After the nuclear disaster in Fukushima and the decision to switch off nuclear power in Germany, renewable energies are becoming increasingly important. Wind power, geothermal energy and hydropower play an important role in this. But for private consumers, above all, the generation of energy from solar power is an important pillar of the energy transition, since they can also contribute to this themselves. There are two ways to use the power of the sun: photovoltaics and solar thermal energy.
Below we explain the differences between a photovoltaic system and a solar thermal system. We also explain possible forms of hedging. Because both forms of solar system are costly investments that need to be protected against damage if you do not want to risk financial losses.
The difference: photovoltaic and solar thermal
Both photovoltaic and solar thermal use the power of the sun. However, this can be used differently. In a photovoltaic system, solar energy is converted into usable electricity via special solar modules , which are then fed into the grid. The solar thermal system uses solar energy differently – here the heat energy is utilized . Usually, this is heated by means of solar energy water. This can then be used on the one hand for heating purposes and on the other hand also serve to heat the normal tap water. Both systems make it possible to save energy costs – as both heating and electricity costs have increased noticeably in recent years.
Insurance for solar systems: photovoltaic and solar thermal
Neither the photovoltaic nor the solar thermal system are cheap investments. Not infrequently, a loan is required to finance the purchase of such an investment. However, since damage is possible at any time, a hedge is essential if you want to protect yourself from the financial risks that any damage can bring. There is a fundamental distinction between two areas – policies that only cover one of the two types of installations and insurance companies that make no distinction between solar thermal and photovoltaic in terms of coverage.
Especially with installation and later operation of a solar system you should pay very close attention to when which insurance is liable for what possible damage. Because the purchase of the system is associated with high costs and insurance gaps should therefore be avoided if possible.
Protection with the liability insurance
The private liability insurance or the landlord liability insurance applies if the solar thermal or photovoltaic system causes damage to third parties. This can happen, for example, if components have been improperly fastened or loosened by storm and fall from the roof of the house. If this causes property damage or even damage to people, the liability insurance applies. However, you should report the installation of the system to the insurer, so that he can include the system in the insurance coverage.
Protection with homeowners insurance
The same applies to homeowners insurance. Insofar as the solar system is classified as part of the existing property, it is also possible here to cover damage to both installations. However, the homeowners insurance for the solar thermal as well as for the photovoltaic system leaves significant risks, which can be concluded only in the context of special insurance. Therefore, a solar insurance is recommended in any case.
Protection with construction insurance
If the solar thermal or photovoltaic system is installed in the course of a new construction, the construction insurance can take effect here. Because just then, if the house is built anyway, it can easily cause damage to the solar system.
Solar thermal system and their insurance
The additional costs for heating and hot water have been increasing for years. Solar thermal systems can bring significant cost savings , so that this investment can really pay off after a few years. However, this only works if the system runs well over a long period of time. However, damage to the system can occur at any time, necessitating costly repairs and also leading to business interruptions.
A solar thermal insurance can cover all damage that may occur to the system due to environmental effects or component failure. The all-risk coverage goes beyond the protection of homeowners insurance and should be considered by any owner of a solar thermal system.
Photovoltaic system and its insurance
Photovoltaic systems are now used in many areas. As small, decentralized power plants they supply electricity for private households, but also for companies. Anyone who operates such an installation should secure itself with regard to liability and possible damage, since otherwise not only financial losses but also unplanned costs can occur at any time.
Thus, in the event of damage that brings the plant to a standstill, it must be borne in mind that electricity must again be drawn from the general electricity grid, which leads to additional costs. But even those who operate their facility on a third party or a rented roof, must be aware that he can be held liable for any damage caused by the system. Solves itself about a part of the plant and injures a passers-by, can protect only an operator liability insurance against high consequential costs.
Even during the construction phase, the system can be damaged. Here, however, usually the installation insurance of the installer, which incurs, among other things for theft, fire, negligence and assembly errors.
For owners of a solar power system, however, the conclusion of a photovoltaic insurance is still highly recommended, especially since high costs arise when the system is severely damaged by natural phenomena. After all, photovoltaic systems are technical devices whose repair is often costly . The all-risk coverage of a photovoltaic insurance covers natural events such as
- Heavy snow
- lightning strike
- Overvoltage or
Short circuit due to a design error. Theft and vandalism are also covered. In addition, plant owners can also insure against the financial loss at standstill of the plant.
Especially in the case of a photovoltaic system, it is important to look for aspects such as plant size or design class when looking for suitable insurance. On the one hand savings potential can arise here, on the other hand the insurance cover can expire, if it comes to unintentional misrepresentations.
Use comparison for free and without obligation
Particularly in view of the high investment costs, it is worth considering solar insurance in advance of the acquisition and carrying out a comprehensive and independent tariff comparison. Take advantage of this opportunity free of charge and without obligation and discover the advantages and disadvantages of each offer on the market.