Take the guesswork out of buying quality solar systems
The Eskom Solar Rebate Programme, established to bring discounted quality solar water heating systems to the South African public, aims to ensure that only systems designed to meet the rigours of South Africa’s climate qualify for an Eskom subsidy.
Eskom’s General Manager of Demand Side Management, Andrew Etzinger, says consumers wishing to make the move to solar water heating should ensure that the system they buy has at least a test certificate awarded by the South African Bureau of Standards (SABS).
“An even better system and assurance of quality is a system that has the full SABS Mark of Approval. Householders should also be aware that if a supplier is not registered as an Eskom approved distributor, they will not qualify for the rebate available on the Eskom Solar Rebate Programme,” says Etzinger.
Eskom is removing the uncertainty surrounding the purchase of solar water heating systems by allowing only SABS-approved suppliers on the programme. Consumers can be assured of quality and not cheap untested systems because they have access to suppliers whose products have met South African quality requirements.
“In addition, our suppliers have the expertise required to match solar heating systems to particular household requirements.
“Potential buyers should be aware that there are many systems available. Many of these do not meet the standards required for a solar water heating system in South Africa. Quality and suitability of a system for a particular area are of prime importance when buying a system. It is important for instance, that when buying a system for a home in Gauteng, it should be proven to withstand low temperatures and frost,” says Etzinger.
“Eskom advises that you buy the best system you can afford, and we encourage people considering the switch to solar to familiarise themselves with the Eskom programme the advantages it offers.”
The key attributes of the Eskom programme are:
- It is available across the country to all householders;
- The Eskom programme is structured around making quality solar systems available to the public and ensuring that all systems meet the minimum performance criteria;
- Approved installations supplied by Eskom-approved suppliers qualify for a rebate;
- All registered Eskom suppliers use accredited installers to install their systems;
- Eskom-registered suppliers have had some of their systems tested by the South African Bureau of Standards (SABS) to qualify to participate for the programme. Consumers are warned to make sure which systems from a specific supplier is approved as not all their systems on offer may be on the programme;
- As the systems on the programme have either the SABS test certificate or full SABS Mark of Approval, purchasers can be sure that they are buying installations designed to withstand the rigours of the South African climate;
- In accordance with building and SABS regulations, Eskom advises consumers to obtain a compliance certificate which checks that all electrical additions or alterations are carried out safely and in accordance with the Occupational Health and Safety Act; and
- Eskom monitors the programme on an ongoing basis
To find out more about the scheme, suppliers, their physical location and the value of rebates, consult the Demand Side Management website on the address alongside or call the Eskom Solar Help Desk on the number alongside.