Welcome to the solar reviews center

Reading reviews is a very important part of researching a potential solar power or battery storage purchase. If you’re installing a system in Australia, then the experiences of other Australians who have made the switch to solar are particularly relevant.

I’ve collected tens of thousands of reviews of companies and components over more than a decade, creating the largest solar reviews database in Australia. Whether you’re looking for opinions on installers or brands of solar panels, inverters or batteries, you’ll find them on SolarQuotes. Learn more about how the ratings and reviews are collected here.

Learn more about how we calculate the rankings here. NOTE: the ratings calculations below are based on the last 6 months.

Installers

Top 5 Solar Installers

Below you’ll find the top 5 solar installation businesses in Australia participating in the SolarQuotes network, as rated by their customers. We take special care to ensure only genuine customers of installers can leave ratings and reviews.

View All Top-Rated InstallersBrowse Recommended Installers By CitySearch All Installer ReviewsLearn more about our installer reviews

  1. Installer Image

    Koala Solar

    4.9 Based on 88 ratings

    Initial contact with Adam was easy and he explained everything so that it was easy for us to understand and we weren't overwhelmed with 100 different options like with other companies we spoke to.

    Every step of the way was easy and the customer service was very accomidating.

    Installation was fast and professional and we are very happy with koalas service, would recommend.

    Zach 5.0

  2. Expert Electrical 4.9 76 ratings
  3. Goliath Solar and Electrical 4.9 61 ratings
  4. MC Electrical 4.9 51 ratings
  5. Smart Energy Answers 4.7 48 ratings
Panels

Top 5 Solar Panel Brands

With so much choice in panels available, it can be challenging to determine which may be best for you. Below is a list of the brands offering the best solar panels according to Australians who have had the panels installed for at least a year.

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  1. Panel Brand Image

    Jinko Solar

    4.8 Based on 133 ratings

    About the company

    Jinko Solar is a Chinese company producing tier 1 panels. The company has a physical Australian office in Sydney, offering local support if you have a problem - and that's a very good thing. But you shouldn't need to use it as generally speaking Jinko solar panels have proven to be a cost effective combination of reliability and price. The company also has dedicated warehouse facilities in Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth.

    Company History In Brief

    Jinko was founded as a company in 2006. I don't think they actually made anything that year, but I have to presume they were thinking really hard about making stuff. Other highlights from the company's early days were the production of ingots (big solid lumps of silicon) in 2007, slicing ingots into wafers in 2008, using those wafers to make cells and solar panels in 2009, then a stock market listing in 2010.

    Since that time, the company has grown at a ferocious rate.

    But a black mark in the company's history occurred in 2011, when hundreds of people protesting fish killed by a chemical spill in a nearby river stormed the Jinko factory in Haining City. Company cars were overturned, offices were trashed, and riot police were called in to stop the toxic avengers.

    On a related note, an organisation called the Silicon Valley Toxics Coalition, or SVTC, used to produce an annual report ranking solar panel manufacturers on environmental and social responsibility.

    In 2014 Jinko was given a score of 7 out of 100. Then in 2015, the company came 14th out of 40 companies surveyed, with a score of 53 out of 100. This was not a great result, but it was a huge improvement. But  in 2018-19, the company was ranked no.1 by SVTC, with a perfect score of 100. SVTC doesn't appear to have published scorecards since that year.

    So, Jinko Solar came a long way in a short time - and if they have a factory in your town I am sure they are far less likely to kill all the fish in the local river than they used to. Walking the solar talk, JinkoSolar has also pledged to power its own operations with 100% renewable electricity by 2025.

    Manufacturing Locations And Capacity

    Jinko Solar has seven production facilities in China and one each in Malaysia and the USA. In September 2021, the company announced its intentions to also build an ingot factory in Vietnam.

    Last year, the company forecast its annual mono wafer, cell and solar module production capacity would have reached 32.5 GW, 24 GW and 45 GW respectively by the end of 2021.

    While a few years back (2019) JinkoSolar was ranked the number one manufacturer in terms of panel shipment volume, in 2021 it was sitting at number 4 according to solar PV market intelligence and research firm PV InfoLink, after achieving number 2 in 2020.

    Jinko's workforce had remained fairly constant at around 15,000 for several years while its production capacity had doubled. That's the way things go these days thanks to automation and robotics. But it appears to have added a bunch more staff in recent years, with a couple of estimates putting the number of employees at more than 24,000.

    General JinkoSolar Panel Info

    Among the Jinko solar panels currently sold in Australia are the Cheetah and Tiger product lines available in various wattages and efficiencies ranging from around 19% to 21.5%.

    The higher the panel efficiency, the less roof space a system will take up. For most installations this is not a problem, but some people have a limited amount of room to install solar panels. Unlike some other manufacturers, the efficiencies Jinko gives for their panels are accurate and they don't cheat by not including the panel's frame in the efficiency calculation. That is appreciated.

    Like many manufacturers these days, Jinko is focusing on producing panels with "half-cut cells"; which offer benefits including better partial shade tolerance.

    All the panels they currently ship to Australia are salt mist corrosion resistant and suitable for installation in any location. Jinko panels generally carry a 12 year product warranty, but some models have 20 years.

    Warranty Procedure For Orphaned Jinko Customers

    If you have purchased Jinko panels from a solar installer who has since gone out of business, the responsibility for warranty claims shifts to JinkoSolar. Their customer service line in Australia is 1300 326 182 - affected customers should contact this line for warranty assistance.

    Jinko have advised that customers will be asked to send through photos and serial numbers of affected panels to an email address that they will provide, and they will then arrange for the replacement of the panels. If required, Jinko will be able to recommend installers to carry out the work if a customer is unable to organise one themselves. They will also reimburse customers for labour costs involved with replacing the solar panels - $200 for the first panel, and $15 for each additional module.

    Jinko Solar Panels Are A Cost Effective Choice

    Jinko Solar panels offer a combination of good reliability and competitive pricing that can make them a very cost effective choice for home solar installations in Australia.

    Check out the reviews below from Australians who have these modules on their rooftops, and add your own JinkoSolar panels review if you're an owner of any of their PV products.

  2. Canadian Solar Inc 4.9 98 ratings
  3. Trina 4.9 98 ratings
  4. Hyundai Solar 5.0 81 ratings
  5. Sunpower 4.9 81 ratings
Inverters

Top 5 Solar Inverter Brands

An inverter is a critical component of a solar power system and the one likely to wear out the fastest, so it’s important to choose a quality, well-backed brand. Below are the top 5 solar inverter brands based on ratings from Australian purchasers.

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  1. Inverter Brand Image

    Fronius

    4.8 Based on 423 ratings

    About the company

    Fronius Customer Service: 03 8340 2900

    Fronius is a European company that was established by founder Günter Fronius in Austria in 1945. Mr. Fronius kicked off with a repair shop for radios and electrical equipment and soon started making battery chargers, then welding transformers.

    The company grew over time from being a welding and battery charger manufacturer to become one of the most prominent European players in the solar market. Its solar division has been operating in this field since 1992, so they have decades of experience - and this shows in Fronius inverter products.

    In late 2010, Fronius opened its Australian office based in Melbourne where it not only provides customer service and technical assistance, but also offers product demonstrations and training courses.

    Fronius make some of the best inverters in the world. They used to be playing catch up with SMA in terms of industry reputation and quality, but I would argue they have well and truly caught up in recent years. I would happily have one of these inverters on my house.

    The inverters are easy to 'export limit', if your local network insists on this as part of your solar connection agreement. But you do have to buy the 'Fronius Smart Meter (FSM)' accessory to do this (about $500 extra). The FSM also allows full consumption monitoring (over and above solar monitoring) although I am not a fan of the Fronius SolarWeb monitoring software.

    Personally, I prefer Solar Analytics and always recommend adding Solar Analytics to your Fronius inverter and using that for monitoring instead.

    Fronius solar inverters usually come with 2 solar inputs (or MPPTs). Their MPPT efficiency is legendary. And if you have a symmetrical east/west facing roof you can often put both the east and the west array into one input - leaving the second inverter input free for a third roof area.

    The only downside with the Fronius hardware that I am aware of is their inverters are fan cooled and can be rather noisy. Keep them away from living areas!

    Fronius Solar Inverter Warranty Notes

    All Fronius string inverters are accompanied by 5 years Fronius Warranty Plus. However, by registering at www.solarweb.com, customers can receive an additional 5 years warranty free of charge.

    If you should experience what you believe to be a warranty related issue with your Fronius inverter, you should first contact the original installer of the unit. However, if that installer is no longer around, don't panic.

    Fronius advise that in this situation they first require the customer to find an qualified solar installer to verify the issue with the inverter - but this needs to be paid for my the customer. Once the issue has been confirmed, the installer will then contact the company on your behalf. Fronius will then work with the installer to arrange for replacement of the inverter. If a customer needs help in finding an installer, the company is able to make a recommendation.

    Do you own one of these inverters? Share your experiences with other Australians by leaving a Fronius inverter review.

  2. Sungrow 4.6 205 ratings
  3. Goodwe 4.7 164 ratings
  4. Enphase 4.8 152 ratings
  5. Solaredge 4.7 148 ratings
Batteries

Top 5 Solar Battery Brands

A home battery is a significant investment and new-generation energy storage technology is still rapidly evolving. Below are the best-rated brands of solar batteries, as voted by Australians who have had these batteries installed.

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  1. Inverter Brand Image

    Tesla

    4.9 Based on 77 ratings

    About the company

    Tesla, Inc. was founded in 2003, originally as Tesla Motors. Tesla is headquartered in the USA's San Francisco Bay Area, with office locations around the world (including Australia).

    After cutting its teeth on electric vehicle development, Tesla then expanded into commercial and home battery storage. The company arrived on the home energy storage scene accompanied by great fanfare with the Tesla Powerwall battery back in 2015, which was followed by the Powerwall 2 in 2016.

    Tesla has grown into a huge company in terms of market capitalisation - a whopping USD $143.6 *billion* as at late January 2020. 

    Anyway, back to batteries - the following are some basic specifications of the Powerwall 2:

    • Usable Capacity: 13.5 kWh
    • Power: 7kW peak / 5kW continuous
    • Dimensions: 1150 mm L x 753 mm W x 147 mm D
    • Weight: 114 kg
    • Warranty 10 years

    The Powerwall is produced in the Tesla Gigafactory in Nevada USA, which also manufactures Tesla Model 3 electric motoers and the company's commercial/utility storage solution, the Powerpack.

    Pricing And Supply

    Supply of the Powerwall 2 was an issue for quite a while in Australia, and then there was a major price rise in 2018 - followed by a not so major price decrease in 2019; then further pricing volatility. As at late June 2022, Powerwall is the most expensive it has ever been.

    So, Australians have had it a little rough with the Powerwall, but its high profile through extensive media attention have seen plenty installed here and interest remains strong.

    The cost of Powerwall 2 per warranted kilowatt hour based on one cycle per day (but see below for notes on warranty) is around 39 cents - not the cheapest, but far from the most expensive of the systems we have listed on our battery comparison table.

    Blackout Capabilities

    The Tesla Powerwall 2 is an AC Coupled battery that comes with the necessary hardware (Tesla Gateway) to provide blackout protection, backup and off grid functions.

    Powerwall's "Unlimited Cycles" Warranty

    Tesla offers a 10 year "unlimited cycles" warranty, but this only applies to solar self-consumption and backup use. Any other application (such as participating in a Virtual Power Plant) or combination of applications sees the warranty cover drop to 3,200 cycles – about eight years’ worth if cycled once a day.

    Reliability Testing Results

    The Canberra Battery Test Centre has been putting the Powerwall 2 through reliability testing. The test battery arrived with a fault and later developed another that resulted in it being replaced.  Results published in September 2019 indicated capacity estimated at 96% after 640 full cycles.  If  maintained, the Powerwall 2 will stay well within the minimum capacity provided by its warranty.

    While not perfect (and Tesla hasn't been overly fond of us pointing out issues), as far as home solar battery storage goes at this point in time the Tesla Powerwall 2 is probably a good choice among what is available.

    Telsa is great at marketing, but how is the Powerwall viewed by those who have one installed? What about after sales service and support? We're inviting Australian Powerwall owners (whether they have the original or Powerwall 2 model) to leave their rating and review here.

  2. SunGrow 4.9 13 ratings
  3. Alpha-ESS 4.4 19 ratings
  4. Growatt 4.8 13 ratings
  5. BYD 4.5 12 ratings

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