Fabian Demicoli

Investing in the right Photo-Voltaic (PV) system

 Energy prices today, and for the foreseeable future, and our obligation to reduce carbon emissions, make investing in a PV system a wise move. The problem is that such systems are not cheap, and caution before committing a significant amount is called for.  The upside is that a good system should last in the region of 30 years at least, while the savings should allow the capital outlay to be recouped in as little as two or three years, giving an excellent return on capital over the whole life of the system.

 

Of course, you have to choose a good system at the outset, because otherwise, a dream investment might turn into a nightmare. 

In the last few years the PV boom in Europe, the US and China, has given rise to assorted brands popping up like mushrooms, sourced mainly from the Asian Continent, Greece, Turkey and other countries with similar manufacturing histories. Nothing wrong with that of course, as long as they can provide proper reliable systems and effective warranties. If they do and have a good price, go for it.

However you should be aware that many of the operators behind these brands are prone to suddenly filing for bankruptcy or even vanishing without notice or explanations. Opting for renowned, long established brands that are unlikely to vanish in the next couple of years is essential for your investment to be successful, even if the upfront outlay is a bit on the higher side. It is wiser to rely on slightly higher priced brands that recoup your investment in a reasonable amount of time than try to break the record in payback time only to find out that your investment has suddenly developed fatal flaws and your money has been wasted.

It's said that if something is too good to be true, it probably is: achieving a balance   between price and brand strength can be a key component in getting the right answer to the question of whether this maxim holds.

Article by Noel Gauci, renewable Energy consultant and president of Renewable Energy section of GRTU.

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