Business Development Science and Technology

Common Solar Problems: How to fix them

Solar system
By Nyasha Chasakara (Founder & Managing Director @Solarpro Energy Africa)

Solarpro Energy Africa has been installing home solar systems since 2017. Over the years as we interact with clients we provide after-sales services to we have learnt a few lessons. Some of these lessons have helped us improve our service offering and if we were the manufacturer of the products we sell I am sure this would lead to even better products for our customers.

The biggest challenge that clients face with the solar systems is the weather. When there is cloud cover or when it is raining solar systems don’t produce a lot of power. In order to ensure that you get the most out your system its important to let the battery charge and not force the system to power heavy loads.

Here is a list of common support calls:

  1. Low battery fault
  2. System has shut down and battery is off
  3. Can I use my welding machine on the system
  4. Why is my system beeping
  5. Can I can connect my stove to the system
  6. Utility power is available why is my system not charging the battery
  7. System wont turn on but the sun is shining
  8. Why is my battery swelling
  9. My Gel batteries are no longer lasting that much what is the problem
  10. My solar panels are not producing a lot of power but i have 4 of them

Not all problems can be fixed. Take for example the unstable grid power which results in under or over voltage scenarios which then stops the inverter from charging the battery. Our trained technicians have attended to faults were the inverter was not properly configured leading to batteries failing to charge properly. This highlights the need to engage professionals when deciding to go solar. A lot of money is being wasted paying for equipment that is wrong connected, which soon fails and could cause more losses to property due to fire hazards.

At Solarpro we train our customers from day 1 to understand these issues and train them on how to manage their consumption. We recently installed a system in Murehwa to power lights, TV and fridge. We are delighted that one of our blog followers Itai Rogers Chinyadza invested in this system for his family back home and changed their lives. Itai and I connected on LinkeIn sometime back and he read my blog on going solar. He asked me to design a system and he went through the process of considering various offers until he settled on us. We are grateful for this!

The system is working well and thanks to the high literacy levels in Zimbabwe users are able to follow our instructions on how to reset their system in the event of a fault. His family is now able to watch TV, pump water into the tanks to water the garden and provide water for the animals at his family compound. More importantly neighbours from all over his village now have a reliable way to charge their phones. A whole community has been transformed. This is why I love what we do at Solarpro. Thanks to the mobile internet and data services our technicians are also able to watch the inverter via Whatsapp and resolve errors without traveling to the sites.

Our Help Desk has a number of articles that we continue to update in order to train users on how to use their solar systems and get the best out of them.

We are committed to connecting everyone to the sun through Solar technology. Our desire is to simplify solar energy access so that it is accessible. We are working on this and I am really excited about the future. Technology keeps getting better and better. What was impossible a few years ago is now possible and cheaper. Our ability to apply our lessons into new products or improving current products is increasing daily. This means that in the future our customers can expect to get even better products and more services from us.

About the author

Byron Adonis Mutingwende