A Clean Energy Council program to give consumers increased confidence when purchasing solar power systems was launched by Federal Environment Minister Greg Hunt in Canberra today.
Clean Energy Council Deputy Chief Executive Kane Thornton said people had a lot of things to consider when making a major purchase such as a solar energy system, and the process could be confusing.
“By choosing to buy from a business that has signed up to our voluntary Solar PV Retailer Code of Conduct, you are choosing a business which has committed to a higher standard of quality and service. They will also provide a minimum five - year warranty on the whole of your solar power system,” he said.
“This program is designed to give peace of mind to people who are making the decision to invest in a solar system by helping them purchase the best product available.”
“The solar industry is well regulated, with all systems needing to meet Australian standards and be installed by a specially trained and accredited solar installer. This code is another important step that provides consumers with even greater confidence, and the ability to select a retailer who guarantees a high level of customer service.”
Customers will be able to identify businesses that have signed up to the Code of Conduct by a special Clean Energy Council Approved Retailer logo. A full list of approved retailers can be found at www.approvedsolarretailer.com.au and the program has been authorised by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC).
Mr Thornton thanked the founding signatories to the Solar PV Retailer Code of Conduct Bradford Solar – for their industry leadership and commitment to lifting customer service standards across the sector.
Mr Thornton said that in addition to looking for a Clean Energy Council Approved Retailer, consumers wanting to invest in solar power should ensure their system is installed by a Clean Energy Council - accredited installer.
Customers can expect that a Clean Energy Council Approved Solar Retailer will:
- ensure that sales representatives act ethically at all times
- not engage in any dishonest or misleading advertising and sales tactics
- provide you with the necessary information in writing to enable full education about your purchase prior to entering into a contract
- uphold your legal rights relating to cooling-off periods and refunds and give you the opportunity to cancel a contract and obtain a full refund where changes are made after contract that are not approved in writing
- provide a standard minimum warranty period of five years on the operation and performance of the whole PV system including workmanship and products, and address any problems arising during this period
- fully inform you of the process between system installation and network connection or will facilitate this process on your behalf Documentation and general business
- ensure that you are provided with the required documentation after the PV system is installed
- adhere to all existing legislation and regulations, and maintain effective internal cancellation procedures and complaint handling processes
- be fully accountable for the actions of any subcontracted parties, including CEC-accredited installers/designers have a fair and transparent complaints process, and get back to you within 21 days of making a complaint