Solar panels are an investment. Although the immediate cost of installation might be high, the amount they save you over time can really add up. But because they are such a big investment, you’ll want to be sure that they will not only bring down your energy costs, but that they will also last a long time before you buy. In fact, one of the most common questions from homeowners considering solar energy is “how long do solar panels last?”
Solar panels are manufactured to withstand different weather conditions and other stresses. In fact, manufacturers are so confident in their products that most offer 25 year warranties. Solar panels will usually last about that amount of time, and sometimes more. Even after 25 years, the power output should not be less than about 80% of rated power. This means that the panels do not stop producing electricity after the 25 years, just that their energy production declines. As long as a solar panel is not physically damaged, it can continue to work for many years after its warranty expires.
Degradation Rate Per Year
Solar panels are sturdy but can sometimes experience a high rate of degradation. Generally, a solar panel’s output falls about 0.3%- 0.8% per year, depending on the brand. This means that there may be a decline in structural integrity and efficiency of the solar panels. Degradation can be caused by installation issues, weather conditions like high winds or heavy snow, or soiling, which is the most common factor. Dirt particles accumulate over the solar panels’ surfaces, blocking sunlight and reducing their efficiency.
While the energy output of solar panels does decrease over time, you can help extend their life expectancy and keep them more efficient for longer by taking care of them. To take proper care of solar panels, you should:
- Get your panels regularly checked by the installer/provider. Inspections should be done regularly to make sure there is not any damage. The maintenance team can identify the slightest defects and minimize the chances of more or worse damage.
- Keep the solar panels free from leaves, dirt, pollen, dust, dirt, and drooping or fallen branches. Install critter guards to keep animals from building nests under them. Clean them with soap and water and a soft cloth.
To ensure your solar panels last a long time, you should also:
- Work with a reputable installer that offers great customer service.
- Purchase solar panels with good warranties.
If you are interested in solar panel installation and want to make sure your panels last as long as possible, you need to find a credible and trustworthy company. Go Solar Energy offers you that trust and credibility. We will provide you with free quotes on different solar panels and their installation costs. No need to call around and research, we will do it all for you. Our trained agent will do all the comparisons, and help you make the best choice. To get started simply enter your zip code on the homepage, or to speak directly to one of our agents call (888) 290-3112.