The Solar Project – Notes On Our Installer (Video Interview)

[This post is part of a series about our net-zero residential solar project – see a list of links to the full series here, a list of frequently asked questions here or click here to bring up all Green-related postsPrevious Post in Series.]

I talked a bit about the installer of our system, Independent Power Systems, in this post and this post, but I have few additional thoughts and a video interview to add to the mix.

Overall, IPS has been nothing short of amazing to work with. If they weren’t, I wouldn’t hesitate to spill the beans, but my satisfaction is very genuine. Every person I have dealt with has been knowledgeable, gracious, helpful, and enthusiastic. (Special shout-out to Chris Carerra, Alan Robertson, James Boutin, Bill Smith, Race Traver, Deb Ostedt, Steve Schoo and Tina Boniface!)

While solar projects can be long and complex, doing one is a really cool undertaking, and it is great to work with a team that makes it as fun as it ought to be. As you can see in the short interview below, IPS is staffed with this kind of person. The company was low key and low pressure to work with, they did what they said they would do, they were flexible, they answered every conceivable question we had, they were respectful of our privacy, and they did excellent work. They worked hard, put in long days and worked through the weekends to try and hit our target completion date (which they easily would have if not for our town’s electrical and building inspectors).

One of the most appealing aspects of working with IPS is their comprehensive approach. They are not unique amongst installers in trying to minimize the hassles for the system owner, but they are unique in how far they go with it – they take care of every conceivable detail before, during and after the project – all the permits, the equipment delivery, dealing with the leasing company, dealing with the state and federal tax and rebate paperwork, taking care of setting up the monitoring system for earning your SREC income, sending you your SREC checks, even setting up all your website log-in credentials.

In my case they even took the extra step of helping me install my Powerhouse Dynamics eMonitor system (discussed in the installation context here and in greater detail in a future post on conservation). They offered to host a system switch-on party for all of our neighbors and friends to answer questions about our system and the technology in general. And they even worked with me to design special custom “This Device is Powered by the Sun” stickers (above right) that I wanted for all of our family members’ laptops, iPhones and other battery-operated mobile devices (in particular, those belonging to our kids, who can help spread the word amongst the members of their generation.) I really hope IPS makes these stickers a permanent part of every residential job they do – the more conversations getting started about solar, the better.

I will talk more about using the system and conservation steps we have taken in future posts, but with regard to the installation itself, I’ll conclude by saying that, all-in-all, it was an awesome project working with IPS. Here’s the video interview I did with Alan and James (email subscribers click here to view the video):

[This post is part of a series about our net-zero residential solar project – see a list of links to the full series here, a list of frequently asked questions here or click here to bring up all Green-related posts.  Previous Post in Series.]

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  1. So is that a video?

    • Christopher says

      No, it was a really amateur home-made effort. My video editing skills are definitely lacking. Need to do something about that some day….

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