Solar panels and higher bills
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aus_koala





PostPosted: 15 Nov 10 21:49
Post subject: Solar panels and higher bills
Organisation name: Origin Energy
Issue type: Comment

Hi all, latest update. Process not complete yet.

WE have had our panels installed as stated earlier, inspector came and needed installation people to come back as some labelling was not correct. This issue was fixed in about 10 minutes. Found out one of the installation team used to work for clear solar (see other threads for comments regarding clear solar).

Inspector came back again and all was signed off and even though we do not have new meter (one that can record the feedback into the grid) we were given the ok to turn our system on and use what we produce.

We have received our first bill and it was down by about 20% in the last 3 months which included the end of a cold and wet melbourne winter (wettest in about 12 years). This is without any rebate for feeding into the grid.

We did get a (surprise) visit from either Origin Energy OR SP Ausnet along the way. Not sure what that was about but one of my daughters was home and was just told they needed to inspect it. A ot of people must be getting paid to inspect these days!

We have been contacted by SP Ausnet regarding the installation of our new meter and have been given a date of 1st December 2010. This is the last step in the process so I hope to make a final update after that date.......
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Danny_b





PostPosted: 16 Nov 10 18:56
Post subject: Solar panels and higher bills
Organisation name: n/a
Issue type: Comment

Aus_koala, are you getting a Smart Meter, or a bi-directional meter?

Both allow feed in to the grid, but if you are getting a bi-directional meter, you are required to pay for it, and it will be replaced with a Smart Meter at some time over the next two years (assuming it all goes to plan, which so far it hasn't).


A number of the participants in the community bulk buy I participated in paid the $300 or so for their new meter, only to have it taken away and replaced with a Smart Meter less than 6 months later. One person held off on having the bi-directional meter installed, as he knew the Smart Meter was coming, but eventually gave in and had it installed. He received confirmation of the Smart Meter installation date in the mail the day he had his new bi-directional meter installed. The Smart Meter was installed a month later.

Basically you can't rely on one area of the power distributor talking to another, because they don't.

Also, if you haven't already filled in the Premium Feed In Tariff form, get that from your electricity retailer. There might be a delay in them processing that when they receive it.
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sirlaughalot





PostPosted: 28 Dec 10 14:36
Post subject: Solar panels and higher bills
Organisation name: Clear Solar
Issue type: Comment

I too am waiting on a cheque from clear solar.. This would be for advertizing their product for twelve months as agreed.
Got the usual runaround. My first email to
requesting my payment was acknowledged with,
"I'll forward your request to... etc".(DELETED)
reply came:-
Hello X,
I have a copy of your contract/quote here and would like to confirm with you the pricing.
Base system = 12,000 less solar suburbs discount and the SHCP rebate of 8,000 equals $2,400.00 upfront payment ( this includes the $400.00 for tiled roof)
You get a credit upfront of 300.00 and 500.00 (sign, and recs) which leaves 1,600 total out of pocket cost.
So, as you can see, the 300 has been all ready credited.

Kind Regards,
Renee Garth

Naturally I replied..

Wrong!,
First you take forever to pay the rebate of $500 as per my contract..
Now you say I had a credit already...JUST PAY UP AS YOU SHOULD.
I'll post this on http://www.(DELETED) with a copy of my details if you prefer.
My contract states clearly:-
(Following installation you will receive a $500 cashback for holding on to your renewable energy certificates.
And if you agree to display a clear solar sign at the front of your property for 12 months you will receive a further $300 advertising rebate. Thisr educes the final
Out of pocket expense by as much as $800
I've had $500...You owe me $300.

Clear solar replied..
X,
I am so sorry. You are a solar suburbs customer, and we had about 1,000 of them. The government grant customers are the ones where it was taken of the top.
This is the first Moreland Council one I have seen.
Apologies again, I don’t have a copy of what you have, I just went through the different councils that signed up with us as solar suburbs.
I will prepare a request for accounts to send you a cheque for $300.00.

Kind Regards,

I said I would post my details here, so we will see if I get my cheque any time soon.
I'll keep you posted.
p.s. funny how my electricity charges have nearly doubled since having the new meter.
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dbandit





PostPosted: 25 Jan 11 16:04
Post subject: Solar panels and higher bills
Organisation name: Clear Solar
Issue type: Complaint

Funny how six to eight weeks has turned into 8 months, I’ve now been told that installation will take place in February. This is the forth time I’ve been given an installation date. I’m thinking what their next excuse will be… I guess floods will be a good one,,.,., wait and see. eusa_liar.gif
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ExClear





PostPosted: 27 Jan 11 10:21
Post subject: Solar panels and higher bills
Organisation name: Clear Solar
Issue type: Complaint

Dear dbandit,

I wish you all the best with having you issues resolved. I know first hand that Clear Solar is in the deepest poo possible.
I am surprised thay are still trading, one would imagine they are keeping themselves above water by using the deposits of people that sign up now.
They have lost 80% of their staff due to disgruntlement in the last few months, they have been trading on the verge of being insolvant for nearly a year now. Their whole Senior Management team has resigned.
They had an investor lined up that pulled out when they examined the books. Nobody wants to touch them
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Principle





PostPosted: 31 Jan 11 20:34
Post subject: Solar panels and higher bills
Organisation name: Clear Solar
Issue type: Complaint

Hi Sirlaughalot

Clear Solar has denied our advertising rebate. They are saying it was not due despite us showing them two letters that it was. They say the letters were sent in error and that it has been paid. It has not been paid. Their people are rude , do not reply to messages and are worse than used-car salepeople.

How did you go with your payment?
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Missy55





PostPosted: 01 Feb 11 08:37
Post subject: Solar panels and higher bills
Organisation name: Clear Solar
Issue type: Complaint

We ordered a system June 10, it was installed eventually, after lots of phone calls and a paper trail you would not believe we had it all turned on in Dec 10, after a busy christmas with visitors we got round to actually looking at how the inverter was working....well it wasn't sending anything to the grid. We were puzzled by this and rang clear solar 17 Jan 2011...you only get through to a talking person if you call the info line as a new customer...they speak to NEW CASH PAYING CUSTOMERS....we were told the software wasn't working and a tech would be sent out that week. No tech and no call. We rang the next week...Madelaine said a tech would be out this week....we live in central vic and you would expect a call alerting us to a visit by this tech...we will be calling again for a date so we will be home. Consumer affairs can give you a phone number of a management person at Clear Solar, so give them a ring regarding problems. I am also on the verge of contacting the state ombudsman about this whole fiasco...Government rebates are being used to finance a lot of this solar industry and the whole system is a huge mess. Yes, I agree the issues involved in putting green solar power in place are huge, but shouldn't something be done to make this all easier, faster and more productive.
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dbandit





PostPosted: 21 Feb 11 10:21
Post subject: Solar panels and higher bills
Organisation name: Clear Solar
Issue type: Complaint

Have been waiting once again for the instillation guys from Clear Solar. No one turned up so I phoned them to enquire. “Was told of another installation date this time set for March” Very Very Unhappy……
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nonscenic





PostPosted: 19 Apr 11 15:19
Post subject: Solar panels and higher bills
Organisation name: Sharp
Issue type: Complaint

Had a 1.5kw solar system installed through Origin Solar. Installation was quick (within 4 weeks), the installers good and the inspector came within 10 days of the installation and turned on the system. All went well for four days until the mains power was off. When the power was turned on again the Sharp inverter (JH1600E) produced 5 watt hours of electricity and then died.

Since then the fun has begun. Sharp Customer Service is an oxymoron. After ten days they finally sent out a technician who confirmed that there was a problem, but that Sharp would have to authorise a warranty repair and that this might take "some time".
If a product is not fit for purpose what is a reasonable time for a manufacturer to meet their obligations under a warranty claim and what responsibility does the seller (Origin Solar) have to the consumer? I have contacted them and they refer the problem to Sharp.
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offthegrid_blackops





PostPosted: 30 Apr 11 13:11
Post subject: Solar panels and higher bills
Organisation name: Clear Solar
Issue type: Complaint

***ATTENTION: ALL CLEAR SOLAR CUSTOMERS WHO WERE PROMISED CUSTOMER CASH REBATES***

I have first hand knowledge that the number of customers who were never paid the promised cash rebate by Clear Solar runs into the thousands.

I also know that Clear Solar is not in a position to service this liability and they continue to trade whilst insolvent (this is illegal) and continue to accept upfront deposits from new customers with the knowledge that they may not be able to fulfill the orders.

My suggestion is that ALL customers who have been promised rebates and/or installations by Clear Solar in the last 12 months who are reading this now PLEASE go to the TODAY TONIGHT WEBSITE and register your story... this is the only way to make Clear Solar accountable for their unfair and misleading business practices and perhaps many of you may get a portion of what is owed to you from the Liquidators.

Following a response from Today Tonight, many of you may wish to head down to Clear Solar's head office in Mitcham to meet the camera crew on a given day to further enforce the seriousness of this unfair trading and misrepresentation.

Good Luck people

Anonymous User
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brilliant1





PostPosted: 13 Jun 11 14:49
Post subject: Solar panels and higher bills
Organisation name: Origin Energy
Issue type: Comment

Hi, have been reading with interest the problems with wanting solar power. I have recently had a 1.5kw unit installed with Origin. All quite professional and friendly service. When I rang to see when the unit would be connected to the grid I was told it can take up to 45 business days (9 weeks). Does this seem to be a ridiculously long period of time or have others had to wait this period as well?
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Danny_b





PostPosted: 13 Jun 11 19:22
Post subject: Solar panels and higher bills
Organisation name: n/a
Issue type: Comment

It depends where you are, how busy the inspectors are, and whether you need a new meter.

I just had solar installed (have previously had it installed at another house) last Wednesday, and was told the inspector should visit within a week, then they'll send the paperwork into my power distributor, who'll organise a new meter. I was told by the installer the whole process should take 4-6 weeks, but given the opportunities for things to go wrong, I think that was optimistic.
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kolonel1971





PostPosted: 01 Jul 11 22:06
Post subject: Solar panels and higher bills
Organisation name: solar
Issue type: Comment

Any updates dbandit ?!?

I was looking into getting solar, and from what i have read, this seems to be a common trend. The solar company is quick to sign you up and get a deposit, with little intention of actually proceeding at the agreed and signed amount. It is amazing when you read the T & C, it states that they can charge you more if the amount of the rebate is affected.

There is another company here in Vic (advertising heavily on the tv), that have a reputation for doing something similar to this as well. Until this industry is regulated, who knows what you are getting.

From the enquiries i have had, they are a bit coy when i ask them to put it in writing, and on top of that, they are trying to palm of some cheap chinese systems.

Good luck with it.
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Soupcan
I'm a NGE Premium Subscriber




PostPosted: 08 Nov 11 16:39
Post subject: Solar panels and higher bills
Organisation name: Origin Energy
Issue type: Complaint

I got solar installed at my home through Origin. They installed the panels within 2 weeks of paying for it, so far so good, until the forms got approved and sent to Origin by Etsa. Now Origin decide to keep the forms for 5-6 weeks before processing and a further week or 2 before booking in an installation date with Etsa, now I am getting the meter 4.5 months after installation, not quite the 10 to 14 weeks I was told. Origin say the inverter was installed after the panels and that was the hold up and the installers (that Origin employ!) say the inverter has nothing to do booking in the metre (which they don't).
This would have been fine if Origin started the payments of the panels from when the meter gets installed but no, they start payments well before that.
To top it all off a friend who lives in the same suburb, ordered through Origin 2 weeks after me is getting her meter 2 months before me, GO FIGURE, Origin must have processed the forms straight away, but they are saying Etsa must have had a cancellation, yeah right, so why didnt mine get moved forward into that cancellation date if I ordered before them (in the same suburb!!!)
I have spoken to Origin complaints people who said he would get back to me with a resolution but do you think he would, I have called twice with no return of a phone call.
Very unhappy and I will be changing energy suppliers
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Wallaby19





PostPosted: 15 Feb 12 07:22
Post subject: Solar panels and higher bills
Organisation name: SolarSA
Issue type: Comment

SOLAR ENERGY: DISGRUNTLED CUSTOMER

Just recently we purchased a 1.5Kw solar energy unit consisting of 7 panels from SolarSA. The unit was installed on the northern side of a tiled roof at the correct angle getting full sun and unobstructed.
The unit has yet to provide 1.5Kw of power,(energy) the best it has done to date is 1.2Kw a 20% potential loss of production. This has been mentioned to SolarSA on several occasions only to fall on deaf ears.

TOTAL COST OF UNIT……………………………………………………………..$17,675
LESS RECs (RENEWABLE ENERGY CERTIFICATES)………………………….$6,200
LESS CUSTOMER DISCOUNT……………………………………………………..$400
OUR COST……………………………………………………………………………$11,075

We also received our first power bill from Origin Energy since installation only to find that the cost to receive electicity from them has increased however, to return power back to the grid has not increased. My question is at what point do we the consumer have to start paying the energy companies to return power back to the grid?

WARNING: If you intend to install solar energy do so at your own risk, you have been warned

Cheers
Disgruntled
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