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Solar panel manufacturers

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What are people's recommendations for solar panel manufacturers?

I'm asking around locally for some quotes for solar panels for my house. The first bloke I saw offered some panels from JA Solar. Anyone heard of them? Their panels look pretty good but I can't find much about them on the internet.

I'm curious to hear people's opinions on the various manufacturers.

Solar panels are commodity products these days so they are sold by fancy marketing rather than technical merit, I guess there all of a muchness but quality is important for long life.
I use Axitec (German) as I came across some at the right price and the manufacturer provides good technical data.
Don't forget there are many different types of panel around such as polysilicon, amorphous and thin film, each have there own application areas and price/performance.
I imagine you are having the installation done for you so that you may claim FIT's, carefully research using the web the real likely income rather than relying upon the installers figures.

Have a read of some of the posts on this forum: http://forums.whirlpool.net.au/forum/143?g=371

From what I could tell opinions on solar panels are like buttholes - everyone has one...

People seem to talk about "Tier 1" solar panels. Some folk see Tier 1 panels as being good quality panels others say the Tier 1 is a reference to the 'value' of the mother company that makes the panels.
Three also seems to be lots of solar installers surreptitiously promoting their favorite products and slagging off the competition (at least on Aussie forums).

I have Jinko brand panels on my roof. They are a 'Tier 1' panel. They get good reviews but some folk bag them.
I figure a 10 year odd warranty is pretty good seeming my system will pay for itself in about 2.5 years.

Prior to the Jinko panels I had some cheap no-name Chinese panels that worked fine and were still going strong after 5 years with no issues.

There's also some useful information on this site. It's Aussie focused but it should apply anywhere the sun shines.

Some folk seem to try to wring the last Whr our of their system by mixing / matching as some panels cope with shade better than others.
I suspect a lot of this is enthusiasm based and may make little difference for run of the mill installations.

My system was cranking 5.1kW this morning so I'm pleased.

Q Cells Q Pro G4 panels are highly regarded.

It's true - they're now commodity products. Many, many brands (and much rebranding). Most are made in China and are of similar high quality. Most have 10-15 yr material warranty and 25 year power output warranty (assumes company will still be around!).. Most are ETL listed, many UL listed.

A reputable installer should only sell quality panels, honor warranties, etc.


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