Understanding a Solar Panel Warranty

There are a lot of variables to consider when installing a solar panel system. Depending on the unit, the home, the surrounding environment, and the spot on the globe, solar panels can vary greatly in their final system output. This complex mix of factors can lead one to believe that the lifespan of an average solar panel is totally unpredictable.  But, if anything, solar panels are one of the most reliable investments you can make and the length of a solar panel warranty is quite indicative of this. Regardless, individuals looking to install a solar panel system need to seriously consider the different solar panel warranties that are offered by solar installers.

Manage Your Expectations for Solar Panel Warranty

As solar panels age, they are expected to be less efficient just like your car. Common standards suggest that a 5-year old panel may see a slight decrease in efficiency and be operating at 95% of its original efficiency, which will further drop to 80% by its 25th year. These numbers can change based on all the factors mentioned earlier, and some evidence suggests the average panel lasts much longer than these standard values.

A solar panel that remains efficient is important for owners looking to recoup solar installation costs and make solar power a more affordable option than the electricity coming from your conventional utility company power grid. To protect those financial interests and ensure that they are getting a good value, consumers should seek out the best solar panel warranty.

Comparing a Solar Panel Warranty

Here’s a comparison of different companies and the warranties they offer.

SunPolar guarantees solar panels will operate at 90% output after 12 years, and 80 output at year 25.

Suntech has solar panel warranties protecting panels that operate at 95% at 5 years, 90% at 12 years, 85% at 18 years, and 80% at 25 years.

Trina Solar’s solar panel warranty varies depending on the type of solar panels. For monocrystalline installations, an 80.18% output is guaranteed at the 25 year mark, while for polycrystalline installations an 80.7% output is guaranteed 25 years into a system’s lifespan.

Yingli Green is atypical in that it offers a solar panel warranty for panels that are only one year old, guaranteeing a 98% output. At the 10 year mark they protect panels at 92%, and at the 25 year mark they protect panels at 82%. This is one of the most strict policies, guaranteeing that panels will be efficient for longer.

Homeowners should rest easy knowing that most major solar panel production companies stand by their panels for such lengthy periods of time. This allows them to get a solar panel installation with the confidence that it will be productive and cost efficient for a long time knowing they have a solar panel warranty to back their purchase up.