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SolarCity
Overall Satisfaction Rating
1.23/5
  • 5 stars
    2
  • 4 stars
    1
  • 3 stars
    0
  • 2 stars
    7
  • 1 stars
    70
Based on 80 ratings submitted in the last year
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    SolarCity

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    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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    540 SolarCity Consumer Reviews and Complaints

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    Page 1 Reviews 1 - 30
    Rated with 1 star
    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Oct. 12, 2018

    We acquired a leased solar system on the home we purchased in April 2018. Since then we have had nothing but problems with the billing department for SolarCity/Tesla. When the system comes up for renewal, we will not choose to stay with this company!

    4 people found this review helpful
    Rated with 1 star
    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Oct. 10, 2018

    I only went with SolarCity/Tesla hoping they are an established and a big company who won't be involved in lying and shady practices, but I learned a hard way that those things are no measure of company ethics and practices. In addition, they are so big that you can't fight with even if they lie to you on your face, in writing or on contract. Most people don't want to spend tens of thousands of dollars fighting their corporate lawyers on permanent payroll.

    Tesla don't even care about few thousand frustrated residential customers. Just go on BBB website, I wished I had done that before, and see how many complains they have and how serious this company is in resolving legit issues and problems faced by customers. Trust me. YOU WILL BE BETTER OFF WITH A MOM AND POP SOLAR COMPANY than going through TESLA SOLAR/ENERGY.

    Working with them will be a frustrating experience and full of regrets. They prey on people who are less informed, they use their name formerly SolarCity and now Tesla to legitimize their existence and reliability, which is opposite of the reality. Salespeople and engineers will lie to you in person and over the phone and make promises to you but when the system is installed you will be shocked to someone hear tell you "we are sorry" it's not in our contract, I even had written proof from their reps and they still backtracked on commitments made by their employees.

    Tesla warranties are the lowest in industry, and on top of that they hide information about your solar panel system's performance that every other company provides to their customers. Tesla do that so they don't have to fulfill warranties claims because customers won't have any proof to claim problems. In addition, Tesla provide no mechanism to resolve issues, so if you have an issue or a problem you will have no way to escalate issue or able to contact supervisors/managers. Even their "Resolution Center" mentioned in contract don't return phone calls or emails.

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    2 people found this review helpful
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    Rated with 1 star
    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Oct. 8, 2018

    STAY AWAY FROM TESLA/SOLAR CITY! Unless you want your house destroyed, a useless warranty, and $1000s worth of damages that you will need to repair yourself, because they refuse to take responsibility for what they have done! I'm sorry that I ever let the salesman into my house! If you're smarter than me, you won't! This process has been going on for years now! They breached their own contract during the installation process, then tried to get me to pay for their errors.

    When I told them to come pull the whole system, they changed their tune, but it looks like they screwed up my flat roof, by improperly installing the mounts. They already took responsibility and fixed it once, but now that there is more damage showing through, the documentation disappeared, the original inspector disappeared, and they deny any knowledge of responsibility. I guess my only recourse now is to lawyer up. Here is another ** company that won't stand behind the crap work that they are doing! AVOID this company like it's the plague, or you WILL be sorry!

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    5 people found this review helpful
    Rated with 1 star
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    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Oct. 3, 2018

    Our system has been down for about 6 weeks (2nd time this year); Tesla is going to install a redesigned system. New system will have 19 panels vs existing system has 20 (Same production – more efficient design). I didn’t approve the new design until Tesla could explain how they are going to cover the exposed roof for the one less panel. Waiting on Tesla Operation manager to reach out to answer this question. Anybody had experience with a similar issue? How was this resolved? I don’t have a slack of extra roof tiles. Telsa Customer service line has call center long waited times (over an hour except at the 5 AM PT) opening. Thanks in advance for any insight.

    6 people found this review helpful
    Rated with 1 star
    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Oct. 3, 2018

    Trying to get SolarCity to answer their phone for customer service - always says it will be at least a 45 minute wait, and when I do get through it's actually over an hour. Then they promise to contact me within a few days and do the repair within two weeks - and it's been nearly two months without a call. I call back to their new sales (they actually answer the phone) and they have twice promised to have customer service call me back - but nothing. Maybe if I stop making payments someone will actually call me.

    3 people found this review helpful
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    Rated with 1 star
    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Sept. 25, 2018

    Our roof was damaged in a storm on 8/23. Our contractor has been trying to contact SolarCity since 8/28 to get the panels temporarily removed for repairs. They are unable to get through on the customer care line - sit for hours, get hung up on before talking to someone. It is now 9/25 and we still don't have our roof repaired. Emails to them just tell us to call the same number. We assume if we have another company do the work it would probably void our solar lease and any warranty. If they can't do the work, at least give authorization to have another solar company reset the panels. But first we have to talk to someone, which so far is impossible. I've tried calling with same results - on hold forever or hung up on.

    10 people found this review helpful
    Rated with 1 star
    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Sept. 25, 2018

    My Yelp reviews say it all about the last 18 months, and then another TERRIBLE customer service experience today. Online bill pay has not been available on my account since taking over the SolarCity contract on my house. I called customer service and it is an hour wait - that’s not a typo, ONE HOUR is standard. Once I got through, they said “oh, just call the bill pay center directly at **”. I asked where that was posted and they said that they don’t post it. You just have to call and wait and they might give you that number as a courtesy. What a joke!

    6 people found this review helpful
    Rated with 1 star
    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Sept. 18, 2018

    We have our third solar system with Solar City, the first two houses were sold and all accounts cleared. This third system after 16 months of no billing problems suddenly came up with our regular automatic payment and then additional charge of $228.5l. We contacted Solar City Billing department and they said they could not see the charge, odd as they could see the regular payment. Filed a dispute with our bank and they reversed the charge. However the following month of Sept. 2018 they doubled the extra charge to $470.48. Again called the billing department and was again told they could not see the extra charge, filed a dispute with the bank and charges were reversed.

    However this problem has not been corrected even after we sent in copies of the charges on our bank statement. Called the billing department 3 times with no answer after being on hold over an hour. This is ridiculous and sent a complaint to Tesla. No response so far. Customer service is the worst, very disappointed with Tesla and SolarCity.

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    10 people found this review helpful
    Rated with 1 star
    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Sept. 18, 2018

    Wait/Holds times are over an Hour! I’ve closed on my house in June 2018 been trying to set up payments every month. Finally was told in Aug 2018, could get my first bill in Sept... Apparently takes a while for everything to be transferred. Was worried if I was going to be backdated charge. Rep Stacy assured me it was going to start in Sept ONLY! Placed me hold multiple times to assure this answer. Sure enough got a bill now and of course it’s being backdated!!! Waited one hour and 25 mins for rep to get on the line. She said she couldn’t do anything and was out of her hands! She had nobody else I could talk to or no help. Stacy even said “buy some stuff for the house” when I told her I had the money in my account! So ridiculous!!!

    4 people found this review helpful
    Rated with 1 star
    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Sept. 15, 2018

    When my solar panels were installed they broke one of my door jams and hid it so that I wouldn’t know. In addition they dropped something from the roof and ruined my new outdoor furniture. They sent someone out to assess and fix the items. Then one day when I was driving on the highway there was a SolarCity vehicle riding my butt in the fast lane and I was already doing 80 mph. I called and filed a formal complaint. It is my understanding the worker got written up but was able to look up the information on his complaint and I got a harassing text message from the employee. I reported it to SolarCity and they didn’t seem to have a care in the world that their employee did this. THEN after 2 years of service and showing a 0 carryover balance, all of a sudden in March this year I got a bill saying I had a carryover balance of over $700???

    When I called to ask what was going on, I was told their billing system had been messed up for years and now that it was corrected this is what I owe. Um what?! I mentioned that companies like Verizon don’t hold customers accountable for the company's mistakes and if SolarCity thought of themselves as reputable then they would do the same. Needless to say my last bill still says I am overdue by $700, yet I got a letter in the mail that said I owe $286 to rectify my past due balance. I feel this is all a scam! Has anyone else experiences this? I know they recently had a class action suit for calling people and I’m wondering if others are having the same issue. I am getting ready to report to the BBB as I have had numerous calls to customer service where I feel like I am talking to a wall and I have sent 3 different written requests to which I have received no response. This is overall a really crappy company who provides ** service.

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    8 people found this review helpful
    Rated with 1 star
    profile pic of the author
    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Sept. 13, 2018

    Overall, the whole process of getting my system installed was an easy, pleasant experience, but now that I've had it for a few months it's just not worth the money. The design of my system isn't efficient enough to provide enough energy for my home so I pull over half of my electricity from the grid. Between the payment for the loan and my electric bill I'm actually paying significantly more than I was before the solar. I was promised that was going to have my Powerwall by this past June but I'm now being told that the earliest I can expect it is January. At this point I wish I never would have bothered with the whole thing in the first place and I'm tempted to sell my stock. Don't waste your time until their efficiency for both equipment and energy has been improved.

    14 people found this review helpful
    Rated with 1 star
    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Sept. 10, 2018

    We contracted for two systems on two separate dwellings on the same owned property. The contracts were signed in 2015. Our first true up with PG&E was less than $800. Our 2nd true up came in with us owning PG&E $2,440+ dollars. In speaking to PG&E we found that the solar system had not been net metering for several months on one of the systems.

    After sending many e-mails and calling customer service and waiting for nearly an hour each time trying to get a human to answer the phone call, we finally found out that Solar City had a $3,600 credit on the account for the system that had not been net metering. We have tried unsuccessful for several weeks to get the credit refunded to help offset the amount we owed PG&E. Solar billing department refuses to respond regarding a refund. They did respond saying they would not apply the credit to our other account that we have not paid now for three months because of the credit they refuse to refund.

    A couple fellows finally came out to the property, they did not provide a business card so that we could follow up on their visit. The took lots of photos and notes on the system that has not been net metering. That was several days ago. We have not been informed of their findings or what they will do fix the system so that it is net metering properly.

    All of this has been going on for the last three months with no resolution from Tesla - Solar City. If there was a way to CANCEL OUR CONTRACTS WITH THEM, WE WOULD. Looks like the contract has everything in their favor. It does not say they have to give good service in a timely manner or we have the right to cancel. It just says we have to "pay" the bill regardless of any issues. It does not say they will refund any overcharges, but a $3,600 credit seems a huge red flag that there are major problems.

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    10 people found this review helpful
    Rated with 1 star
    profile pic of the author
    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Sept. 4, 2018

    Customer service is beyond ridiculous. They are great while they are working to get you on the hook. Once you are contracted you are on your own. I moved into a new construction on 12/28/17 and my system was not activated 7/03/18 at 1 pm. For my inconvenience Tesla offered me a payment of $170.51. Seven months of excuses and no action, and finally a check for 170.51 to cover my inconvenience. How do they come up with that insulting number? What was quoted, what my lease states and what my bill shows are three different numbers. Calling customer service is pointless because no one ever answers. I have emailed them with full documentation and so far just a canned response with their Best regards and an invitation to call customer service. I'd like to say TESLA I hope you crash and burn, but it looks like you already are. Best regards.

    15 people found this review helpful
    Rated with 1 star
    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Sept. 4, 2018

    Customer Care is horrible as noted by all the negative reviews. I have tried calling but the wait is over an hour. They will call you back, but it has been over one week and no callback. How does this company continue to survive? You will keep taking the monthly payment out of my account yet I have no recourse with you. Why do you even have a customer care department when there is none.

    16 people found this review helpful
    Rated with 2 stars
    profile pic of the author
    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Sept. 3, 2018

    Roof damaged by hail. 1+ hours on d to talk service then 6 weeks to get crew out here. 45 min to remove panels. Now shingles replaced, told 7 month wait to reinstall my panels. Inexcusable - Tesla need to hire across the board for service. Or subcontract. Sign me up for class action.

    15 people found this review helpful
    Rated with 1 star
    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Sept. 3, 2018

    I have tried to get a resolution to this problem for weeks and I keep hitting stumbling block after stumbling block. Nothing but abhorrent customer service from SolarCity aka Tesla. On August 10th we noticed water coming in through the ceiling in our living room. We contacted Tesla since it is directly below the solar panels on our roof. Calling them is near impossible because they quote over an hour wait with the automated system and then while holding the line magically disconnects around the 45 minute mark. Twice I got hung up on.

    I finally got through and they agreed to send someone out to check on the leak the next day. The Tesla rep couldn't determine for sure where it was coming from so he wanted to come back out the next day. The next day after the second inspection he still wasn't sure. So Tesla sent a team out the following day. The team determined that it was bad felt paper around our chimney and that the water was running down a rafter in the attic and dropping off at the point where the leak came through the ceiling. Not their responsibility.

    So we call insurance, schedule several roofers to give quotes on a fix, and have a restoration company come out to mitigate the water damage. The restoration company says the water is not coming from the chimney area. They use moisture meters which clearly show it is actually coming from directly above the leak which is directly below the panels. There is no moisture around the chimney. The roofer also says it is not the chimney but possibly a combo of storm damage and the solar company insufficiently flashing the solar stands allowing water to penetrate through. I contact Tesla with this new info and am told I need to send them a report that they can forward to the Operations team for further review.

    In the meantime another monsoon storm hits and the water comes in through the ceiling again. So I have to have the restoration company out a second time to mitigate the water damage. They had already put a tub in the attic to try and catch any water since it is impossible to tarp the roof due to the panels. Despite the difficulty, I request the roofer try to tarp it best he can, and the roofing company came out the next day to tarp it. So I send Tesla photos from the restoration company and the report from the roofer. And wait.

    The insurance company sends out an adjuster to look at the roof and he also determines that the panels need to be removed for an accurate inspection. So I contact Tesla to find out what the Operations team has to say about the new info, and to try and coordinate a partial panel removal/inspection with Tesla, the adjuster, and roofer. Tesla says the Operations team already determined it is our chimney and they are not responsible for the damage. They will not coordinate an inspection with the insurance adjuster or a roofer. My only option is to schedule a removal, for which I have to pay $499, so the roof can be repaired.

    Fine. I give up! I really don't care who is responsible or not at this point and just want my roof repaired! So I say let's schedule the removal so I can get my roof repaired. Guess what!? Tesla won't remove my panels until early 2019!! Yes, you read that right. 2019! They are backlogged and my contract doesn't allow for a third party to touch the panels. Tesla "graciously" said they will waive that and allow it since they are so backlogged, but I am responsible for any damage done by a third party removal. So explain to me how that is truly an option!?

    I have calls in to three local solar companies hoping I can find someone to remove the panels for me so I can repair my roof. The tarp on the roof has not held and has been shredded by the wind that got under the panels. Another storm rolled through today so now I have MORE water damage; wet carpet, wet insulation, and wet drywall.

    I have video and photos that prove the leak is NOT where Tesla claims. I have two toddlers in my house. This is a health hazard! I have a hole in my ceiling with a bucket in the attic and buckets on the floor trying to catch the water. This CANNOT WAIT UNTIL NEXT YEAR!! Every storm is causing additional damage to my house. They won't accept any responsibility nor will they do anything to help prevent further damage. Truly despicable. Shame on Tesla! They put panels on an old roof and walked away. They got their tax break and could care less about the damage to my home. STAY AWAY FROM THIS COMPANY!!!

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    15 people found this review helpful
    Rated with 1 star
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    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Aug. 30, 2018

    I got solar panels as my husband and I were retiring and I wanted to cut back on our overhead. Now I am still paying $150 a month to Edison PLUS my monthly payment to SolarCity, which will continue to go up EVERY YEAR. VERY UNHAPPY.

    12 people found this review helpful
    Rated with 2 stars
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    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Aug. 28, 2018

    Tesla/Solar City great sales, runs like a top. After hailstorm, before I can get roofing replaced- SIX WEEK wait to have panels removed. Took 45 min work. Heard that possible SEVEN MONTH wait for 2 hour reinstall. Inexcusable- wish I'd never bought this. Was doing right for environment. Tesla a big fail. Why not bring in crews from other states like insurance companies?

    7 people found this review helpful
    Rated with 1 star
    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Aug. 22, 2018

    We installed SolarCity solar panels Aug. 2015. Since then the combined cost for electricity charged by NV Energy (So. NV) plus SolarCity's monthly charges have resulted in little to no savings at all. The problem lies in their monthly charges, which by contract, increase each year. I wrote a letter to Elon Musk along with my chart that tracks my energy costs since installation to point out that their whole program is a scam. That was over a month ago. So far no reply. He's probably too busy shooting rockets off or trying to get his Tesla production up to promised deliveries. Will it take a class action suit to get out from under this lopsided contract? I'm ready to sign on.

    25 people found this review helpful
    Rated with 1 star
    profile pic of the author
    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Aug. 21, 2018

    The fifteenth day is fast approaching and still no knowledge as to when or where my inverter is. They had the kahunas to say that they had a tracking number but can't find the part or the tracking number? THEY SAID IT SHOULD HAVE BEEN HERE MONDAY 8/20. Some district manager from TEXAS is now involved. TEXAS? Where is the area manager for NEVADA?

    They sold a lot of systems here in Las Vegas... To be our utility company but has no service personnel or here in Nevada. These were sold as LEASE SYSTEMS with the Solemn Promise to be there after the sale. I really think its time for Class Action. Kinda wondering how TESLA owners fair with their warranty service with their Model S? I sure wouldn't buy anything from TESLA expecting any type of customer service. Where is the Nevada Attorney General? Where is the FTC? Where is the Consumer Protection Agency? They act as a Utility but refuse to provide any service. Aren't there any protections for Seniors?

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    11 people found this review helpful
    Rated with 4 stars
    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Aug. 20, 2018

    When I wanted to go Solar I talked to half a dozen companies. Only one company (Tesla/SolarCity) said they would send somebody to do the roof inspection BEFORE I am required to sign the contract. All other companies wanted me to sign the contract BEFORE sending someone to do the site survey. They kept saying that as I lived in CA I have three days to cancel the contract. But they said the site survey will be done after 10 days or so after I sign the contract. My roof is 15 years old and even though it is supposed to last some 40 years I did not want to take the risk of signing and then finding our my roof had to be fixed before panels can be installed. But none of other companies agreed to do the site survey before signing of the contract even though I agreed to pay reasonable amount for it.

    Tesla/SolarCity asked me to pay a refundable deposit of $500 to do the roof survey. Sure enough they found damage to my roof which had to be fixed before the panel installation. They showed me the photographs of damage (as the roof is two storeys high I could not climb to see the damage). Their estimate is $4800 to fix the roof. I consulted a friend who is in construction business and he agreed the estimate is reasonable. Here is the kicker. Tesla/SolarCity agreed to bear the entire cost. So I went with that company. They sent a crew of 5 (they engaged an independent contractor) to do the roof and it took them a day and half. This is the main reason I went with SolarCity even though their quote was second highest of all the six companies. But after I factored in the cost of roof repair theirs came to be very competitive.

    Then Tesla/SolarCity (Tesla bought SolarCity) scheduled installation of panels. But I told them I was planning on going away for a two week vacation. They assured me that my presence is not needed as long as they can have access to my roof which I arranged. While I was away Tesla installed the panels and completed the paperwork. I received all the permits and my utility last week gave me permission to turn on the system. All in all I have no complaints. But the system is on for only a week and so far everything looks good.

    I paid the entire cost for the system so I own it. I would give them 5 stars but so far they did not activate their app to monitor the energy produced, energy being used and net energy sent to the grid. I do have a device that monitors the energy being used by my house in real time and so I know the system is producing more than I am using for about 7 daylight hours. During the past one week my house used near zero electricity. I own a Tesla car which I charge every alternate day.

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    4 people found this review helpful
    Rated with 1 star
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    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Aug. 16, 2018

    Our roof was damaged by hail. We contacted SolarCity to advise them that the panels would need to be removed so the roof could be repaired per the terms of the contract. To be brief, every telephone contact with the company resulted in a promise of a return call or action in 48 hours, but they consistently fail to follow up. They refuse to provide any documentation that we are even on a waiting list. They say they cannot remove the panels until 2019. Obviously, the roof cannot be repaired in January or February, so repairs cannot begin for more than 6 months. It is clear SolarCity is trying to avoid their responsibility to remove the panel as they are obligated to do under the contract. Terrible customer service. Do not deal with this company for any service whatsoever.

    23 people found this review helpful
    Rated with 1 star
    Original review: Aug. 16, 2018

    My husband was approached by a SolarCity representative Heather ** at the HOME DEPOT. She showed up at my house with the pitch of a 30% system with the indication that most systems generate more than proposed. With the intention of OWNING our SREC's to trade them and pay for the system, we purchased a system instead of leasing it. When we received the paperwork concerning the SREC's it indicated we were turning them over to SolarCity. We refused to sign the paperwork for 5 months trying to get it corrected. Customer Care representative Rosie ** told us that the program generating the paperwork would not let her change it so for us to sign it and she would get it corrected with management. Heather ** also went to management several times on our behalf with the result of her being fired along with all of the other HOME DEPOT representatives.

    When I called SolarCity I was told numerous times that in fact I did own my SREC's and that I needed to register with a trade company and get an ID# from the state. It was then I found out that SolarCity owns my address and there is nothing I can do or that the state can do as I signed them over - even if we were coerced into signing them. Solar City needs to fill out a form to transfer them back. They refuse to do so, they refuse to communicate with me on the matter so I SHUT MY SYSTEM OFF! Amazingly they sent me an email wanting to know why my system is not working. I explained my experience and all they had to say was that they understood my frustration but we did sign them over and how counterproductive it is to stop generating power.

    I explained that it is counterproductive to save less money on my electric bill than my loan payment is and how unethical their tactics are and now it is the principle of NOT GENERATING INCOME FOR SOLARCITY. This is suppose to be a government program to benefit the homeowner - not a major corporation. Gratefully I am only out $12,000.00 as I have to pay the 3rd party loan to preserve my credit - even more grateful that my in-laws at my meeting with Heather decided to go with MOMENTUM SOLAR for their $40,000.00 system. I recommend them now even though they are not my company as they will give me referral fee and that's how I am paying for my unproductive system!!! If you decide to go with MOMENTUM - tell them Roberta ** in New Jersey recommended them.

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    9 people found this review helpful
    Rated with 1 star
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    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Aug. 15, 2018

    Maybe time for a class action? Their customer service repeats the same line... 7-15 days. That isn't customer service. No repair parts kept in Las Vegas for expedited system repairs. Their go to answer... 7-15 days to order parts. They sell us these solar systems and pull all their service staff out of this market. Effectively no customer service.

    18 people found this review helpful
    Rated with 1 star
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    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Aug. 14, 2018

    Worst company ever. Last year when they came and sold me solar panel, my only concern was that sooner or later I will have to get the roof replaced so what will happen and then assured me that all I will have to do is make a call a day or two ahead of scheduled date and they will come and uninstall and once roof is done they will install the panels immediately. Now that I have my roof scheduled for this Thursday on Monday when I called they told me it will take them 24 to 48 hours to return my call and when my roofer called they told him they can't do it till 2019. Please if you are getting Solar Panels there are much cheaper options. Don't get into the scam of Tesla name.

    20 people found this review helpful
    Rated with 1 star
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    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Aug. 14, 2018

    My bills don't arrive. The charges are ridiculous. I thought it was a save money situation not a get ripped off situation. I want the damn things off. It's costing me more and yes they do cause roof leaks that were not there before. Just a scam business.

    15 people found this review helpful
    Rated with 2 stars
    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Aug. 13, 2018

    I relate to the experience of Michele of Media, PA. We put Solar Panels on in 2012. Exactly the same thing has happened as for you Michele: we also thought that when SolarCity's engineers said our roof was ok for solar panels, that meant for the term of use, meaning 20 years. It never occurred to us to hire our OWN ROOF GUY, who is a knowledgeable professional and roof whisperer, to check the roof ALSO. It had already been checked, right? NOTE: Hire your own guy to check whether your roof is young enough, or needs to be replaced, before you put on solar panels. After the installation, our roof guy saw me and said he had serious concerns about our roof under those solar panels, because it was too old to make it for the life of the panels. What could I say?

    Now we are having leaking. We need to replace the roof. To our shock and horror, we are being quoted $8,000 - yes EIGHT THOUSAND DOLLARS - to remove those panels and then replace them after the roof is repaired. How is this possible, when other people are being quoted $400 for the same thing? Our roof is big, but not that big. Prior to this, our experience was very positive. We have had our panels for 6 years, with no problems. Any problems, they come and repair. My husband estimates we have saved $3-4,000 in electric costs. We loved doing this for the environment.

    When Solar City put them up, they damaged our roof, and they paid to have our roof guy repair it. All good. But $3-4000 savings doesn't make up for $8000. There is clearly a conflict of interest for SolarCity Engineers, who want to make a sale. And there is clearly confusion for the buyer, who hears these engineers report that the roof is fine for solar panels. And this lack of clarity is hurting everyone. Why doesn't SolarCity / Tesla REQUIRE new owners to get their own independent evaluation of their roof, as part of the deal? Rather than being in such a hurry to get the sale, why don't they make sure the thing will work? For everyone? I am not a suing person. But I think this calls for a class action suit.

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    14 people found this review helpful
    Rated with 1 star
    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Aug. 12, 2018

    3 weeks after install the roof leaked badly. Tesla provided "courtesy/goodwill patches". They claim the interior damage is not their problem. Many emails, at least three visits for patches resulting in courtesy/goodwill patches, whatever that means. Ceiling wall floor and insulation damage.

    15 people found this review helpful
    Rated with 1 star
    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Aug. 9, 2018

    Met a guy from Tesla SolarCity in Home Depot, thought it was worth checking out. First time the sales rep came out seemed interesting so decided to have the house checked out for the quote. Guys came out to check the roof and electric. After they left starting having electrical issues, turns out they damaged a main breaker while inspecting. Sales rep said that they would fix it. Second time sales rep was supposed to come out, he showed up 2 and a half hours late for appointment without calling till he showed up wondering why it was no longer a good time. Still have not been able to get a hold of anyone to take care of the bill for the damage. I’ve now canceled any further dealings but very unhappy that they won’t take care of the damage that they caused.

    15 people found this review helpful
    Rated with 1 star
    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Aug. 8, 2018

    In December of 2013. We met a nice young lady in Home Depot, an agent for Solar City. I was going to be retiring soon and my husband was already retired. My husband had been living in our 1,700-sq. ft. home by himself as I lived on site at my job. We explained to her that when I was retired and home we would be using a lot more electricity. We would be entertaining guests, more cooking and my hot tub, it was important to have the system designed to cover the extra usage and the size of our home.

    In January of 2014 we began using the solar system that was installed on our roof. We were excited when every month when we received a bill from Edison, showing that we had a credit. My husband thought the panels were wonderful and told his friends. In December 2014, our Edison bill was $1,400.00. My husband was so upset! I asked where the bills were and he replied that he threw them away because they showed a credit. I called Edison to see if it was a mistake, they replied that it was correct, that our net generated was very low compared to our consumption. I asked why it showed a credit every month and I was told that an overpayment had been made in December 2013. I asked them to send copies of all of the statements for the year.

    When we received the statements, and examined them closely, we discovered the “Notice” stating how much extra we owed Edison each month for consuming more than we generated in small 6 or 8 print type. We were not given the opportunity to pay it each month. It was an annual accumulation of fees that we knew nothing about. They suggested I contact a tech person at Edison, he had the information for our solar panels and told me that what had been installed was enough to run a big screen TV and two refrigerators.

    This was a mistake in design by Solar City, that we ended up having to pay for. We contacted Solar City to see if they would pay for their design mistake and were told that they would send a manager out to get the problem resolved. This took some time on their part and I had returned to work, so we could pay the $1400.00 Edison bill. So much for being on a fixed income.

    In April 2015 their so called manager came to our house, I took the day off to be there when he arrived. "the Manager" was very nice and he said that Solar City would fix everything. Because a lot of time has gone by I don’t remember all that was said. But he seemed very nice and willing to help us. He had us sign some papers and said not to worry that he would get everything taken care of. He was really sorry that he couldn’t do anything about the $1400 that we had paid Edison.

    Thinking back all I can think of was he had two senior citizens that he twisted around his finger. I was under the impression that the new panels that would be added were to make our system workable, to repair their design flaw. I was still working and living on the job site so I didn’t realize that the new panels were on a totally new contract. My husband was paying the bills and until recently I didn’t know we had two contracts.

    Not only do I feel that we are being ripped off, but my husband and I are ill and old and our son wants us to move closer to him. Now we can’t sell our house because no one wants to take over two Solar City contracts. We thought we would live here for the rest of our lives and the payments were bearable. Now we are dealing with Tesla and we have two choices. We can pay off the contracts, somewhere around $25,000.00 or we can buy the panels, per our contracts after 5 years.

    Now we find out that we can’t buy them because the first contract will be 5 years in December and the second contract will be 5 years in 4 of 2019. Second contract once again because of Solar City’s bad design. And in my opinion because of their slick salesman who we thought was here from the company to help us, and all he did was sell us another set of panels! I'm attaching 3 pictures. (2453) not very easy to see but our first panels that were supposed to serve our needs. (2454) panels to fix the original mistake. (Also notice the location and shade from our trees) (2455) Larger picture.

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    11 people found this review helpful
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    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

    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

    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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