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SolarCity
SolarCity
Overall Satisfaction Rating
1.28/5
  • 5 stars
    7
  • 4 stars
    0
  • 3 stars
    1
  • 2 stars
    6
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    83
Based on 97 ratings submitted in the last yearSHOW RATING DISTRIBUTION

SolarCity

ConsumerAffairs Accredited Brand

Since 2006, SolarCity has strived to be the national leader in clean energy services and has become America’s largest solar provider. We specialize in residential and commercial solar systems. We provide energy at a lower cost than paying for energy generated by burning coal, oil and natural gas.

Our mission is to see millions adopt clean energy services, which in the long run will save them from rising electricity costs. We will work with you through the entire process and will provide ongoing monitoring and repair services. Call today for more information!

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Last updated: March 28, 2018

490 SolarCity Consumer Reviews and Complaints

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: March 28, 2018

Worst customer service AFTER they lock you in for a TWENTY-YEAR contract. I called 12 months after we had our panels installed because we weren't saving as much energy as they promised they would. These panels are really ugly, so I didn't want them at first but figured if they saved us SO MUCH MONEY on power that is was worth a try. WRONG, WRONG, WRONG. They suckered me into adding even more ugly panels onto the roof. One year after that, we had roof damage due to a bad wind storm and they want to charge me double for removing the roof when they duped me into getting two systems in the first place. I am currently trying to find a way to get out of it.

12 people found this review helpful
Top 490 Reviews and Complaints about SolarCity

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Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: March 21, 2018

Great service on the front end, nice people, etc. Panel installers arrived on time. Installed system after a 2 month wait. I have a whole house generator system so I was concerned about wiring installed. I have ATS for system. I ask the electrician on site if he was a master electrician. He stated no but one was available, never arrived on site. The installers installed the ground rod, next day survey came out to mark my yard so installer would not damage any of my underground utilities. After waiting several weeks for city inspector the install failed inspection. Installers came back "corrected" the issue, wait a couple more week for re-inspection, conduit was again placed too close to electrical box, had to get variance to proceed.

Never received notice to activate system, spoke with SolarCity several times. Finally received go ahead to activate system, the phone app updated days later.

A month later received phone call that system was shutting down throughout the day and they need to come over and correct issue. I wait two weeks for appointment, they cancelled and rescheduled. Just called today and found out the appointment is scheduled for this week, NO communication. I call MySolarCity earlier today and the guy said "I not going to lie to you" I thought well that good but he did not help. This is my experience. The solar install was over 30 panels.

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3 people found this review helpful
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Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: March 20, 2018 9KW System. SolarCity was very active since my initial contact until first payment and installation. Roughly a month, though some delays were on my side in reviewing and questioning. Since installation I have been waiting a month for accurate input be shared with Electric Company. Delays within SolarCity. It seem like a month that I have an electric bill when I should not. My timeline: January 8 - First Proposal. January 21 - All parties completed Documentation

January 21 - Initial $500 payment. January 21 - Site survey scheduled - this is done online by me at a date I looked for. January 27 - Site Survey. January 27 - Received Documents for signing with Notary. January 31 - Proposed System. January 31 - Questioned the system design.

February 2 - Finally received response that someone will get back to me. February 2 - I signed the proposal as I was told any changes could set back the project. February 12 - System installation scheduled, my choice to delay 2 days enabling a Saturday install. February 14 - Invoice for 50% of balance. February 16 – Payment. February 17 - System installation. Made changes to design during installation. February 21 - Re-design approval. February 22 - Notice on Inspection. February 26 - City Inspection (I was not advised to be home for electrical box inspection).

March 1 - Had to be home for re-inspection inside. March 2 - I check to see if inspection results was send to Electric Company. March 2 - Invoice for final payment. March 7 - No response yet from scheduler, I resend request on results to Electric Company. March 3 - I questioned need for final payment, system is not functioning yet. March 7 - Reminder on payment, no response on my request on why payment. March 7 - Final payment. March 12 - I check with Electric Company, was advised something is missing. A placard is needed and SolarCity did not know. March 14 - Last update from Sales, he went dark for 3 days. His title - Sr. Sales Support Specialist. I am not getting a timeline. March 15 - I shared my gate code with Ops team. March 17 - Was told that they have other scheduled work too.

March 19 - No response yet... System has been installed more than a month, with delays in scheduling inspection and submitting accurate documentation. Once accurate documentation is send to Electric Company, they have 9 -10 weeks according to SolarCity. I will update as I get further input. My suggestion, ensure SolarCity is ready to support your County / City / Electric Company.

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4 people found this review helpful
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Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: March 6, 2018

It has been a horrible experience from the start. My online account does not work. They are telling me that I am one of the 10000 customers that are running into this issue. They were not able to process my bill and they charged me a chunk of money after 3 months of not being able to charge me because the previous house owners was still registered under the address and his credit card was still associated with the account. To top it off, my gateway does not work at all after they told me it is all good and I should see it working in 24h. Months later it does not work. I have wasted my time and called them multiple times to resolve the multiple issues and only after numerous calls they realized my address was incorrect, my phone number was wrong. Still my online account is pointless, I do not receive billing invoice. My gateway does not work still.

6 people found this review helpful
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Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: March 3, 2018

I leased solar from this SolarCity (Tesla now) in January 2015; service was okay until I requested transfer to my new house. Before selling old house I contacted several times discussing options, The seller do not want to assume the lease, then I did not have any other choice rather than transfer. I paid for removal $499, Tesla requested new house roof plan, roof plan was given by builder, on the day of closing, I got a call from Tesla that cannot reinstall in my new house due to some legal issue with SRP.

My previous utility was APS, no issues with APS. Per SRP no legal issues going on, Panels was removed on January 19th 2018, still I am paying bill for SolarCity, Today I got a letter from SolarCity stating releasing contract due to debtor default; I did not understand, how come debtor's default? SolarCity broke the contract, I was told while purchasing I could move anywhere USA with any utility company. On top of everything, the man called me was so rude, told me I would end up paying full amount for the panel which is sitting in their storage, I did not sign the release contract. I never recommend SolarCity to anybody I know.

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11 people found this review helpful
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Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: March 2, 2018

I took bought a house last year with a 1-year old system installed by Solar City. I took over the 30-year loan on the system. From day one I have been plagued with invoicing errors. Solar City invoiced me for alleged payments owed by the previous owners. I have my loan origination document that clearly states my principal balance when I took over the loan and I disputed the charges. Solar City received a lump sum payment from the original owners paid out of escrow in April. By now it's June and Solar City tried telling me payment was not received until some time later (resulting in interest charges) and I had to chase it through escrow and verify that yes, the funds were immediately distributed. Every single month I received incorrect invoices and had to call them and dispute every time.

I had signed up for auto-pay. After a few months, they stopped withdrawing my auto-payments without informing me. Interest accrued on my account. I thought I got it resolved, but a few more months later of still no auto-pay and I inquired, they told me I had to call or email to authorize payments because my account was complicated. I don't understand how/why it's so complicated. So I authorize my Jan 2018 payment and they send me a receipt saying payment received. Receive my Feb invoice and the numbers are off again and show no reduction in principal balance. Inquire again, and they say January payment didn't really go through (so I look at my checking account and verify no transaction) and I have 3 months of accrued interest brewing. I schedule a payment of $100 and confirmed with my checking account - yes it went through this time.

I'm angry and over it so I request a payoff quote. The payoff quote is more than $200 than the principal balance on my last invoice. I dispute it. They insist the payoff is accurate, citing I have $75 in accrued interest. I remind that I made a $100 payment that should negate that $75 plus some, if that were true. I ask them to send me some sort of balance sheet showing a running total with my payment history. They refuse. Really? It's simple amortization! At this point, I'm paying off the loan and saying screw it. Me paying an extra $100-$200 that I don't expect to get back is worth the savings in future interest avoided as well as not having to deal with their financing dept. ever again. I reported them to the State of California.

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5 people found this review helpful
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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Feb. 25, 2018

We've had our SolarCity system for over 18 months and it's been offline about half that time. The main issue is a reoccurring problem with the power inverter. Apparently, there is a common problem with the electronic board that communicates with the wireless gateway. They've replaced it once already, as well as added a wireless range extender (which they just asked me to disconnect since the problem returned). My complaint however isn't ultimately with the poor functionality of the system, it's with the fact that they bill me regardless of whether the system is actually working! For nearly two years I've paid BOTH SolarCity AND my regular utilities provider (in my case BGE) every month for the SAME power consumed.

One of their customer service reps advised that my bill is for the lease of my panels and not the power consumed. I'm aware of the details of my contract. I'm also aware that as part of that lease, it is expected that the panels will generate electricity not simply serve as an unsightly adornment on my roof for aesthetic purposes. I'm paying for a service. I've been told for months that once my inverter begins working again, SolarCity will be able to get an accurate reading from it and issue a credit. That hasn't happened. There is no end in sight here. I've tried to remain optimistic but you're not making this easy SolarCity. Not at all.

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14 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Feb. 23, 2018

I am 100% satisfied with my 5.4 kW system that is on my townhouse. The expectations were set upfront, and I knew that I would have to do a little work with email communication (no big deal). I was able to have a competitive quote price matched after my contract was signed and before my installation was approved by the county and the utility. They did a great job of educating my family and I to get the system up and running. A+++.

2 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Feb. 22, 2018

I was lied to when I signed up for the installation of the solar panels. I was told I would only be paying for the energy I used from the production. Then when my bill was 3 times as high as I was paying PG&E they claimed they put too many panels on my house and that I was to pay for the production, not for what I was using. About six months later as my bill continued to increase one of the people on the phone let it slip that I wasn't even being monitored and that I was paying an estimate of what they thought the panels would produce. I took them to small claims court and won. I am now on a set fee per month but I have to pay it manually every month because for over a year they can't be bothered to get my billing straightened out so that I can be on auto pay.

The last time I complained they offered me a dining discount that was worth about $3.00. They claim it is a software problem and won't admit that this is their way of punishing me for winning in court. They have lied to my face. Lied over the phone and their representative at small claims court was rude and dismissive. I tell everyone I meet considering solar for their home to stay away from SolarCity.

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18 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Feb. 9, 2018

First couple of years, we saw great savings in our electr. bill; however as time goes by, the monthly lease payments go up (1 of the few things they did warn us about) and the "true-up" bill to the electr. co. at the end of the year has grown to about $1400/yr. So we're only saving about $30/month over the pre-solar costs & they will narrow down even more as time goes by.

And, around here anyway, having leased solar makes your home darn near unsellable; understandable that nobody wants to get roped into these 20-yr contracts that don't allow for you to pay it off early. At the end of the 20 yrs (& NOT before then), you can either extend the contract or let 'em come repossess their panels, etc. And get this: if you decide to move (if you even find a buyer for your house), they'll move your panels to your new place or if you decide to leave the panels with the house, Solar City's "third party loan" company has to approve the buyers taking over the lease.

I heard 1 guy say he was going to just quit making the payments & let 'em come repossess their stuff. Well guess what? If you, like I did, got roped into letting them take the payments auto out of your bank acct--and they really push you to do it this way, "We'll charge you $7.49 less a month, bla bla"--you can't cancel the payments since you didn't set up the autopay thru your bank yourself but set it up thru Solar City, so you have to contact Solar City to stop the payments. Yeah, right; you know what they'll say to that. (That's my bank's policy anyway; maybe yours would be different.)

Anyway, we're now sitting here in an unsellable house (unless we lower the price down to "give-away" level). They should really give people the option of paying the loan off early; but neither of us had ever leased anything before & feel like we were rushed thru the reading & signing of the contract. So don't lease solar & don't set up auto payments thru anybody but your bank.

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10 people found this review helpful
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Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Feb. 7, 2018

SolarCity (Tesla) installed my solar panels in October and as of today, February 6, 2018, I cannot turn them on. The entire month of January I was told by SolarCity that they had submitted everything PGE needed only to find out that they had not submitted the final building permit. I called SolarCity so many times to check on the status and was repeatedly told they did not need to do anything. The only reason I found out that SolarCity needed to submit a building permit is because someone at PGE helped me to extract the details. I call and call and no one does anything. PATHETIC service.

14 people found this review helpful
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Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Jan. 23, 2018

This review is meant as a 'heads up' when using this company for Solar - not necessarily a 'don't go there'. The one star review is a direct reflection of this part of my experience with this company - not the whole experience. I had my solar panels installed by SolarCity just under a year ago (2017) and up to now-had been very satisfied with most of the experience. There was a delay between the solar installation and 'going live' but, all in all - it went smoothly and all summer my panels generated a significant amount of solar energy. I lease the system as opposed to having purchased it. I am very upset with the company right now. I have skylight on my upper roof (2 story house), my master bedroom, and after a recent significant rainfall, noticed a leak coming from the lower end of my skylight through the drywall ceiling.

We had our professional 'roof man', who has met our roofing needs over the past 40 years, come look at it. Upon checking out the leak and the roof - this had nothing to do with the solar installation, he informed us that this roof, of 28 years (20 yr shingles), was showing significant signs of deterioration in regards to the roofing materials (shingles showing wear) and that the solar panels should not have been installed without addressing replacing the roofing material first. He addressed the leak (minor issue) and I called SolarCity. I was very upset that the condition of the roofing material wasn't brought to my attention at the time of the roof inspection. I was given a 'scripted reply' by the customer service person I spoke with-that when the engineers come out to inspect roofs, the only issue they are concerned with is the 'roof structure and ability to support the panels', they are NOT inspecting the roofing material.

I informed the customer service person that I felt this was unprofessional, misleading and neglectful, because in my mind, a 'roof inspection' is a dual inspection - structure and roofing material integrity. Especially when it is going to cost me ~ $400 to have the solar units removed and put back in order to replace the roof (not even a year later!) I'd asked my sales person after the roofing inspection, specifically about the roof 'being in good shape', only to be assured that 'all was good and passed the engineer's inspection'. I received a follow up phone call from another SolarCity rep after completing their survey, only to hear the same script. I let her know the same thing, most homeowners would think a 'roof inspection' did assess the roofing material and let the homeowner know, prior to installation, that it may need attention.

So - here is my warning: Buyer BEWARE! If you do go with this company, have a professional roofer inspect your roof prior to agreeing to an installation and save yourself the money of having to pay for the labor of removing/replacing the solar because their engineers didn't include the evaluation of the roofing material integrity in your inspection.

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13 people found this review helpful
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Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Jan. 22, 2018

I am complaining about your service is very horrible. My bill before I installed your panels was in $80 dollars a month, now is $100 at month & I talk to a representative & she told me if this. If I don’t like this You have to move it. Ok you Solar City thinking this is right pay more money because you yes you lying to the people about it your product.

19 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Jan. 15, 2018

We leased the solar system since 2010, the system went down the hill since few years ago and never hit the minimum 7KW for 3-4 years, I called and write them many times a year. No one ever answer or they just sent you an quick email for nothing and never mention the refund. We feel really bad, and will advise everyone who DO NOT DO business with them.

12 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Jan. 14, 2018

I have over 70 panels on my house and don't see any type of savings. It's actually a cost neutral but cost me money in damages during the winter months. It was never explained how the snow would fall off the panels during the winter months here in Massachusetts. I was told all the benefits, never the cons. I have a 2 story colonial which is covered about 90 percent on my house with the 70 panels. So far we've had these panels for about 3 years and the damage of the snow has cost me $2,500.00 from the damage of my deck pulling away from the house, gutters, and also putting a huge dent on my hood of my truck backing out from the garage.

I called Solar City and asked if they would install some type of snow barrier to avoid the snow falling down. The customer service was very rude and indicated that it was stated in the contract that I was responsible for getting the snow off my panels. I explained the main problem is that the panels are 40 feet from the ground. Again, she indicated that it was in the contract and I was responsible to figure out how to get the snow off the panels. I further explained to the customer service agent that all 4 entries of my home are in line of snow falling which happens when it falls.

I further indicated how my truck was damaged and also the house as well. My main fear is that when this heavy snow falls it could possibly fall on my family and or dogs while exiting my home. Lastly, I asked if I could buy my own barriers and attach them to the panels. I was told by the customer service agent that they are owned by Solar City and I wasn't authorized. I don't know what to do at this point. If I knew this ahead of time I would of never signed the contract. Highly disappointed.

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9 people found this review helpful
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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Jan. 9, 2018

They failed to explain the Contract as well as took almost twelve months to get the contract sent to us. My room which is on other side of SolarCity power box has destroyed two plasma screen TVs, they need to tell their customers not to put anything on side of wall where power box is. They lied to us about the low payments with SolarCity. It's bogus. What's the point of having panels if they still rely on Electricity to function. We had power outage and thought solar panels would still keep electricity on. But no... solar is not advanced. The furthest Technology we have reached is electricity... Without it we as a humanity go extinct. Super dissatisfied with the SolarCity, scam... and lies... as well as Elon Musk is a fake. Imposter. Liar and a thief.

9 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Jan. 9, 2018

SolarCity told me the offset would be about 98% and to remove the panels it would be 400 and 400 to re-install. I am only offsetting by 50% and they want to charge me over 7000 to remove the panels. When brought to their attention, the excuse was they were not in the conversation. The contract states competitive pricing but since SolarCity has specific equipment nobody will give a written competitive price. Misleading information, to me, is unethical.

12 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Jan. 8, 2018

These guys have either the worst billing system ever devised for a major company or the worst people trying to manage it. I have had a billing issue with them for over 3 years now, starting with their auto pay system. They would take money without me ever seeing an invoice and at random times during the month. Obviously, that isn't anything many folks would put up with, cancelled that option. So they want to charge me $15.00 a month to pay by check since they set me up under 2 accounts since they messed up the productions calculations.

Plus, they didn't cash checks and credit my account for months, again, not an acceptable practice. In addition, their system and the electric company production records don't jive and they either {a} didn't want to prove up their system or {b} can't prove up anything. Argued with them for over a year and still don't believe the jumbled info they sent. Then they finally set up an electronic pay system, best thing they did in my opinion. HOWEVER, all they did was push the error to that one and those folks are just as bad as the other ones when it comes to resolving the issue.

Then the internet interface was down for 2 months before I could convince them to send a new one, still wondering how if that isn't working how do they know what the system is producing and how it jives with what the utility company is showing. After many complaints and frustrating conversations I had 1 person trying to work with me a few years back, but he couldn't show me where all the money I sent was accounted for. It appears that Solar City has a different view of resolving issues than the average person has, their way or no way. I WILL FOREVER REGRET EVER DOING BUSINESS WITH SOLAR CITY...

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10 people found this review helpful
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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Jan. 8, 2018

Well Ramon “Mone” was here at my house giving me the moon and the stars (nothing personal with the guy) but when it came to the estimated amount of money I was going to spend I was over 20 buck of my original bill. He promises a new electrical panel for free (lie #1). Also he says that I was going to get an amount on my taxes (lie #2). He promises next day installation (lie #3). And I can keep going with the lies I got. End up not getting Solar ** because I went to my lawyer with the contract and he just look at me and laughed. BEFORE you do anything please do more research with other companies. Also Solar ** people don't stop emails and phone call and the harassment. I am happy I didn't get this foony company.

17 people found this review helpful
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Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Dec. 28, 2017

I am very disappointed with the service. I had Solar City install panels on my roof 7 months ago. For 4 months on and off, the equipment was faulty and they changed some parts and still no luck, finally they changed the entire box in the garage, but now I am faced with a $800 bill so far in my TRUE UP from Edison and this is just for 7 months only, besides on what I pay monthly to Solar City as per the agreement. The equipment did not produce enough and I do not know what to do? Solar City cannot help out. Please advise what can be done here? My estimated first year of production is supposed to be at 7826 kWh. My Solar system size is 5.2 kW DC. Appreciate any advice. Thanks.

12 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Dec. 20, 2017

We bought a house that previously had SolarCity solar panels installed. Months later we found out the roof was leaking down a wall causing major damage. This shingle roof was not the appropriate roof for this house and needed replacement with a tar Roof. No roofing company would guarantee a shingle roof on this house and after many calls to Solar City regarding installing on this roof I have an email from Solar City stating they agreed on a tar roof from their Regional Mgr. So we signed a contract to De-install for new roof and re-install for $499 before the 2016 rains started. The roof was done but the roofing company couldn’t coordinate with Solar City to install panels and they finished the roof before the rain. The home is under Property Mgmt who were paying the Solar Bill that had not been installed each month unbeknownst to us.

Solar City contacted us regarding bill a few months later and we told him the story who passed it on to his Regional Mgr. We would like panels re-installed. Months go by and finally they ask would we break contract and we said yes either way but we weren’t going to pay for non-installed solar. I email 2-3 people each month regarding having the matter decided and today Dec 20th, they say we have to pay $499 (de-install/re-install fee) (never was reinstalled since August 2016). All Solar payments up until this month! Even though we have been waiting for their decision on installing panels or breaking contract! So now the price they want is $1100! I believe maybe it should be 1/2 of the $499.

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7 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Dec. 18, 2017

SolarCity deployed Solar Panels and equipment in October. Issue 1: The system inspection by city failed as SolarCity person did not bring right equipment. Second time inspection went fine. The homeowner's time was wasted as someone need to be around to open the gate for the personnel. (BTW - installation have 1 issue, instead of using house ground, they redundantly drilled a hole in ground to install ground rod - not yet resolved.) Issue 2: The SolarCity power inverter never communicated with gateway. 3 visits by 3 different technicians so far and no resolution over last 2.5 months. The last guy figured out that electronic bridge board in inverter is faulty. Said he will get it in 2 days, 1 week passed, another week passed. Now they say it takes 14 days. Still no light at the end of tunnel.

No proactive tracking, no update on timeline, no set timelines. They just lie every time you ask and give some absurd answer. No way to reach the technical team online. You are dealing with customer service who just does not know much and of no help other than giving another timeline at every call. Totally frustrated. BTW – it’s their own requirement to have power generation monitored 24/7 but consumer is following up, wasting time without any resolution over the months. Pretty bad service overall.

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9 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Dec. 7, 2017

Early in the process of going solar, a gentleman spent a great deal of time on my roof. When he came down, he stated he was having a great deal of trouble getting the readings he needed. Were these readings correct? The system installed is not generating what was expected. My system was pretty much installed the shortest day of the year. Shortest day to longest day should give me some idea of what my system would produce in 6 months. Production for the first half year fell short. September 2016 I emailed my salesman and he verified, "The system is about 200 kWh short from what we estimated so far." After 1 year of 2733 kWh expected, a disappointing 2411.2 kWh were produced.

After contacting SolarCity numerous times, nothing is resolved. Instead of a solution, I was told what my local forecast was, told my consumption must be increasing, and told I have guarantee and would receive a check after 2 years should the system not perform. I continued to contact SolarCity with the Customer Service department referring me to their Technical Department and the Technical Department referring me back to Customer Service Department. I received a power bill from PSE&G in the middle of the summer showing I used 10kWh from my power bank in one of the most productive months of the year. (Not possible.) I called PSE&G & inquired about my energy bank and they informed me at the same time last year I had 300 kWh more in my bank.

There have been no changes in my home, no new appliances, no A/C units in use at all, no one in the house except me, no new buildings, no new tall trees. The only change from 2016 to 2017 is that I was home during the day in 2016, and using the computer every day. My usage should be less in 2017. When I contacted SolarCity Customer Service and told them there is definitely something wrong having 300 kWhs less in the bank this summer, I was told again I have a Guarantee and will have to wait for 2 years to see IF I will be receiving a check. Clearly after more than a year and a half, SolarCity has done nothing to look into a possible malfunction in their equipment and now, Customer Service is telling me after 2 full years of falling short, they will decide IF I will be getting a check.

I paid SolarCity in full for a system that will provide me with all my power for the next 30 years. (Providing no changes.) My latest PSE&G bill shows I have nothing in my Energy Bank. I will not be looking forward to paying PSE&G full electric bills this Winter when I have already pre-paid SolarCity for my power. I don't have a monthly payment. My system is paid off. If the system was working correctly, I wouldn't be paying PSE&G for the next 5 months.Where the initial readings incorrect? Are all the panels working? I should have at least 300kWh more in my bank. Is someone stealing my power? Has someone tampered with the system? After emailing numerous people, they don't even agree what the guaranteed amount is. The one person who knew what he was doing at SolarCity is gone. Tesla/SolarCity does not deliver what they promised. Today is December 7, 2017 - after almost 2 years, only 4609 kWh produced.

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10 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Dec. 1, 2017

I purchased Solar panels in March 2017. The salesperson guaranteed "110%" of my total energy usage would be taken over by the solar panels. My first electric bill was $200. Subsequent bills were $100, etc. I have never had a zero electric bill. I contacted the sales rep. She told me there was something wrong with the system. She contacted her manager. I have emails stating that something is wrong and emails sent to SolarCity in California stating that they should fix the issue, because they made a mistake on the install. Then months of no response.

I finally got through to customer service by going through the BBB (they since have closed the complaint due to how long it's taken to fix things) and they told me that I installed my pool after the installation of the system. I did not. The pool was installed BEFORE the system. They knew that. I have emails to that fact. They then told me that I have to wait a year. For what??? They won't give me an answer. They won't fix anything, They won't talk to me, and I have no guarantees that my problem will be looked at by anyone. This company is irresponsible. They treat customers like they are criminals. I bought this system in good faith and was so happy to have solar. I don't understand why I have been treated so badly by a group of people.

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15 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Nov. 22, 2017

So they called me. Sold me on $16,000. I left deposit of $500 and was very happy that it was only $16,000. But then I had roof inspection done and they practically told me my roof needs to be redone because it's old and asked for over $4000, but what THEY DIDN'T KNOW IS I CHANGED THE ROOF 3 MONTH PRIOR TO INSPECTION. THIS COMPANY IS A FRAUD AND "TESLA NAME" WILL NOT HELP THEM. Eventually they cancelled the order and did refund my deposit.

26 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Nov. 11, 2017

In 2015 I was told about this company (SolarCity) and all of the wonderful benefits of having solar power and how this company supposedly places free panels on your home by relatives of mine. This company sends an energy consultant to your home to discuss the what solar city is about and asked if I would be interested. It started with my relatives who told my mom and then the word got to me. The same energy consultant came to all three of our homes. She seemed very nice and educated on the matters of SolarCity. At least I thought she was initially she showed me the plan on her computer of how many panels I was to get telling me what she thought I would like to hear about the company.

I thought it was a catch from the beginning because why would a company give away free panels what do they gain. When they ran my credit I did not initially qualify. I should have looked at that as a sign and ran as fast as I could but my mother basically vouched for me. She told me that I may have to trim some of the trees in my backyard so that the panels I would receive would get full access to the light. That was was another sign I should have took and ran. But I inevitably didn't have to get any trees trimmed so I continued with the process. The energy consultant also told me that I would be paying less than $100 for both bills. The only truthful thing I felt she told me was that I couldn't claim these panels on my taxes. She also neglected to tell me that the company will place a lien on your home if you want to sell off your home and the panels that you don't essentially own aren't finished being paid for.

I had asked my relative, "So when do we get to claim the tax credit," thinking that eventually we would own the panels thinking he may know because of that's a question I forgot to ask. He stated that probably when the panels are finished being paid for that day will never come. I also didn't know that if I decided to sell or rent that the new owners would have to accept responsibility for the contract with them. Nor did I know the cancellation terms that also would have been a game changer for me. I wondered why there would be two bills and she told me that it would be to pay for any energy used by the solar panels and of course whatever power if any I would use from BG&E.

Because I have a larger family I thought, "Well if I can pay less than my current BG&E bill alone this might actually work." Not only will I be paying less between both bills but I will also be leaving less of a carbon footprint on the earth. Not thinking about what happens with the disposal of these panels. I do blame myself for not thoroughly reading through my contract and asking more of the right questions, making sure I have a better understanding (which I thought I already had) or even telling them no thank you for the first two incidences but from what the consultant told me which was convincing I thought it would be a win for my family and myself.

I went on with everything and in 1/2016 my panels were installed. I ended up going through three dryers because the construction team neglected to connect a cord back up so that my dryer could run on a certain amount of watts to dry my clothes. I got rid of my old dryer thinking it went bad, replaced it with a used one thought that one was bad, bought a brand new one and when that one didn't dry we knew it couldn't be the dryer. After some time passed my bill started to come in and I noticed that my bill was not under $100. That summer of 2016 my solar city bill was over 200 and my BG&E bill was right under that. I called them to complain and asked why my bill was this high when I was told by the energy consultant my bill wouldn't be over 100. The customer service agent said that it's because of the summer and typically bills are higher than and it should drop during the colder months.

I was astonished of course. No ** is what I thought but that's not what I was told when I signed up for SolarCity. That was the beginning of my unhappiness. These bills kept coming in and they were higher than what I would have paid if I was just with BG&E. There has not been one day that has gone by that I am not paying over 100 between both bills for electricity. I felt mislead, tricked, upset by all of this with SolarCity. Currently, I am not working and contacted them to see if they offered assistance for people who are unemployed.

The agent wrote back and told me that they offer a payment plan and that currently they are not adding any late fees. What am I going to do with a payment plan when I don't work and it's hard enough to maintain the main bills let alone paying and extra electricity bill? And with all these reviews I feel like my home is tainted because of these panels from SolarCity and the reputation it has gained. I may be stuck in this home when I had plans to move and rent out after a certain time. No one is going to want to rent let alone buy my home knowing I have solar city panels. I just want to be done with SolarCity pay whatever remaining balance I have and they come get their panels because this has been a nightmare.

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28 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Nov. 6, 2017

When I asked the salesperson if the front stoop that I made larger and don't have permits for would red flag me with the town they said no. I asked them if it does I want to back out of the contract that I still had time to get out of but because 2 salesmen reassured that they never had any issues only the neighboring town was the headache to deal with it. So I went ahead and got them installed. So that's the first issue then the second was the electrician that they sent over connected my 220 amp panel with a sub panel by taping two wires together and said to me, "It's ok. Just don't show the inspectors," so now when I want the issue fixed by SolarCity they are saying it's my issue. The salesman is there only for the money and basically are pretty much like a used car salesman. Stay away.

27 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Nov. 6, 2017

I am leasing my solar, last month they called me and told me my unit was not working properly. They came out to check, well that month I received my bill from DWP and it was 200.00 more. I called my rep no response yet. So on top of paying solar city 114.00 per month, that month I paid over $900.00. Beside this problem, I have not seen savings and signing up was one of the biggest mistakes I have made.

31 people found this review helpful
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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Nov. 1, 2017

I bought a brand new house on June in 2014. There was no leaking during raining season in 2015. Later SolarCity came and told me that I could save 15 % off bill. They told me if they broke tiles on the roof, they would change. They would be responsible for the whole roof leaking after installed solar panels on the roof. During their installation, I saw them did changed several broken tiles but I also saw them glued broken tiles. It rained more during raining season in 2017, there were several places leaking. I called SolarCity, they only fixed one place leaking and blamed the rest to the builder. I called the builder, the builder blamed SolarCity. The builder said there was no leaking before SolarCity came, so the builder refused to fix it. They blamed each other and nobody fixed leaking places. It kept raining for weeks and my house got more wet during the raining season. It was suffering, very painful.

Then I had to hire the third party inspecting the whole roof to figure out who should be responsible for it. The third party told me it was SolarCity. Then I told SolarCity the third party inspection showed it was SolarCity's responsibility. The picture showed broken tile near solar panel. They still told me it was not their responsibility. How could they walk away and left broken tile on my roof for years? Rain is coming soon. I had to hire roof company coming. I don't have lots of time arguing with SolarCity and let my house continues to be damaged more.

My neighbour hired other solar company installed solar panels on their roof. There were lots of broken tiles around the solar panels. Their house was damaged a lot. Inside walls wet and lots of bubbles on the wall came out. Later they fixed it and sold out the house quickly. So don't trust any Solar companies, don't let them install solar panels on your roof. Besides, the third party told me if you wanted to sell your house, if other people said they didn't want solar panels on the roof, then you had to hire third party to remove them. It costs a lot to remove them.

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19 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 25, 2017

The Solar City lease I have has prevented me from selling my house in Arizona 4x in the last month. If you are considering leasing from this company DON'T. I have heard from real estate agents that having leased solar on your home is a big turn off for buyers. The options they give us is transfer the lease, pay of the remaining amount of the lease (over $30,000) or pay the costs to move it to a new residence (at my expense, thousands of dollars) and since we moved out of state that is no longer an option. I have dropped the asking price of my home by $60,000 and still no one will buy because of the leased Solar. HUGE MISTAKE GETTING INVOLVED WITH SOLAR CITY!!! DON'T DO IT, DON'T DO IT, DON'T DO IT!!! The little amount of money actually saved, (about $1200/yr) is not worth the anguish of having buyers that fall through due to this stupid lease!!!

44 people found this review helpful

SolarCity expert review by Zachary Shahan

SolarCity is by far the largest residential solar installation company in the United States. It is also one of only a few companies vertically integrated, offering installation and financing while also including a manufacturing arm.

  • Market share: With 26 percent of the residential solar market in 2013, SolarCity had more than 3 times the market share of #2 Vivint Solar and about 4.5 times the market share of #3 Verengo Solar. A strong market share indicates the company is performing well and attracting customers, and the wealth of experience can also be very useful for customers.

  • Vertical integration: Vertical integration can (theoretically) allow SolarCity to offer customers a better deal. Greater efficiencies, economies of scale and a more secure process can mean lower prices for customers.

  • Various financing options: Homeowners, businesses, or organizations can get solar leases, PPAs, loans, or pay for their systems in cash with SolarCity.

  • Leasing: SolarCity has a strong preference for solar leasing and PPAs, as it makes more money from these options. SolarCity may try to steer customers towards leasing or PPAs when it would actually be in the customer's best interest to use a loan to purchase a system.

  • Acquisition: SolarCity reportedly has relatively high customer acquisition costs, which could result in higher costs for consumers.

  • Best for: homeowners, small and large businesses, government agencies, nonprofits, leasing and PPA customers, solar beginners and cash and loan consumers.

Profile picture of Zachary Shahan
Zachary Shahan

Solar Energy Contributing Editor

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Zachary Shahan is the director of CleanTechnica, and his key areas of focus are solar energy and electric vehicles. He has been referenced or interviewed by essentially every major media organization as a recognized global thought leader on solar energy.

SolarCity Company Information

Social media:
Company Name:
SolarCity
Address:
3055 Clearview Way
City:
San Mateo
State/Province:
CA
Postal Code:
94402
Country:
United States
Phone:
(888) 765-2489
Website:
www.solarcity.com

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