Solar Panels: How Long Do They Last?

Solar Panels' Durability

Solar panels are undoubtedly a costly investment. This cost causes the homeowners to worry about whether these solar panels will last enough for them to get a return on investment. One of the most common questions that solar installers encounter is “how long do solar panels last?”. 

Compare Solar Quotes cares about you and your concerns. Thus, today, our expert team will answer some of your most asked questions about the lifespan of solar panels. 

How long do Solar Panels last?

The majority of the solar panels available in the Australian solar market lasts about 25 to 30 years. However, this lifespan does not mean that the panels will not generate any electricity after this time period. Most panels have an efficiency degradation rate of 0.5 per cent per year. This means that it will take about 200 years for a panel to reach 0 per cent efficiency. 

Then, why is the lifespan of a panel only 25 to 30 years? Even though panels generate a decent amount of electricity after the 25 to 30 years lifespan, the amount of electricity generated is not considered as significant. In the 25 to 30 years of life, a panel loses a significant percentage of its efficiency and cannot generate enough to meet the energy requirement of the household. 

Can the Panels last longer than their said lifespan?

A solar panel can last several decades if it does not encounter any physical damage by wind, rain, storms, and so on. Generally, solar panels are extremely durable and the fact that there are no moving parts makes them more secure from outside forces. All the solar panels available in the Australian solar market undergo heavy testing and are approved by the Clean Energy Council

Australia encounters some of the most extreme weather conditions each year and thus, the durability of the solar panels is extremely essential. The best way to ensure that your panels will last longer than their lifespan is to work with a reputable installer with outstanding customer service.

The majority of panels come with a product warranty of 12 to 15 years and a performance warranty of 25 years. In recent years, there are many panels in the market that come with a product and performance warranty of 25 years. It is better to get panels that come with solid warranties. 

However, proper maintenance and care of the panels can ensure a lower degradation rate per year and will help the panels to last longer. In order to ensure a longer panel performance, you have to:

  • Get the panels checked regularly:

The best way of ensuring the long life of your panels is to get them professionally checked and service at least once a year. Regular examinations will take care of potential issues, such as loose racking, exposed wires, etc., that can reduce the efficiency of panels. 

  • Keep your panels clean:

Solar panels can assure you years of good performance as long as you can avoid major physical damage to the panels. The cleanliness of the solar panels also affects the efficiency and performance of the panels. Keep your panels clean by removing any dirt, bird dropping, leaves, and so on, from the panels. Use a light panel cleaning brush and soapy water to clean the panels easily. 

How often do the solar panels have to be replaced?

As we have discussed above, solar panels generally last for about 25 to 30 years. The fact that panels must be replaced after this period of time is not true. Yes, the efficiency and the performance level of the panels will decrease by a significant amount by the end of the 25 to 30 year time. But the panels do not just stop performing altogether. 

It is advised that homeowners should replace panels after the performance warranty is over. However, it is not completely necessary. Your  panels will still continue to absorb sunlight and generate electricity, but the amount of energy generated will be less. 

Do solar panels ever have to be replaced?

Yes, solar panels will have to be replaced at some point in time. Electricity generated by solar panels helps the household to meet its daily energy requirements. It is time to replace your panels when it does not generate enough electricity to meet the energy requirements of your home. 

The purpose of installing solar panels is to decrease our dependence on electricity from the mains electricity grid and save money. When panels do not generate enough electricity, the household has to import electricity from the mains grid. This import of electricity causes the electricity bills to increase. 

So, it is better to replace the panels after a certain period of time to save money on electricity bills. Replacing the panels will keep you stress-free about the electricity bills for the next 25 to 30 years. 

Also, these panels save enough to pay for themselves within 2 to 3 years of installation. This means that after the panels have paid for themselves, the amount of money you save is extra as energy generation is free. 

Conclusion:

Solar panels in Australia are an extremely beneficial technology due to the long scorching hours of sunlight. Solar panels not only help homeowners to save money but also help the environment battle against the harmful effects of climate change. 

It is essential to install panels from a reputable solar installer to ensure that you get the best performance for your money. Before making a final decision, make sure to get at least three quotes from the CEC approved solar installers in Australia. Compare the solar quotes in terms of quality, cost, efficiency, performance, etc., to make sure that you get the best value for your money.

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