The best solar panels in Australia
Choosing the best solar panels has never been more important.
- In 2013, there were 454 solar module manufacturers operating in Australia
- In 2019 there were only 67!
- In 2013, 26,672 panels were registered with KEK in Australia
- In 2019 there were only 2650!
The good news is that out of those 67 manufacturers, there are only a small handful joining together at the forefront of the industry, with LG Solar being the standout feature. The best solar panel in 5 years is the LG NeON 2 solar panel, which was voted the best solar panel in Australia by the solar industry:
The best solar panels in 2021 will deliver more power
The best solar modules in 2021 will deliver more power than their power.
In an independent study by CSIRO for Choice Magazine, a panel made up of 15 of Australia's most popular solar panels was tested. During the test, they found that 12 of the 15 panels were operating below their claimed rated power, some even by 10 W.
Since only one panel was used in the test, it is impossible to draw firm conclusions about specific brands. However, it has been pointed out that there are some major inconsistencies between a manufacturer's claimed power rating and actual power.
For example, a 260W panel from one of the largest manufacturers in China achieved a test result of 251W. This inconsistency shows the importance of having access to panel-level monitoring, which is the case with almost all Solaray installations.
The star in this test was LG Solar; The 300W panel delivered a test result of 307W, which is similar to what we've seen with our LG Solar systems installed across Australia and highlights the importance of purchasing quality panels.
Solar panels are manufactured with a power tolerance
Every manufacturer is different, but the better brands tend to have a reach of + 3%. For example, a 355 W panel from LG Solar can range between 355 W and 365 W. The only way to take advantage of this is to use a system like Enphase that has panel-level output. Otherwise, performance will be output at the rate of the worst performing panel in your array. In the best case this corresponds to the rating of the panels, in the worst case it can be much less.
Low light performance is also vital in Sydney due to our weather. We only have about 100 ‘perfect' days a year, the rest of the time with some rain in our cloud cover. The better panels (like the panels listed below) not only work well in the test lab, but also deliver more performance in all weather conditions throughout the year. Better performance in low light can make a significant difference to your electricity bill over the years.
Financial strength and local representation of the manufacturer
Cheap solar panels are being pumped out of China at a dozen cents. They are often renamed with a slick logo or simply shipped to countries like Australia and sold unbranded! Have you ever seen an offer for “20 x 250 W solar modules”? We see it all the time. It is literally a no-name system!
In spite of the marketing claim of a full 25-year guarantee on the output power, inexpensive solar modules often have no claim to guarantee.
Often there is a phone number that no one answers or contact details for an office in China where no one speaks English. If it wasn't brought to Australia through an official dealer, the warranty will be void if the manufacturer goes bankrupt (or simply changes its name).
For the warranty to be of any value, the product must be shipped through official distributors and the manufacturer must have an office in Australia. The company must also have a strong financial position and be committed to the Australian market.
In fact, it is such a problem, it is estimated that 1: 3 solar systems are not supported in Australia!
Because of this, Solaray only supplies panels from most manufacturers and we have a rigorous review process before we introduce a new brand for our technical team to begin testing.
The best highly efficient solar modules
LG NeON 2 365W panels
LG is a leading global manufacturer of solar modules with over 20 years of experience. The latest NeON 2 355W panel and the new 370W NeON R panel are equipped with the latest technology that brings improvements to households that really matter, from longer warranties and higher efficiency to stronger frames and increased wind load.
Choosing a premium panel like the LG NeON 2 is an investment in superior standards in terms of design, manufacturing, backup support and warranties. This high quality is the result of LG Solar's strong commitment to developing a module that will provide reliable and high performance for decades.
LG solar products are rigorously tested beyond industry standards, and these standards apply equally to the selection of materials for their solar panels. When you choose LG Solar, you can rest assured that you are buying the best.
Very few modules of this quality are available for residential installations. This makes LG Solar the outstanding choice as the leading brand in Australia. LG Solar offers full warranty support and is represented on site. All LG systems installed by Solaray include our Platinum Service Package, which includes full replacement warranties and technical support.
The best news of all is the price – NeON 2 365W panels are extremely affordable for such a quality panel. LG Solar strives for industry-leading efficiencies, but is putting this new technology critical to its production line to ensure that all customers have access to the best technology available. It doesn't do much good if a company puts out a 365 W panel (with a lot of advertising) but only makes 1000 of them and / or calculates an absolute fortune for them.
LG Solar was ranked # 1 in Australia by Choice Magazine in an independent test by CSIRO. They ranked number 1 for the real edition and the only panel to receive a rating for “outstanding performance”.
Trina Honey 370W panels
Trina is the world's largest manufacturer of solar modules and the largest vertically integrated manufacturer. This means that all major components from bars to finished modules are manufactured.
In addition to conducting large-scale solar research and development around the world, Trina has teams of scientists working on energy-efficient product research at many of the world's leading universities, including the Australian National University and the University of Queensland.
Recently, Trina Solar Panels were selected for Australia's largest roof installation – a huge 1.22 MW array (5,004 modules) – for the University of Queensland. Not only does this facility provide a significant portion of the campus’s performance, it also serves as a testing ground for ongoing research.
Trina solar panels are at the premium end of available Chinese modules, and the Trina Honey 330W module is considered by many industry experts to be the most affordable solar panel from a Chinese manufacturer.
Trina solar modules are developed and manufactured according to the highest quality standards. The products have proven themselves in the field and in third-party tests against other leading manufacturers. This, combined with its high performance in low light conditions, enables consistently high performance and the ability to maximize system performance.
Technical details about Trina Honey
Trina Honey 370W panels have a guaranteed power tolerance of + 5W, which means that the module is rated from 370W to 375W. It is important to note that this additional output is only beneficial if you are installing a system with panel-level output, such as B. an enphase system.
Thanks to advanced cell texturing techniques available in 60 cell configurations, Trina Honey panels have set two world records for output.
Excellent performance in poor lighting conditions on cloudy days, mornings and evenings thanks to the latest technologies:
- Extended surface structuring
- Back panel
- Selective emitter
Ideal, highly efficient solutions for your requirements – the 60-cell module maximizes the limited space with a power density of up to 159 W / m2.
Trina Honey modules are extremely reliable due to strict quality controls with over 30 internal tests (UV, TC, HF and many more). Internal tests go far beyond the certification requirements.
With a 25-year guarantee on linear performance, Trina guarantees that the panel performance will not decrease by more than 2.5% in the first year and then by 0.7% for each year, and guarantees a performance of at least 90% until Year 10 and at least 80% by year 25.