You paid for that expensive solar energy system, whether from an up-front purchase or a back-end lease or rental agreement. One way or another you are paying for it, and if it’s under-producing compared to what you were promised then it is costing you money, month after month. SolarView tells you what you need to know.
We have all heard horror stories of solar energy systems that either don’t perform at the level that was promised by the salesman, or are simply out of operation for days, weeks, or even months before the owner has any idea that anything is wrong. It’s about time that homeowners are empowered by solar monitoring software to know that their solar energy systems are delivering as promised, every month, every week, and every day.
For just pennies a day, SolarView puts you in charge, letting you know at a glance that your system is operating, and operating well. The SolarView system includes two primary components:
SolarView App is an easy to use solar monitoring software app that runs on your Android phone or Windows desktop or laptop computer, and as long as you have it running you will know at any time just how much energy your solar energy system is producing, and whether or not there are problems with it. There is no web site to log into, and no web pages to navigate. SolarView mobile app runs on all Android phones and tablets, while SolarView desktop app stays open on your computer at all times without impacting your computer performance. Either way it is your easy, instantaneous view into the performance of your solar energy system. It not only gives you your current status at a glance, but in addition it allows you to generate a wide variety of reports and graphs, view weather conditions, understand your peak power times, and audit your system performance against the guarantees provided by your solar installer.
SolarView Monitoring Service is a monitoring service provided by us on your behalf. What this means is that your system is being monitored even when your app or computer is asleep. We proactively keep an eye on your solar energy system 24 hours per day, and notify you by email or text message of error or warning conditions. We also provide you with a daily summary report showing your previous day’s energy production by the hour, and a monthly summary report showing your previous month’s energy production by the day. Your monthly report also analyzes your monthly results compared to the production estimates provided by your solar installer, so you can keep them honest and get the production that you paid for.
You may wonder why you need SolarView monitoring. After all, your solar installer probably promised you that they will monitor your system for you, and your solar inverter company gives you a web site and an app that allows you to examine details about your system. Unfortunately there are limitations to what those sources provide, and these are limitations that are not explained during the sales presentation.
A true monitoring system must feature three characteristics:
- It must be simple and fast. If you have to spend time browsing, logging in, and navigating a web site or phone app then you are unlikely to make regular use of the capability.
- It must be proactive. The monitoring system must do the work for you, and proactively reach out to you when there is something important for you to know.
- It must provide useful, actionable information. It’s not enough to show you graphs and numbers – the monitoring system should provide you with meaning and context for those numbers.
Only SolarView meets these requirements.
Your solar installer almost certainly will not proactively alert you to problems with your system, or may do so only after days, weeks, or months of lost production. During our beta test period for SolarView, we intentionally shut off our test solar energy system to see how long it would take to get a notice from our solar company – which is a very good, five-star rated company. We never were notified. When we discussed this with a representative from the company he informed us that he is personally responsible for over 1000 locations so he is unlikely to look at his monitoring station more than once every four to six weeks! Imagine that your system could be down for that period of time, and meanwhile you are unknowingly drawing your energy off of the grid!
With SolarView you will not have this problem. We have no conflict of interest in conducting continuous monitoring of your system. Most importantly, our monitoring is fully automated. You don’t have to count on a frazzled worker looking over the data for hundreds of clients and then picking up the phone to call you. SolarView checks your system status continuously and notifies you automatically of anything that we detect that might require your attention.
Regarding “monitoring” from solar inverter companies like SolarEdge and Enphase, although these companies provide excellent web sites and apps, these features are passive rather than proactive. That means you need to log in and check your system status manually in order to know what is going on. In our experience, this sort of manual monitoring gets old very quickly, and after the first few days of having your new system you are not likely to be logging in regularly. By contrast, SolarView does this checking for you every 15 minutes throughout your production day.
Furthermore, only SolarView gives you the means to compare your actual production against projected / promised production based on the estimates from your installation company and the published specs from your panel manufacturer. This knowledge provides meaning to the production numbers and gives you the information that you need to keep your service providers accountable.