

Upon arrival, our crew found even more installation mistakes! Rails weren’t tight or grounded, microinverter cables were spliced and taped together, not weatherproof and an extreme safety hazard. Wrong size breaker for the system, panels laid down incorrectly etc. Every corner we turned there was something else wrong. It was so disheartening to see a solar company take advantage of someone who was trusting them to do work on their home.  Did we mention the customer believed he had contracted for high quality LG panels only to find they installed a cheap Chinese substitute?

After two site visits, inspections, a four man crew and over 10 hours of work we made the system safe for this homeowner and it is now generating electricity the way it was intended to. The choice to go solar is simple, but solar systems are not simple to install. It takes a skilled team backed by a company with integrity that takes pride in what they are putting on your roof, from safety and functionality to aesthetics. This story has a happy ending, but not all unsafe installs are salvageable, do your research and go with a reputable company that has verifiable references.

 Call us today – with over 650 solar installs, Palomar Solar can get the job done right the first time!