MC4 Plugs, The Hardest Working Things In Solar.

While they look different, the new model MC4 evo plug on the left is legal to mate with the old MC4 on the right.

If you’re not involved in the solar industry but wonder how millions of solar panels worldwide are connected to deliver clean energy, you might have too much spare time on your hands. Nonetheless, I’m glad you’re interested because, as I’m about to explain, this topic can be quite electrifying – particularly when an electrical fire or short circuit causes a catastrophic inverter failure. [Read more…]

In-House Vs Sub-Contractor Solar Installers: Which Is Best?

In-house vs sub-contract installers

When wading into the murky waters of rooftop solar for the first time you may have come across people advising you to check that the solar company doesn’t use sub-contractors to install their systems. [Read more…]

Improving Australian House Construction: The Case for Service Ducts

Spot the difference.

The sound of Dad’s drill bit, as long as my arm, boring through the thick stone walls of our 1875 home, was a childhood constant. The sound of regular home improvements. [Read more…]

George And His Terrible Solar Install

Photos of a poor solar installation.

There are dents in the roof and solar panels right behind the air conditioner.

Some weeks ago, I was cruising the wilds of social media and found a solar thread causing a stir. The victim of a shoddy solar installation was seeking help, and of course, a few comedians were making light of the misfortune. [Read more…]

Make Solar Inspections Mandatory In NSW Before Tragedy Unfolds

Unsafe solar power system installation

Loose connection on the active conductor inside an AC isolator, evidence of heat damage.

There’s a big problem in Australia’s solar world. Despite ACT, TAS, and VIC inspecting all new rooftop solar power system installations, NSW, SA, WA and QLD don’t – and that’s playing with fire. [Read more…]

New Tasmanian Metering Rules Could Add $1,000s To Solar Installs

New electricity metering rules in Tasmania

Attention, Tasmanians looking to invest in solar energy: the Tasmanian Metering Code of Practice has undergone changes and is now strictly enforced, which could hit your wallet hard. [Read more…]

Why Solar Installers Hate Tiled Roofs

Tiled roofs and solar power

You can see from the dirt, this isn’t a fresh break, it’s just a typical tile failure.

You’d be silly to build a house with a tiled roof.

I can’t make it any simpler, but as we explore more subjects in the series of how to talk to builders, hopefully I can explain the many reasons why tiles make a poor choice for solar roofing. [Read more…]

Why Solar Labels Matter: The Case For Quality Labelling

a solar power system safety label kit

Image: 1StopWarehouse

As a Licensed Electrical Inspector, I’ve seen heaps of solar power system setups. This month, let’s chat about something you might not consider important: solar labelling. It might sound boring, but trust me, how well it’s done often tells you a lot about the quality of the whole install. [Read more…]

Is Your Roof Strong Enough for Solar Panels?

Roof truss warning - solar panels

Some roofs are more suited to solar panels than others. Recently, we fielded an inquiry from a customer who’d amassed a heap of solar power system quotes. One company made a noteworthy assertion. [Read more…]

Disconnection Points Vs DC Isolators: A Solar Inspector’s Experience

a disconnection point and a rooftop DC isolator

Let’s shed some light on the ongoing debate between disconnection points and rooftop isolators; two critical aspects that have stirred discussions within the solar industry. [Read more…]

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