Solar power systems are a smart financial investment for homeowners. As we evaluate offers from solar companies, there are still many factors to consider before choosing the right equipment. Your financial options, the installer you select, and the solar system you installed impact your energy savings.
In this article, we’ll guide you through evaluating different solar panels and inverters. In the end, you’ll have a better understanding of what you need for your home.
6 Factors to Consider Before Choosing the Right Solar Panels
One grid-connected solar energy system has two main components: solar panels and inverters. Solar panels can generate electricity directly from the sunlight. Then, the inverters can convert the electricity into an energy form that can be used at home.
Some solar energy systems also include a monitoring system, allowing homeowners to see how much power they consume and produce.
- Solar Panels Pricing:Price usually is the first factor when choosing solar panels. The solar panels’ cost is determined by different variables, such as the size in watts, the physical size, the brand, the material quality, and durability.
It’s important to consider the expenses, but it shouldn’t be the only factor. If you think about long-term investment, the least expensive panels might not be the most efficient and probably not the best option for you. Generally, the lifespan of solar panels reaches more than 30 years. Therefore, it is more critical to ensure a good quality system than choosing the lower price.
- Solar Panel Quality: Quality is a measurement of how panels are manufactured. There are different types of manufacturers producing solar panels that differ in material, price, and efficiency. For example, vertically integrated solar panel manufacturers control each stage of the production process. They invest a significant amount of money into research and development (R&D).
On the other hand, other manufacturers will only assemble the solar panels. These companies neither manufacture their product nor invest in R&D.
Also, we need to consider the warranties and assurances that manufacturer offers on their equipment. Solar panels will degrade and become less efficient over time. Many producers guarantee that their products will not degrade within a certain period.
We recommend checking the companies’ reviews or history to evaluate their experience. Since installing a solar power system is a big investment, research the supplier’s qualifications and customer services.
- Energy Efficiency:Solar panels’ efficiency determines how much sunlight is converted into electricity. This will come to a simple question, how much power will your system generate? The price of solar panels is directly proportional to their efficiency.
It is not always the best choice to get the biggest and most efficient solar panel system. At first, you should monitor your daily home energy usage and assess your requirements. Then, choose the right panels that suit your needs.
- Durability:This can reflect the manufacturer’s confidence in its products. Typically, solar panels have a 25-year warranty. If the manufacturer does not offer any product warranty, most likely, their product is of poor manufacture. Be careful not to be misled by lower prices since you would regret it in the long term.
- Solar Panels’ Size:Size means the physical size and the size in watts. Like we mentioned in point 3, make sure to install a solar panel system that is big enough for all your appliances. More importantly, homeowners need to ensure there is enough space to install solar panels. An average household would typically require a 4kW solar power system.
- Inverter:Solar panels take sunlight and transform it into direct current power. The inverter’s job is to convert the DC power into the alternate current (AC) electricity used in your home. Generally, there are two types of inverters: string inverters and module-level power electronics (MLPEs).
String inverters are the cheapest option for the solar power system. When you have optimal production conditions, string inverters can be a good choice for your home.
MLPEs are usually more expensive but more efficient. If your solar panels’ efficiency is not optimal or cannot be installed at the best angle, MLPEs are the best choice.