Top 5 Best Cheap Solar Panels (2023 Cost & Efficiency Guide)
In this guide on cheap solar panels, you’ll learn:
- What do you lose when you get cheap solar panels?
- Will cheap solar panels actually give you a higher ROI?
- What are other options to save money when going solar?
Each product and or company featured here has been independently selected by the writer. You can learn more about our review methodology here. If you make a purchase using the links included, we may earn commission.
What Are the Best Cheap Solar Panels for Your Home?
Solar technology is improving each year, which has helped to drive down the cost of going solar. However, there is a still a decent range in price between the cheapest solar panels and the most expensive options.
Whether you’re a homeowner who’s trying to work within a fixed budget or you’re a frugal shopper who appreciates a great value, low-cost solar panels may very well be the best option for your home.
Below, we’ve listed the best affordable solar panels that are on the market today. Continue reading for more details about each of these, as well as what you should know before purchasing one.
Q Cells solar panels are more affordable than most brands, and the Q.PEAK DUO series provide some of the best specifications for the price in the industry. The BLK-G10 model has an efficiency rating of 20.6% and puts out 400 watts per panel, making it a great option for solar customers with small roofs who need maximum power. The warranty coverage is also great, making them a solid option in the long run as well.
What We Like
The BLK-G10 panels boast an above-average efficiency rating of 20.6%, which is around 2% lower than some of the highest-efficiency panels available. Despite the high performance you can expect from these solar modules, they’re still significantly cheaper than most brands, with an average cost of around $2.60 per watt. The price is below the industry average without compromising much on performance.
Q Cells panels come with good warranty coverage, and while it’s not the best available, it does maintain or exceed industry standards for performance and equipment warranty coverage.
What We Don’t Like
There’s not much we don’t like about these panels. The performance warranty guarantees a minimum of 86% of the original efficiency after 25 years. This is better than the standard of 80%, although it doesn’t match the durability of more expensive options, like Maxeon, which guarantee 92%. Still, we think they’re high-quality enough to make them one of the best options for affordability and performance.
Read our full review of Q Cells for more information.
Solar Panel Options
Q Cells only manufactures two panel options for residential solar customers. The BLK-G10s are the least efficient of the two, but we do feel that they provide the best value for the money.
- Q.PEAK DUO BLK-G10: These panels are the most affordable option from Q Cells, and we feel that the overall cost-to-value ratio overall is better. These have an efficiency rating of 20.6% and average around $2.60 per watt.
- Q.PEAK DUO BLK ML-G10+: The ML-G10+ panels are a little more expensive, but they come with just a slightly better efficiency rating of 20.9%. We feel that the marginal bump in efficiency isn’t worth the higher cost if you’re prioritizing affordability.
Q Cells offers a 25-year manufacturer’s warranty for all of its panel options, which matches the industry standard.
You also get a 25-year energy production warranty with your solar panel system, which guarantees no more than a 2% dip in efficiency in year one, and no more than 0.5% lost per year for the remainder of the warranty term. That means your panels will retain an above-average 86% efficiency after 25 years, which means greater energy savings for you.
Q Cells doesn’t partner with any specific installer and instead has a large network of certified installers available across the country. Most homeowners should be able to find a solar contractor in their area that carries Q Cells panels, especially given their popularity.
Facts and Figures: Q Cells
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|Solar Panels, Solar Batteries|
In our opinion, the LONGi Hi-Mo 4 is the best option available if you’re looking for high performance from a cheap solar panel. It’s not the cheapest panel on a per-watt basis, but it does provide outstanding quality and a relatively high efficiency rating—up to 20.9%—for a remarkably low price. We recommend these LONGi panels for any solar customers looking to keep total installation costs down without compromising when it comes to production, warranty coverage or overall value.
What We Like
LONGi’s budget line of panels has an unusually high efficiency rating of 20.9%, which is considered excellent regardless of the price per watt.
The panels also have some other impressive specifications. These include a low temperature coefficient of -0.34% per degree (C), as compared to the industry average of -0.5%, and a better power production warranty than most panels. LONGi Hi-Mo 4 panels come with a production guarantee for 30 years, compared to the industry average of 25 years.
Best of all, these LONGi panels average around $2.40 per watt, which is below the average of $2.66. Ultimately, choosing these panels should save you money upfront and over time, as the low cost is coupled with a high efficiency rating.
What We Don’t Like
The only real downside to the LONGi Hi-Mo 4 panels is the below-average equipment warranty. LONGi only provides a 12-year warranty for things like manufacturer defects, whereas the industry average is 25 years. Still, we think the quality of these panels makes them well worth the investment.
Solar Panel Options
The Hi-Mo 4 panels will eventually be phased out, as the Hi-Mo 5 line has been in production for quite some time, and the Hi-Mo 6 panels are being released in 2023. We’ll include some information on other LONGi panel options, which are also high-efficiency and still come with affordable price tags.
- Hi-Mo 5 Panels: The Hi-Mo 5 line from LONGi has an even greater efficiency rating of around 21.3%. They’re pricier due to the advanced technology—including gallium-doping to improve longevity and smart soldering—but the greater efficiency could end up saving you more money over time on bills from your utility company.
- Hi-Mo 6 Panels: The Hi-Mo 6 panels are being released this year and are expected in four sub-models: Scientist, Explorer, Guardian and Artist. These have efficiency ratings between 22.1% and 22.6%, making them some of the most efficient panels in the industry.
LONGi provides a 12-year manufacturer’s warranty for the Hi-Mo 4 panels, which is a little less than half of what most other solar companies offer. However, the power production guarantee lasts for 30 years, which is better than the industry average. The efficiency loss in the first year is guaranteed to be less than 2%, and each subsequent year will be less than 0.55%. After 30 years, that’s just over 82% of the starting efficiency remaining.
Much like Q Cells, LONGi has a nationwide network of installers that carry its products, so you won’t be locked in to a specific installation company. Most homeowners should have access to LONGi panels from multiple installation companies in their area.
Facts and Figures: LONGi Solar
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Jinko Solar is a solar manufacturer based in China, and it has more than 15 years of experience producing high-efficiency solar modules. Some of its highest-efficiency options are only available overseas, but the Eagle Continental model is one of the most affordable tier-one panel options available in the U.S. that has an above-average efficiency. The warranty isn’t the best, but If you’re looking for the lowest installation cost available, we’d recommend these panels from Jinko.
What We Like
Jinko Solar has one of the lowest costs of any tier-one solar manufacturer, with per-watt prices averaging around $2.25 for the Eagle Continental product line. This is well below the industry average of $2.66, meaning you’re likely to pay significantly less for a system consisting of these modules.
The Eagle Continental panels also have a peak efficiency rating of 19.88%, which is lower than you’d see from other high-efficiency options on our list. Jinko panels have some other appealing performance specifications, though. These include a positive-only power tolerance of 0.3%, which is far better than the industry average of -0.5%/+0.5%, as well as a below-average loss of efficiency in extreme temperatures.
What We Don’t Like
The efficiency is the biggest drawback to Jinko’s panels, but for the money, we still feel it’s a good option.
Another pretty significant downside is the manufacturer’s warranty, which only lasts for 12 years compared to the industry standard of 25 years. Plus, the efficiency warranty only guarantees 80.7% efficiency after 25 years, so the degradation is more aggressive than most other options on our list, despite being slightly better than the industry average of 80%.
Solar Panel Options
Jinko has five panel options total, but two of the five—Cheetah and Tiger Neo—aren’t available in the U.S.
- Eagle G5: The Eagle G5 panels provide the highest efficiency from the company in the U.S. at 21.13%. They’re more expensive on a per-watt basis than the Continental line, so installations will be more expensive overall.
- Eagle G4: Similarly, the Eagle G4 line has a superior efficiency of 20.96%, so they’re expected to save you more on energy bills in the long run than the Continental panels. These are also more expensive, though.
- Eagle Continental: The Eagle Continental line is, in our opinion, the best solar panel option if you’re looking for the lowest installation price possible without sacrificing too much on quality and performance.
Jinko includes a 25-year efficiency warranty with its panels. It guarantees no more than a 2.5% loss of power in year one and no more than 0.7% per year thereafter. That means a remaining efficiency of 80.7% after 25 years, which is just above the industry average. The manufacturer’s warranty only lasts for 12 years, though, which is far less coverage than you’d find from most competitors.
Countless solar installers across the U.S. carry Jinko solar modules, so you shouldn’t have any problems finding a company that carries them in your area.
Facts and Figures: Jinko Solar
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Canadian Solar is one of the most well-known budget solar brands and for good reason. Its panels provide outstanding value overall, combining a low cost per watt with impressive panel specifications, a high efficiency rating and decent warranty coverage. It’s one of the most popular panel brands overall, so availability also shouldn’t be an issue for most solar customers. Perhaps most notably, the panels have an above-average wattage, making them popular for owners of small roofs.
What We Like
While it’s not the most efficient panel on our list at 19.4%, the HiKu line of panels is positioned as a great budget option, averaging around $2.70 per watt installed. The panels reach up to a massive 465 watts, which is larger than most budget options. That means this is a great option for homeowners with small roofs who need to take advantage of the space they have for panels.
Canadian Solar panels are widely available, as the company doesn’t have any specific industry partnerships limiting who can install them. As such, most Americans should have access to these valuable panel options.
What We Don’t Like
The HiKu line of panels from Canadian Solar has an efficiency rating of up to 19.4%, which is lower than some other options on our list. This is, in part, due to the fact that these are polycrystalline panels, while most other manufacturers on this list only offer monocrystalline panels.
Additionally, Canadian Solar only offers a 12-year manufacturer’s warranty, and the degradation of the panel efficiency is more than you’ll see from most other options.
Solar Panel Options
Canadian Solar has an impressive lineup of panel options, although none are as affordable as the HiKu line.
- HiKu: The HiKu line of panels from Canadian Solar is the most affordable on a per-watt basis, but the panels also come with the lowest efficiency rating offered by the company.
- BiHiKu: These panels have a slightly better efficiency rating than the HiKu line, coming in at 20.1%.
- HiHero: The HiHero lineup is the only heterojunction (HJT) panel option from Canadian Solar. It has a super high efficiency of 22.5% and a longer-than-average efficiency warranty that lasts for 30 years, but it’s the most expensive option.
- HiKu 6: The HiKu 6 is also a great option for small roofs, with a peak per-panel power output of 555 watts. It’s more expensive than the base HiKu line, though.
- BiHiKu 6: This panel comes with an efficiency of 21.4% and a max power output of 550 watts, making it another popular option for owners of small roofs.
- HiKu 7: The HiKu 7 averages around $3.00 per watt, making it well above the industry average. However, it comes in sizes up to a massive 670 watts and has an efficiency rating of up to 21.6%.
- BiHiKu 7: This panel is similar to the HiKu 7 but with a slightly lower efficiency, price and max wattage.
- TOPHiKu 6: This panel line is the first tunnel oxide passivated contact (TOPCon) panel available from Canadian Solar, which means a higher efficiency of 21.4% and greater solar energy savings over time. This is the smallest of the TOPCon panels from the company, coming in at between 420 and 570 watts.
- TOPBiHiKu 6: This product line also uses TOPCon PV cells and has an efficiency of 21.4%. It’s the mid-range TOPCon option in terms of size at between 555 and 575 watts per panel.
- TOPBiHiKu 7: These panels are the most powerful available from Canadian Solar, with an output of up to 695 watts per panel. They’re more expensive than most other models, but they’re ideal for small roofs.
Canadian Solar’s warranty coverage for most panel options, including the HiKu lineup, isn’t ideal. It includes protection for manufacturer defects for 12 years, which is less than half of the industry average of 25 years. Only the expensive HiHero line comes with a 25-year warranty for manufacturer defects.
The production warranty for most panels is 25 years, which is average, except for the HiHero option, which has a 30-year efficiency warranty. After 25 years, the panels maintain a slightly above-average 83.1% efficiency.
Canadian Solar has no restrictions on which installers can order and install its products, so its panels are widely available throughout the U.S.
Facts and Figures: Canadian Solar
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Silfab is a prevalent manufacturer in America, and as far as cheap solar panels go, it has one of the most appealing warranty packages to provide you with ultimate peace of mind. We’d recommend Silfab panels for anyone looking to keep costs down and still have above-average warranty coverage to guarantee long-lasting system performance.
What We Like
Silfab panels, including the affordable SIL-370-HC model, all come with 25 years of protection for the panels themselves, plus a 30-year production warranty. The length of the coverage isn’t the only upside either, as the guarantee of remaining efficiency is higher than the industry average after the warranty term.
The SIL-370-HC panels are slightly above average in price, but their efficiency is also great for the price, sitting at 20.2%. The efficiency is matched with a better-than-average temperature coefficient of just 0.36% loss per degree (C) above 77 degrees (F). That means these panels are a great option even if you live in an area with above-average temperatures.
What We Don’t Like
The efficiency of the Silfab panels isn’t the best on our list at 20.2%, although we still think they provide excellent value for the money. Silfab’s panels can also be a little above average in price, depending on your installer and how much the equipment is marked up.
Read our full review of Silfab for more information.
Solar Panel Options
Silfab has two product lines available for residential installations: Prime and Elite. Prime is the base model, and the Elite series is more expensive and offers better performance specs.
- Prime SIL-370-HC: This model is the smallest available from Silfab, with a power output of 370 watts per panel. The efficiency is quite good for the price, sitting at 20.2%.
- Prime SIL-400-HC+: These panels have the same efficiency rating but a higher power output, making them a better option for smaller roofs.
- Elite SIL-380-BK: The 380-BK panels have a superior efficiency rating of 21.4%, but they’re quite a bit more expensive than the Prime product line.
- Elite SIL-410-BG: These also have an efficiency of 21.4% and come with the company’s highest power output per panel of 410 watts.
All of Silfab’s panels include a 25-year manufacturer’s warranty, which protects your solar array from defects that lead to panel damage or poor performance. You also get a 30-year efficiency warranty, which guarantees a first-year loss of no more than 2.9% in the first year. This is more than average, but the per-year loss in subsequent years is no more than 0.5%. Overall, the remaining efficiency after 25 years is better than most other brands at 85.1%.
Silfab panels can be installed by a massive variety of installation companies throughout the U.S. Without specific industry partnerships, Silfab panels should be available from multiple installers no matter where you live in the country.
Facts and Figures: Silfab
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What Should You Look for When Choosing Cheap Solar Panels?
Of course, the first thing you’ll likely want to look for when purchasing affordable solar panels is the cost per watt, which is the single factor that dictates your total installation cost. However, buying the best affordable panels that still meet your energy demands and provide long-term savings isn’t as simple as buying the panel with the lowest per-watt cost. This could lead to being stuck with panels that underperform and end up saving you far less, on average.
Below, we’ll discuss the most important factors we recommend considering, as these can affect savings over time.
- Cost per watt: The average cost per watt is crucial because it tells you around how much you’ll pay for your system. The higher the cost per watt, the less appealing the panel is as an affordable option. However, higher costs can sometimes be justified by other things, like higher efficiency ratings or better overall performance and longevity.
- Efficiency rating: The efficiency rating of your panels tells you how much of the available sunlight your panels can convert to electricity for your home. The higher the efficiency, the more you’ll save on your utility bills in the long run. That means a panel with a higher cost per watt but a higher efficiency rating could end up being cheaper over time.
- Performance or output warranty: The efficiency warranty of your panel is another important consideration because it guarantees your panels will perform as intended for years after you install them. The longer the warranty term, the longer your panels will continue saving you on energy bills. Again, a panel with a higher cost per watt but a longer warranty term could end up being cheaper over time.
- Degradation rate: The degradation rate defined within the output warranty tells you how quickly your panels will lose efficiency. The faster they lose their ability to generate solar energy, the less they’ll potentially save you over time. Ultimately, paying more for a slower rate of efficiency loss—even if it means using a different solar financing option—could end up saving you money in the long run.
- Equipment warranty: Finally, your equipment warranty is what protects you from manufacturer defects and other issues with your panels, which can lead to a loss of power and, therefore, lower savings from your solar project. Longer equipment warranties are great for maintaining peace of mind and maximizing system lifespan, but also lowering your energy bills for longer overall.
Watch Below: One of the main tradeoffs when trying to find a cheap solar panel system is the expected lifespan. So while these will save you money upfront, you may still see a lower ROI if they don’t last as long as a more expensive panel would.
Compare the Top-Rated Cheap Solar Panels
In our opinion, the best panel options—if you’re looking for a mix of upfront affordability and longevity for long-term savings—are the Q.PEAK DUO BLK-G10 Series from Q Cells and the Hi-Mo 4 panels from LONGi. Both brands are known for their affordability and unwillingness to compromise on efficiency and durability just to keep costs down.
The BLK-G10 panels from Q Cells provide a great blend of high efficiency, lengthy warranty coverage and durability, making them our top pick overall if you’re looking for a cheap solar power system. The Hi-Mo 4 panels from LONGi also pack a ton of value into an affordable package, so they’ll help keep upfront prices down but still offer good efficiency ratings and protection packages.
The table below includes a quick side-by-side look at these two panels to help you decide which one might be better for your solar project. We’ll also include our top model picks from the other manufacturers that made our list.
|Efficiency Rating||Power Output||Temperature Coefficient (per degree C over 25)||Power Tolerance||First-year Degradation||Subsequent-year Degradation||Efficiency After 25 Years||Total Warranty Term|
|Q Cells BLK-G10||20.6%||350W–370W||-0.34%||0/+5%||2%||0.5%||85.5%||25 years|
|LONGi Hi-Mo 4||Up to 20.9%||445W–455W||-0.34%||0/+5%||2%||0.55%||84.8%||30 years|
|Jinko Solar Eagle Continental||Up to 19.38%||390W||-0.36%||0/+3%||2.5%||0.6%||83.1%||25 years|
|Canadian Solar HiKu||Up to 20.3%||350W–375W||-0.35%||0/+10%||2%||0.55%||84.8%||25 years|
|Silfab Prime SIL-370-HC||Up to 20.2%||370W||-0.36%||0/+10%||2.9%||0.5%||82.6%||25 years|
Compare the Top-Rated Cheap Solar Panel Manufacturers
Buying affordable solar panels seems like a simple endeavor, but choosing the panel that simply has the lowest cost per watt doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll get the panels that are best suited for your home and energy needs. It’s also important to consider the efficiency rating of your panels, the performance warranty term and guaranteed ratings and more. Ultimately, a panel could be more expensive per watt but save you more in the long run, ultimately making it a cheaper option.
If you’re looking to buy cheap solar panels, we recommend looking at options from Q Cells and LONGi, in particular. These are both tier-one panel manufacturers that offer low prices, solid warranty coverage and above-average efficiency ratings for their products.
The table below provides a quick comparison of these manufacturers based on our methodology to illustrate why they’re the best options for low-cost solar panels, in our opinion. We’ll also include panels from other top providers as well.
|Efficiency Score (Out of 25)||Durability Score (Out of 20)||Warranty Score (Out of 20)||Price Point Score (Out of 20)||Temperature Coefficient (Out of 10)||Sustainability Score (Out of 2.5)||Appearance Score (Out of 2.5)||Our Overall Rating (Out of 100)|
Cheap vs Affordable Solar Panels
There’s a key distinction between cheap solar panels and the most affordable solar panels. Cheap considers only the price tag. Affordability involves factors beyond initial price, such as price per watt (aka bang for your buck), efficiency of the panel and warranty.
A cheap solar panel isn’t worth anything if it breaks without a warranty to replace it. The cost of a solar panel is set by the manufacturer and involves a variety of factors, from cost of production to expected lifetime. Let’s break down the factors that go into solar panel costs.
Solar Panel Efficiency
The greater a panel’s efficiency, the more energy each solar cell’s power output will be. Efficiency matters, as a homeowner will have to buy far fewer panels to meet their energy needs with higher-efficiency panels. The most solar efficient panels usually cost more to manufacture, raising their price point and total installed cost.
Solar Panel Power
The power, or wattage, of a solar panel reflects how many watts (W) of energy the panel is capable of generating when producing at maximum capacity. Most modern residential solar panels have power factors between 300 and 350W.
As is true with high-efficiency panels, a customer needs to purchase fewer panels overall if they have a higher power output. While they’ll typically have a greater upfront cost, high-output panels will provide better value over time.
Solar Panel Warranty
A warranty is simple to understand, yet no less important to consider. Bearing in mind that the average lifetime of a solar panel system is about 25 years, warranties are essential in ensuring reliable energy output. Though solar panels are very durable, a lot can happen over 25 years.
Falling tree branches can crack a panel, rooftop critters can chew up wiring and untreated water damage can corrode a system. Some of the cheapest panels will come with the worst warranties, and costs can add up quickly if a solar power system runs into trouble.
Solar Panel Quality
Similar to solar panel efficiency and power, the cost of a solar panel has much to do with its quality. The cheapest solar panels on the market will be of the poorest quality, making them far more prone to breaks, issues and quick aging. The higher the quality of the parts in a solar panel, the more expensive it becomes. However, this is just another time when “cheap” panels are far from the most affordable solar panels in the long run.
If you’re looking for affordable solar panels to install on your home, we recommend the BLK-G10 panels from Q Cells. They have excellent warranty coverage and energy efficiency ratings to help guarantee long-term savings, and they come in at below-average prices per watt, which also lets you keep upfront prices as low as possible.
Regardless of which option you feel is best for your home, we recommend getting solar quotes from multiple installers in your area. Different solar contractors charge different prices for the same panels based on product markup, labor warranties included and more. You can use the tool below to get quotes from a few providers in your area to compare and find the one that suits your budget and your energy demands best.
Methodology: How We Reviewed Cheap Solar Panels
As we mentioned above, we don’t recommend just blindly choosing the panels with the lowest cost per watt because that could lead to lower energy savings in the long run. We’ll discuss our rating criteria below so that you can see what factors, in addition to price, are most important for getting the best deal on your renewable energy system.
- Price Point (20%): Naturally, the cost per watt is a crucial thing to look at when comparing the best cheap solar panels. Options with lower costs will undoubtedly help you keep your upfront costs down, which is the primary goal when prioritizing affordability. We first ranked panel options by cost per watt and then adjusted based on the following criteria.
- Efficiency (25%): The efficiency rating is almost as important as the cost per watt because your energy savings decrease as your efficiency goes down. A simple way to think of this is that a panel that costs half the industry average per watt isn’t worth much if the efficiency is a quarter of most other panels. Efficiency rating should be balanced with cost per watt to ensure your panels actually save you more over time.
- Durability (20%): Panels with a high efficiency that degrade in efficiency more rapidly might save you more upfront, but your average monthly savings will decrease as your panels age. Paying more for a panel with a slower rate of efficiency loss often makes financial sense, as it could end up saving you more—and costing you less—over time. We look at the first year degradation, subsequent year degradation and performance in extreme weather conditions to determine a panel’s overall durability.
- Warranty coverage (20%): No matter how cheap your solar panels are, you’ll likely spend $10,000 to $20,000 or more on your solar array. Converting to clean energy is an expensive endeavor, which is why getting panels with long-lasting warranties is worth paying more for. You not only want panels that are affordable and can perform right after installation but also continue saving you money over time. As such, we rank companies with lengthier warranty protection higher.
- Temperature coefficient (10%): Panels with a lower temperature coefficient will perform better in hotter climates. We consider the efficiency loss based on temperature, as this plays into overall efficiency as it relates to panel cost.
- Sustainability (2.5%): Since EcoWatch is a website focused on environmental friendliness, we consider the sustainability of each panel brand and manufacturer as a whole. Panels that are made from recycled materials and manufacturers that have a positive reputation and a recycling process for PV equipment at the end of its life get ranked higher.
- Appearance (2.5%): Homeowners generally prefer all black panels that don’t have grid lines visible. We rank companies a bit higher based on the percentage of their products that meet these criteria.
FAQs: Cheap Solar Panels
Since going solar is so expensive, we get a lot of questions about affordable solar panels. We’ll answer some of the questions we see most often below.
For the equipment and solar panel installation, the lowest per-watt cost you’ll see for a tier-one solar panel will be in the low $2.00 range, usually between $2.20 and $2.40. That means the typical 9 kilowatt (kW) photovoltaic (PV) system would total between $19,800 and $21,600 before the federal solar tax credit (ITC) and other incentives.
Keep in mind that there are panels that will cost far less, especially off-grid systems and DIY solar panel kits from companies like Renogy and Grape Solar. These can come with per-watt prices of around $1.00 per watt. However, these come with far lower efficiency ratings, less appealing warranty coverage and often don’t include all the equipment you need, like inverters, charger kits and mounting racks. They also often can’t be integrated with leading solar batteries.
Ultimately, we believe these kinds of panels will end up saving you less over time, which means the low upfront cost isn’t worth it.
In many cases, yes, opting for cheaper solar panels can be an outstanding option. While high-performance panels from companies like Maxeon (formerly SunPower), Trina Solar, Tesla, Panasonic and REC will help you maximize your energy savings over time, they also come at significantly higher per-watt prices. They will often save you more on your energy bills, but if they’re not affordable to begin with, then a cheaper option will be a better option all around.
Even the cheap options we reviewed above are expected to pay for themselves within an average of around 10 to 12 years. After that time, they lead to average lifetime energy savings totaling over $20,000.
Jinko Solar has some of the lowest solar panel prices in the industry for tier-one panels, and, as you might expect, its more affordable panel model has an efficiency rating of 19.88%, which is below what many other leading manufacturers offer.
The cheapest type of solar panel is technically thin-film, which is a flexible material that’s ideal for portable solar panels. However, thin-film panels come with a much lower efficiency than average, so they’re rarely used for rooftop solar systems. Polycrystalline solar panels are typically the most affordable type of PV panel that’s still used for residential solar panel applications.
Monocrystalline solar panels (mono), PERC solar cells, HJT solar cells and TOPCon solar cells are more efficient but come at higher prices, in most cases.
Comparing authorized solar partners
- Competitively priced
- Highly efficient
- Work well in high temperatures
- Only one type of technology available
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