Going green is a very popular topic nowadays, which is why you may hear all kinds of claims from the media, the contractors and people who have not idea about what they are talking about. There are also scammers who are looking for make some easy money by selling things that are simply too good to be true.
Some claims are absolute and obvious nonsense, for example, a story about a scientist who invented an engine that gets 100 miles on a gallon of water. With other stories, it may be more difficult to determine their credibility.
The industry of alternative energy is changing very quickly, which is why you need to make sure that you are protecting yourself.
When purchasing equipment or getting advice, do not look for the cheapest price because often you will get what you are paying for. Also, don’t go for radical new technology. Almost always, getting something time-tested makes more sense because of proven reliability. It is often not a question whether equipment or technology works, it is a matter of how reliable it is and for how many years it will serve you.
When it comes to outrageous claims and super-efficient brand new discoveries, the rule of thumb is very simple. It is the same rule that applies to all other areas of life: if it sounds too good to be true, it most likely is. If you are talking to a contractor and he or she promises you to install a brand new system that will solve all your problems, will reduce your bills by 90% and costs a half of what other systems cost, you should run away as quickly as possible.
Finally, pay attention to how much experience a contractor has. Especially in a bad economy, you will find a lot of solar contractors that were plumbers or electricians just a few short years ago. Every solar installation is different, which is why you are looking for someone with years of proven experience.