Whether you are buying or leasing them, you will have those solar panels for a very long time and make sure they are producing clean energy, working at a high efficiency and saving you money you are expecting.

Here are some questions to answer about what it takes to go solar, and one of the most common questions such as: How do you pick a solar company and make sure they offer a good deal?

We go over how to avoid the worst-case scenarios:

Here are some tips from a solar installation company in San Diego, CA, Sunline Energy.

Get bids from three to 5 solar companies and ask them to give you information that will allow you to easily compare the information.

Many customers have admitted that they struggle to compare which solar system will work best for them.


Solar Panel installation on clay roof by Sunline Energy

Solar Panel installation on clay roof by Sunline Energy

Here is a handy worksheet that has been created by Center for Sustainable Energy, a nonprofit that pushes solar and other environmentally friendly alternative energy.

There are two ways to measure the wattage or output of a solar panel. There’s a direct current, which is the form of energy that solar panels produce, and alternating current, which is the form of energy that homes use.

Ask companies to quote the likely system output in AC wattage, using the California Energy Commission’s so-called CEC-AC rating. Bids in DC wattage might lead you to believe that it will be more powerful and cost-effective than it would be.

Most likely your solar panels will come with a product warranty but it’s important for the company to also offer a workmanship warranty. This is crucial if you should find the positioning of your panels or some installation error that is affecting our solar power production.


Sunline Energy Solar Installation San Diego, CA

Sunline Energy Solar Installation San Diego, CA

Do your research on your solar companies. Check out the Better Business Bureau and yelp for reviews and look up their certification and most importantly their licenses the company has. Search the Contractors State License Board of California to see if they have any of the following licenses: A (general engineering contractor), B (general building contractor), C10 (electrical contractor) and/or C46 (solar contractor).

SDG&E sometimes offer solar and energy efficiency assessments — but only if you put in a request, or if you are already getting solar panels. If you get a call suggesting that you had signed up from one from a group that has a similar name and sounds like the state agency, don’t accept an on-site visit.