I chose Photon Brothers since they were (a) local (Broomfield, CO), (b) gave me a competitive price (c) use good materials of construction, and (d) had good customer reviews in general. Below I have outlined my experience with them during the project. I have included a short review for folks who only want to see the bottom-line, and a longer version with dates when different milestones were completed to show how quick/efficient they were in completing the project.
Long Story Short: I highly recommend this company. They are the real deal and their prices are very competitive. The project was completed in an amazingly short time. Their employees take great pride in their work, are very friendly, and take full ownership of projects from agreement-signing to project completion.
Longer Story: (1) Agreement Signing: I signed the Agreement with John E, who is a Co-Owner/Solar Consultant. My meeting with him was a low pressure experience and he was pleasant, knowledgeable and laid back. I had a lot of questions for him and he patiently answered all of them. I signed the contract with him on the same day, Jan 17, and paid them the advance. (2) Project Management and Team: I was fortunate to have Amanda assigned as my Project Manager. She has the right temperament for the job. She kept me in the loop and promptly answered all my questions patiently throughout the project. She is friendly, hardworking, dedicated, very responsive and professional. She sent me a welcome email within 4 days of signing the contract on Jan 21 and introduced the project team. She also sent me an information packet which outlined the different steps of the project and what to expect during each step, including scheduling, periodic project updates and check-ins. (3) Site Evaluation: Within a day of project manager assignment, on Jan 22, a company technician Rob stopped by to take measurements and collect information needed for project design and specifications necessary for permits. (4) Design and Permitting: Well within 2 weeks, Photon Brothers completed a draft design plan and submitted it for my review on Feb 10. The design was fine and I only had minor comments, which I provided to them on the same day. Since my neighbor had some concerns about snow-dumping in their yard which was adjacent to my roof, Photon Brothers even included snow guards with my solar panels at no additional cost! I was very impressed with their responsiveness. They addressed all my comments and submitted the final plans to me within a couple of days on Feb 12, which I approved. On the same day, they invoiced me for the Design Approval stage, which I paid immediately. They then applied for the necessary permits with my city, which the city approved on March 4. (5) System Installation: Within a week of permit approval, the PV system was installed in just one day on Mar 10 by installers Dan and Adam, with Derrick doing the electrical work. The installers were very courteous, friendly, and efficient, and did a great job on the installation. They also cleaned up well after the work. I had several questions for them during the installation, which they answered patiently, in spite of being busy. Final inspection: Photon Brothers scheduled the final inspection with the city promptly and the inspection took place within a couple of days of installation on Mar 12. Nick from Photon Brothers was present during the inspection and the system passed inspection with flying colors. I was then invoiced for the Construction Complete stage of the project on Mar 13, which I promptly paid the same day. (6) Utility Final Visit, Turning on System: I then received 3 contract documents for my signature from Xcel Energy within a day of city inspection on Mar 13. I E-Signed the 3 documents promptly within the same day and Photon Brothers signed the documents on Mar 16. Xcel signed the documents on Mar 18 and ordered the meters on Mar 20. Xcel installed the production and net meters on Mar 25. Photon Brothers then walked me through powering the system and helped me set up the monitoring platform the same day. (7) Photon Brothers Closeout Packet: On the same day (Mar 25) Photon Brothers emailed me a Personal Project Packet which contained details of the design, materials, and sample utility documents for a solar energy system like mine. I received the final invoice on Mar 26 and paid it the same day. Photon Brothers then sent me a sales receipt for my tax purposes and stated that I will be receiving my promotional rebate check from them next week.
From agreement-signing to project closeout, it only took a total of about 9 weeks for project completion! Excluding the 3 weeks it took to receive city permit approval, Proton Brothers completed their portion of the project at blazing speed, in about 6 weeks! Based on my above experience they are an outstanding company and I highly recommend them for PV System installation work.