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Solarglass Roof install set for Feb 16-Mar1

jboy210

Supporting Member
Dec 2, 2016
5,103
3,172
Northern California
Nope. My gate is locked and they never asked for access. I already had a SmartMeter, and it was obvious that it supported bi-directional flow as it had already showed a tiny bit of production when Tesla did their inverter testing & Gateway commissioning (I monitor my meter with a Rainforest Eagle, so I noticed the blips on those days). So I think it was purely a paperwork review for me. The telephone pole with the transformer is also in my yard, though it can be accessed through my neighbor's yard as well and he doesn't lock his gate, so I can't say whether they climbed the pole or not.

Thanks. We have Smart Meter so hopefully will have the same luck. Since we have underground electrical runs I have no idea where the transformers are located.
 

charlesj

Active Member
Oct 22, 2019
1,142
236
Monterey, CA
...

I called tesla like every couple of weeks, kept asking what the hold up was. It was just slow on SCE (my utility) part back then I was told.

...
I remember when I installed my system it took PG&E a month to swap out meters and get on line with the panels.
I discovered the solar company that helped me with permits didn't start the PG&E part until after inspection was done.
I was furious especially when PG&E told me that the process with them could have been started when permit was applied for. They would have put a pause at their end as needed until it was inspected and then just a day or so. Lost a month of production.
 

bmah

Moderator, Model S/X, California Forums
Mar 17, 2015
3,951
7,119
Lafayette, CA, USA
I remember when I installed my system it took PG&E a month to swap out meters and get on line with the panels.
I discovered the solar company that helped me with permits didn't start the PG&E part until after inspection was done.
I was furious especially when PG&E told me that the process with them could have been started when permit was applied for. They would have put a pause at their end as needed until it was inspected and then just a day or so. Lost a month of production.

I don't want to scare anybody, but it took me a year and a few days to get PTO for my Powerwalls (a combination of slow paperwork and a failed inspection that required some mitigation of pre-existing access issues). It didn't bother me a whole lot because I already had solar, and nobody ever told me to turn the Powerwalls off. So they worked quite well to power the house during two PSPS events and various other minor outages. PG&E did the final inspection literally a week before the Bay Area shut down over the pandemic.

I'm pretty sure that's an outlier. Hope everybody else's PTOs go (a lot) faster than that!

Bruce.
 

TMThree

Active Member
Mar 28, 2019
1,116
1,611
USA
Inspection was the bigger hurdle for me, because San Jose takes 2 weeks to schedule a visit. So it was 2 weeks from completion until the first inspector showed, and there was one issue flagged that Tesla couldn't fix on-site, so it was another 2 weeks until the second (passing) inspection.

Damn. Here in FL, the initial inspection was done while they were doing the install. The final inspection was done the next day and it failed. Following day they did a video (remote) viewing with the installers explaining whatever it was to the remote inspector, and it got passed. Biggest issue here is waiting for Duke Energy to install the net meter hardware. Been waiting 3 weeks now.
 

woferry

Member
Mar 4, 2019
403
474
San Jose, CA
Yeah, and they're real sticklers in San Jose, given that all Tesla had to do was buy some fireproof caulk and seal a hole around one piece of conduit, he asked if he could just send a picture of the finished job and the caulk they used, the inspector said no, he had to see it himself. So it took 2 weeks for that, the inspector was on-site for at most a few minutes before he signed-off. And I heard them talking in my attic during the first inspection, the inspector was asked if San Jose would accept video inspections and he said absolutely not. I wonder if any of that has changed now.
 
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bmah

Moderator, Model S/X, California Forums
Mar 17, 2015
3,951
7,119
Lafayette, CA, USA
I am curious, what kind of access issue?

Not meaning to hijack @jboy210 's thread, but:

The meters at my house are on the side of the garage, and (up until a few weeks ago) one accessed them by hopping up onto a retaining wall for a planting area. This was not a problem when I had my inspection for solar...I usually put a stepstool up for people to be able to get to that area. When it came time to do the Powerwall inspection like 9 years later, they said no that wasn't going to work for liability reasons...despite the fact that this arrangement had worked through at least two prior inspections.

The solution, which was worked out between people from PG&E, Tesla, and my landscaper, was to clear out the front part of the planting area to create a walkway from an area farther down the driveway where the retaining wall was somewhat shorter.

It was annoying to have to deal with this. On the other hand, all of the people I interacted with at both PG&E and Tesla were reasonable and genuinely trying to help get the situation resolved quickly.

Bruce.
 

jboy210

Supporting Member
Dec 2, 2016
5,103
3,172
Northern California
Yeah, and they're real sticklers in San Jose, given that all Tesla had to do was buy some fireproof caulk and seal a hole around one piece of conduit, he asked if he could just send a picture of the finished job and the caulk they used, the inspector said no, he had to see it himself. So it took 2 weeks for that, the inspector was on-site for at most a few minutes before he signed-off. And I heard them talking in my attic during the first inspection, the inspector was asked if San Jose would accept video inspections and he said absolutely not. I wonder if any of that has changed now.


It may be changing. Here is what they say here in Pleasanton.

The allowable projects may schedule building inspections, however, they will be conducted remotely, through a video session on a smart phone or tablet device, and customers must contact our staff at ....

FWIW, completion of our install was allowable.
 
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charlesj

Active Member
Oct 22, 2019
1,142
236
Monterey, CA
Not meaning to hijack @jboy210 's thread, but:

The meters at my house are on the side of the garage, and (up until a few weeks ago) one accessed them by hopping up onto a retaining wall for a planting area. This was not a problem when I had my inspection for solar...I usually put a stepstool up for people to be able to get to that area. When it came time to do the Powerwall inspection like 9 years later, they said no that wasn't going to work for liability reasons...despite the fact that this arrangement had worked through at least two prior inspections.

The solution, which was worked out between people from PG&E, Tesla, and my landscaper, was to clear out the front part of the planting area to create a walkway from an area farther down the driveway where the retaining wall was somewhat shorter.

It was annoying to have to deal with this. On the other hand, all of the people I interacted with at both PG&E and Tesla were reasonable and genuinely trying to help get the situation resolved quickly.

Bruce.
Many thanks. But now, you must have had a smart meter, perhaps not 9 years ago but now, so why would meter readers come to your meter in the first place?
 

bmah

Moderator, Model S/X, California Forums
Mar 17, 2015
3,951
7,119
Lafayette, CA, USA
Many thanks. But now, you must have had a smart meter, perhaps not 9 years ago but now, so why would meter readers come to your meter in the first place?

Good question. I didn't get a real satisfying answer to that when I asked. I think it has more to do with emergency access to the meter and/or main breaker.

Bruce.
 

GoGoGoMach5

Member
Mar 11, 2020
17
4
Southern California
Hey jboy210,
I saw in another thread that you're waiting for PTO. Congrats! When was the install officially done? Were you given any indication of when PTO might arrive? I'm hoping you'll be able to finish your install document.
 

jboy210

Supporting Member
Dec 2, 2016
5,103
3,172
Northern California
Hey jboy210,
I saw in another thread that you're waiting for PTO. Congrats! When was the install officially done? Were you given any indication of when PTO might arrive? I'm hoping you'll be able to finish your install document.


Thanks. The first gating factor is getting the City to inspect the work and sign off. We are in limbo because of the lockdown. They are scheduled to open May 4, but who knows. Once they do open I gather that the inspection will be done virtually with someone from Tesla using a phone to show the installation, and someone at the city inspector's office asking questions. The person at the city I talked to last week said it takes 15-20 minutes.

Once they city signs off, Tesla will send us a bill for the final amount. Once we pay that Tesla sends PTO request to PG&E.

On the document, I was thinking the same thing. I have a lot of new pictures including of the massive crew Tesla sent over here to finish this job. I guess they were committed to finishing in 4 days and had a lot of resource available. So we had 6 Tesla people plus a 4-5 person subcontractor crew on site. I went broke plying them with doughnuts!

Anyway I will see if I can put up some stuff tonight.
 

jboy210

Supporting Member
Dec 2, 2016
5,103
3,172
Northern California
Update. On the our order it shows they are arranging for final inspection. So we are getting closer to being done. Our project coordinator called Friday but we missed the call. I hope they just show up on Monday.

I suspect this will be a video inspection with some guy from the Tesla Inspection team holding the phone and a remote inspector asking questions. The inspection page on the city website reads:

Building Inspections: Inspection requests can be done online by scrolling down and selecting the "Permit Status & Inspections" yellow icon below or by calling 925-931-5300, Press 1. Inspections may be conducted through a video session on your smart phone or tablet at the job site. You will be contacted the morning of your inspection to coordinate the time of your inspection. All construction safety protocols must be in place and a signed COVID-19 Construction Project Safety Certification form provided to our inspector prior to the inspection.

I plan on taking pictures and video of the inspection and updating the installation document.

Sure hope we pass the inspection and can move on to paying Tesla the second half and getting PTO from PG&E.
 
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wjgjr

Active Member
May 11, 2020
1,223
959
Silver Spring, MD
I suspect this will be a video inspection with some guy from the Tesla Inspection team holding the phone and a remote inspector asking questions.

Different state and different rules, but this is exactly what we did. Tesla employee showed up on time (~8:00) to remove the covers on the panels and prepare for inspection. Inspector was supposed to arrive by 8:30, but was 2 hours late. He stayed in the driveway (didn't even walk around to look at the outside equipment) on video chat with the Tesla employee. Within half an hour, Tesla employee was back with the approval sticker, and everything was approved in the county systems that afternoon. Didn't even ask to see the attic, where the rapid shutdown devices are located.

Honestly, it ended up being the easiest inspection - we had a past inspection for a new heater failed twice in part because the grounding screws weren't green enough, so having the inspector remote (and also having an employee on site in the event of some minor issue) was the one thing that went well in the (still ongoing) inspection/PTO phase of the project. I certainly appreciate the importance of the inspection and do hope nothing safety-related was missed, but it was good that it didn't get derailed by a disagreement on the precise minutiae of the code.
 
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jboy210

Supporting Member
Dec 2, 2016
5,103
3,172
Northern California
We are finally seeing some movement. Tesla called yesterday to set up final inspection. Set up for tomorrow morning. Install started in March 2 and completed April 2. With Covid shutdown in the middle. Permit office closed until mid-May.

I sure hope we pass and Tesla sends us request for final payment. Then we can move onto PTO. I hope PG&E is not as slow with PTO as I have heard.

Anyone else recently get PTO from PG&E. If so, what was the waiting time?
 
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SoCal Dave

Member
Jul 30, 2020
420
317
California
We are finally seeing some movement. Tesla called yesterday to set up final inspection. Set up for tomorrow morning. Install started in March 2 and completed April 2. With Covid shutdown in the middle. Permit office closed until mid-May.

I sure hope we pass and Tesla sends us request for final payment. Then we can move onto PTO. I hope PG&E is not as slow with PTO as I have heard.

Anyone else recently get PTO from PG&E. If so, what was the waiting time?

Wow, you completed the install on 4/2 but still haven't had final? I'd be fuming.

I replaced my underlayment a couple weeks ago and the inspector came out the next day for both rough and final.
 

jboy210

Supporting Member
Dec 2, 2016
5,103
3,172
Northern California
Wow, you completed the install on 4/2 but still haven't had final? I'd be fuming.

I replaced my underlayment a couple weeks ago and the inspector came out the next day for both rough and final.

Not thrilled with it. But on the other hand, I had the system to test and did not give Tesla 50% of the money, so ....

FWIW, when they called the city they said they could do the roof inspection that morning. But the solar built into the roof gave them pause and then Tesla messed up the data on the permit, so we had to get that update approved.
 
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