There are lots of different types of solar panels out there and to the unexperienced ones it may appear as a solar jungle. That’s why in this article we are going to clear up the different properties of various photovoltaic groups and help you recognize what types of solar panels are for you. First of all the things you need to ask yourself before deciding on what different types of solar panels to buy are:
How much am I willing to spend on my new solar power system?
Different types of solar panels can have very different price tags. Do you want to go for the best possible out there or are you on a budget? Often we would just like to get the best power output per invested buck. In regard to the 3 usual types of solar panels on the market today it doesn’t matter what you chose. For example the more effective monocrystalline panels will be more costly but you will need less of them. On the other hand if you chose thin film solar you will need to buy a larger quantity of modules but they will be cheaper.
What does matter in sense of the price is quality. Most of the Photovoltaic entrepreneurs out there sell good quality certified panels. But still it is worth to check out reviews and references before the final buy. Today the standard panel has a guarantee to last 25years, but high quality ones will actually stand fast for up to 40 years or more. That is something to think about because even if a panel seams cheaper and more effective right now, if the more expensive one can last longer and therefore generate more power in the long run it is a better deal.
Will solar be the only power source in the house or just a complement?
If you want the whole house solar powered at all times it will put much more demand on the solar system than if you only want it as an extra bonus to cut the edge off the power bill. The more power you want, the more panels you are going to need for them to be able to gather you all that required electricity. After that it boils down to our next point which would be how much space is available. Less space naturally calls for more efficient PV panels. The most efficient ones today are the monocrystalline solar panels.
How much space do you have to install the solar panels in?
The bigger area your solar panels can cover the more of the sun’s rays can they catch. If you have a really huge area available then you could buy the less expensive panels that don’t convert as much of the light but still get enough energy for your needs. A lot of space generally means you would get polycrystalline or maybe even amorphous silicon panels. A small space would require Mono crystalline to generate you enough power.
Types of solar panels
There are three types of solar panels available today these three are:
- Amorphous Silicon (“Thin Film”)
The difference between these types of solar panels lay in what they are made of, how much power they can output and of course how much they cost.
Monocrystalline Solar Panels
The solar cells in Monocrystalline solar panels are made in large crystals of silicon. These are the most effective of the three panel types but also the most expensive ones. So if you have limited space to put up your solar panels in these may be for you because they will give you the most electrical output per square meter
Polycrystalline Solar Panels
These solar panels are the most common ones, they are made of multiple silicon crystals and that’s why they get a beautiful finish reminding of deep blue shattered glass. The polycrystalline panels are kind of the golden middle path when it comes to both price and efficiency. Being a little less effective then their monocrystalline cousins but also a great deal less expensive they are the obvious choice for many establishments today.
Amorphous Silicon or Thin film solar panels
Flexible cheap and durable is what these panels are. In the contrast of the other to three types of panels which brake and shatter very easily the amorphous panels can be bent and battered but still remain whole and strong. These types of panels are ideal on vehicles where they need to be shaped to match the curves of the chassis they ere attached to. Unfortunately they are not as efficient as the other two types of panels, so one would preferably use them on places where the sun is exceptionally strong like on the ocean. This is why amorphous silicon panels are often used on boats. Another alternative use is if you have a lot of space, because then you don’t have to worry about thee need of putting up one or two panels extra. Since the amorphous panels are cheaper the price will remain the same even if you need to buy a couple more.
The thin film solar panels don’t have the aluminum frame going around them like the other silicon panels do. This means that there is no threshold for dirt and dust to accumulate over time, meaning less need for cleaning. The plain borderless look makes them seem more beautiful to some people as well.
We hope that this information has helped you to understand the types of solar panels out there today, and that you now feel that you can make an educated choice would you wish to acquire some of your own.