Upgrading to photovoltaic solar panels can be an expensive commitment, but there are plenty of cheap solar panels to choose from. Read on for more information about solar options.
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1. Solarland SLP020-24U Silver Poly 24 Volt Solar Panel
Solarland panels are the cheapest overall.
- $63.80 per panel
- 20-watt panels
- Unknown efficiency
- 10-year warranty on power output
Their most popular cheap model is the Solarland SLP020-24U Silver Poly 24 Volt Solar Panel, which is typically used for powering traffic lights and other small off-grid uses.
Certain features, like its efficiency rating, are either non-existent or challenging to find, which makes this cheap panel a potentially risky purchase.
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2. LONGi Model #LR6-60-HPB-310M
As for residential solar panels that can power an entire house, the LONGi brand is well-rated on SolarReviews and offers a few cheap model types, including LONGi Model #LR6-60-HPB-310M and LONGi Model #LR6-60-HPB-300M.
- $165 per panel
- 310-watt panels
- 18.7% efficiency
- Limited 25-year warranty
LONGi is a great panel that offers good efficiency and reliable wattage, it is a high-quality cheap panel option.
3. LONGi Model #LR6-60-HPB-300M
LONGi also offers a lower wattage model if you want to spend a little less per square foot and have roof space to spare for extra panels.
- $196.11 per panel
- 300-watt panels
- 18.1% efficiency
- Limited 25-year warranty
Although LONGi panels are not as efficient as their top-tier counterparts, they can provide enough power for your entire home for a guaranteed 25 years.
4. Canadian Solar Model #CS3K-315MS
Canadian Solar is another highly-rated, cost-effective solar panel manufacturer. The cheapest option is Model #CS3K-315MS.
- $207.90 per panel
- 315-watt panels
- 18.96% efficiency
- 25-year output warranty
Canadian Solar panels are slightly more expensive than LONGi but they offer better efficiency, so you can use less of them to power your home.
5. Panasonic Model #VBH330RA03K
Panasonic solar panels are regarded as some of the best-quality panels, but you can find a good deal with the VBH330RA03K model.
- $291.18 per panel
- 330-watt panels
- 19.7% efficiency
- 25-year warranty
Panasonic is definitely the most costly option on this list, but its brand recognition, higher efficiency, and wattage might make it worth the money in exchange for the peace of mind that comes with a known and well-liked brand.
Why do solar panel costs vary?
Although individual solar panel prices are listed, normally when solar installers order materials for installation, they might be able to find a better deal because of relationships they have with manufacturers or through various incentives for solar in your state.
Find what solar incentives you could be eligible for here.
When buying solar panels for a project, the cost per watt of the panel can end up being less than if you bought 20 individual panels. Working with a licensed installer can help you get the best quality panel for the best cost.
Additionally, while cheap solar panels offer the best price upfront, they might not be the best long-term option. Cheap solar panels have a shorter lifespan because usually what makes them cheap is that they have lower efficiency, or ability to absorb sunlight, and they deteriorate more quickly.
However, if you are determined to get the best deal for solar panels, going the DIY route might be your best bet.
Are buying cheap solar panels worth it?
Solar panels vary in price for a few reasons. High efficiency panels with more solar cells, or ones that have a higher wattage amount, are generally more expensive because they can produce more electricity per panel than less efficient options.
While purchasing cheap solar panels might save you money upfront, the long-term benefit of installing more expensive solar panels might outweigh the initial savings. Higher-quality panels will produce more electricity and last longer so you will need less panels to cover the energy consumption of your home.
Cost generally comes down to how a panel was built, both in terms of quality and the method used, i.e. monocrystalline versus polycrystalline, and its efficiency.
While cheap solar panels might be tempting, the best-priced solar panels are ones that will provide the highest payback over the long term. Despite the large initial price tag involved with a quality solar system, depending on where you live, you can save upwards of $60,000 over a 25-year period instead of spending that money on utility bills.
Solar power is one of the most profitable renewable energy home investments in the United States and is currently helping hundreds of thousands of homeowners save money on their electricity bills. Provided you install the right system size, you can wipe out all or most of your electric bill. Solar panel installation companies are more than happy to help you find the cheapest solar installation.
Solar Energy Terms
A renewal energy resource is an energy resource that is regenerative or virtually inexhaustible. Typical examples are solar, wind, geothermal, and water. A renewal energy resource is an energy resource that is regenerative or virtually inexhaustible. Typical examples are solar, wind, geothermal.
Solar energy-Solar energy is electromagnetic energy transmitted from the sun. Solar energy is measured is kilowatt hours (kWh) or megawatt hours.
kWh and MWh
kWh and MWhkWh and MWh are measurements of energy production and usage. kWh stands for kilowatt hour. MWh stands for megawatt hour.
Alternating current (AC)
Alternating current is a type of electrical current, the direction of which is reversed at regular intervals or cycles. In the United States, the standard is 120 reversals or 60 cycles per second. Electricity transmission networks use AC because voltage can be controlled with relative ease. This is the type of current used by homes and buildings.
Direct current (DC)
Direct current is a type of electricity transmission and distribution by which electricity flows in one direction through the conductor, usually relatively low voltage and high current. This is the type of current created by your solar panels. To be used for homes, DC must be converted to alternating current (AC) using an inverter.
The process by which sunlight is converted into energy. The sun emits photons (light), which generates electricity when they strike a photovoltaic cell. A photovoltaic module is another term for a solar panel.
(sources: affordable-solar.com, solarreviews.com)