Tonopah homeowner ‘heated’ over solar breakdown | 3 On Your Side

TONOPAH, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) – There’s nothing wrong with going solar, but there are some pitfalls if things are not done right. “When you just push this, it would make a buzzing noise and it would go away but the whole top is burned up,” said Robert Price. Price has a pretty dangerous issue with the breaker box found on the side of his Tonopah home.



Sunrun break box problem

Price says a faulty electrical connection in his breaker box caused his solar output to malfunction.




“It could’ve caught the house on fire or the box,” said Price. He says he doesn’t know exactly what caused the breaker to burn up, but he blames it on a company called Sunrun. Sunrun is a solar company that Price hired to install solar on his home. “I believe I have 47,48 panels on the house. And we’ve had them for almost two years,” said Price.

Price says going solar slightly decreased his monthly power bill. But not long ago, his electric bill actually spiked. He complained to Sunrun, but the high bills kept on coming. “They sent somebody, but he did nothing. So, I took it upon myself. I mean, I got these panels, I can’t keep paying $500 electric bills and they won’t, they won’t send anybody,” said Price.

Price says a faulty electrical connection in his breaker box caused his solar output to malfunction, which created higher than normal power bills. “I couldn’t wait for him again because they sent a tech and he didn’t do anything,” said Price.

3 On Your Side reached out to Sunrun about Robert’s burned up breaker and they said:

“The issues Mr. Price encountered were unfortunate and extremely rare in our experience. Although properly installed, we’ve determined that the breaker failed to maintain its integrity during a short-circuit event. We are taking corrective measures to identify the root cause of the issue and replace electrical components.”



Sunrun break box problem

Robert Price has nearly 50 solar panels on his house.




And that’s good news for Price, who’s understandably been concerned. “That’s all I want, fix the box,” said Price.

Statement below sent to 3 On Your Side from Sunrun:

“Sunrun has served over 570,000 customers across the country, and the issues Mr. Price encountered were unfortunate and extremely rare in our experience. Although properly installed, we’ve determined that the breaker failed to maintain its integrity during a short-circuit event. We are taking corrective measures to identify the root cause of the issue and replace electrical components.”

“Additionally, we are coordinating with Mr. Price’s utility provider to temporarily turn off the power to his home so that we can replace the damaged busbars inside of the main service panel. Sunrun will credit Mr. Price for any loss of production while his system is offline for repairs.”


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