While residential solar systems are relatively reliable, some users of solar power have experienced problems where their solar system is not working.

According to Choice, Australia’s leading consumer advocacy group, around 20 percent of solar system users have had a problem with their system since installation.

So, just what problems are they having? We discuss below.

Solar system not working? Panels

The Choice Solar Survey indicates that some 12 percent of solar power users had a problem with their inverter; 6 percent said their system’s performance declined over time; and another 2 percent had cable connection issues.

However, the majority of survey respondents stated that they had experienced no issues with their solar power system.

The quality of the inverter and solar panelswere the leading causes of solar system problems.

Here are five reasons why your solar system may not be working:

According to leading solar panel installers, the most common reasons why your solar system is not working are as follows:

1. Inverter red light flashing

Your inverter should display a blinking yellow light. If you see a red light flashing continuously on your inverter, it typically means that the inverter is off, and not connected to the grid.

2. Clean Energy Council performance not met

The Clean Energy Council is the regulatory body in Australia for solar power and they have specific guidelines that need to be met. If the number of kilowatts (kW) produced by your solar system is less than the recommended CEC rating, then your system may not be providing enough energy to power your home.

3. No change in my electricity bill

Your solar system powers your home during the day when the sun is shining and then exports any energy that it doesn’t use to the grid.

Therefore it’s important to remember that if you’re not at home during the day using energy, and you’re on a lower feed-in tariff, then you may not see any significant difference in your energy bill.

Solar owners on a 16c or 44c FIT should still see a difference regardless.

4. Meter not installed

Before you can realise any real benefits from having solar power installed, SA Power Networks will need to install a meter. This meter records the amount of energy imported to the grid and exported from the network by your home. Once a meter has been installed this will then be recorded on your electricity bill.

5. Tripping circuit breaker

If you find that your home’s circuit breaker keeps switching off, then there could be a problem with your inverter – most commonly due to water penetration or cable entries not being correctly sealed – or your circuit breaker may be too small for the size of your solar system.

How you can fix the problems

If you are experiencing any of the issues mentioned, then contact your solar panel installer and ask about system maintenance.

Your installer should then arrange a time to inspect your unit and be able to give you a quote for any repairs if they are not covered under warranty.

Are you looking for a reliable solar system so you avoid any breakdowns? Then contact Solar Power Direct. We can make finding the right system for you easy.