Suniva and Bogus Excuses
This page contains a mix of experiences, random thoughts, etc, to help you
understand what you MAY run into when you try to get a warranty
replacement on a defective product from a dodgy company. The techniques
and methods, etc, herein are apparently becoming rather widespread in the
disreputable war between the big companies/industries and the consumer,
particularly as products are being cheaped down like crazy.
You say to Suniva or whoever, these wires are burned!
: They insist that they are not burned wires!
OK, maybe the wire is not on fire. Maybe the burning point (higher than
the melting point!) of the wire has not been reached. Maybe a "burned
wire" would need oxygen to literally burn! But aren't we fooling with
semantics here if the wire is scorching hot, melting stuff, and putting
burn marks on its surroundings? How about some simple honesty?
You say to Suniva or whoever, tell me how YOU want me to test
this defective panel.
: They say that their fancy test equipment is $200,000! And they can't
send it to you! And that together with them, you need to analyze your
"overall" system performance with a convoluted procedure (even involving a
software simulation!) that those brainacs have developed, which is to
result on a loooong trip to fairy land.
Why not test just the defective one? (Some industry sorts may even
suggest that a multimeter is of no use!) They want to know about your
charge controller, maybe they can blame that. How about your inverter?
Maybe it's guilty! Or maybe you just have dozens of hours to waste.
You say to Suniva or whoever, since you have images of the cracks
in certain panels, send me your images archive or publish it. For surely,
I should have been able to look through these before buying a panel.
Surely the public should be allowed to see what they are buying.
: You are told no. That a big company such as Apple would never let you
see any of their secret files because of a defective product.
Note: it is (was) not uncommon for a company to replace their defective
products without a struggle. I have only seen two expensive defective
products lately that the companies have FOUGHT to cram down my throat -
1. Suniva solar panels, and 2. That fancy new orange Generac generator
at Lowes. The generator may look good in your garage, but 3 or so days of
continuous duty at my place in the wintertime were enough to destroy a
pair of them. Regarding the generators, they are made in China. You
know, where people go to have stuff made cheap.
You thought that you were buying a USA-made panel, but you find that it is
simply compliant with some Buy American Act or something. Does that mean
the silicon was made in China? You ask where the panels are made.
:They say that the panels are made in 3 places. USA and Canada.
2 and 3 are different numbers. You are then told that they are made in
multiple places in USA and Canada. You then ask if anything is made in
China. You are then told that if you provide your serial number, you can
then be informed of where yours was made. Which is not an answer to the
question. And further, it looks likely that they are using cell
from China! Is this why the junk is cracking up??
You search the internet for information on snail trails, but instead
of simple answers, you find a bunch of useless PhD junk. Who do you think
sponsored those papers?
Common sense is better than faith in the cult of academic genius.
Particularly as those geniuses are usually busy servicing an industry
gravy train. Just imagine, you are to see cracks spontaneously forming
on your solar panels, but you are to ignore your lying eyes and believe that
there is nothing wrong because people who "everyone" agrees are smarter
than you have said so. (But wait a second. Maybe semantics artists are
reading this. Let's instead say that you see microcracks expanding into
whopping cell-smashing cracks right before your lying eyes!!)
Suniva has suggested that the customer's testing of panel output
is meaningless to them, and that further, it may void the warranty!
I was told by Suniva that if a customer provides a serial number,
then Suniva can look it up in their cracks imagery archive. And that if
the cracks match AND ... ..... ... ..., then maybe they'll care. And if
they don't match, someone else must have stepped on the panel or dropped
A question: Why should you trust what they pull out of their secret
images archive? It is not that hard to associate a serial number with
any image they want. In other words, why trust them? One could speculate
that the photographing of the panels and the storing of the images in a
private database is intentend to only serve the producer. The producer
can then say that their crack imagery is comprehensive, and then blame
someone else for cracks that supposedly don't line up - despite the fact
that the notion of customers trampling panels and then blaming the producer has
never appeared to be a widespread problem in the past.
Note: One must wonder why the innocent consumers are suspected of
trampling on the solar panels rather than the convicts. After all, no one
likes working for a buck an hour.