General FAQs

What size is my system?

If you purchased your solar system from Solar integrity, then this information can be found on your invoice or in your job completion pack that has been emailed or mailed to you.

If on the other hand you purchased a home with an existing solar system and there is no paperwork, you might wonder- how big in kilowatts is my solar system?

Understanding the specifics of your current solar setup, particularly its size, is essential for optimising performance and ensuring it meets your energy needs. 

Review installation and purchasing documents

The first step is to scrutinise the installation documents provided by the solar panel company. This paperwork usually includes system specifications, such as kilowatts (kW) capacity or megawatts (MW). Look for a document titled “system specifications” or similar. If the previous owner can not find this information, the installation company still should have a record. So ask the previous owner who was the company that installed the system and contact them. 

Check the inverter and panels

The inverter, the heart of your solar system, transforms the DC power generated by the solar panels into usable AC power. Inverters often have a nameplate with system information, including size and capacity.

Locate your inverter, usually near your main electrical panel, and note the details on the nameplate. if it is for example a 5-kW model, then your system is most likely between a 4.5kW to 6.6 kw system. Please note the panels can be oversized by 1/3 over inverter capacity.

Another way is to count the number of solar panels. Panels over the years have increased in Wattage capacity and physical size – and started to be installed in larger number from about 2005, when they were 165 Watt. Now they are 430 Watt per panel and more.

So for example if you have 20 panels and they are the 250W model, you have 5000W or 5 kW of capacity.

Use online monitoring tools

Many modern solar systems feature online monitoring tools and apps allowing homeowners to track real-time performance. Log in to the monitoring platform provided by your solar company (or hopefully the previous owner gave you that info)  and access the section displaying system specifications.

This may include details like daily energy production, current power output, and the size of your solar system.

Contact your local solar installers

Contact your various local solar installers directly if you cannot find the necessary information through documents, inverters, or online tools. One of them hopefully installed the system and can check their records. That’s why we always recommend a local company, instead of a far way city company, when support is needed, being local makes it so much easier.

Usually the initial installation company have records of your installation and can provide details about your system’s size. Be prepared to provide your name, address, and any relevant account information for verification purposes.

Schedule a professional assessment

Consider scheduling a professional assessment with a Solar Integrity for a hands-on approach. We  will visit your home, inspect your solar installation, and provide a detailed report that includes the size and efficiency of your system. 

Understanding the size of your existing solar system is vital for making informed decisions about energy usage, maintenance, and potential expansions.

By utilising documentation, inspecting your inverter, leveraging online monitoring tools, contacting your solar installer, checking with your utility company, or scheduling a professional assessment, you can uncover the key details about your solar installation and work out the financial benefits your current system is providing. 

What retailer should I use?

This is a decision only you can make. However we can certainly offer you a site to look at that is independent, and run by the State Government.

Victoria –  https://compare.switchon.vic.gov.au/

NSW – https://www.energymadeeasy.gov.au/

Things that you should consider when choosing a retailer are:

Rate charged per kWh (kilowatt hour)
Service charge (this is normally a daily charge)
Feed in tariff rate

Be sure to factor in how much of your solar power you are going to use, as this will mean you are buying less kWh from your retailer.

However we would encourage you to look at our local electricity retailer. That’s right you can purchase and sell your electricity through Indigo Power. Indigo Power are community owned and operated, and located right here in North Eastern Victoria and the Border Region. Their prices are comparative, they are creating local jobs and investing in renewable energy project locally as well. AND when you ring them, you get to speak to someone local! To look at their prices you can head to Indigo Power or call them on 1800 491739.

How do I maximise my solar savings

To maximize your energy usage, it’s important to acknowledge that solar panels generate electricity during daylight hours. Therefore, it’s beneficial to make the most of the free electricity while the sun is shining. The size of your solar system or your household’s power requirements dictates the number of appliances you can operate during the day. As a general rule of thumb, consider shifting energy-intensive tasks like running the dishwasher, washing machine, dryer, or pool pump to daylight hours to maximize your solar system’s utilization and save on costs.

In most instances, routine cleaning of your solar panels isn’t necessary as they are self-cleaning, especially if they’re installed at an angle and exposed to rain. However, regular maintenance is crucial. The frequency of cleaning depends on various factors, including your location. Accumulated dirt, mold, sea salt, and bird droppings can reduce the amount of sunlight your solar panels can absorb, affecting their efficiency.

To keep your solar panels operating at their best, monitoring your home’s energy consumption is key. Various apps are available to track your energy usage, which can be linked to your solar panels. These apps provide insights into your daily, half-hourly, and total feed-in credit, helping you make informed decisions about your energy consumption.

What constitutes an emergency? And when should I call the emergency number?

If there is a fire call 000 immediately.

Then call any of the Solar Integrity team:

Brett Emo 0419 593 224
Luke Fraser 0400 604 237
Bobbi McKibbin 0418 293 423

If you notice sparks or a burning smell initiate the shut-down procedure immediately, it is located on your Inverter and call us, we’ll call out as soon as possible to investigate.

I have just had a letter asking to audit my system, what does this mean? Should I do it?

Receiving a letter asking to audit your renewable solar system can be a cause for concern, but understanding the purpose and implications is crucial before deciding whether to comply.

So firstly don’t stress, this does not mean that there are any concerns with your system.

Some government bodies that oversee the rebate/incentive schemes randomly conduct solar PV and home storage battery system audits each year. This is to assess quality of installations on a national level and ensure that they comply with the  requirements of their rebate and incentive scheme.

These organisations such as Solar Victoria or the Clean Energy Regulator will send an independent auditor. The auditor will look over your system and ask you some questions. They will also ask to see any paperwork you received in relation to your installation. This is why we emphasise the importance of you keeping that rather large email that we sent you not long after your installation took place.

If they find anything with your system that has them concerned, you and the installer will receive notification of this. The installer then has a certain number of days to respond. We do ask that if possible, you send a copy of this letter to us for our records also, in case there is anything in there that we need to address internally.

Also, worth noting is that this audit is voluntary you do not have to participate if you do not wish to, it is entirely up to you.

Should you comply?

Deciding whether to comply with an audit request depends on various factors:

Legitimacy of the request

Verify the authenticity of the audit letter. Ensure it is from a recognised authority and solar related regulatory body. Scams involving fraudulent audit requests have been rare, but could happen

Legal obligations

As a solar audit is not mandated by law or industry regulations, non-compliance will have no legal consequences. Understanding your obligations and the potential repercussions of refusing an audit is crucial. keep in mind an audit could be a benefit, as you know how safe your energy system is and may identify if any corners were cut. Best of all – it’s free to you.

Potential benefits

Consider the potential benefits of undergoing the audit. It could lead to improvements in your PV systems and and enhanced operational efficiency.

Resource implications

Assess the resources required. Do you have to be there on the day that the audit is planned? Ensure that the solar and or battery installation audit can be undertaken without significantly disrupting your operations.

Privacy and confidentiality

If the audit involves sensitive information, ensure adequate measures are in place to protect privacy and maintain confidentiality. Discuss this with the auditing party if you have any concern. 

In summary

Receiving a letter requesting a system audit can be a daunting experience, but it’s essential to approach it with a clear understanding that it is voluntarily and can give you some potential benefits.

Assess the request’s legitimacy, you can contact us and ask us questions, weigh the legal obligations, and consider the overall impact on your and your family’s time.

We encourage our customers to participate in the audit process as it is of great benefit to our industry, particularly around reaching the required standards around equipment, installation and safety.

I can’t find the email that you sent me with all the documents relating to my system, what do I do?

Maintaining all relevant documentation from Solar Integrity about your PV system for future maintenance, warranty claims, or potential upgrades is important. However, losing or misplacing the email containing these essential documents is unfortunately quite common.

If you find yourself in this situation, fret not—here are some helpful hints ‘s.

Check you spam or junk folder

Begin by checking your spam or junk email folder. Emails on some subjects containing a number of PDFs etc may sometimes get mistakenly filtered into these folders. If you locate the missing email there, mark it as “Not Spam” to prevent this from happening again.

Use the search function

Employ the search function in your email platform to look for keywords associated with your solar installation, including our name.  This can assist you in locating the email even if it’s not in your primary inbox.

Contact Solar Integrity directly 

If you’ve exhausted all search options, contact us directly. Email Bobbi McKibbin at bobbi@solarintegrityaw.com.au and she will resend the necessary documents.