Does the Quality of Solar Panel matter?

Fast read

Choosing a reliable and quality solar panel is important for solar energy. Some cheap solar salespersons may try to convince you that all solar panels are the same, but this is untrue. Poorly made solar panels can harm the longevity of your solar system.

Looking for CEC-approved panels and inquiring about the manufacturing process are essential. Low-priced solar panels may seem appealing at first. But they typically degrade faster and may have discolouration, decreased production and efficiency, and snail trails.

Considering capacity, quality, efficiency, customer service, and warranty is important. As well as the price when choosing a solar panel. Choosing a reputable brand with an office in Australia for many years can ensure that warranty claims are handled smoothly.

Investing in a quality solar panel is a long-term investment, and ensuring that the panels can withstand the harsh Australian and New Zealand climate is essential.

Why should I choose a reliable, quality solar panel?

As electricity prices go up and concerns about climate change grow, more people in Australia and New Zealand are turning to solar power. This has led to a significant increase in the solar market, with numerous companies and salespeople offering their services. For someone new to solar, it can be confusing and overwhelming, especially with regard to the quality of solar panels.

Sometimes, salespeople may tell you that all solar panels are equal and that quality doesn’t matter much. That’s not true at all, it’s important to understand why choosing the best-quality solar panels is crucial.

Choosing high-quality solar panels ensures that your solar power system operates efficiently and has a longer lifespan. Cheaper solar panels might seem like a good deal, but they often use lower-quality materials. This can lead to problems like faster wear and tear or a higher risk of malfunctions.

Investing in the best-quality solar panels may cost a bit more upfront, but it pays off in the long run. These solar panels are more reliable, durable, and efficient, so don’t be misled by the idea that all solar panels are the same. Make the smart choice for your wallet and the environment by opting for top-notch quality.

Are all solar panels equal?

The main misconception that surrounds solar panels is that all panels are equal. Whether you heard this from a dodgy solar installer or your neighbour with solar, they are wrong. Poorly made solar panels can have detrimental effects on the longevity of your solar system.

So the first thing you should look for in a solar panel is whether it has been CEC-approved. But even that alone is not a guarantee because sometimes the approved and imported panels are not identical.

So a CEC registration, which is necessary to get the STC rebate, is considered the bare minimum since even CEC-approved panels have failed in the thousands in the past.

Therefore, it is encouraged to go beyond this stamp and enquire about how the solar panels were made and what support network the manufacturer has in Australia.

Degradation rate

Lower-priced solar panels may seem fine at first glance, but they typically degrade faster, especially in the harsh Australian climate. Some of the problems that tend to occur when cheaper solar panels are chosen include;

  • Solar panel discolouration;
  • Extreme decreases in solar panel production and efficiency after only a few years;
  • Snail trails along the solar panel, which can be an indication of microcracks.
solar panel with yellow discolouration because it is low quality
Solar panel discolouration is a sign of cheaper panels, decreasing functionality

Why should I not get the cheapest ones?

It might be tempting to go for a lower-priced solar system, but, as with many things, you often get what you pay for. When you’re comparing quotes from different solar installers, especially regarding the solar panels, it’s essential to consider various factors.

Look at the wattage capacity, efficiency, annual degradation, and the time the manufacturer has had a significant presence in Australia. Check if they have a dedicated customer service line and understand the details of the warranty. Of course, price matters too, but it’s just one piece of the puzzle.

While some people consider the country of manufacture, the reality is that many solar panels sold locally are made in China. However, not all are of the same quality. Some Chinese-made solar panels are high quality, with many reliable options available.

In summary, when making a decision about solar panels, it’s crucial to consider multiple factors beyond just the price. Wattage, efficiency, degradation, solar panel manufacturer presence, customer service, warranty period, and even the country of manufacture all play a role in ensuring you make a wise investment for a reliable and efficient solar PV system.

The sealant can be critical to a high-quality solar panel

When picking solar panels, it’s not just about the shiny parts; there’s something else important – the sealants and lamination. These are like the protective shields that keep moisture away from the back of the solar panel where the important stuff happens.

Cheaper solar panels may seem like a good deal, but they often use not-so-great sealants. These cheap sealants can wear out faster, letting water get into the panel. This is bad news because it can make the solar panel rust and stop working.

degraded solar system
A cheaper sealant means less resistance to general moisture

To ensure your solar panels have a long lifespan, consider investing in those with high-quality sealants and lamination. These act like superhero shields, keeping out moisture and making sure your solar panels keep working well. So, remember – it’s not just about the looks, but also about the stuff that keeps the quality of your solar panels strong and reliable.

Meaningful and strong product warranty

Another reason choosing a quality solar panel is essential is the product warranty. This is because although a brand may give you long warranty years, the number is worthless if there is no credibility behind the brand.

You are always encouraged to choose a solar panel brand with an office and legal entity in Australia. This means that the warranty claim is managed smoothly in the case of product or performance warranty claims.

In the case of solar energy, the initial costs can be overwhelming. However, it is essential to realise that it’s an investment, this means over time, the financial returns will be solid.

This is why it is so crucial that your solar system lasts for as long as it is meant to since it is a long-term investment with your solar panel system exposed to over 200,000 hours of rain, hail and shine. The solar panels must be built to withstand the wind and weather.

Low quality solar panels made by unknown brands will often not be able to handle the local conditions, so this is why it’s so important to choose an excellent solar panel brand. Usually, experienced installers who have been in the industry for a decade or more can make suitable recommendations.

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