Cheap Solar Panels: How to Get the Best Price
Making the green choice not only saves the planet, it also saves a few dollars on energy consumption. That’s why countries offer various types of incentives, whether fiscal or financial, to encourage more people to turn to this environmentally friendly source of energy. And more people could do so if solar systems were a good deal.
Unfortunately, the common perception is that these solar alternatives are very expensive and only the rich can afford them. Fortunately, cheap solar panels actually exist, if you know where to find them. This article will look at the cheapest solar panels so that more people can turn to this reserve of earth lovers for their energy and electricity needs.
The Cheapest Solar Panels
So, how cheap can the price tags of cheap solar panels be? Is it worth investing in these panels? We would like to invest in models of solar systems that will not go bankrupt, but that also offer good performance and power. What can be considered cheap are panels with a power of 200 to 400 watts, but which cost less than $400. There are several brands that check these two boxes, and you will find a list below.
|Model||Power (watts)||Price per watt||Warranty||Efficiency||Where to buy|
|LG 400 Mono||400||$1.00||25/25||19.30%||Check Price on eBay|
|Trina 375 Mono||375||$0.75||10/25||19.30%||Check Price on eBay|
|Peimar 360 Mono||360||$0.65||20/30||18.54%||Check Price on eBay|
|Jinko 355 Mono||355||$0.77||10/25||18.31%||Check Price on eBay|
|iTek 360 Mono||360||$0.86||12/25||18.05%||Check Price on eBay|
Where can we find these low-cost solar systems? Most of them are available online. Some of the most affordable solar panels can be purchased on Amazon. You can also visit their individual websites to view their selection of solar system models. If you prefer in-home service, there are sales agents for some of these brands, so it’s best to keep an eye on them.
Is It Cheaper to Build Solar Panels Yourself?
Then you have the most economical and efficient panels on the list. Then you have to decide how you are going to install them. Are you going to hire a professional service or are you going to install them yourself? If you’re good at electronics, you can do it yourself, which can be a good economic solution.
A DIY solar kit could dramatically reduce your electric bills. Read our review of the Backyard Revolution online guide – an ultimate guide to building a solar power station yourself.
If you don’t have any electronics knowledge, you can always choose to install them yourself, but you must follow the manuals or tutorials on YouTube to the letter to be successful. But how cheap can it be if you go this route?
The entire process of purchasing, installing and maintaining your solar panels typically costs close to $18,000. Of that total cost, 10 percent is spent on system design and installation of the panels and all electrical connections. If you opt for сheap DIY solar panels and repair them for your home, you can automatically save about $1800.
This method is ideal if:
- You are good at installing and handling electronics in your home
- If you use your solar system for small off-grid projects
- You have time to spend on determining the destination of each party
However, keep in mind that solar panels are made of delicate materials and their installation may require both equipment and skill. Professional, certified installers have years of installation experience and have all the necessary equipment to get your panels in the right places.
Considering you got the cheapest solar panels, if they break or don’t work due to poor installation or materials, you may lose panel productivity or even double your expenses if you end up hiring an installer anyway. This is in addition to the fact that solar home systems are generally not covered by tax credits and rebates, so you may lose this benefit if you opt for the do-it-yourself method.
However, this method can work if you don’t use the panels to power your entire home and you don’t need to be connected to the grid for your main power source. If you live in a motor home or want the panels to power your yacht, this may be a good method of self-installation.
Used Solar Panels
If you decide not to do the installation yourself, there is another way to save money while having a decent and functional solar system. These are cheap used solar panels. You can buy used panels at a lower price and still be able to use them for 10 or 20 years. These panels are considered used because the previous owners or establishments used them to become solar.
As for the reasons why they can sell them, here are a few:
- They decided to retire the solar system, either because of migration to another city, renovation of their house or a personal decision.
- The panels have lost their effectiveness due to hidden damage, and they have decided to replace them.
- They decided to switch to a more efficient solar model. For example, if they are using polycrystalline panels and they have decided to switch to monocrystalline panels.
Can you really save a substantial amount of money when you go for cheap used solar panels? Well, you can get them for almost half the price. If a 300-watt solar panel costs about $250 when new, you can get it for about $100 or less if it’s used. You can buy used panels from auction sites such as Craigslist or eBay. Used signs can also be purchased on Amazon.
There can be unseen damage to the surface of the panel and also to the electrical components (cracks/scratches etc) that can impact its functionality and lead to costly repairs and inefficiency. You can also buy them at garage sales or from solar panel manufacturers. However, if you decide to buy used solar panels, you need to know the terms and conditions. Although they are inexpensive, they can be less energy efficient because solar panels naturally lose their effectiveness with age. The connections may not be as strong as when they are new and can lead to unstable current.
In addition, micro-cracks may be present and will require a professional to inspect them properly. This is in addition to the fact that professional installers may not offer the same warranties if they find that they are installing used panels. Warranties may be reduced or even completely lost with this option. However, if you are not going to use the used panels to power your entire home and will only use them to charge your equipment or for your electric bicycle, this option may be a good choice. After all, these panels don’t require as much power as your entire home
One of the main issues with used panels is that over time, everything from minor micro-cracks to major breaks and scratches can appear on the surface of the panel. Considering that solar panels are at their best when their surface is completely uncompromised, this means that extensive wear and tear can render them inefficient.
The energy requirements of the average home are so extensive that even the slightest energy “bleed” can lead to your system not running at the capacity you need it to in order to achieve your desired energy requirements. This is why used panels may be better suited so being relied on for small-medium scale energy requirements.
This is where used panels really come into their own and prove to be a very cost efficient means of harnessing solar energy whilst spending less in the process.To make sure you get good quality panels, go to reputable online retailers and check out the reviews. If you’d like to see the panels personally, which is best, you can check your local newspaper, or the manufacturers or merchandisers based in the state so you can test the panels before you buy. Careful inspection and customer reviews are the keys to a successfully used vehicle purchase.
Getting the cheapest solar panels for your home could really help you make a successful transition to solar energy. As the number of manufacturers and suppliers increases, competition is tightening and you can already buy 300-watt panels for less than $300, which you can install yourself or have professionally installed on your roof.
Do-it-yourself installation can be successful if you are good with electronics or know how to follow guides. It may also be advantageous to use solar panels not to power your entire home, but to power equipment or vehicles.
If you want to buy even cheaper panels, you can opt for used panels. However, you need to take extra precautions when choosing where and what to buy, as you may spend more money on maintenance than if you buy new ones. Whichever option you choose, weigh your options carefully to get the energy savings you want for the budget you have.