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How can you identify solar electric system providers?
- Contact the Solar Energy Industries Association for a list of solar service providers in your area
- Contact Hawaiian Electric for vendor recommendations
- Conduct an internet search for reputable, professional contractors with experience in PV systems
How do you choose among PV providers?
Once you compile a list of prospective PV providers in your area, find out what products and services they offer. Ask the following questions to get a better sense of their capabilities:
- Has the company installed grid-connected PV systems? If not, has it installed grid-independent or stand-alone PV systems?
- How many years of experience does the company have installing PV systems?
- Is the company properly licensed?
- Does the company have any pending or active judgments or liens against it?
How do you choose among competing bids?
When evaluating bids from PV providers, look for the following information:
- The maximum generating capacity of the PV system in AC watts or kilowatts under a standard set of test conditions (or specify the output of the system at the inverter)
- An estimate of the amount of energy the system will produce on an annual basis in kilowatt-hours, a range of ±20% is realistic
- The total cost of getting the PV system up and running, including hardware, installation, connection to the grid, permitting, sales tax, and warranty