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Solar Myth Busting: High Maintenance

Rooftop solar

Myths get started all the time as we try to understand something complicated. We make up a story as an explanation, and the more times we say it and share it, the more that myth sounds like truth. So, we are going to bust some myths by sharing the simple facts about solar. This doesn’t have to be complicated and these myths are no longer necessary to get solar.

Myth: Solar is High Maintenance

Fact: Solar panels have no moving parts, on average are warrantied for 25 years, and nature takes care of the bulk of the maintenance work.

With no moving parts, solar panels require little to no regular maintenance. And because we are in the Midwest, we are lucky, because heavy rainfalls generally take care of cleaning the panels for us! If you think you are in an extra dusty part of town, a couple times a year you may want to check your solar panels for a build-up of dirt and debris, since heavily soiled panels will have slightly decreased output than sparkling panels. Panels that appear heavily soiled with dirt, pollen, or bird droppings can be rinsed off safely with a garden hose on cloudy days or early in the morning. No need to scrub your panels or hand clean them, which can result in damage. If your garden hose doesn’t have the power to get all of your panels with you standing on the ground, we recommend having a professional climb onto the roof to take care of them for you. Safety isn’t to be taken lightly.

Solar in Ohio: Trust and Ratings Trump Price

Part of what we do for our customers — and prospective customers — is keep an eye on solar market trends and market intelligence. We want to know where the value is in solar, and how to maximize that value for our customers. Often, that research reflects back upon us, and other companies that install solar in Ohio, showing us what customers think about, and look for, in a solar installer. So it is gratifying to see a survey like this, conducted by EnPhase and published in Renewable Energy World magazine.

When solar homeowners were asked, “Why did you select the installer you chose? (check all that apply,)” a huge 69% said that they chose their residential installer because they were the most trusted or highest rated installer, while just 56% of responders selected price. So price is certainly important, but trust and ratings are a much more common factor.

SURVEY

 

“It’s pretty clear that strengthening the trust of prospects and customers leads to solar sales and referrals, and reviews and other information found on the web are also important for acquiring and converting residential solar sales.” (Tor Valenza)

All of that said, it’s honest communication, follow-up and follow-through that win peoples’ trust. And maintaining focus. Each solar installation we do is the most important one we have ever done. That’s where our reputation comes from.

Tor Valenza a.k.a. “Solar Fred” is a solar marketing and communications consultant and the author of Solar Fred’s Guide to Solar Guerrilla Marketing. Sign up for the Solar Fred Marketing Newsletter, or contact him through UnThink Solar. You can also follow @SolarFred on Twitter.

More Watts

Static-Electricity-tw

As we all grow more digital and more electronic (anyone really think that’s going to stop?) we might consider where all that electricity will come from say, 20 years from now. (If it continues to come from burning coal, we’re all in trouble.) By adding productive solar now and migrating more of your energy use to electricity, you can make a significant personal contribution to a cleaner world for ourselves, our kids, and their kids. The power needs of homeowners are projected to increase over time, even with energy efficiency measures; if you think about whether you’re likely to drive an electric vehicle in the next 20 years, likely a plug-in, well, there’s a big bump up in your electricity use right there. And who knows what kinds of electron-juiced gadgets our kids’ kids will have. The point is, our energy needs are likely to increase dramatically over the coming decades. High-performing solar could be the energy bridge that gets us there safely.