Solar panels are incredibly durable. Their average lifespan is approximately 25 to 30 years, though some can last even longer. Many solar panels have warranties that guarantee performance throughout their service life, typically 10 to 25 years.
While solar panels provide clean energy and reduce monthly bills, they do not last forever. Like everything else, they eventually reach the end of their lifespan and will need replacement.
Before going solar, it’s essential to understand what factors affect the lifespan of a solar panel. That way, you can make a well informed decision about whether solar is the right investment. This article will discuss solar panels’ durability, factors affecting them, and the degradation rate.
Why Do Solar Panels Degrade?
Solar panels comprise materials like crystalline silicon, gallium arsenide, amorphous silicon, and organometallics. All these materials are susceptible to degradation over time when exposed to the elements. That means solar panels slowly lose their efficiency as they age.
What Is a Solar Panel Degradation Rate?
The rate of degradation in solar panels is relatively slow. It takes many years for a significant loss in performance to occur. However, different brands have different rates of degradation.
That’s because companies have different technologies, and the ones with superior tech will have a slower degradation rate. Before buying a panel, always check the manufacturer’s datasheet to see their degradation rate.
According to the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, the average solar panel loses about 0.8% of its efficiency per year. That means a new solar panel will be about 84% efficient after 20 years. A good quality solar panel can retain about 80% of its original efficiency after 25 years.
However, premium solar panels have a lower degradation rate of about 0.3%. That means after 25 years, they will still be approximately 92.3% efficient.
Degradation is an essential aspect to consider when choosing solar panels for your home and business. At Wayne Solar, we only provide solar panels from the top manufacturers ensuring that you get the best quality product with the lowest degradation rates.
Factors Affecting the Longevity of Solar Panels
The degradation rate of solar panels is not set in stone. Several external factors can affect how quickly they lose their efficiency. For example:
The local weather plays a significant role in the service life of your solar panels. For example, extreme winds such as hurricanes carry sand and other particles that can scratch the glass-coated surface of solar panels. Heavy snowfall can damage their structural integrity and accelerate the degradation process.
That’s why it’s essential to have your solar panels installed by a professional. They can help you properly secure them against severe weather conditions.
Installation can affect the lifespan of solar panels. Unprofessional installations can cause factors like shading, incorrect orientation, and bad wiring, which can shorten solar panels’ lifespan. Also, old, leaky, and damaged roofs can lead to panel damage and premature failure.
At Wayne Solar, our team of experts takes great care to avoid any installation issues that could affect your solar panels. We ensure our customers get the best, most professional installation possible. Don’t gamble with your solar panel. Let us handle it.
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