NABCEP PROFESSIONAL EXAM 2017

New to this forum. I am a solar installer and do very little AC work except when helping the electrician. I have failed the pro exam twice this year scoring 66, which means I am close. Just seeing if any one has taken the exam this year and if you would like to brainstorm some questions. My local utility has now required the NABCEP Pro cert to install solar though I have been doing it for 5 years now.
Thanks
 

pv_n00b

Senior Member
Location
CA, USA
I can't help with the test other than to say good luck. It's questionable that your local utility can require NABCEP certification of contractors to install solar. If you have the required state contractor's license that's all that's legally needed. But yours is a small municipal utility and they try to get away with a lot to slow down solar. If you can get the local solar contractors together you can push back on this at the state level. Shine some light on what they are doing to slow solar. It's wrong to require a private certification to conduct business, even the NABCEP website says they do not intend the certification to be used to prevent people from getting access to work.
 

pv_n00b

Senior Member
Location
CA, USA
Good point! It does seem wrong on so many levels, but is becoming more common.
There have been a few utilities that required NABCEP certification to access solar rebates but I have not heard of any that require the certification to do the job of a licensed electrical contractor. It creates a second shadow contractor licensing system that is not under the control of the state and states tend to not like that. If I were in CO I would have a chat with the state contractor licensing board about it to start, and then move on to my elected representatives. If the utility feels that a separate license should be needed to install solar then they need to take that to the licensing board.

I know if a utility told a licensed engineer that they needed NABCEP certification to design PV systems that utility would find itself in hot water pretty quickly.
 

ggunn

PE (Electrical), NABCEP certified
Location
Austin, TX, USA
Occupation
Electrical Engineer - Photovoltaic Systems
There have been a few utilities that required NABCEP certification to access solar rebates but I have not heard of any that require the certification to do the job of a licensed electrical contractor. It creates a second shadow contractor licensing system that is not under the control of the state and states tend to not like that. If I were in CO I would have a chat with the state contractor licensing board about it to start, and then move on to my elected representatives. If the utility feels that a separate license should be needed to install solar then they need to take that to the licensing board.

I know if a utility told a licensed engineer that they needed NABCEP certification to design PV systems that utility would find itself in hot water pretty quickly.
In Austin, to qualify for rebates the solar contractor must be registered with the City (and the utility, which here are one and the same), and in order to register as such the contractor must have at least one NABCEP certified professional on staff who has oversight of design and construction. Not everyone installing solar needs a NABCEP cert.
 
Utility and NABCEP

Utility and NABCEP

Our utility is a co-op and within the permit they require separately from the electrical permit, the home owner to agree that the installer be NABCEP PROFESSIONAL CERTIFIED. Within the permit they say that they hold the means to deny the net metering. I actually can do the install but they won't release a net metering. It definitely needs to be challenge. I want to pass the test but I want to challenge this as well.
 
In Austin, to qualify for rebates the solar contractor must be registered with the City (and the utility, which here are one and the same), and in order to register as such the contractor must have at least one NABCEP certified professional on staff who has oversight of design and construction. Not everyone installing solar needs a NABCEP cert.
Exactly what rebate is this? City or state?

Kinda a similar here in NY. To get state rebate, installer must be nabcep.
 

ggunn

PE (Electrical), NABCEP certified
Location
Austin, TX, USA
Occupation
Electrical Engineer - Photovoltaic Systems
Our utility is a co-op and within the permit they require separately from the electrical permit, the home owner to agree that the installer be NABCEP PROFESSIONAL CERTIFIED.
What do they mean by that? AFAIK, NABCEP certifies individuals, not installation companies. Does your co-op require that there be a NABCEP certified professional on board? Have you considered hiring such a person?
 

pv_n00b

Senior Member
Location
CA, USA
In Austin, to qualify for rebates the solar contractor must be registered with the City (and the utility, which here are one and the same), and in order to register as such the contractor must have at least one NABCEP certified professional on staff who has oversight of design and construction. Not everyone installing solar needs a NABCEP cert.
Requiring NEBCEP for rebates and requiring it before a licensed electrical contractor can do electrical work I consider two different things. Not allowing someone to access rebates is effectively the same as saying the contractor can't do the work but is probably different enough in the bureaucracy to get by. Since it's never happened anywhere I work I have not had the chance to stare it down but it would be interesting.


What do they mean by that? AFAIK, NABCEP certifies individuals, not installation companies. Does your co-op require that there be a NABCEP certified professional on board? Have you considered hiring such a person?
NABCEP does certify PV companies, although few have signed up so far. But I agree that the utility is probably referring to the individual PV installer certification.
 
Top