Review for SunPower
Newbury Park, CA
SunPower workmanship gets a "F" grade, AGAIN
SunPower workmanship gets a “F” grade, AGAIN. Recently SunPower came out to replace all the microinverters that were failing one by one – our system is less than 2 years old. After they completed the work, we inspected the roof for damage (SunPower has damaged our roof in the past). We were shocked to discover footprints all over our 21 panels – 48 footprints to be specific! The way the panels are laid out on our roof, there was no need to ever walk on them. Walking on panels can cause microcracks in the solar cells, reducing panel performance, which will continue to worsen over time. The microcrack problem is a known issue that is even documented on SunPower websites and SunPower Facebook pages. Here is a quote from SunPower “We do not recommend that anyone walk on the panels because it can damage the cells, which would damage performance”.
After discovering our panels had been thoroughly walked on by the SunPower crew, we called both the SunPower corporate and SunPower regional offices a week ago. However we were only able to leave voicemails since no one answers the phone at either location. No one has returned our calls.
Our previous experiences with SunPower:
Initial installation – damage to the roof and the roof leaked at the panel mounting brackets. SunPower did then come and remove the panels while the roof was fixed, and then SunPower reinstalled the panels.
Reinstallation of panels – SunPower failed to connect 2 of the 21 panels. On our smart phone SunPower application, we kept getting error messages concerning slow data reporting. We kept contacting SunPower about it. After FIVE months SunPower figured out that 2 panels were not reporting, not connected, and therefore producing no power for 5 months.
Data reporting issues resume – Again we noticed this on our smart phone application and informed SunPower. Eventually they diagnosed that the microinverters were failing, which was causing production loss. 1 1/2 months after we notified SunPower of the issue, they replaced all the microinverters and walked all over the panels.
Apparently diagnosing microcracks on installed panels is not a simple thing, and production loss from microcracks will be small at first, but increase over time. So far since SunPower walked on our panels, production on our panels is down 6% over the previous year time period. While it is possible that this weather related, we think it is more probable that this is from 48 footprints of damage.