Friday, 19 September 2014

Adelaide Solar Panel Testing

The aim of home solar panel testing is to ensure that you are getting optimum performance and the best value from your solar panels.

Solar panel testing for Adelaide homeowners
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We provide you with comprehensive data

At Solar Fix Network, when we undertake solar panel testing, we use state-of-the-art equipment to test your home solar energy system and the information that we gather enables us to provide you with a comprehensive report, comparison graphs and data that is verified by one of our experienced electrical engineers.

Our aim in testing your solar panels is to ensure that they are performing consistently and to your expectations. We check and compare their actual performance against the targets outlined by your system designer or installer, to ensure that the operation and output remains in line with the ongoing performance rating.

Check your warranty

Over time, is inevitable and to be expected that there is some drop in the performance of your solar panels. This should be clearly outlined in your warranty (e.g. most will guarantee 90% of stated output for the first ten years of operation, and 80% over a period of twenty-five years). Our solar panel testing service is therefore crucial to ensuring that you are getting full value for money from your investment, as you are able to know if your system is performing to expectations.

If you don’t have the relevant documentation that outlines the expectations as to how your home solar system should be performing, our Design Consultation service can help. We can collect and collate information that provides you with a comprehensive collection of design documents to enable you to monitor the ongoing performance of your system.

Adelaide Solar Panel Testing Service

Our solar panel performance testing involves a thorough and rigorous testing of the major parts and components of your home solar energy system:
  • inspect modules for defects or damage 
  • check the module mounting system components for corrosion or damage and verify the tension of clamps and brackets 
  • check the array cabling for heat, uv, vermin or mechanical damage and secure any loose or hanging cables 
  • inspection all cable connections 
  • check the integrity of all conduits and cable entry points 
  • check the integrity and operation of rooftop and wall DC isolators, and the AC Solar main switch 
  • check the system is correctly labelled 
  • check string (array) voltages and currents 
  • check the system is earthed 
  • measure the integrity and performance of each string of modules with use of IV Curve test equipment 
  • log solar inverter readings and compare production to date against design or expectation 
  • provide a detailed report of the system test, including a list of actions taken, system measurements, and any issues that may require further action

Learn more about the benefits of solar panel testing at

Copywriting by +MarkAngus

Tuesday, 19 August 2014

Inspection and Maintenance of Solar Panels Ensures Safe and Efficient Operation

In South Australia, we haven’t had problems with solar panel safety on the same scale that some other states have had with regards to a rapid influx of poor quality, imported solar inverters and isolators as a result of the withdrawal of feed-in tariffs (FITs). This is because in SA, the withdrawal of FITs was done more gradually, and so there wasn’t the same rush, and influx of less than scrupulous retailers and installers onto the market, trying to cash in as homeowners hurried to take advantage of the scheme.

Nevertheless, the quality of the most important components of your home solar energy system, namely the solar inverter and DC isolator, make a significant difference to the reliability, efficiency and safety of your home solar energy system. It is crucial both for the effective and safe operation of your solar panels that these and other vital components are checked on a regular basis by trained industry professionals.

Adelaide solar panel cleaning, inspection and maintenance
Visit to find out more about Adelaide solar panel inspection, maintenance and cleaning

Adelaide Solar Panel Inspections

When we inspect solar panels, or carry out a maintenance check, we’re able to ascertain important information that affects the efficiency of your system, such as the integrity and operation of rooftop and wall DC isolators and the AC solar main switch, and whether your DC isolator is not at risk of overheating. We will also assess the wiring of your DC isolator, to check it is operating safely. We also examine your solar inverter to ensure that it’s not becoming excessively hot, to check that the circuitry is of sufficient quality, and that the seals are in good condition.

Copywriting by +MarkAngus

Friday, 15 August 2014

Adelaide Solar Panel Cleaning and Maintenance Services

The Cost Benefits of Solar Panel Maintenance and Cleaning

As of 1 July 2014, electricity costs in South Australia are set to soar year again—this time, by 4.4%, or as much as $85 per year and making ours amongst the highest in the world. This is even more frustrating for consumers when it is estimated that SA Power Networks rakes in annual after-tax profits of $420 from every customer in the state.

Adelaide solar panel cleaning and maintenance services from Solar Fix Network
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If you have solar panels installed, you have already gone some way to mitigating these costs. However, the never-ending hike in energy prices means that an efficiently operating home solar energy system is even more important.

Most homes in Adelaide can expect to use about 50% - 60% of the energy generated from a home solar energy system, with the remainder being exported back to the grid. Therefore, whether you are enjoying the greater benefits of a generous feed-in tariff (FIT), or are simply receiving the minimum retailer payment from your electricity retailer, in order to reduce the amount of electricity you draw from the grid and to increase the amount that you ultimately feed back, your solar panels need to be working at maximum capacity.

Our regular solar panel maintenance and cleaning service ensures that your panels are clean, not being shaded, and that the important components such as the solar inverter and DC isolator are functioning effectively and safely. This also means that you can be sure that you are getting the most from your investment, and that you are not contributing excessively to SA Power Network’s profits!

Copywriting by +MarkAngus

Tuesday, 12 August 2014

Adelaide Solar Panel Care and Maintenance

Having your solar panels inspected, performing regular maintenance checks, and having them cleaned on a regular basis is vital to ensuring that your home solar energy system is working as efficiently as possible. An efficient solar system working to its full capacity means that you cut down on your energy use, reduce your household emissions, and save money on your electricity bills by consuming less and by feeding back to the grid.

Like any significant investment in technology, it pays to take the time and effort to ensure that your system is working to maximum capacity, and in the case of solar panels there are clear cost benefits to be gained that outweigh the expenditure involved.

At +Solar Fix Network, our solar panel cleaning, inspection and maintenance services ensure that you have an effective and efficient home solar energy system and that it’s producing the results you require—namely cutting your energy use and costs and reducing your household emissions.

Solar Fix Network offer a full range of solar panel maintenance services
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Solar Panel Maintenance Checks and Cleaning Improve Efficiency

In order to ensure that your solar panels are working at their most efficient, regular inspections. maintenance checks and cleaning are invaluable.

For instance, at a periodic solar panel maintenance check we will assess as to whether your panels are being affected by shading. Suburban Adelaide is blessed with a great deal of greenery and while this might wonderful for the ambience of your street and neighbourhood, fast-growing trees with overhanging branches can impact on how much direct sunlight is able to get to your solar panels, especially in the winter months.

Our maintenance checks can therefore determine whether the are any impediments to your panels receiving the maximum sunlight, thus affecting their overall efficiency and costing you money.

Solar Panel Cleaning

Our Adelaide solar panel cleaning service will remove any build up of stains, grime or debris that might be preventing sunlight from reaching the solar cells. Such build up can be caused by air pollution, dirt, dust, rain or bird droppings, as well as lead litter from nearby trees and branches.

A build up of residue and grime on the surface of your solar panels can reduce their operating efficiency by up to 40%, which in turn means that you are not producing energy at the rate you could be and so your power bills may not be dropping as anticipated.

Our eco-friendly cleaning service uses minimal purified water that contains no harmful chemicals or detergents, and environmentally-friendly telescopic reach-and-wash cleaning poles and brushes so that no residue is left behind afterwards. Your solar panels are then in a ultra-clean state and there are no barriers to your being able to make the most of every ray of sunshine available.

Inspection Services

In South Australia, it is a requirement that solar panels are inspected on a regular basis. The timeframe for this should be set out in the manufacturer’s instructions, but if this isn’t the case, a solar panel inspection in Adelaide needs to be carried out every five years.

We specialise in offering a solar panel inspection service that will ensure that you are meeting the warranty conditions set out by your manufacturer as well as South Australian state government legislation.

Copywriting by +MarkAngus

Sunday, 22 June 2014

Why regular solar panel maintenance checks are important

DC isolator

Your DC isolator is a central part of your system’s operating efficiency and safety and it needs to conform to AS5033 with regards to its construction and installation.

There were a number of incidents in northern Australia in early 2014 where faulty imported DC isolators were believed to have overheated, or moisture entered the switch’s enclosure, and this caused sparks and overheating. In a significant number of cases this then led to solar panels catching on fire. As a result, the DC isolators that were at fault—the Avanco DC isolator and the PV Power isolator—have now been recalled and withdrawn from sale.

However, even if your DC isolator is not one of these two models, these accidents nevertheless highlight the fact that high-quality components are essential to a safe and efficient system. They also demonstrate all too clearly the importance of having regular solar panel inspections and maintenance checks.

Homeowners should check the documentation that was provided by their solar installer in order to check the brand of DC isolator that has been used, as well as ensuring that the component that has been installed is the same as that in the documentation.

How will solar panel inspection help?
  • we confirm that your DC isolator has been made by a respectable manufacturer whose products are known to be of an acceptable standard 
  • we check the integrity and operation of rooftop and wall DC isolators and the AC solar main switch, and ensure that your system is correctly labelled 
  • we check that your DC isolator is not at risk of overheating 
  • we review and assess the wiring associated with your DC isolator, to ensure that it is delivering the appropriate safe operating conditions 

Solar inverters

The solar inverter enables the DC current that is generated by your solar panels to be into your home so that it can then be used by household appliances. It also the means whereby the excess energy you produce can be fed back into the grid, enabling you to capitalise on any feed-in tariff you may have.

In order to get the most out of your system, your solar inverter needs to function efficiently. Unfortunately, too many homeowners have been persuaded to install cheaper, low-quality inverters with the aim of reducing initial set-up costs. However, this is ultimately a false economy as a cheap inverter is more likely to fail or work below optimum capacity, meaning that you are drawing more power than you need to from the grid, and not benefitting from your feed-in tariff.

This is why it is so important to check your inverter on a regular basis, and if it is underperforming, or you notice a drop off in output, that you have an inspection and maintenance checks. At Solar Fix Network, we offer a full range of solar inspection and maintenance services, and our skilled and trained staff can inspect and test your solar inverter to ensure that it’s working to full capacity and that you’re getting the full benefits of your system.

Solar panel cleaning 

If your solar panels aren’t clean—whether due to rain, pollution, bird droppings or other deposits—sunlight is unable to reach the solar cells and they therefore absorb less energy. In turn, this means that your system is producing less energy and so is costing you money. It’s crucial, therefore, that your solar panels are as clean as possible.

We offer a comprehensive solar cleaning service, using eco-friendly materials and technology, that is designed to keep your solar panels clean and working at their best.,

Using purified water that contains no harmful chemicals or detergents, your rainwater collection and supply will not be affected, while rubber seals and glass panels are not damaged by the use of chemicals. Throughout the cleaning process, we use minimal water and so cleaning is completed in a safe, environmentally sound manner.

Our cleaning utilises gentle, environmentally-friendly telescopic reach-and-wash cleaning poles and brushes, ensuring that there are no spots, harmful residues or chemicals left behind, while our use of scratch-free cleaning technology means the glass on your panels remains like new.

Adelaide solar panel cleaning, inspection and maintenance services
To read more about our Adelaide solar panel maintenance services, please visit our website

Copywriting by +MarkAngus

Sunday, 15 June 2014

Adelaide Solar Panel Maintenance Services

In order to ensure that your system is working at full capacity, there are several different checks that you can carry out that will tell you how well your system is performing. If you carry out these checks on a regular basis, you won’t have to wait until your energy bill arrives to find out that your home solar energy system is not operating at full capacity.

Check your solar inverter

On a two-weekly basis you should check your inverter display, ideally in daylight conditions late in the day—in South Australia the best time is between 4.00pm - 5.00pm. If it’s dark when you make this check, or there is very limited sun, your inverter display will be blank, but this doesn’t necessarily indicate a fault. Therefore, any checks of your solar inverter should ideally be made when there is a reasonable amount of sunlight, and little or no cloud or haze.

Check the following:
  • there are no error messages being displayed 
  • if possible, check the Peak Power display. This is often shown as Ppeak. This will be measured in watts (W) or kilowatts (kW) 
  • the energy produced today. This is usually shown as Eday or Etoday. This is measured in kilowatt hours (kWh) 
If you are not familiar with the displays on your system, the manufacturer’s manual will explain where these can be found. If you don't have a copy of the manual, you should be able to download one.

Check your system’s efficiency

All home pv solar energy systems should come with documents from your solar retailer or system designer that will detail your expected energy yield. As a first step to checking the efficiency of your system, compare the results that are displayed on your solar inverter with those that your designer has supplied.

Keep a record of the readings that you take, including information such as the time and date, and what the weather conditions were like (e.g., cloudy, clear, sunny, etc.) This will then be a useful reference point for you to be able measure changes or fluctuations in your system’s performance.

If your solar inverter is underperforming

If you aren’t getting the output from your system that was predicted, or you notice a drop in performance, then it’s important that you have your system inspected as soon as possible.

We offer a comprehensive home solar inspection service for homeowners in Adelaide and throughout South Australia, and our expert team can advise you on the steps that need to be taken to ensure that you’re getting full value from your home solar system.

To find out more about solar panel maintenance, please visit our website or email us with your questions.

Solar Fix Network clean, inspect and maintain solar panels in Adelaide
To read more about Adelaide solar panel maintenance, please click here

Copywriting by +MarkAngus

Monday, 9 June 2014

Adelaide Solar Panel Maintenance

Home solar energy systems require relatively little maintenance—however, this does not means that they require no attention or servicing.

In order to ensure a safe and efficient operating system that is effectively producing energy for your home and feeding it back to the grid, it’s important to have a regular and thorough maintenance programme for your solar panels.

At Solar Fix Network, we offer Adelaide homeowners a comprehensive solar panel inspection, maintenance and cleaning service that ensures your home solar system is working to capacity so that you are able to enjoy the full benefits of your investment.

We specialise in providing a complete range of inspection, maintenance and cleaning services and our staff are qualified and licensed to carry out mandatory SA Power Networks compliance inspections.

We can meet all of your solar panel maintenance, servicing and repair needs wherever you are in South Australia. You can visit us at +Solar Fix Network or our website. In addition, you can call us on (08) 8185 1552 or email us.

At Solar Fix Network, we offer Adelaide homeowners a comprehensive solar panel inspection, maintenance and cleaning service
To read more about Adelaide solar panel maintenance, please click here
Copywriting by +MarkAngus