Installing Solar Panels In Melbourne (COVID-19 Update)

Solar power in Melbourne and COVID-19

Find out the latest information on installing solar panels in metropolitan Melbourne and regional Victoria under COVID-19 restrictions.


Update August 9, 2020: Unfortunately, solar panel installations will not be able to occur in the Melbourne metropolitan region while Stage 4 restrictions are in place (you can still get quotes – but obviously no home visits). Regional solar businesses will still be able to operate under certain conditions.  Find out more here.

The information in the post below was published on July 9, when Stage 3 restrictions were implemented for metropolitan Melbourne and Mitchell Shire.

The situation on July 9:

New directions announced on Tuesday by Premier Daniel Andrews for metropolitan Melbourne and Mitchell Shire LGA kicked in at 11.59PM last night and will apply (at this stage) until 11.59PM on Wednesday 19 August. The restrictions will impact many activities, but solar installations aren’t among them – again, at this stage.

Installers living within the affected region will still be able to work, as will installers living outside it who need to travel into the area.

The Melbourne solar installers we had spoken with up until yesterday said it will be business as normal – or more accurately, business as COVID-normal. And that’s a very important point.

COVID-Safe Solar Power Installations

Back in April, we mentioned the purchase of a solar power system and having it installed doesn’t require you to be in close physical contact with anyone, and outlined steps for a COVID-free experience.

On the solar company’s side, they will also be pretty keen to ensure a COVID-safe process as well. It’s simply not in any installer’s interests to be catching and spreading COVID-19 as this would impact on their ability to work, put their colleagues, friends and families at risk and perhaps lead to tighter restrictions.

The Clean Energy Council and Smart Energy Council have been providing plenty of advice and educational resources to the industry on carrying out COVID-safe operations for months, and those working in the sector appear to be taking it all pretty seriously.

While it might not be a great time generally, it is a very good time to go solar in Melbourne (and Mitchell Shire) given Victoria’s solar panel rebate and the generous national subsidy arrangements – Victorians get to double-dip.

According to the Solar Victoria web site, there are plenty of PV rebates still available in this round and the new round isn’t far off. The national “solar rebate” is particularly attractive at the moment due to high STC values that are still close to the maximum level.

Even if you’re not  keen to have tradies at your house during the coming six weeks for whatever reason, this “stay at home” period could provide a golden opportunity to research going solar and then arranging for quotes; ready for when you are.

About Michael Bloch

Michael caught the solar power bug after purchasing components to cobble together a small off-grid PV system in 2008. He's been reporting on Australian and international solar energy news ever since.

Comments

  1. Hi – is this still up-to-date?

    thanks

  2. Can we please get an update on solar installations when you are ready?

    • Ronald Brakels says

      We haven’t heard anything that indicates solar can no longer be installed in Melbourne or anywhere else in Victoria, but if that changes we’ll notify people as soon as we hear something definite. I’m not expecting that to occur, as it is a low risk activity, but it is a possibility.

      • I’m not 100 percent sure because the Government has been pretty vague about what is essential services only, but my read is it has been knocked on the head for six weeks starting on Thursday 6th August unless it’s part of a new build??? It would be good if someone from the government could clarify things.

        • Ronald Brakels says

          Looking at the latest information from the Victorian Government that was updated less than an hour ago, people are still permitted to work. If possible people are required to work from home, but obviously that’s not possible when installing solar. As I see it, sales and discussion can be done over the phone or video and should take the place of face to face interaction wherever possible.

        • Ronald Brakels says

          I just called Solar Victoria and they said guidelines for solar installers should come out this afternoon. Installers will be emailed. As soon as I learn something definite I’ll put it up on the blog.

          • My solar installer is still waiting for word unfortunately – any updates received?

          • Ronald Brakels says

            Unfortunately, not that I am aware of. I was told there were be information specifically for the solar industry available yesterday afternoon but it was delayed. My understanding from the general information put out by the Victorian Government is rooftop solar installations can go ahead with precautions, but I can understand people wanting to get confirmation first.

          • Surprised there is still nothing specific to solar given VicSolar government scheme well underway and a lot of uncertainty.

          • Ronald Brakels says

            The conditions for solar installations in Melbourne have finally been clarified:

            https://www.solarquotes.com.au/blog/stage-4-melbourne-solar-mb1634/

      • Stephen Docherty says

        Can solar panels still be fitted under stage 4 restriction ? Thanks in advance

  3. Pam Whiting says

    Solar panels cannot be installed on residential properties under stage 4 restrictions. They can be installed at construction sites including a residential renovation where the house is vacant.

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