Solar panels and higher bills
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Annoyed customer
I'm a NGE Premium Subscriber




PostPosted: 23 May 13 17:51
Post subject: Solar panels and higher bills
Organisation name: Origin Energy
Issue type: Complaint

Myself and one other from my place of employment signed a contract and paid a deposit to Origin energy for a Solar electricity system purchase on 29th June 2012. We were offered a total of 31cents TFIT (25c /KWh and additional feed in tariff of 6c KWh for Origin customers. It was stated that the timeframe for installation would take approximately 5 to 8 weeks and also stated in the contract that "The Installation Subcontractor will ensure that the Installation starts as soon as it is reasonably possible for it to be started". My colleagues panels were installed within 2 weeks (and he now receives 31c TFIT) while I, after quite a few phone calls to Origin and Service Stream, waited for 5 months . I was going away for 5 weeks and advised them that there would be no-one home to take a phone call or be present at the home for the installation (this is a requirement)and if they couldn't install the panels before I went and not to call until I got back. I arrived home only to find 1 voice message advising me that they were ready to install. I called Origin back only to be told they had no record of that conversation (conveniently) and said well we cannot install now until December. I couldn't believe it was going to take 6 months from signing the contract to installation. It was finally installed on 29th November and because it took 5 months to install, I was informed that the Feed in Tariff request was sent in December but not received by Powercor in time to be considered for the 31c and so defaulted to the current Feed in Tariff of 8c per KWh. I would never have paid what I did for the panels (which are now significantly cheaper) only to receive 8c Feed in Tariff. I have put a complaint into Origin, Ombudsman and Consumer affairs only to be told they cannot do anything. It seems like the BIG companies like Origin are "The Untouchables" and offer no apologies for breaking their contracts. Not even the offer of the 6cents extra for being an Origin customer. They get you in, sign you up and give you nothing.
DON’T bother with Origin as I am cancelling both my gas and electricity accounts with them and going with someone who HONEST!
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commodore98
I'm a NGE Premium Subscriber




PostPosted: 17 Feb 12 18:23
Post subject: Solar panels and higher bills
Organisation name: commodore98
Issue type: Comment

I have just racked up one year with my 3.4 kw system ,over the year i have produced 3550kw @ 60cents a KW to date I'm $645 in credit at this rate i will of recouped my out lay $12,000 in the 6 years and had free electric power for that time.
At the end of the 6 years I'm hoping i will have over $12,000 in credit the benefit will drop to the 20 cent or what ever the power company charges me
At this rate i should enjoy free electricity for at least 3 or 4 years after the solar bonus scheme ends and after about a 30% deduction on the bill.
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Section52





PostPosted: 16 Feb 12 10:12
Post subject: Solar panels and higher bills
Organisation name: n/a
Issue type: Comment

Wallaby19 - You havent stated the wattage of your 7 panels.
My 1.62kW system (7 x 235 watt polycrystaline panels) was fitted by Energy Matters in June 2011 and to date it has generated 1641 kWh. The panels seem to be very temperature sensitive but work better in lower light conditions than monocrystalline panels. Under the midday sun with light winds they produce about 1300 watts, with a strong wind about 1420 watts and just after a cumulus cloud has passed 1600 watts for about 2 minutes until they heat up again. The SMA 1700 inverter heat sink is almost too hot to touch with with this amount of power and I feel that adding an extra panel would shorten the inverter life considerably. So this might explain why you are not getting the returns you expected.
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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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