For a lot of people an inverter is a must have, for others however it has been a bad investment. Today I would like to discuss the two types of consumers described above.
11.30pm (random evening), my phone rings.
Client: Julian, there is something wrong with my inverter, it is not working.
Me: Sorry about that Sir/Madam, I will send someone in the morning, please put the unit in by-pass mode.
Client: Can't someone come tonight?
me: (in my mind) - Dude/Babe, IT'S PRETTY DAMN LATE.
me: (my real reply) - I'm sorry Sir/Madam, its to late to get any technician's to go out tonight.
Client: OK, please have someone come around first thing in the morning.
5.45am - Phone rings
Me- (Waking up) - Heeeelllllloooooo........
Client: Julian, is the technician on his way????
Me- (in my mind again) - WTF...........
As you can tell, this person needs their inverter sorted asap because they cannot imagine a day without it. It gets worse for them when they realize that it takes a few days to get it fixed and returned. Then they will be on my case every 6 hours.
Recently, my inverter batteries failed. The system had served us for about 18 months and to be fair the batteries needed replacement. Trouble was I didn't have the money for new batteries. Yes, Yes, I can imagine what you are thinking right now. *Its your line of business, how can you not have new batteries. Well truth is as a business owner I need to pay for what I use personally from the business. (Not so easy to do....)
So for the few weeks that my inverter at home was out of commission, it was such an unpleasant experience. When the power goes out, first of all you realise you are in complete darkness (at night that is) or the TV goes off and you miss whatever was showing or you have to start over.
Then there is the annoying journey to go and turn on the generator at whatever time of the day, even at 5.00am, when the house starts to become active on a week day.
It was so annoying and (not exactly but) almost unbearable. My wife kept reminding me and asking me when the new batteries where coming. Can't blame her because we were all well used to having one now. (Almost taking it for granted).
So finally a few weeks later, got some replacement batteries and now life is sane, normal, pleasurable, livable again.
But for some not so lucky folks out there (some of my customers included), it has not been such an enjoyable journey. The inverter investment did not go so well.
Just after a few months, their batteries packed up. Most annoying was when I was with a former vendor that only gave 6 months warranty and the batteries would pack up on the seventh month. That is a nightmare for any customer and if it was my client it was a nightmare for me too.
To be fair the above scenario is a 1 out of 15 situation but for that one person its too much. The large outlay for the purchase of the inverter is significant, as such no one wants to be in those shoes and I understand completely. That's why we try to advise customers on the best practice culture for maintaining your inverter system. To check out some of these tips click here.
A fair number of times the reason their inverter systems fail so quickly is misuse, not to say that some of it is not manufacturer faults but whatever the reason, its a situation no one should ever experience. Besides by this time, you would have enjoyed a few months of the benefits of having an inverter, so that makes it even more painful for folks when it fails like that.
However consider this, the high cost of inverter systems quickly pay themselves off. Imagine you had a 3 kva system that cost you about N360,000 (old prices, 2015, CHAI) and you were getting 10hrs of backup everyday. To provide that power everyday would cost you between N1500 - N2000 everyday. in 30days that's N45,000 - N60,000 a month. In six months you have made up that money, in a year you have doubled that expense.
So to round this up, we (Crimson Electric) aim to ensure that our clients have full use of their inverter systems for at least 12 to 18 months. We have alot of clients who have enjoyed well over 24 months.
So if your inverter system works fine for a year, just know you have saved a huge amount of money. I know that I am biased to the conversation because it is my business but still the numbers don't lie.
*smiley face* Have a great day.
PS: Feel free to contact me for any enquiries you may have, simply send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org