Solar panels provide renewable energy for your home, which not only helps the environment, but also reduces your electricity bill. But not all panels are alike. In this article you will be reading a lot about the different factors that determine what makes the best solar panel. Before you buy solar panels for your home, research the different factors and decide on which option is right for you.
4 factors to include while choosing a Solar panel:
- Choosing a suitable panel material
- Selecting a solar inverter
- Deciding on a mounting option
- Other needs such as electricity consumption and your ideal budget
Choosing the panel material
The 4 common materials that are used for solar panels are Monocrystalline, Polycrystalline, Thin-film and Amorphous. It is now your job to identify which material is most suitable for your needs and provide the best benefits.
- Monocrystallilne panels offers the best productivity out of the other 3. Due to the high silicon purity, it results in better working panels. It is because of this that these panels are usually the most expensive.
- Polycrystalline panels are the most Eco friendliest and “greenest” option. They contain the basic amount of silicon and are not as efficient as the other panels.
- Thin-Film panels are extremely budget friendly. They are very simple and are ideal for smaller homes. They may degrade faster than the other panels but can be long lasting with maintenance.
- Amorphous panels are more of a subset of thin-films. There are multiple layers of silicon cells which produce high efficiency.
Selecting a solar inverter
As it was with the panel materials, there are 4 types of solar inverters to choose from that best suits you.
- Power optimisers work well in places that are partially shady. This inverter will suit you best if your location receives 6-8 hours of direct sunlight with partial shade in between.
- Micro-inverters are best for long term usage. Unlike other inverters, they keep working despite any broken panels and due to its longer life span, these inverters are the most expensive.
- String inverters are the least expensive and budget friendly. They are a cluster of smaller panels acting like one single panel and are most suitable for houses with flat roofs.
- Central inverters are currently the oldest and most common inverters. They work well in harsh climates and is the most reliable.
Deciding on a Mounting Option
It is now becoming clear that each factor has 4 sub-factors. Once again there are 4 mounting options that you can choose from.
- Ballated mounts are suitable with areas having low wind. They are attached at an angle a few meters above the roof to gain sunlight easier and do not work that well in windy climates.
- Mechanically attached mounts work well in harsh weather and are the most secure. They are fixed and take up very less space, ideal from smaller houses.
- Hybrid mounts are a combination of the previous two mounts. They can be mechanically fixed while at the same time, can be fixed at an angle above the roof.
- Fixed mounts follow the sun throughout the day and try to absorb as much sunlight as possible and do not work as well in partial shaded areas.
Being Happy With Your Decision
Buying a solar panel should bring you no regrets to you both before and after buying it. Some factors that you must take into consideration while buying a solar panel include what kind of building you live in and where exactly you want to set up the panel. Fix a budget so that you can be prepared on what to expect and so that you don’t end up exceeding your budget.
We hope this has helped shed some light on the turmoil of buying a solar panel. Before hesitating, just keep in mind that Solar Energy is Today’s resource for a brighter tomorrow!