Step 4: Hire a Solar Installer

Make sure your solar contractor is qualified and knows what he or she is doing.

Before you hire a solar installer for your project, be sure to ask these three critical questions:

  • Are you NABCEP certified?
  • Are you sufficiently qualified and experienced?
  • What are your qualifications?
  • Have they taken a class about solar installation? Are they licensed contractors or electricians?
  • What are your experiences and references?
  • Have they done installations like this before? Were other customers happy with their work?

North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP) offers voluntary and nationally-recognized certifications to renewable energy professionals throughout North America. Only professionals who meet the requirements for experience and training are eligible to sit for the certification exam. Successful candidates are awarded the title of NABCEP Certified Installer for demonstrating their competence in the field and their commitment to upholding high standards of ethical and professional practice. In a report presented at the 2008 American Solar Energy Society (ASES) Conference, the authors reported that: “Systems installed by NABCEP certified installers have fewer problems at the time of inspection than those installed by non-certified installers.” A list of NABCEP Certified Installers can be found at NABCEP.org.

You can find more info and a list of NABCEP certified installers in Tennessee here.