Skip to content   Skip to footer navigation 

CHOICE Consumer Insights team

Learning more about what you need

The CHOICE Consumer Insights team uncovers what matters to everyday Australians. To do this, we often start by talking to our Voice Your Choice (VYC) research community. 

This page is where we share the insights from our VYC members and where we keep you up to date with our research. 

Find out more about joining Voice Your Choice.

July 2018

More and more consumers are installing rooftop solar systems to cut and control the cost of their rising electricity bills ('Unprecedented': Solar panel installations soar, on track to triple 2017 record, SMH, 9 July 2018).

We decided to investigate whether people were experiencing any problems with their solar installations. To do this, we turned to our Voice Your Choice members, and asked the following questions:

Since installation, have you had any problems with the following components of your solar PV system?

solar pv chart 1

Base: all respondents n=1028.

20% had problems with the inverter

6% had decline in performance/level of output

3% had problems with the cable/connector

2% had problems with the panels themselves

1% had problems with framing/mounting structure

1% had problems with the batteries

8% had other problems

67% haven't had any problems

Did you experience any of the following issues with your installer?

solar pv chart 2

Base: respondents who did not install the system by themselves n=1020.

7% experienced significant delays with the installation work

5% said their installer put in incorrect / faulty wiring

4% said their installer damaged the roof

4% said their installer did not honour or facilitate the warranty process

4% said their installer had missing / inadequate documentation & paperwork

3% experienced deviations from original work plan

3% said their installer put the inverter at an inappropriate location

3% said their installer put the panels at a sub-optimal location

2% faced extra costs that were not disclosed prior to work commencement

2% said their installer used materials different to originally stated

1% said their installer put in incorrect / inappropriate labelling

1% had safety issues

13% had other issues

70% haven't had any problem with the installer

Around a third of all respondents indicated some difficulty with either their system or service provider. These problems varied widely with no one single problem coming up strongly. Although not all of these problems resulted in extra cost or stress, the results will hopefully provide added insight into what you should be asking when installing your new system.

If you've experienced any of the above problems or you're about to embark on a new solar installation, remember that as a member you can always contact our experts at CHOICE Help with any questions relating to consumer law.

Previous insights

Welcome to the new look CHOICE
March 2018
Our research consistently showed that Australians know us well for our product reviews, but are less aware of all the other great work we do. We decided that a new look for CHOICE would unify the many channels we work in, and help spread the word about our efforts to make Australia's consumer markets safer and fairer.

Health insurance matters to you
November 2017
When we asked you what areas CHOICE should focus on, you told us that health insurance is a priority. So far, we've made it easier to find the best health insurance policy for you, and we're investigating gap payments.

How we choose what to work on
October 2017
We asked Voice Your Choice members to tell us what they felt we should focus on, and which campaign CHOICE should champion.