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The Solar Panel best is the one that guarantees good power over a long period of time. The reference criterion is the energy degradation, that is the loss of power of the cells due to the wear of materials or the action of atmospheric agents: the lower the degradation, the higher the quality. The convenience must therefore be calculated over the long term: a panel that after 10 or 20 years of life guarantees a higher power is cheaper than another more 'Aging', even if it cost a little more at the time of purchase. Solar panels must last, not be replaced after a few years or maintained continuously.
The point is that the user does not have many tools to check the quality of the solar panel. Often the only clues are the seller's data sheet and insurance. Here then is the usefulness of forms of 'extended' guarantee covering various aspects, including power.
SunPower, an American company, was the first to launch a combined warrantyon its own solar panels that it covers both the potency and the product for 25 years. A 25 year warranty it is unique on the market and one wonders what are the technological differentiators that have allowed SunPower to offer a guarantee of this type.
Andrea Antolini, Country Manager of SunPower Italia, explained to us that this was possible because "SunPower's Maxeon solar cells are built on a solid copper base which makes them significantly better able to withstand humidity, temperature changes and other real-world situations that can put a strain on the life of the cells, with cracks and corrosion.
For the user it is undoubtedly important to be able to count on a guarantee of power and not just of the product. "Thanks to its advanced technology, SunPower is able to offer its customers a higher level, more efficient and reliable product. Our linear power warranty guarantees at least 95% power for the first five years, followed by a maximum rate of degradation of 0.4 percent per year. In this way, at the end of the 25 years, we reach a power level of 87%, never seen before on the market, which represents a 9.1% more energy than market standards for the first 25 years of the solar panel's life. However, we are convinced that our modules are able to offer performance and reliability even after 25 years of installation, and this guarantee ensures that even customers actually perceive this solidity ", says Antolini.
If a solar panel needs to be repaired or replaced, SunPower supplies a functionally identical or equivalent panel, or the cost of the panel is fully refunded. This includes associated labor and transportation costs incurred by customers to whom solar panels have been installed by SunPower or its resellers / partners. The new warranty went into effect on July 1, 2012 and is available to residential, commercial and utility energy customers installing SunPower solar panels.
SunPower's goal with this initiative was to offer one representative guarantee of the uniqueness of its technology, allowing customers to have complete peace of mind when purchasing solar modules. SunPower has customers around the world, in the residential, business / commercial and large utility-grade facilities. The power of these plants can vary from 1.8kW for a home to 600MW for a large plant. In Italy, specifically, the company's focus is greater on the residential market and small commercial installations, up to 50kWp.