HowToHow to Choose a Solar Panel Company: Everything You Need to Know

How to Choose a Solar Panel Company: Everything You Need to Know

In a March 2022 survey, 8% of respondents reported installing solar panels. Almost 40% of participants also said they seriously considered doing the same.

If you’re part of the second group, now’s an excellent time to push through with your plans. A good enough reason is that the federal solar tax credit is once again at 30%. Qualifying for this incentive can considerably lower your solar panel installation costs.

However, you should also be aware that you have over 10,000 options for solar companies. Thus, it pays to know more about how to choose a solar panel company you can rely on and trust.

Luckily, you’ve come to the right place. Below, we’ve shared our top tips on choosing a solar panel provider, so read on.

Determine Which Solar Panels You Want

Photovoltaic (PV) and thermal panels are the two primary types of solar panels. They both collect and absorb the sun’s raw power and convert it into energy you can use at home. The chief difference is the type of energy they generate.

Solar PV panels produce electricity you can use to energize your home. For example, you can use it for lighting, appliances, and electronic devices.

Solar thermal panels generate heat energy. Thus, they’re more for home heating or hot water systems.

It’s vital to determine which of the two you want because some solar panel companies only offer PV panels. So if you wish to invest in both residential solar system types, choose a company offering both.

Look for Companies Offering High-Efficiency Panels

Before buying and installing solar panels, consider their efficiency first. The higher their efficiency rating, the higher their output.

Output refers to the amount of power that solar panels can generate. So the higher it is, the more usable, clean, and green electricity the panels can produce.

High-efficiency solar panel designs usually utilize monocrystalline (mono) panels. They consist of black solar cells made of pure silicon. That purity is one of the reasons mono panels are the most efficient of all solar panel types.

Another reason to opt for mono panels is that you may need fewer of them to generate enough power for your needs. That, again, has to do with their increased output. Thus, if you have limited space at home, consider getting high-efficiency panels.

The most reputable solar panel companies manufacture and sell mono panels. However, note that these products cost the most of all your options.

If you have a tight budget, worry not; the best companies also make polycrystalline panels. Also known as poly panels, these devices cost less than their mono counterparts.

The downside is that polycrystalline panels are less efficient than monocrystalline. As a result, they may not always produce enough power to offset your total electricity usage.

Choose a Solar Panel Company Offering Installation

You may consider a DIY installation if you only plan to set up a small solar energy system. An example is if you only wish to power a small space, such as a detached shed or a garage. You can do this as long as you have basic electrical skills and won’t use the system for numerous devices.

But if you want to power your entire home with solar, go with professional residential solar panel installation services. For starters, installing whole-home solar energy systems requires government permits. It also entails inspections and, in most cases, work by licensed contractors.

For example, a roofer must first check your roof’s integrity before you can install solar panels on it. Because if it’s unstable, it may collapse under the weight of the solar energy system. Each solar panel, after all, weighs about 40 pounds.

A licensed electrician must also inspect your existing electrical system first. For instance, they must confirm the wiring is compatible with solar equipment. Skipping this step can result in costly repairs and even dangerous fires.

Lastly, you can’t just connect a solar power system to the grid. Inspectors must first determine proper and safe connections.

The good news is that reputable solar panel companies also offer professional installations. Go right here to read a more in-depth guide on what services you can expect from such providers.

Ensure There Are Lengthy Warranties Offered

Solar panel companies, at the very least, offer a product warranty. It’s a written guarantee that a panel is free of manufacturer defects and abnormal wear and tear.

Product warranties range from 5 to 25 years. Take advantage of this if your panels suddenly stop working; it may be a manufacturer defect. If so, then the repairs or replacements must be free of charge. 

Another warranty to consider when picking a solar company is a performance warranty. It guarantees a panel’s output and expected degradation for a specified time, say, 20 years. For example, it may assure you that the panels will perform at 80% of their output rating for 20 years.

What if the panels’ performance dips below 80% after ten years? Then the performance warranty should kick in, and their maker should fix the issue. You, in turn, should not pay for any repair or replacement.

If you hire a company to install your panels, be sure they provide a craftsmanship warranty. It guarantees that they correctly designed, assembled, and installed your equipment. So if any problem arises from these factors, the company must fix them for free.

Craftsmanship warranties can range from one to 10 years. However, some companies don’t even offer them.

Avoid companies without a craftsmanship warranty, even if they charge less. One reason is that it may indicate a lack of confidence in the quality of their services.

Time to Choose a Solar Panel Company

Please remember that a solar energy system can still cost $15,000 to $25,000 before any tax incentive. So even with the tax breaks included, it can still set you back at least $10,000.

That’s a hefty investment, so carefully choose a solar panel company. Ensure they carry the type of panels you want and that their products are high-efficiency. They should also offer installation and, most importantly, lengthy warranties.

To read other guides on home improvement, lifestyle, and tech, browse the rest of our site now!

See Also – Tallyman Axis

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