SunSource in Liquidation – what happens to my warranty

SunSourse warranty

If you are wondering why SunSource is not answering their phone, they have closed down, shut their doors. I have heard from multiple sources that liquidators are going into SunSource today to wrap things up. Another Solar business goes into administration, leaving customers wondering “what happens to my SunSource warranty now they have shut down?

*DISCLAIMER: MC Electrical is not affiliated with Sunsource or any other third party sales companies. However, we have over 12 years experience in the solar industry. So, if you’re having issues with your Sunsource Solar Install, Give us a call today on 07 3268 3836 so that we can get your solar system producing power like it was meant to. 

Silver Lining for the Industry

In the past, I’ve posted about great companies like Infinity Power, Electroy, and Solar Guys going into administration. When good companies shut down the solar industry shudders. Today is a bad day for SunSource customers, a worse day for staff, and a hell of a day for their sub-contractors. One of their subcontractors is claiming a loss of $140 000 and another of $250 000. But despite the misery that SunSource has created, today is a good day for the industry.

Allow me to say what I really think. SunSource was run by people who were all about deceiving customers, pressure selling, massively overcharging and under delivering. They followed the business model of the now bust BioSolar, and ended with the same result.

Maybe I have overstated it. Here’s a sample of what their customers have to say:

Sunsource ShutdownVery unprofessional! A SunSource representative went to jail recently for fraud for the second time in twelve months. He promised big returns but after signing we found out it was all lies. I Reffered them to ASIC for investigation   ….. Steer clear!

And here’s one from 2 months ago that dogged a bullet:

Sunsource ShutdownMeeting terminated after 15 minutes. Very unprofessional. He refused to provide a quote so we knew how much it would cost!

This one paid $10 000 to $15 000 for a 5kw system (more than twice of what they should have if it were SunSources top of the range). They gave a generous 2.5-star review:

Sunsource LiquidationOnce they got our money, they basically abandoned us when we were trying to complete our solar system in our home. Sadly after sales told us to chase it all up ourselves. After sales service is terrible we thought they would really help us when we really needed them. Sad to say we were really let down.

What happens to my SunSource workmanship warranty?

First the bad news, your workmanship warranty went down with the company. SunSource used sub-contractors. It’s a small industry I know several of them. They were a mixed bag. One company I know had exceptional standards. The electricians from that company took their job seriously. Then there were the not-so-noble subbies. They would pressure their sparkies to get in and out and as quickly as possible, taking any short-cuts that were necessary to get the job done. Since late 2015 I heard many of the sub-contractors were not getting paid, so they would quit. A young sparkie with a new contractors ticket would come along and give it a crack – until he realised he wasn’t going to get paid and he would quit also. The quality of the work was often (but stress not always) been poor.

Fortunately, repairing poor workmanship is often inexpensive. If you live in Brisbane or South-East-Qld, call us on 32683836, and we can help you with your warranty claim.

What happens to my SunSource Product warranty?

It depends on what panels and inverter you purchased. If SunSource imported the inverter or panels, then your warranty won’t be valid. If the inverter or panel manufacturer still has a presence in Australia, then your warranty should be ok. You will need to pay an Electrician for a service call. If you live in Brisbane or South-East-Qld, call us on 32683836, and we can help you with your warranty claim.

Below I’ve listed the panels and inverters that SunSource have been providing in recent years.

Inverters sold by SunSource

ABB Aurora Inverters
I considered the ABB inverter a quality Italian inverter – until they started failing in droves. However as a reputable company, ABB honour their warranty. You will have to pay a callout to diagnose and replace the inverter, but ABB will honour their 5-year warranty. While getting it replaced, consider getting an ABB WiFI card fitted, so we can both monitor your system online, and pick up more quickly if something goes wrong in the future.

Sungrow Inverters
Sungrow is a quality budget inverter. We are the warranty agents in Brisbane and South East Qld. If your Sungrow inverter has failed, we can replace it for the cost of a call out to diagnose the fault.

B&B inverters
B&B inverters were a cheap Chinese inverter. As I understand it, SunSource would have been the importer for B&B inverters. B&B do not have a presence in Australia. Have a read of my B&B inverter review.
I
t seems to me that you no longer have a warranty on your B&B inverter.

Panels sold by SunSource

Phono Solar Panels
SunSource mainly sold Phono Panels. Phono is a quality panel, and your warranty should be safe. This would be a product warranty only, not a labour warranty. However, a strange rule in the Renewable Energy Credit Scheme is that you can claim REC’s on replacement panels – providing your system is up to current standards. The  RECs (often called “rebate”) usually covers the majority of the labor cost of the work involved in replacing the panels. So if your Phono panels fail (and you live in Brisbane or the South-East-Qld), we should be able to replace them for a small out of pocket cost.

This post is a work in progress, and will be updated as I learn more about SunSource products.

Conclusion

While the administration and liquidation of SunSource is bad news for their existing customers and subcontractors, it’s great news for the industry. Your workmanship warranty is no longer, which is a bit of a concern as SunSource underpaid subcontractors who often took short cuts. There was very little quality control. The products they used were not worth the money they charged, but many of them were ok. In most cases, we can assist you with claiming an inverter warranty, but you will need to pay for a service call to test the system and the cost of the labour to replace the inverter. Your panels warranty is a little more interesting. While the labour component may be large, we can claim the Renewable Energy Credits a second time, which will usually cover the cost of bringing your system up to today’s standard and installing the replacement panels. Contact your local solar service company to assess your system issues or for system upgrades/replacements call us on 3268 3832.

Mark

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Author
Mark Cavanagh

Mark is the Owner and Manager of MC Solar & Electrical. He’s an Electrician, accredited solar installer/designer and an electrical contractor.

Get A Free Product Tour

Visit our showroom in Eagle Farm, Brisbane and discover what’s possible for your property.