Tesla Energy is the renewable energy division of Tesla. Within it are two business units;
It competes closely with its rival Sunrun for the mantle of being the largest installer of residential solar power systems. It is the manufacturer of the Tesla Powerwall 2, arguably the leading residential energy storage solar battery solution on the market.
With its renewable energy solutions and its pioneering electric cars, Tesla has done more to fight climate change than any other company in the world. We here at SolarReviews have a positive bias towards supporting Tesla because of the alignment of their goals and ours to fight climate change on all fronts.
However, SolarReviews exists to provide neutral advice to homeowners considering solar and so the question we must restrict ourselves to is whether consumers should buy their solar panels from Tesla as opposed to other local solar companies.
There are several pro's to buying solar panels from Tesla namely:
Tesla solar panel prices are published online and you can sign up online; In July 2020 Tesla reduced their system prices and Tesla prices for residential solar systems are now really competitive. In fact, they are now cheaper than the market average; and Tesla makes the Powerwall 2 solar battery so if you decide to buy a hybrid system with battery storage there may be some comfort to know you are buying it directly from the manufacturer.
However, there is one major downfall to buying solar panels from Tesla. If you look at the reviews score of Tesla on ours and other reviews websites you will note that they are significantly lower than the average reviews score of local family-owned solar companies.
Solar panels are a unique consumer product in that they are designed to last 25-30 years and interact with the utility grid and the other electrical infrastructure within your home.
Although solar is very reliable, things do go wrong and where Tesla and other large corporate solar installation companies have fallen down is in a lack of after-sales service.
You only need to read through the reviews of companies like Tesla, Sunrun and Vivint to see that residential solar is really a business much better handled by smaller, local solar companies who are able to offer better after-sales technical support.
We remain hopeful that Tesla will find a way to improve this facet of their business but until such time as this is reflected in their consumer reviews, our advice remains that you should look for a well established local solar company when buying solar panels for your home.
Office location: Austin, TX 78728
My experience from start to finish has been seamless. I chose to get quotes for 2 local companies, in addition to Tesla. Tesla was 20% less than the next closest quote. The process of design and modifications was handled by my project rep, Liz. Liz was readily available and I always received a text or call back within 24 hours. We had the design and permits done in less than 2 weeks. The longest delay I had, was waiting on CPS Energy to give us a temporary disconnect date. Once we received that, my install was scheduled and only about 2 weeks out. Fast forward to install day. The crew actually arrived early, something I've never had happen before with any construction project. Rob, Tony and the rest of the crew from Austin were so professional. From the moment they stepped foot on property, safety was obviously the #1 priority. They immediately set up like a production crew, complete with tables and designs. The electricians modified my original main panel/inverter/TEG layout, to something way more esthetic than the original plans. From the beginning, I could tell this was going to be an amazing experience. I purchased a 10.2kw system, with 2 Tesla Powerwall 2.0's for whole home backup. I was very specific about where I would like my PowerWalls, and although it was difficult, the crew made it happen. IT LOOKS FANTASTIC. Exactly as I had imagined. They even went the extra mile to paint and hide conduit, etc. The minute you open my garage, you are now greeted with an eye level bank of 2 Powerwalls. My install was on a tile roof, and they were exceptionally careful. They painted any visible conduit (which was like 2 small pieces) to match my roof. I actually saw them spray a piece of extra conduit with 3 colors of brown and take it to my roof to make sure they got the closest color that would match! The crew was so friendly and nice, they never once got tired of my questions, and actually seemed to love explaining it to me. Words cannot convey just how amazed I was with the entire project. Two days later, I have a gorgeous set of 2 arrays, 2 powerwalls and all the goodies. The yard and outside were cleaned thoroughly, and I did not find one piece of trash, again, a first for any construction crew I've ever had here. When they came back out to test the system, Rob brought a drone and took some sweet shots of my new system. I give Tesla kudos for a job well done. My system looks better than any install in my neighborhood by a long shot. I can't wait to get my inspection completed and start soaking the south Texas sun in to power my home. Thank you Tesla, and the Austin based crew for an absolutely FLAWLESS experience. Elon is clearly about to take over the world if all the installs are like this!
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