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How important is efficiency of solar panels? Does it mean they are higher quality?

asked 2014-11-06 15:19:17 -0500

anonymous user

Solar Guru

I've got a couple different options in front of me--one for a 6kW system using SunPower panels and another with Trina panels. The SunPower panels are more efficient but the system is a bit more expensive--I gather they're a better panel, but is it really worth paying more?

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answered 2014-12-12 14:23:32 -0500

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updated 2014-12-12 14:23:32 -0500

In my opinion the only reason to go with a higher efficiency panel is when your roof real estate is limited. Because there is such a difference in price it doesn't make financial sense. Yes the panels may be slightly better made but what you are paying for is more power per square inch (that is what efficiency means). BP panels were thought to be top of the line at one point and you can Google what has happened there. One * to my comment - the added cost is eligible for the federal tax credit so any difference in price is really only a net 70% difference. Also, your sun power dealer may have extra financing packages available directly from the manufacturer that the other dealer doesn't offer. If you are going lease or PPA the added cost is factored into your monthly contract price - and since the provider gives you a guarantee on the output it is really a moot point which equipment they use (aside from the anchors to your home). Make sure they use a flashed anchor.

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Asked: 2014-11-06 15:19:17 -0500

Seen: 166 times

Last updated: Dec 12 '14