Why Inferior Solar Panels Don’t Last

February 17, 2018

Solar panel manufacturers often provide lengthy warranties for their products. The timeline for a typical solar panel warranty can be in excess of 20 years, but the truth is that poorly made solar panels begin to lose performance sooner than warranties expire. So, why does this happen? And, what makes an inferior solar panel degrade sooner than a superior one?


To tackle these questions, it’s important to remember that there isn’t such a thing as a physically perfect solar panel. There is no material on earth that is completely impervious to the effects of high amounts of UV radiation, which happens to be exactly what contributes most to solar panel degradation. Other contributors include weather and low quality manufacturing materials. Even though the ‘holy grail’ of solar panels doesn’t exist, what can be said about solar panel craftsmanship is that better-made panels simply perform better over the longer term.


According to a study by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), solar panel performance can degrade from .5% to 3% every year, meaning a poorly made solar panel can lose almost a third of its efficiency in just 10 years. This means quality controlling solar panels is absolutely critical before making a decision on which ones to use for a specific installation. It’s also important to know that a solar panel isn’t just solar cells and glass – a solar panel also needs a frame that will hold up to extreme temperatures and ongoing weathering. Warped frames are responsible for a significant amount of panel failures, particularly in areas of high heat.


The best way to avoid the risk of having low-quality materials used in your solar power generation system installation is to ask questions and make sure you’re working with a trusted partner who has a track record in the industry. Urban Solar is committed to using only the highest quality solar panels and mounting equipment available today. And, because we have long-standing relationships with the manufacturers of these high-quality parts, we’re able to leverage our buying power to yield a lower overall cost for you, the end customer.


So, why not reach out to Urban Solar today and inquire about a complimentary energy assessment? We’ll tell you how much you can start saving on your energy bills after getting answers to just a few basic questions. We look forward to hearing from you!