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Old 04-02-19, 10:31 PM   #1
SgtNarc
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Default Solar panel survey

Wanted to start a thread and see which brand panels are being used by members/installers. Seems to me that a majority of panels being manufactured World Wide are held to and maintain a certain standard.

Brand names like Silfab, S-Energy, Risen, Neo Solar Power, etc are being used with good reviews and seem to cost a lot less than bigger brand names LG, Panasonic, etc.

So, if cost is a factor when DIY solar whether grid tied or not, which panels are you using.

Tom

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Old 04-04-19, 08:40 AM   #2
Zwerius
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Hi Tom,

I'm using Kyocera KC125-G2. These are 125 Wp panels.
I'm using them for over 15 years now. And there's no sign of deterioration.
See the efficiency graph (over the years) on my (Dutch) website: https://geen-energierekening-meer.we...e-panelen.html[/url]
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Old 04-06-19, 02:25 PM   #3
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The solar panels themselves are now dirt cheap relative to the full cost of a system. Right now the highest cost of a consumer purchased system installed by a professional is currently the professional. It's been that way since about a decade ago when the major solar module manufacturers were charging under $1/watt and inverter manufacturers also went under $1/watt. There is also the permitting and electrical work with a professional install but usually the people are costing twice the cost of the equipment being installed.

What is the price difference between a decent panel from a known company versus the others you've listed. 20 cents per watt? For my system the difference isn't even a 4 digit number and I'd rather not need to climb on the roof to swap out bad modules if things start going south.
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Old 04-06-19, 08:32 PM   #4
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My 220W panels manufactured by the bankrupt company: Evergreen generated 19.3kWh today. (panels were installed in 2013) Evergreen may have gone belly up, put their product still works 6+ years after their company went bankrupt...

I've got another 5.6kW of Canadian Solar 270W panels on a pallet in the garage. I expect they'll work like the Evergreen panels...

There's no guarantee any panel manufacturer will be around to warranty a panel some day down the road. Evergreen was bankrupt when I bought my panels, so I knew there was "No Expressed or Implied Warranty". If a manufacturer is still around should you have an issue, great. However, I wouldn't expect them to have a warehouse of "new old stock" panels lying around waiting for you to have an issue to ship you a direct replacement.
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Old 04-16-19, 02:38 PM   #5
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I have 53 (315W) LG panels and 15 (320W)Solaria panels installed. The LG panels were installed in 2017 and then with the tarrifs in place I could not buy additional LG panels, so I went with Solaria in 2018.
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Old 05-16-19, 05:05 PM   #6
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I have 33 JA Solar 300W Mono Black Panels (9.9kWp total) on the roof pointing in two directions (S-W and S-E) giving good coverage over the day.

2 Solax Inverters and 4 Strings.

They were installed just a month ago, so can't tell anything about reliability yet. So far best day was 62.7kWh produced. Worst day was 14.9kWh. Producing around 42% of my power used, 25% of the produced energy is self-consumed, the rest is fed into the grid.
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Old 05-16-19, 11:07 PM   #7
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My oldest panels (installed in 1982) are Arco 35 watt, and I'm sure there is deterioration but I can't accurately measure it even with good Fluke meters due to sunlight variation. I also have some 85 watt Solavolt that are about 25 years old, same thing. Then is an array of 125 watt Kyocera panels that are 15 years old and the occassional maximum power output is within a few watts of my readings when they were new. And the newest arrays are Evergreen, purchased when panels finally dropped under $1/watt--and they usually produce 5% more power than their rated output during some cold sunny March days, since we installed them in 2012--no noticable power loss yet.
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Old 05-17-19, 12:21 AM   #8
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40 Canadian Solar panels 230 watt
10 Lightway 240 watt
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Old 05-17-19, 07:40 AM   #9
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Our system is SunPower 327 panels. The whole system is warranted for 25 years, and is rated for 1" hail.
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Old 05-17-19, 12:58 PM   #10
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4 Sharp 175's bought in 2009 for $898.00/ea $5.13/w
2 Sharp 175's bought in 2011 for $498.00/ea $2.85/w
24 Sharp 240's bought in 2012 for $337.00/ea $1.40/w

The reason I went with Sharp was they were Made in the USA, Memphis, TN to be precise. My complete array best day performance was a tie at 48 kWh on 2/17/17 and 4/15/19. The 175's use Enphase Inverters, the 240's use a Sunny Boy 5000. By my subjective math, our array is 75.964% paid back and I can't tell that they've lost any power output.

Price is always a factor. Your solar panels are going to be with you for a very long time, don't let the price of your solar panels control the entire decision.

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