Solar panels have become a large player in the energy market, helping homeowners to reduce their bills whilst guaranteeing a fixed income through feed-in tariff payments.

Whilst solar is a fantastic investment you have to be sure in hiring the right company to complete the installation. There are businesses out there confusing customers with dodgy sales tactics and promising discounts for instant decisions.

We know that making a decision on solar panels needs to be well thought out. Therefore, our service offers a great way for consumers to receive quotes from vetted and reputable companies without the risk of hard selling.

Complete our solar panel quotes form and hear from up to four professionals in your area.

Or read below to find out about a recent Which? investigation that looked into sales tactics for solar PV.

The Which? solar panel investigation

The first stage any solar company will complete is a home visit. This is first and foremost to educate you on and introduce you to solar panels, help you understand the costs and savings of this renewable energy, and assist you in making the right decision.

Which? launched an investigation into this to find out the truth behind some of the UK’s leading solar companies. A house was rigged with cameras and a potential customer invited 12 companies round to discuss the installation of solar panels.

As an MCS accredited company, there should be a proper assessment of the house, details provided on payback time and feed-in tariff profits. On top of this, information should be given on the solar panel system’s future, such as the inverter which will need replacing.

  • On the spot discounts

Two of the 12 companies instantly breached the code of certification, by hard selling and offering a discount if a contract was signed within 24 hours. One offered a ‘first come first served’ type discount in exchange for regularly meter readings. Both are specifically banned in the code.

  • On-going costs

One of the companies clearly failed to mention any on-going costs associated with solar panels, despite prompting from the prospective buyer. A final decision was expected from a salesperson’s quote, rather than a qualified surveyor.

  • Property checks

With solar panels, the suitability of the roof needs to be checked, simply to ensure it can withstand the weight and the angle will optimise efficiency. However, five of the companies didn’t enter the loft space to check for suitability. On top of this, seven didn’t take into account that the roof was partly in shade, which would seriously hinder the system’s electricity production.

  • Future costs

Staggeringly, 10 of the 12 companies failed to mention the solar system’s key component – the inverter. This converts AC power into DC, so it can be used in the home. Even when prompted on future costs or maintenance it wasn’t mentioned that the inverter would need switching around the 10-year mark.

  • The salesman

Five companies failed to send a surveyor to the site but were still able to provide a quote, estimate or price. This was often without taking in considerations such as the roof’s suitability too. Eight of the companies also didn’t factor in current energy usage or lifestyle.

Solar panel quotes

To avoid the risk of falling into a salesperson’s trap and paying out more than you need to, or not having a thorough survey completed, use the tips above to ensure you are getting your money’s worth.

Also, complete our quick solar panel quotes form and we’ll provide you with details of up to four vetted and reputable trade professionals in your area