Consider shopping for discount solar panels from well-known manufacturers if you're planning a "small project" and are more concerned with staying on budget than having the latest solar panel technology.
Good deals can be found when you know what to look for. Here in this article, we'll examine the facts and possibly save you some money too.
Rapid development in the photovoltaic (PV) panel industry means that newer models are replacing older models at a record pace. And with the increasing popularity of solar electric power, there are more models than ever to choose from. Surplus solar panels can be a real bargain.
Discontinued solar panels might be rated slightly less efficient than their newer replacement models, but if you can obtain a significant discount on the cost, the cost savings might permit you to begin your solar project sooner, or expand it to supply more electrical power than you had first planned.
If you are intent on buying low cost solar panels, also consider factory blemished solar panels, also known as "Blems" (or "B" panels). Brand name manufacturers often offer a significant discount on panels that have cosmetic defects that don't affect their efficiency to generate normal rated power.
For instance, scratches on the frames won't affect a PV panel's performance. If it doesn't bother you that they don't appear brand-new and shiny when installed on your roof, then by all means take advantage of the lower discounted price.
B panels can come with the manufacturer's full warranty and are worth considering for PV power projects. However, if there's no warranty offered, look elsewhere to make a deal. Lack of warranty might signal substandard soldering and defective wiring which will not only prevent the panel from generating its advertised efficiency rating, but could lead to damaging the inverter as well.
Needing to replace defective parts on a PV panel or the panel itself can get expensive when there's no warranty offered, or when the manufacturer cannot be trusted to honor its warranty. Even the cheapest solar panels should never be bought without a strong warranty behind them!
Shop locally and online for discounts and specials on surplus solar power panels. The increasing demand for photovoltaic panels means that vendors are needing to compete for your business. Some may offer a special discount on package deals that include other components necessary for your system, such as mounts, mounting hardware, and wiring.
Always make sure blems and discount solar panels have gone through the Underwriters Laboratories (UL) approval process. Otherwise, your homeowner's insurance might not cover your house if you use unapproved panels in your solar arrays. Never take chances with the cheapest solar panels and your house insurance!
While you might find off-brand models at significantly lower prices, you could be taking a risk by using them. A temptingly low price could mean low quality components or sloppy manufacturing. Even if there is a warranty offered, there's no guarantee that the vendor will be in business five years from now should the panels fail for some reason.
Discount solar panels from recognized manufacturers offer the best deal. Companies like Mitsubishi, Sharp, Sanyo, and other name brand companies have been in business for years. They have proven track records with multiple products, and they will be around to honor their product warranties.
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