Solar panel insurance
This is how you can cover your solar panels with home insurance.
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If you've installed solar panels, you've already done the tricky bit. Most home and contents insurance policies will cover solar panels – all you need to do is increase your coverage.
What is solar panel insurance?
Most home insurance providers consider solar panels to be permanent fixtures of your building, which means that they'll be covered by a home and contents insurance policy or building insurance policy. So for example, if your solar panels are damaged by a storm or fire, your home insurance policy will help reimburse you for the repairs.
Protect your solar panels with home insurance
Compare benefits and get a quote (or multiple!) from a home insurer that can cover your solar panels.
How do I know which brands cover solar panels?
Most home insurance brands will cover solar panels to some extent; you just need to make sure that you have enough to cover the value of the solar panels. As permanent fixtures, you can usually get cover for solar panels under a home and contents insurance policy or building/home insurance policy.
We've done some product disclosure statement (PDS) research to show you how some major Australian brands cover solar panels. There are even some insurers that will cover you for additional electricity costs if your solar panels are damaged or broken.
What costs can I expect to pay?
The cost of setting up your solar panels can range from $4,000 up to $20,000. Since solar panels are usually covered under the building policy, you want to make sure that the sum insured amount stated on your policy will be enough to cover damages to avoid underinsurance.
There's no set extra premium you'll pay to cover your solar panels in home insurance, but here are some expenses to consider:
- If you need to increase your sum insured amount, you can expect to pay a higher premium for your policy.
- A few brands actually offer extra cover for fittings and fixtures. If you choose to take this optional add on, you can expect to pay a bit more as well.
When am I covered?
Solar panel insurance comes under home insurance, which covers your house and other structures on your property including garages, garden sheds, fences, domestic fixtures like built-in wardrobes, air conditioner units and solar panels. It can cover you for the following events:
- Storm and rainwater
- Theft (or attempted theft)
- Escape of liquid (e.g. burst pipe)
- Impact at home (e.g. fallen tree)
- Malicious damage, vandalism, riot or civil commotion
- Breakage of glass, ceramic and sanitary fixtures
- Earthquake or tsunami
Pros and cons
Here are the advantages and disadvantages of getting solar panels included in your home insurance policy.
- You're protecting your investment
- You're protecting a vulnerable and expensive part of your home from fires, storms and other types of damage
- Solar panels can be expensive to fix or replace without insurance
- Like all types of insurance, there's always a chance you won't need it
- It's an added expense
What's not covered
A home insurance is unlikely to cover you for the following issues:
- Performance issues. If your solar panels aren't working properly, and the problem hasn't been caused by an insured event like a storm, fire or other type of damage, your insurance probably won't cover you. This is a performance warranty issue and you should take it up with your solar panel provider.
- Product issues. Similarly, if there are any physical or electrical issues with your solar panels that have not been caused by an insured event, it's not your insurance that will cover you – it's the product warranty. Home and contents insurance generally won't cover you for this.
- If you take out a policy after the damage. Just like any other insurance, you need to have held a valid policy when the event that caused the damaged occurred, otherwise you won't be covered.
- General wear and tear. Home insurance won't cover damage caused by general wear and tear of your solar panels. You're better off maintaining the panels to avoid gradual deterioration.
Frequently asked questions
If you've recently had solar panels installed, you can get in touch with your insurer to increase your sum insured. For those who haven't gotten around to buying a policy yet, now is a good time to make the investment. Compare here.
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