All solar panel manufacturers are not created equal
At first glance, solar panels may all look the same, but they are not created equal. B Maximize your return on investment by examining key factors to ensure worry-free performance for at least the next 25 years.
Choose yield over efficiency
Many manufacturers are touting efficiency (rated power per square foot) as the most important feature of a solar panel. However, focusing only on efficiency can reduce its long-term performance, yielding less energy over the life of your system. These “efficient” panels often crowd the solar cells together and up against the frame. This can lead to shading from mounting components, excess accumulation of dirt over the cells, and reduced potential for light capture and energy production.
The goal is to pay for decades of energy produced in a natural environment. So be sure to judge your purchase decision on real-life performance—not how much power a panel can produce in optimal laboratory conditions.
Choose a proven technology
Two main types of solar panels are currently available on the market: crystalline silicon, panels, and thin-film. Crystalline silicon panels have a significantly higher energy yield than thin-film panels using the
same area. Unlike thin-film, crystalline solar panels have demonstrated superior real-life performance over three decades, making them the preferred technology of choice for developers, utilities, government and business.
Choose an experienced manufacturer
There are hundreds of young start-up solar companies today, and it’s tough to know which to do business with. Given that a solar module can last for decades, be sure to select a manufacturer you are confident will be around to honor warranties as well as service commitments.