Typically, many homeowners assume there’s one type of solar energy system for their home. This is not the case, there are different energy systems out there, all calling upon different types of technology to harness the power of the sun.
In today’s solar market, you’re likely to come across two main categories of solar panels; conventional and new technology. The conventional panels are the standard solar panels used throughout the industry, while new technology ones are more advanced and built with the future in mind. They tend to have higher efficiency too, as well as many other benefits.
At Vantage Home Solar, we’re partnered with Sun Power – a leading company in the solar energy business. Through this partnership, we can provide high-efficiency solar panels packed full of new technology. To help you see the difference between these new solar panels and traditional ones, we’ve compared the two in this blog post.
Standard Solar Panels
A standard solar panel setup will include a few essential components. First and foremost, you have the solar panels themselves, along with racking to help mount them to the roof. Then, you’ve got the electrical wiring to help feed your house with solar energy, along with a box known as an inverter. This inverter is used to make the electricity generated by the panels suitable for home usage. When solar power is harnessed by standard panels, it’s in a DC format – which stands for direct current electricity. For you to use it in your home, it must be converted to an AC format (alternating current). This AC current gets delivered straight into your electrical system for you to use right away.
Taking a look at the actual solar panels themselves and you see that conventional solar panels are fairly thin and made of silicone. They have strips of metal running down each cell, which will expand and contract depending on how hot it is outside. Then, there’s usually more metal on the back of each cell too.
These solar panel cells are normally not very flexible at all either. In fact, all it takes is a little bit of pressure while attempting to bend one, and it will snap into multiple tiny pieces. Of course, when mounted and fixed to your roof, you’d hope they won’t be forced to bend anyway.
New Technology High-Efficiency Solar Panels
The panels we use from Sun Power are completely different to the standard ones on the market today. As a result, there are various benefits your home will enjoy. The differences begin with how the solar energy system is set up on your roof. With these high-efficiency solar panels, you get the benefit of instant electricity conversion. Instead of a typical setup that involves wires going to an inverter box that’s mounted somewhere, these panels have built-in microinverters. Each panel has a small inverter behind the panel, ensuring power conversion happens right at the source. Aside from making the system look better – there’s no need for inverters on the side of your house – this also improves energy production. More sunlight gets converted into power that you can use right away, and there will be fewer disruptions too.
However, the biggest differences come with the high-efficiency solar panels themselves. Each cell is considerably different to its standard counterpart. These cells involve pure silicon to help produce the best solar power conversion rates the industry has ever seen. Along with this, there is no need for metal lines or a metal backing. Instead, these cells have a completely solid copper backing. What this does is increase the thickness of every cell, improving the durability and strength. But, because no metal lines are running through the cell, it means they’re more flexible and can be bent too. Not only that, but standard solar panels tend to lose some of their efficiency because of the metal strips. They reflect sunlight away, and can also corrode over time, leading to more issues.
Through a unique design, new-technology solar panels are less likely to break as they address most issues that normal cause standard solar panel failures. Not only that but the high-efficiency panels we use have a staggering efficiency rate of 22%, while standard panels rarely come close to 20%. It’s predicted that a high-efficiency solar panel system can provide you with the same amount of energy over 17 years, compared to a standard system running for 25 years.
As you can see, there are many differences between the two types of solar panels on the market. If you want total efficiency and longevity, then new technology high-efficiency panels are the way forward.