To: Electrical Standards Authorities

Remove the Solar DC Isolator from the Roof!

This campaign has ended.

Remove the Solar DC Isolator from the Roof!

Please remove the need to install a DC Isolator on the roof alongside a Solar PV Array.

Please mandate that all DC Isolators are removed from current installations before we have more fires or worse a solar fire related fatality.

Why is this important?

In mid-2012, Australia and New Zealand together issued a new standard for the installation of solar arrays. This standard mandated the use of a specific piece of equipment called the "rooftop DC isolator" in Australia, and by some interpretations also in New Zealand. They did this despite evidence showing that the practice is unsafe.

A study from an international testing laboratory found that DC isolators are not safe in a firefighting situation, as they can’t withstand the high-pressure water used to extinguish a fire. The California State Office of the Fire Marshall frowns upon their use, because they give a false sense of security. And Europe, the most mature solar market, opted never to adopt them, also for safety reasons.
More than 70 fires in Australia have been caused by this isolator since 2012 -- that is, since it became mandatory! To put this into perspective, there were only 3 fires related to PV systems in Australia prior to the mandatory requirement to install a rooftop DC isolator.

The Australian government has responded with product recalls on DC isolators, at least 5 so far, showing this crisis isn’t just limited to a single manufacturer, but to the device itself. There is no evidence to suggest the device improves the safety of a PV system: all it does is increase costs and the risk to homeowners trying to do the right thing. And that's not to mention the catch-22 for PV installers who are both legally bound to comply and obliged to keep their clients safe.

Master Electricians Australia chief executive Malcolm Richards in an interview with the ABC late last year said that he says he knows of about 40 to 50 fires that have been started by the faulty isolators.
"We're warning home owners to carefully check the brand of isolator that is connected to your solar panels," he said.

"If it carries one of these two (recalled) brands ... undertake the isolation procedure until your electrician can come around and fix that up to eliminate or replace it."

How it will be delivered

In person.


Reasons for signing

  • They are no way-safe. Its proven in SA not to have them
  • They are not advisable for the job and they are not needed.
  • Signing this will hopefully save lives.

Updates

2015-08-19 14:11:31 +1000

Sorry I made an error with the auto correct in my email:

"Because the petition is now closed, it does not mean we will continue to monitor this important area of Solar Safety."

Should read:

Although the petition is closed, we will continue to monitor this important area of Solar Safety.

Sorry for the confusion! Thanks Charles!

2015-07-14 12:33:45 +1000

http://gs-press.com.au/utils/zimage.php?width=1200&height=800&image=images/news_articles/GSES_Going-wrong_FIG1.png

2015-07-14 12:32:53 +1000

Here is some great information.

http://ecogeneration.com.au/news/solar_installations_where_are_we_going_wrong/93826?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Latest_article&utm_content=solar_installations_where_are_we_going_wrong

2015-06-19 17:23:50 +1000

http://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/queensland/madonna-king-solar-panels-installations--in-queensland-spark-a-fire-every-week-20150618-ghqt0t

2015-06-19 17:23:39 +1000

We are so pleased we have over 1000 signatures! Thanks for helping fix this ticking time bomb. We will be posting next week the locations and times we will deliver the petition to the Federal Minister and each safety office across Australia.

2015-06-18 08:45:24 +1000

1,000 signatures reached

2015-06-17 19:11:43 +1000

500 signatures reached

2015-05-28 12:47:48 +1000

http://www.sunshinecoastdaily.com.au/news/isolator-on-solar-panels-fires-up/2588676/

2015-05-18 18:01:20 +1000

I understand from attending the recent Solar 2015 Conference in Melbourne last week, that we are close to having the DC-Isolator removed from the roof in the next round of standards due next year.

Fresh News
"A majority of unsafe and substandard installations are attributed to water ingress of DC isolator switches and installers failing to ensure all DC wiring within the building is enclosed in heavy duty conduit. Both relate to Australian Standards changes, effective from October 2012. Inspections in late 2014 identified improvement in sub-standard rates when compared with earlier in 2014." Directly quoted from The Renewable Energy Target 2014 Administrative Report.

Please continue to help us to remove the need to install a DC-Isolator on the roof alongside a Solar PV Array by signing our Community Run Petition and help us continue to place this important topic on the forefront of renewable policy debate.

2015-04-23 17:15:21 +1000

https://youtu.be/KfBFr8s5Ydo

2015-04-23 16:57:28 +1000

Congratulations! SolarSafe's petition ('Remove the Solar DC Isolator from the Roof!') just hit 100 signatures. That's an incredible achievement. This is a huge turning point and an important opportunity to build on our campaign's momentum and take it to the next level. Please help share the campaign and lets move to get rid of this together.

2015-04-23 16:51:11 +1000

100 signatures reached

2015-04-21 16:46:51 +1000

50 signatures reached

2015-04-18 11:51:44 +1000

https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/greatest-debacle-solar-pv-australias-rooftop-dc-isolator-lucas-sadler?trk=prof-post

2015-03-27 12:47:21 +1100

25 signatures reached

2015-03-02 16:13:58 +1100

10 signatures reached

2015-02-28 11:30:28 +1100

See Linkedin for more information https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/dc-isolators-need-removed-lucas-sadler?trk=prof-post