Solar Energy is not a new energy development in Nigeria and indeed Africa but the adaptation to Solar is fast rising as it is helping to boost businesses, and helping power homes for middle and lower income earners. For the upper class, it is a desire to reduce the inflationary energy cost of generating and maintaining owned power system such as Generator Systems.
An alternative Energy to other people connotes generating power using just Solar. Solar is not the only alternative or renewable energy option. We have wind, biogas among other sources. Solar could be the reliable energy solutions for Nigeria in five years time and you may ask why people and Government have not been investing more in this energy option. Well it has to do with little information around the industry, credibility, competency and the myth that have been hanging for a long time.
From this post, you will get to know a little around solar panels, inverters, and all other solar components.
Here are some of the reasons to analyze in a solar quote:
1. Extent of information provided: A good solar company will spell out in details what they are offering you in terms of their solution. You will get a brief explanation on the size, capacity, warranty and ratings of each components. Always ensure you compare information on this as there will be difference in prices even in similar component but ask questions for grey areas.
2. Projects, they have handled: You can always judge a solar company by the number of works they have done over time. Do they pride themselves in their work? How competent do you think their staff are and what level of professionalism is in their service delivery. This information will serve as a guide to help you understand the kind of solution you will be given.
3. Cost: How much is the total unit charge of the system when compare with other quotes of same capacity. Do they have a competitive quote? When comparing cost, it is good to compare based on specification and materials the companies proposed to use. As earlier mentioned, a good quote should provide a brief information about their components, if possible manufacturer of such components. Cost should be based on material proposed to be used for the solar installation.
4. After Sales support: Not every solar company is able to plan a support mechanism for the customers in case there is any issue with the installed solar energy components. Inverter or one of the solar panels may develop problem at any point in time and it would require that a team member from the solar company visits to rectify any problem.
5. Warranty on Solutions: For most companies, they tend to avoid this part as they won’t want to be liable in case of eventualities. For a good solar company, they brag about their installation and components because they trust the level of work and competence invested in the installation. Using High Grade equipment, a good solar company has more to brag about with the warranty and such company give less hassle because they have installed a reliable system for you.
6. Maintenance: How often will the maintenance be carried out and at what cost? A clue on this will relieve you of unbearable incremental cost as maintenance on Solar is not a regular basis as such. Kindly ask the company the maintenance charges and the timeline for maintaining the equipment.
7. Component Quality and Specification: Are you actually getting your ratings in kW or KVA. It is better you weigh everything in KW including the Panel size. It is also better to have a mono crystalline panel as it is more efficient but pol crystalline panel are not bad just that mono panels perform better for same wattage. Inverters can protect or destroy your batteries, so choose carefully as there are several inverter types, inverters and batteries are critical in Solar apart from the panels. Go for AGM first or GEL batteries as know what the DOD of your battery is at 10% DOD, 50%DOD and 75% DOD. Know the volts and the AH of your batteries. Know your battery cycle compared with others.
Cheap does not mean you are getting a good deal and costly does not mean you have a better deal.