Installer Prices

So I’m looking for an approved installer to do my installation for me for a new house in the Helderberg area and sign off the SSEG application. I’m supplying all the hardware - it’s sitting in my garage. I wanted the roofing company to install the solar panels but they left without doing it due to a miscommunication.

Just to give you an idea, it’s 8 panels on a North facing corrugated iron roof, using Renusol mounting system. 1 Solis 4G inverter and one Axpert MKS Plus as UPS with Trojans.

The quotes I’ve received so far have been R66k, R38k and R34k. This is for labour and registration ONLY. My neighbour is getting a complete system installed with 8 panels, 4,8kwh lithium and 8kW sunsynk for R105k. His installer doesn’t want to touch the Solis unfortunately. I’m at my wits end as I really don’t see how this could be worth more than R20-R25k’s work?

Do you also have cables, connectors, combiner boxes, surge arrestors ect and all the small things that go with the install that are expensive when all added up?.

I’ve got DC breakers, PV fuses and fuse boxes, as well as the battery fuse and monitoring components. I need a few components like changeover switch and surge arrestors but not much.

My experiences, should be ±R2600 labour per day … and whatever parts needed.

Edit: The above prices were in 2019 and 2018 … I’m told the price went up by some …

Sent you a message.

Also got cabling and MC4 connectors.

That is a bit steep. Thumbsuck I would charge around 16k excluding vat…for that work, but unfortunately, I don’t touch axperts and I am a bit far away, although a trip to the cape is tempting. I might have an installer that will be interested. Please let me know if I could hook you up…

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Thanks Jaco, that would be great. There are some more installers coming out for quoting but a personal reference would be great.

I agree those quotes look too high. I mean, you don’t have batteries to be installed or rewiring necessary on the DB (presumably, I’m not sure how a AC-tied setup works).

The guy that installed my panels a year ago charged R650 per panel, a call out of R550 and roughly R1k for trucking, earth spike and clamp. He left all the wires at the stop in the garage where the DC combiner box got installed.

The above excludes the wiring, DC combiner box and any AC side work that had to be done. My AC side work went through a few phases, so a bit difficult to get a number for that.

With all due respect to my friend TTT, as we have heard from you on the other forum and as you have told me personally in some conversations, you used an Electrician, inexperienced in solar installations, nudged them into helping you and imo ended up paying a electricians day/hourly rate.

Please do not think that an proper experienced installer will come close to the price you have mentioned above. We deal with Quotes and counter quotes on a daily basis, almost every person we quote will gladly share their other quotes with us and the rates I have mentioned above is just below the middle of the rate scale we normally deal with.

The rates you mentioned from 2018-2019 does not in any way represent the current industry rates, not even close.

I say this not to disagree with you but rather to try and prevent a situation where Karis gets the wrong idea of what to expect… Maybe the electrician that helped you would still be willing to help her at the same rate, but still that rate is not the current average industry rate.

Good luck Karis, I truly hope you will get a fair deal from someone soon.


Jaco is right, the DB work and inverter connections were done by a sparky, their first time, after I “bullied” them into connecting the 24v Victron Multigrid 3kva (jip, it was that long ago) as they did a sterling job when we built on, having to redo the entire house, now having to split the DB board, them having found and fixed the pre-existing earthing problem having done all the tests as per CoCT with the engineers’ requirement in hand.

He even bought the latest NRS regulations book, specifically for my install, as he was very interested in solar installs.

On top of all that, the sparky asked for all the manuals on the Multigrid to read up before he will commit to connect the inverter. That impressed me a LOT I must say.

Since then they entered the solar market professionally, gone on courses whilst primarily quoting on Victron … refusing flatly to connect Axperts to any DB unless it is done as per regulations. :laughing:

So in effect, as this goes back a few years now, I “helped” a sparky and his firm, to enter the solar market … preferring Victron! YES!!! :+1:

BUT!!! At the time they knew nothing about panel mounting, DC combiner boxes etc, even though they have all the AC/DC and “hoogspannings” qualifications, being old hats at installing solar water heating systems, I googled for professional installers to mount the panels, construct the combiner box for me, professionally.

That was when I came across

Emailed a few companies, and one company stood out and got the job to mount the panels professionally and “build” the combiner box as per what the engineer and I designed.

Asked them this morning what is their daily install rate to mount panels as of today … R2250 + VAT.


Now I MUST add … if you are a DIY’er like me, or at least a wanna-be one like me, THEN one can take the CHANCE of being your own “project manager”.

But IF you are not a DIY’er, someone else must do the entire install, and take responsibility for the install, THEN my first recommendation will always be @JacoDeJongh

Doing a solar install DIY’er way, you ARE going to have to take all the risk yourself. If you don’t want that, then going installer rates are the way to go for they take the responsibility, obviously within reason, they take the calls at night/weekends when things go pear shaped, sometimes even having to drive back because of no fault of theirs, but like equipment failure etc.

So I am not saying that the going installer rates are wrong, I’m just saying that between what DIY’er pays, and the risk staying with them, and what a professional installer must “staan Pa voor”, are worlds apart.

I hope this solves all and any confusion.


You are confusing mounting panels with doing a solar installation. Please TTT, if you feel you can argue with installers in the industry, have it your way.

The question was:

One can do it as one job, having bought all the parts to a large extent, by one installer.

I found over the years that some installers prefer to supply all the equipment so that in the event that something does go faulty, that they can “fix” it easier, one-stop and all that, averting a “he said, she said” scenario.

Or one can also split the jobs up like:

  • one approved installer does just the panels and combiner box,
  • one preferred qualified sparky, for the CoC, does the DB split working in conjunction with the engineer for the registration/sign-off.

It really all depends on what the needs are and how one wants to do it, for there are more than one way to skin this cat. :wink:

Well I think you guys have managed to hit a very important point. If you simply need someone to screw brackets and mount a rail, I’m sure it can be done very cheaply.

I still find that the solar installers know things like how many tiles apart to lift to get the brackets in a good spot, and they understand that the PV modules have a “clamping zone”, so while you pay more per day, the odds are they will finish faster.

Yesterday I had an interesting similar situation where getting it right sooner, and within a limited time span becomes more important than the price. We were installing a new sewage pipe into an old 1975-style sewage system (a concrete channel with manholes). So we had to punch a new hole into the side of one such manhole shaft, and whoever casted that thing back in the day was apparently afraid someone may want to drill through it one day…

When I realised the poor guy is going to sit there for three hours slowly punching through, all the while having the house’s amenities out of action, I went to a tool hire place very quickly and hired the R500 core drill package… at that point the money was secondary to getting things done! :slight_smile:

That is very true. Once your panels start flying from the roof, or the system stop working and the guy who installed it cheaply does not do it anymore. Then the last thing you want to talk about is money.

It goes back to a old afrikaans saying… Goedkoop is duurkoop. (with in reason of course)

Whenever I have to deal with quotes and the price seems a bit steep I request a detailed quote.
That should give you an idea to what you are been quoted on and if the message is not lost in translation.
Then I look for everything that is the same on the different quotes (those tend to be the “truth” then I ask about the differences)
If you want to save money you will need to spend the time to dissect the quotes and pick up on the lingo.

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Then you see things like “Clear away the rubble” (on a building project) and you realise… hey… these guys know what they are doing. They charge to leave the place clean… :slight_smile:

Single story tile/IBR roof and you supply all the material this is what I would charge.

One or 2 things I have to mention before I would do a job like this is.
-All smalls will be charged extra.
-All problems with components including inverters is yours as your name is on the invoice and I do not get involved with your supplier.
-With Axpert no COC will be issued as it is not NRS approved.

If you were not that far I would have knoked on your door.

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The Axpert will only be installed as UPS so that is ok with NRS right?

I found a Zimbabwean guy who is willing to do it all for under R15k. I will split the job into two parts. If the installation of the panels goes well then he can do the AC too later. I can at least supervise to an extent to make sure everything is correct. He says he even has someone who can sign off on the SSEG application. Lets see how it goes.