Solar Warranties: A Guide to Protecting Your Solar Investment

Gain valuable knowledge about solar warranties, their intricacies, and best practices to ensure your solar energy investment is secure and fruitful.

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    Solar Equipment Warranties

    In the contemporary landscape of renewable energy, solar technology plays a pivotal role. For businesses and individuals alike, understanding the nuances of solar warranties is essential to securing a sound investment in this sustainable energy source. 

    This guide is designed to provide you with a detailed understanding of what solar warranties encompass, empowering you with the information necessary to make informed decisions. Let’s delve into the specifics of solar panel, inverter, and racking warranties, and explore the importance of warranty details in the realm of solar energy systems.

    Solar Panel Warranties

    Product Warranties

    Product warranties in solar panels are critical, typically covering a span of 10-12 years. These warranties provide assurance against defects in materials and workmanship. In the event of a panel malfunctioning due to manufacturing defects within this period, the manufacturer is obligated to replace it at no additional cost. This aspect of the warranty plays a crucial role in safeguarding your investment against unforeseen manufacturing flaws.

    Performance Warranties: Ensuring Longevity

    Performance warranties, usually extending 25-30 years, guarantee the panels’ power output capacity over time. They ensure that the panels will retain a substantial percentage of their original power output capacity, such as 90% after 25 years. This long-term commitment offers a significant assurance of the panels’ efficiency and longevity, a vital consideration for any long-term investment in solar technology.

    Solar Inverter Warranties

    Product Warranty

    The solar inverter, a key component of the solar system, typically comes with a product warranty ranging from 5-12 years. This warranty is an essential safeguard against defects in materials and workmanship. Should the inverter fail due to manufacturing defects within this timeframe, the manufacturer is responsible for its replacement, ensuring continuous and efficient operation of your solar system.

    Performance Warranty

    The performance warranty for inverters, usually spanning 5-10 years, guarantees a minimum efficiency level over the warranty period.

    For example, an inverter might be warranted to maintain 95% efficiency after 10 years. This warranty underlines the commitment to maintaining the efficiency of your solar system, crucial for optimizing the return on your solar investment.

    Image: Enphase inverter and battery installation

    Solar Racking Warranties

    Product Warranty

    Solar racking systems are often overlooked but are integral to the stability of the solar setup. Their product warranties range from 10-25 years, covering defects in materials and workmanship.

    In the event of a failure attributable to manufacturing defects, the manufacturer is responsible for replacement, thereby ensuring the structural integrity of your home solar or commercial installation.

    Performance Warranty

    Solar racking systems generally do not include performance warranties, as they are engineered to be robust and withstand the test of time without significant degradation.

    Image: Two installers putting panels on a ground mounted solar racking system.

    Interpreting Warranty Fine Print

    Comprehending the fine print of solar warranties is as crucial as understanding any contractual agreement. It is essential to meticulously examine what is covered and what is excluded, along with the process for lodging a claim.

    Additionally, inquire about any supplementary warranties that your solar installer might offer, adding an extra layer of protection to your investment.

    Further Considerations for Solar Warranties

    • Reputation and Reliability of the Manufacturer: The value of a warranty is largely contingent on the standing and reliability of the issuing company. It is advisable to select reputable solar panel manufacturers and installers to ensure robust warranty support.
    • Transferability in Property Transactions: A significant advantage of solar warranties is their potential transferability to new property owners, enhancing the resale value and appeal of your property.
    • Options for Warranty Extension: Some manufacturers and installers offer extended warranty options, potentially prolonging the coverage and security of your solar energy system.
    Image: Two residential solar installations on a metal roof.

    Empowering Your Solar Journey with Knowledge

    Understanding the intricacies of solar warranties is fundamental to maximizing the benefits of your solar energy investment. By selecting the appropriate warranties and understanding their terms, you are not only investing in solar technology but also in the reliability and longevity of your energy solution.

    Informed decisions in this realm are pivotal to harnessing the full potential of solar energy.

    What Equipment Has The Best Warrenties?

    Several solar equipment manufacturers offer impressive warranties, but a few stand out for their comprehensiveness and duration.

    Here are some of the brands with the best solar equipment warranties in 2024:

    Solar Panels

    • SunPower: SunPower offers the industry’s longest warranty, a 40-year product warranty on its Maxeon panels. This warranty covers defects in materials and workmanship, and guarantees at least 92% power output after 40 years.
    • Panasonic: Panasonic’s AllGuard warranty package covers the entire solar system, including panels, inverter, monitoring, and racking, for 25 years. It also includes a performance warranty that guarantees at least 90% power output after 25 years.
    • LG: LG offers a 25-year product and performance warranty on its solar panels. The product warranty covers defects in materials and workmanship, while the performance warranty guarantees at least 86% power output after 25 years.
    • REC: REC offers a 25-year product warranty on its Alpha Pure Black panels, and a 25-year performance warranty that guarantees at least 86% power output after 25 years.
    • Qcells: Qcells offers a 25-year product warranty on its Q.PEAK panels, and a 25-year performance warranty that guarantees at least 86% power output after 25 years.

    Inverters

    • SMA: SMA offers a 12-year standard warranty on its inverters, with optional extensions available up to 25 years.
    • Fronius: Fronius offers a 10-year standard warranty on its inverters, with optional extensions available up to 25 years.
    • SolarEdge: SolarEdge offers a 12-year standard warranty on its inverters, with optional extensions available up to 25 years.
    • Enphase: Enphase offers a 5-year standard warranty on its microinverters, with optional extensions available up to 25 years.

    Other Warrenties

    • Tesla: Tesla offers a 12-year standard warranty on its Powerwalls, with optional extensions available up to 25 years.

    It’s important to note that warranties can vary depending on the specific product and manufacturer, so be sure to read the fine print carefully before making a purchase.

    You should also consider factors such as the company’s reputation, financial stability, and customer service record when making your decision.

    Frequently Asked Questions

    Here we compiled a list of the most asked questions regarding solar equipment warranties:

    What duration do solar panel product warranties typically cover?

    Solar panel product warranties generally cover a period of 10 to 12 years.

    Are solar warranties transferable in the event of property sale?

    Yes, solar warranties can typically be transferred to new homeowners, adding value to the property transaction.

    Do solar racking systems have performance warranties?

    Solar racking systems usually do not come with performance warranties due to their inherent durability and expected lifespan.

    Is it possible to extend the warranty period for a solar energy system?

    Many manufacturers and installers offer options for extending the warranty on solar energy systems, often for an additional fee.

    What key elements should be considered in the fine print of a solar warranty?

    It is important to scrutinize what is covered, the exclusions, and the process for making a claim. The credibility and track record of the manufacturer or installer are also important factors.

    solar within each on a single family home solar

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    Author:

    Adam Walters

    Adam Walters

    Adam Walters is a writer and solar industry expert with over a decade of experience. He has written extensively on topics related to renewable energy, sustainability, and climate change, and is a passionate advocate for the transition to clean energy sources.

    Email Adam

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