Updated: Dec 11, 2020
Once your application for net energy metering scheme has been approved and you have decided which installer will install your solar system on your roof, please make sure that your installer provides you with a proper agreement and not simply a two (2) pages form signed by you and the installer without expressing the installer’s obligations, warranties, indemnities and etc. Why? Because you are paying them a lot of money for the equipment and services rendered to you. And on top of that, you have a responsibility to provide a steady output to Tenaga Nasional Berhad (TNB) to enjoy the offset excess electricity exported to TNB, to save your electricity bill.
What happen if your solar system did not produce the guaranteed output? What will happen if your roof leaked and your home structure collapsed or damage after few months of installation? Who will be responsible? If there is no proper agreement signed, you may end up losing more money instead of saving money. As the homeowner or owner of the solar system, you need to know what type of warranty and/or guarantee that should be covered by a credible and reliable solar installer.
We will share 4 common warranties / guarantees that solar installer should give you. The list is not exhaustive. You may need to consult your own lawyer specialised in solar in order to protect your interest and money invested.
1. Limited Warranty for Components
This type of warranty depends on the contractual relationship between the manufacturer and the installer. A credible installer will give up to 10 years for all components of the solar photovoltaic generating system installed. Most critical components are solar modules and inverters which usually given a performance warranty of 20 years (depends on the manufacturer’s warranty to the direct buyer). While a manufacturing defect warranty will cover any defects cause by the manufacturing process of the solar modules and inverters which includes the aluminium frames, glass, solar cells, back sheet or junction box. This type of warranty should be extended to any subsequent owner of the property within the warranty period.
2. Roof leak warranty
This warranty is to protect labor related defects caused by the installer’s employees, agents or sub-contractor during the installation process. The solar installer will give up to 5 years warranty against any roof leak that prove to be direct result of roof penetration. However, this warranty will NOT apply if any roof issues is not directly related to roof penetration during the installation or any improper use or damage by act of God.
3. Repair guarantee
In case of a system malfunction or failure, the installer will try its best to return the system to working order within one business day (or any reasonable day) from receipt of written notice or email from owner.
4. Parts and labor
When the installer expressly stated that the products installed are “AS IS” basis, the installer will provide parts and labor for at least 10 years to the extent not covered by the manufacturer’s warranty. This warranty may cover the full costs, including labor, of repair or replacement of defective components or system.
To be eligible for the warranties mentioned above, owner of the solar system must perform periodic maintenance as required. If owner, owner’s representative or agent, temper with any part of the system, the warranty shall be null and void. Also note that there should be a separate agreement for maintenance of the system installed by the installer for full protection. More details on warranty for solar performance, workmanship and solar equipment/components is listed here.