Arizona Solar Watchdog Program
Installing energy efficiency and solar products on your home is the
right thing to do to reduce Arizona's smog problem reduce our dependency
on foreign oil. The right time to do this is right now before federal
and/or state incentives run out.
A typical installation will cost $50,000 to $100,000 (before incentives).
Any time this much money is involved you need be very careful and check
out the companies that you want to do business with, especially if they
called you or knocked on every door in your neighborhood.
It is very
wise to also check with the local Better Business Bureau or check the
Arizona Attorney General's website to see what active scams are
currently in progress.
All construction projects over $1,000 in value require an Arizona
contractor's license number. Just because they say they have a license,
does not mean they have one or that their company is in good standing.
The best way to research a contractor is to lookup their contractor
license number at Arizona Registrar of Contactors' database to see
what turns up.
Always follow these 10 steps to ensure you get a professional solar installation:
- Make sure your solar contractor is licensed at www.azroc.gov or (602)542-1525
- Ask for three recent customer references with phone numbers and addresses
- Ask for an engineering design on where panels and inverters will be installed
- Ask for a return-on-investment estimate that details cost of a system and its energy savings
- Solicit solar installation bids from at least 3 different solar companies
- Ask what problems might be encountered during the installation
- Ask for a written contract and make sure you understand the terms before signing
- Be very cautious about advancing any money until the job is complete
- Ask for any changes to be made in writing
- Make frequent inspections during the construction process
If you have a problem with a contractor, it is very important that you fill out a rip-off report and file it so that others will know not to do business with them in the future.
If you have a problem with a contractor, it is very important that you fill out a contractor complaint form and file it so that others will know not to do business with them in the future.
Please note that if the contractor does a poor job, you may recover losses up to $30,000 through the Residential Contractors' Recovery Fund that is available due to poor workmanship or non-performance, provided that you are working with a properly licensed residential contractor and your paperwork is in order.
It is also wise to ask what brand names are being installed and what the power conversion rates are. In a solar system, the most important parts of the system are the solar power panels and the power inverter. Use the internet to do research on the recommended vendors products and services before signing a contract.