Solar Maverick Podcast

SMP 07: Getting down to Earth with Solar: Construction, quality control and O&M insights from Chris Grablutz

December 18, 2018

About our Guest:

Chris Grablutz is the director of business development for PV Pros, Inc., a nationwide solar maintenance company specializing in commercial and utility scale solar PV systems based in New Jersey. He is an owner’s engineer and operations and maintenance professional. He has worked in the industry for over a decade, designing and building solar PV arrays with a focus on quality control and longevity.


Episode Summary:

Chris talks about his background in the solar energy industry, drawing on his decade of experience to highlight what he has learned in terms of growing a successful business and  navigating the solar energy world. Looking ahead, he offers insights on the future of energy storage and advice for anyone looking to enter the solar industry.


Insights from this Episode:

  • Strategies for navigating the ups and downs of the solar industry
  • Tips for designing strong and financially smart solar projects from an operations and maintenance perspective
  • Insights on what it will take to move energy storage tech forward
  • The secret to achieving those 100% renewable energy goals
  • Strategies for getting into the solar energy industry


Quotes from the Show:

  • “Smooth seas don’t make for good sailors and that’s what this industry is all about.” - Chris Grablutz, Episode 7
  • “As the industry changed, instead of trying to do new things, we decided to look back at what our core competency was.” - Chris Grablutz, Episode 7
  • On the small size and interconnectedness of the industry: “It’s almost sometimes musical chairs with people changing companies.” - Benoy Thanjan, Episode 7
  • Because of how small and interconnected the industry is: “Do whatever you can to make sure you end things amicably; you don’t ever burn a bridge.” - Chris Grablutz, Episode 7
  • On the importance of quality control while building a project: “There’s solar cells that were made 40 plus years ago that still provide power… We have to make sure that we get to that 25 years [warranty of modules] successfully, and then after that those are still contributing years.” - Chris Grablutz, Episode 7
  • On solar energy storage: “It’s there, it’s ready, it’s just new, and no one wants to make the quick decision, which is good. I think at this point we need to out our foot a little closer to the floor and come up with those financial mechanisms so that we can deploy more storage.” - Chris Grablutz, Episode 7
  • “In all reality, when everyone starts at that entry level position, the things that differentiate you are your knowledge of where you’re going, the things that you’ve done – your experiences, like internships or presenting your own personal research – and being able to differentiate yourself from other people, so that a hiring authority can say, ‘hey this person, they went after it harder than everyone else. They want this job and this is the person that I want on my team.’” - Chris Grablutz, Episode 7


Resources mentioned:


Stay connected:

Benoy Thanjan

Facebook: Reneu Energy


Li Wang:

Instagram: @liwang22


Chris Grablutz:

Visit in person! @ 5 Marine View Plaza #301 Hoboken NJ 07030

Podbean App

Play this podcast on Podbean App