In a word. . . impressive.
I started this process towards the beginning of the year not even imagining that this would go as well as it had. I decided to educate myself, and fortunately I came across SunWork during my research. I couldn't have asked for a better scenario because I was the perfect candidate for their business model, customers who are interested in learning the in's and out's of the system and how it is all put together. Mind you, if you want to be hands off, they cater to that as well, but I think they really would rather have their customers get involved as much or as little as they would like.
Before I found SunWork and reached out to them, my mindset was that I was going to do this completely on my own. I feel like going through this process and learning what I did, I have a greater understanding and could probably get it done on my own. SunWork provided me the opportunity to take my baby steps when it came to getting this project going.
When I first reached out to SunWork, because of the 'S' Tile on my roof, it wasn't looking like it was going to be a reality. I'll be honest, I begged and pleaded to work with this non-profit, because I knew they were EXACTLY what I was looking for, and I believed the same was true of them, whether they knew it or not. I think I may have convinced them when I showed them that I was in this for all the right reasons. I was not looking just for a bargin, although that was a huge selling point for me, I was looking for a partner and a teacher, Bryan (project leader) was just that. After a bit of begging and convincing, I was told Bryan would have to do a site survey and he would be the final decision making authority. My wife and I waited for our site survey with Bryan and crossed our fingers for the best. When Bryan arrived I did my best not to try and scare him away with how much I wanted to work with him, it worked. He did a very thorough and meticulous site survey and I knew this was exactly what we needed for our home.
Bryan got back to me after a few days, said the 'S' Tiles were typically a no-go for the volunteer model, but we could make it work, since they were of good quality. My wife, uncle and I attended both free workshops, (which I also highly recommend) one for volunteer training and the other for ""Going Solar"", which, by that time we already had a signed contract and a project date confirmed. I went to the class eager to learn and nervous about getting volunteers, especially since we live in Orcutt. I believe by the end of the workshops we had a full list for both days.
Fast forward a couple weeks and the project was upon us. Bryan, myself, my uncle, my wife and volunteers got to work. Bryan was so patient as we had a crew of first timers, but as we went the work seemed to flow pretty well. Everyone had a job and a purpose. At times I felt a bit useless, as I was pretty unsteady on my feet and around these types of tools, but I felt included and I felt like I had a purpose in being there, not just a spectator. Bryan worked hard, even surpassing the normal ""work"" hours to get us ahead of schedule for the following days work, which was really admirable. I'm glad Bryan did that for us because it turns out there was a last minute cancellation (no fault on the part of SunWork) for volunteer. My uncle, Bryan and myself worked hard to get the panels up, wired and the system online by the early afternoon.
I could go on about SunWork, Bryan and why solar is so important. I will, but not in this format, I plan on volunteering and doing what I can to get SunWork more projects and more happy people. Bryan was a pleasure to work with, I guarantee your system won't be slapped together and thrown into place like a commercial installer does.