The Rise and Fall of DC Solar Solutions Inc.: A Cautionary Tale in the Renewable Energy Industry

The Rise and Fall of DC Solar Solutions Inc.: A Cautionary Tale in the Renewable Energy Industry

A Promising Venture

Founded in 2008 by Jeff and Paulette Carpoff, DC Solar Solutions Inc. made headlines for its pioneering approach to mobile solar generators. These units, housed in flatbed trailers, provided a flexible and sustainable source of power for various applications, from powering events to supporting emergency response efforts. The company quickly gained traction, attracting investors eager to support its vision of a greener future.


DC Solar trailers typically consisted of 10 solar panels totaling about 2600 watts, one or two SMA Sunny Island inverters with up to 12kW of split-phase 120v/240v power, a semi-custom MidNite Solar Classic 250 charger controller and a pair of heavy 48v lead-acid batteries. They could even be optioned with lights and backup generators.
The design was quite successful for a while, with sales topping $2.5 billion and investors including Warren Buffet jumping in. The company even briefly sponsored a Chip Ganassi NASCAR team.

The Fall

However, beneath the surface of innovation and promise lurked a web of deceit. In January 2019, federal authorities raided DC Solar Solutions' facilities as part of an investigation into alleged fraudulent activities. What unraveled was a complex Ponzi scheme, orchestrated by the Carpoffs, which deceived investors into pouring money into nonexistent or incomplete solar projects.

The fallout was swift and severe. Jeff and Paulette Carpoff were charged with multiple counts of conspiracy to commit fraud, money laundering, and other offenses. As the legal proceedings unfolded, it became apparent that DC Solar Solutions' success had been built on shaky foundations. Investors were left reeling, grappling with substantial financial losses and shattered trust.

The demise of DC Solar Solutions Inc. sent shockwaves through the renewable energy industry, serving as a stark reminder of the importance of due diligence and transparency. While the company's downfall was a blow to the sector, it also prompted a critical examination of regulatory oversight and investor protection measures.

The story is far more compelling than what's written in this post. For arguably the best read on the saga, check out "The Billion-Dollar Ponzi Scheme That Hooked Warren Buffet and the U.S. Treasury," from The Atlantic.

The Opportunity

Yet, the fall of DC Solar isn't complete doom and gloom, as the trailers can be purchased at auction for as little as a couple thousand dollars. The relatively simple design means that restoring one won't break the bank.

Best of all, it's fairly straightforward to replace the old - and heavy! - lead-acid batteries with modern lithium iron phosphate, such as those from Higher Wire. We offer different capacities to suit your needs, and can help you get setup with the proper steps to ensure trouble-free operation.

Our lithium iron phosphate batteries are far lower-weight - only 500-800 lb to replace 4500lb of lead - more efficient and last far longer than the old batteries. They charge faster and retain a charge for longer. Plus they require zero routine maintenance.

We can also help you pair that new battery upgrade with modern hardware, including higher-power PV panels, a better charger, and even modern inverters. Contact us today to get setup with a safe, sustainable energy storage solution for your DC Solar trailer.


  1. "DC Solar owner sentenced to over 11 years in prison for billion-dollar Ponzi scheme" - Internal Revenue Service
  2. "DC Solar Owner Sentenced to 30 Years in Prison for Billion Dollar Ponzi Scheme" - Department of Justice
  3. "Warren Buffet was Scammed out of $340 Million in a Ponzi Scheme" - The New York Observer
  4. "DC Solar scammers serve as a cautionary tale for solar investors" - Renewable Energy World
  5. "How DC Solar Solutions Defrauded Investors" - The Wall Street Journal

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