Show your solar some love – solar safety
Why service your rooftop solar
Your rooftop solar system sits outside in all kinds of weather, giving you the benefit of cheaper electricity to keep your home warm in winter and cool in summer, while helping you do your bit for the planet. So, to ensure that it’s running safely we’re encouraging people to get their home solar system serviced every two years by a licensed electrician.
One of the more tragic results from poorly maintained systems is the potential of fires from the roof caused by faulty DC isolators. This is the most common cause of fire from a solar installation. Improvements have been made in their design reducing the safety risk since 2018. The best way to identify faults and avoid house fires is regular servicing, especially for those systems installed before 2018.
Find out more about keeping your home solar safe.
How to choose a licensed electrician
Solar servicing must be carried out by a licensed (A Grade) electrician, employed by a Registered Electrical Contractor. Also, look for accreditation with the Clean Energy Council for that extra reassurance.
Like most other professions, electricians have different grades of license depending on the work they are qualified to do. Choose an electrician who shows their qualifications and areas of expertise in their advertising. Contact them and ask if they are licensed or registered to undertake the electrical work you need in Victoria. If they are, they will have an identification card licensing them to carry out electrical work.
Further information about finding a licensed electrician is available on our website.
Look out for rogue operators
There are a number of companies operating in Victoria that claim to service solar panels, but they are nothing more than a panel cleaning service. A service must be conducted by a licensed electrician to ensure that you are getting the service you are paying for, and to ensure the ongoing safety of your home solar system.
What is involved in a service?
Maintaining your rooftop solar involves much more than simply cleaning your solar panels. Regular maintenance of your solar panel system should ensure:
- no parts have deteriorated or corroded
- vents are free of debris
- switches do not have any defects
- wiring has not been damaged and has not deteriorated
- electrical checks to ensure all components are operating as intended
- confirming fittings and cables are securely attached
- reviewing the inverter display panel for recorded faults
- checking that access to the isolator switches has not been impeded, and/or
- making sure the emergency procedures for shutdown and isolation are clearly displayed.
This is why a service must be carried out by a licensed electrician, at least once every two years.
- The Clean Energy Regulator has information about maintaining your solar panels.
- The Clean Energy Council has an article about why it is important to service solar panels to keep them in peak condition.
- Solar Victoria has a great collection of information and resources to get you started with solar, and help you to make the most of your home solar system.
Visit the Solar Hub for more information.