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Diamond certified companies are top rated and guaranteed

Why Trust Diamond Certified Solar Companies Rated Highest in Quality?

Photo: Urban Design Solar (2017)

You are the customer. If your goal is to choose a solar company that will deliver high customer satisfaction and quality, you’ll feel confident in choosing a Diamond Certified solar contractor. Each has been rated Highest in Quality in the most accurate ratings process anywhere. And you’re always backed by the Diamond Certified Performance Guarantee. Here’s why the Diamond Certified ratings and certification process will help you find a top-rated solar power company and is unparalleled in its accuracy, rigor and usefulness:

1) Accuracy: All research is performed by live telephone interviews that verify only real customers are surveyed, so you’ll never be fooled by fake reviews.

2) Statistical Reliability: A large random sample of past customers is surveyed on an ongoing basis so the research results you see truly reflect a Diamond Certified company’s top-rated status.

3) Full Disclosure: By clicking the name of a company above you’ll see the exact rating results in charts and read verbatim survey responses as well as researched articles on each qualified company.

4) Guaranteed: Your purchase is backed up with mediation and the Diamond Certified Performance Guarantee, so you can choose with confidence.

Click on the name of a Diamond Certified company above to read ratings results, researched articles and verbatim customer survey responses to help you make an informed decision.

More than 200,000 customers of local companies have been interviewed in live telephone calls, and only companies that score Highest in Quality in customer satisfaction–a 90+ on a 100 scale–as well as pass all of the credential-based ratings earn Diamond Certified. By requiring such a high score to qualify, the Diamond Certified program eliminates mediocre and poorly performing companies. Read detailed information about the ratings and certification process.

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SELECTED PHOTOS FROM THESE TOP RATED COMPANIES

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INDUSTRY INFORMATION AND RESEARCHED ARTICLES BY THE DIAMOND CERTIFIED RESOURCE

  • GAF

  • Amerimax

  • Duralum

  • Lennox

  • Enphase

  • SolarWorld

  • SolarEdge

  • LG

  • SMA

  • Sunpower

SunTech
Terra Solar Global
Amonix Inc
Energy Photovoltaics
United Solar Ovonic
Fronius Solar Inverters
Mitsubishi Electric & Electronics
DayStar Technologies
SANYO Energy
Solar Power Industries
Sunpower Corporation
Sunwatt Corporation
Pacific SolarTech
Evergreen Solar
First Solar
Innergy Power Corp
Kyocera Solar Panels
Global Solar Energy
SMA Technologies
Sanyo Semiconductors
Sharp Manufacturing
Matrix Solar Technologies
Sunwize Technologies
Atlantis Energy System Inc.
B P Solar
Canrom Photovoltaics
GE Energy
Advent Solar
Mitsui Comtek

solar hot water heating
solar inverters
residential solar power
commercial solar power
solar roofing
solar thermal systems
alternative energy solar systems
pv panels
renewable energy systems
solar photovoltaic panel installation
solar panel installation
solar generators
solar panels
solar generators
portable solar power
solar power kits
solar modules
home solar systems
solar water systems
solar lighting
solar energy systems
solar electricity
solar concentrators

Allendale
Benicia
Birds Landing
Bucktown
Collinsville
Cordelia
Dixon
Elmira
Fairfield
Green Valley
Liberty Farms
Maine Prairie
Mare Island
Nut Tree
Rio Vista
Scandia
Suisun City
Travis Air Force Base
Vacaville
Vallejo

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94535
94571
94585
94589
94590
94591
94592
95620
95625
95687
95688
95696

State of California Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) (http://www.dca.ca.gov/)
Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) (http://www.seia.org/)
California Solar Energy Industries Association (CALSEIA) (http://calseia.org)
American Solar Energy Society (ASES) (http://www.ases.org/)
Northern California Solar Energy Association (http://www.norcalsolar.org/)…

State of California Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) (http://www.dca.ca.gov/)
Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) (http://www.seia.org/)
California Solar Energy Industries Association (CALSEIA) (http://calseia.org)
American Solar Energy Society (ASES) (http://www.ases.org/)
Northern California Solar Energy Association (http://www.norcalsolar.org/)
Solar Electric Power Association (SEPA) (www.solarelectricpower.org)

Know What You Want
Decide What You Want from Your Home Solar Panel Installation

Making an investment in harvesting solar energy is an important decision. You will get the best results from your investment if you have some idea of what you want your solar investment to do for you before you begin talking with local solar contractors in Solano County.

Pay special attention to the following questions:

  • Do I want a Diamond Certified solar company that is rated best in quality and backed by the Diamond Certified Guarantee?
  • What do I want from an investment in solar power?
  • Do I want to reduce the amount of electricity I buy from the utility by generating some of my own?
  • Do I want to generate more electricity than I need so that I can sell some for a profit?
  • Do I want my solar investment to provide hot water and heating/cooling
  • If I’m interested in generating electricity, have I used a free solar calculator to give myself some idea of the cost and benefits? (Free solar calculator)
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What To Ask In Person
Questions to Ask Solano County Solar System Companies In Person

Some questions simply cannot be answered until a qualified site assessor visits your home or business, as the quality of sunlight can vary significantly from site to site.

  • What can I expect from the solar site assessment?
  • Is my home or business site better suited to one type of solar power over another? If so, why?
  • If the site is suitable for solar thermal, how much work will be required to make the array deliver heating, cooling, and hot water beyond simply getting the array onto my roof or other part of my property?
  • How does selling back electricity in Solano County work? Is this a program that I can take advantage of?
  • How long does the average solar panel installation take?
  • When will I receive a written estimate for the solar installation I’m considering?
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  • What To Ask References
    Questions for References of Local Solar Contractors in Solano County

    It’s best to choose among Diamond Certified solar contractors because all certified companies have passed an in-depth ratings process that most other companies can’t pass. If you want quality from a solar panel company in Solano County, you can have confidence choosing a Diamond Certified company.

    Diamond Certified reports are available online for all certified companies. And you’ll never be fooled by fake reviews. That’s because all research is performed in live telephone interviews of actual customers.

    If you do call references on your own, specifically ask for a list of the solar panel company’s 10 most recent customers. This will help avoid them giving you the names of only customers they know were satisfied.

    Interview questions for local solar company references include the following:

    • Did you have a solar array installed at your home or business by (name of the company in question)?
    • Did you receive a site assessment from (name of the company in question)?
    • What kind of solar array did you have installed?
    • How satisfied were you with the solar panel installation services from this Solano County solar company?
    • Has the solar array operated the way you expected?
    • Have your energy bills been reduced as much as you expected?
    • (If you have a PV array) Are you selling electricity back to the utility?
    • If so, how has the experience been for you?
    • Are you making as much money as you expected?
    • How does payment for excess electricity work for you?
    • Would you recommend that someone else invest in a PV array large enough to sell electricity back to the utility?
    • How did the federal and state incentives figure into your decision to invest?
    • How did the federal and state incentives affect your ability to pay for the solar investment?
    • Do you have any advice or information we haven’t yet discussed?
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  • Review Your Options
    Before You Hire a Solano County Solar Contractor

    The Diamond Certified symbol has been awarded to companies that scored Highest in Quality in an accurate ratings process.

    It’s best to choose a Diamond Certified solar contractor in Solano County because all certified companies have passed an in-depth ratings process that most other companies can’t pass. If you want quality from a solar panel installer in Solano County, you can have confidence choosing a Diamond Certified company.

    If a Diamond Certified solar contractor isn’t available or suitable for your solar installation, you will have to do some research on your own.

    It’s best to choose a Diamond Certified solar contractor in Solano County because all certified companies have passed an in-depth ratings process that most other companies can’t pass. If you want quality from a solar panel installer in Solano County, you can have confidence choosing a Diamond Certified company.

    If a Diamond Certified solar contractor isn’t available or suitable for your solar installation, you will have to do some research on your own.

    Once you have found a solar contractor/installer, you will want to be certain that the company is properly licensed. All contractors performing work valued at $500 or more must hold a current valid license from the Contractors’ State License Board. Licenses can be checked at the CSLB website.

    Learn More About Solar Power Installations
    Learning the basic terms and concepts of solar energy will make your working relationship with your solar panel contractor much easier. Having realistic expectations about the cost of an array and how long it might take for an array to pay for itself also will help.

    Use a solar calculator to give yourself an idea of the money involved. Know what you are spending on energy before having a site assessment.

    Be prepared to hear that your site may not be suitable for a specific type of solar array, but ask for an explanation if your solar company says your home or location isn’t a good fit for a solar system.

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  • How To Work With
    Before You Hire a Solano County Solar Contractor

    It’s best to choose a Diamond Certified solar contractor in Solano County because all certified companies have passed an in-depth ratings process that most other companies can’t pass. If you want quality from a solar panel installer in Solano County, you can have confidence choosing a Diamond Certified company.

    If a Diamond Certified solar contractor isn’t available or suitable for your solar installation, you will have to do some research on your own.

    Once you have found a solar contractor/installer, you will want to be certain that the company is properly licensed. All contractors performing work valued at $500 or more must hold a current valid license from the Contractors’ State License Board. Licenses can be checked at the CSLB website.

    Learn More About Solar Power Installations
    Learning the basic terms and concepts of solar energy will make your working relationship with your solar panel contractor much easier. Having realistic expectations about the cost of an array and how long it might take for an array to pay for itself also will help.

    Use a solar calculator to give yourself an idea of the money involved. Know what you are spending on energy before having a site assessment.

    Be prepared to hear that your site may not be suitable for a specific type of solar array, but ask for an explanation if your solar company says your home or location isn’t a good fit for a solar system.

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  • Be a Good Customer
    Ways You Can Be a Good Solar Energy Client

    It’s the solar contractor’s responsibility put in quality solar arrays using the best possible installation techniques. But you play a big part in the success of your new solar panel system, too.

    Here are a few simple steps you can take to be a good customer when hiring a Solano County solar system installer.

    • Be clear with the solar contractor about what you want from your solar investment, the outcome you’re expecting and specific ways they can satisfy your expectations.
    • Before you hire a solar contractor or solar panel installer in Solano County, restate your expectations and goals, and reiterate your understanding of the agreement. Most problems with local solar companies occur because of poor communication. By being clear about your expectations and theirs, you can avoid most conflicts.
    • Ask your solar panel contractor if you should call to check on the progress or if he will call you with updates.
    • Be sure your service representative has a phone number where they can reach you at all times while they’re installing your solar array. The work will move along more smoothly if your solar contractor/installer can reach you for any necessary updates, questions or work authorizations.
    • When your contractor contacts you, return calls promptly to keep the solar contractor/installer on schedule.
    • Pay for the work promptly.

    Why would you want to be a good customer? Solar contractor/installers in Solano County appreciate customers who are straightforward, honest and easy to work with. Your good customer behavior sets the tone from your end and creates an environment conducive to a good relationship. Things may very well go smoother and any problems may be more easily resolved.

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Check The Work
Compare Your New Solar Panel Installation to the Work Order

Make certain you know what you are buying and that it meets your specifications before it’s installed.

Once the work is complete, check your invoice carefully to make certain you received what you have paid for. Compare the estimates you were given to the final prices on the invoice.

Politely but firmly request explanations for discrepancies. Honest mistakes can be made; checking the invoice can help correct them promptly.

A complete solar installation invoice usually includes the following items:

  • The name, physical address and license number of the solar contractor.
  • A complete list of all solar system work performed.
  • An itemized list of all new solar panels, solar fixtures, materials and replacement parts installed.
  • The total cost, including the amount due for labor and solar panel materials.
  • Any applicable warrantees or guarantees provided by the solar panel manufacturers and the solar installation company.
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Written Warranties
Get Guarantees in Writing for Solar Panel Installation Services

Written warranties will protect you and your home against faulty solar systems or poor installation. A good written guarantee for solar energy system installation should include:

  • The solar contracting firm name, physical address and contractors license number.
  • What solar system materials and work are covered, including whether the solar contractor will replace or repair the solar panels/solar energy system or give you a refund if you have to place a warranty claim.
  • Your responsibility if you need warranty work (i.e., if you have to pay for labor when filing a claim or pay a prorated amount).
  • Terms and limitations of the new solar panels or solar panel repair warranty.
  • If the solar installation warranty coverage is transferrable to the new owner if you sell your home.
  • Any exclusions to the warranty must be in writing.
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Top 10 Requests
Popular Solar Panel Brands in Solano County

When investing in solar, you will want to be certain that you are investing in value. Your solar array should provide you with many years of operation. The brands listed below are among the most widely used in Solano County. Some companies have established reputations for reliability, while others are newer solar panel companies working with exciting advancements in the solar industry.

DayStar Technologies
DayStar manufactures thin-film photovoltaic panels aimed principally at utilities and commercial customers. However, the design of DayStar’s arrays is such that residential customers can use the thin-film panels in a standard mounting system.

First Solar Products             
First Solar offers a complete line of solar thermal products for use in all climates and all seasons. Evacuated tubes and special coatings allow for the heating of water even under cloudy skies and freezing tempertatures.

Fronius USA

Fronius produces inverters for use with photovoltaic arrays, turning the DC current produced by PV into AC current used in your home or business and on the grid.

GE Energy
GE offers a very large selection of energy products for a variety of scales of operation. Included in the GE line are photovoltaic arrays for residential and commercial customers with good performance under a variety of conditions, a GE warrantee, and end-of-life recycling.

Mitsui Comtek                     
Mitsui provides photovoltaic arrays to Berkeley-based PowerLight Corporation, which uses a patented rooftop installation system to lower installation costs.

Pacific SolarTech                
Pacific SolarTech offers a blended photovoltaic and concentrator technology in the form of modules which can be used by residential and commercial customers as well as utility-level generators. The concentrator feature allows the modules to use a fraction of the silicon used in conventional arrays.

Sharp Solar
Sharp has an extended history in the solar industry and offers photovoltaic arrays for residential, commercial, and utility use.

Sunpower Corporation
Sunpower Corporation offers photovoltaic arrays of several types to residential and commercial customers, government customers, and power plant customers. Sunpower offers up to a 25-year warrantee on their products and on installation by their network of dealers.

Sunwize Technologies
Sunwize provides photovoltaics for residential and commercial customers both on- and off-grid as well as government customers. Sunwize has 20 years in the solar business and serves a wide variety of customers in a wide variety of applications.

Terra Solar
Terra Solar specializes in photovoltaics for residential and commercial customers. The company is vertically integrated and has its own research and development, manufacturing, and sales. Terra solar offers thin-film PV for building integrated photovoltaics (BIPV).

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Glossary Of Terms
Glossary of Home Solar Installation Terms

Below are key solar industry terms that will help ease your way through your solar investment process.

consultation
A knowledgeable representative from a solar contractor/installer will need to come to your home or business to assess the suitability of your site for a solar investment.  Once your site has been assessed, issues such as cost of an array, the most suitable array, and financing will come into play.

Also known as: site assessment, solar consultation

Below are key solar industry terms that will help ease your way through your solar investment process.

consultation
A knowledgeable representative from a solar contractor/installer will need to come to your home or business to assess the suitability of your site for a solar investment.  Once your site has been assessed, issues such as cost of an array, the most suitable array, and financing will come into play.

Also known as: site assessment, solar consultation

federal incentive for solar
Tax credits offered by the federal government to help offset the cost of purchasing a solar energy array.  In some instances, tax credits may be replaced by grants.

Also known as: federal solar tax credit

net excess generation  (NEG)
The electricity generated by a PV array beyond the needs of the home or business.  In most places, NEG is sold to the local utility.

net metering
A two-way flow of electricity between the grid and a home or business.  When the home or business needs more power than a PV array is providing, electricity flows into the home or business.  When the home or business is generating more electricity than it needs, the extra electricity (also called net excess generation, or NEG) flows to the grid.  The home or business pays the utility for electricity flowing into the home, while the utility pays the home or business for electricity flowing to the grid.

solar contractor / solar installer
A solar contractor installs, modifies, maintains, and repairs thermal and photovoltaic solar energy systems.

solar photovoltaic
A system for converting solar radiation (sunlight) into electrical power using semiconductors.  Photovoltaic cells are combined into modules, which are combined into arrays.  The arrays are connected to the electrical system of a home or business.

Also known as: photovoltaic, PV

solar thermal
A system for converting solar radiation (sunlight) into heat energy for space heating and cooling and for heating water using a solar collector or array, insulated piping, and a hot water storage system.

Also known as: solar hot water

state incentive for solar
Rebates and tax breaks sponsored or mandated by the State of California to make solar investments more affordable for California homes and businesses.  The incentives take a number of forms, from rebates for solar thermal arrays to favorable rules for electricity buy-back (called net metering).

Also known as: California Solar Initiative, solar rebates

thin film solar cell
An emerging photovoltaic technology in which a solar cell made by layering one or more layers of photovoltaic material on a thin substrate.  The total thickness may be measured in nanometers.

Also known as: thin film photovoltaic cell

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Frequently Asked Questions
Solar Energy FAQ

Q: Why choose a Diamond Certified solar contractor or solar system installer?

Q: Why choose a Diamond Certified solar contractor or solar system installer?
A: Diamond Certified helps you choose a solar system contractor or solar installer with confidence by offering a list of top-rated local companies who have passed the country’s most in-depth rating process. Only solar contractor/installer rated Highest in Quality earn the prestigious Diamond Certified award. Most companies can’t pass the ratings. American Ratings Corporation also monitors every Diamond Certified company with ongoing research and ratings. And your purchase is backed by the Diamond Certified Performance Guarantee. So you’ll feel confident choosing a Diamond Certified solar contractor/installer.

Q:  Why should I invest in solar panels for my home or business?
A:  A solar array is an investment that will pay for itself and then earn a profit in most locations in the US. This is certainly true almost everywhere in California.

Q:  Solar energy seems expensive, so how can I make my money back?
A:  New financing options enable homeowners and businesses to start saving money as soon as their solar panels are active.  Every dollar you don’t spend on buying energy from a utility is a dollar in your pocket.  This adds up quickly, and it adds up even more quickly as energy costs rise.

Q:  If solar power works and can be cost-effective, why does it need government support?
A:  The federal government has supported every major energy source through R&D support and various incentives.  Oil, natural gas, hydroelectric, biofuel, and nuclear industries all have received government support and continue to receive support today because energy drives our economy.  The State of California supports solar partially to help increase the state’s supply of electricity without building new power plants and partially because solar energy can be harnessed right here in California.

Q:  Don’t I have to have lots of expensive batteries to have solar electric power?
A:  Batteries are only necessary if you want to get off the grid.  As long as you stay connected to the grid, you don’t need to install batteries with your new solar power system.

Q:  Do I have to get off the grid to use solar power?
A:  No, you can stay connected to the grid to use solar electric power.  If your solar array generates electricity, your home or business will draw power from your array first, then the grid as needed.  If your array doesn’t generate as much electricity as you need, or if it’s night, your home or business will draw what is needed from the grid.  If you generate more power than is needed, the excess will go to the grid and earn you money.

Q:  Aren’t all solar products made in China?  I want to support American business.
A:  U.S. solar installations generated $6 billion in direct value in 2010, including manufacturing sales.  Of this 75% ($4.4 billion) went into the US economy.

Q: How do I know what kind of solar array is right for my home or business?
A: The answer depends on what you want from your solar array and how much money you are willing to invest.  A small passive solar thermal array is relatively inexpensive and can provide you with heat for water and heating your home.  An active solar thermal array costs more but heats water and heats and cools your home more efficiently than a passive array.  Photovoltaic (PV) arrays are more expensive than solar thermal arrays, but you can use them to offset electricity consumption in your home or business and even sell energy to the local utility.  A Diamond Certified solar contractor/installer can help you determine the right kind of solar array for your home or business based on your specific site, your needs, and your desired level of investment.

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