Getting the Most Out of Solar Panel Reviews

PV products for non-commercial real estate are very reasonable as of this  writing, November 2012. When planning an installation the starting point is  definitely selecting which system provides the best electric power for the most  reasonable cost. I am an electrical and computer engineer alumni from Cal Poly  Pomona. This assisted when looking over the multiple solar panels reviews. I  will convey the most important criteria when scouting for PV panels, and  demonstrate their importance in simple terminology. I used these criteria when  picking my 6kWh photovoltaic system to offset my full monthly power bill. At  this point in Las Vegas, Nevada there are multiple PV contractors that are ready  to quote a complete equipment install. Receiving a quote of $27,750.00 for a  3.97kWh solar system with a single 3.5 kWh inverter attached was the inspiration  for weeks of research that generated a superior 6kWh array with twenty four  micro inverters installed for only $15,756.70. The following is the short  story.

I recommend that you buy the equipment first, after which you can find a  contractor to install it. The full amount for the equipment was $9717.15 with  freight shipping to my residence. Since the majority of the investment was in  the panels, the majority of the time really should be invested in solar panel  equipment evaluations rather than general contractors. The most important  factors for deciding on a solar panel are; manufactures warranty, and P.T.C.  (PVUSA Test Conditions that are realistic) per cost.

A normal warranty for PV panels is 90% top power guaranteed for first 10  years, and 80% peak power assured for 25 years. This indicates the first ten  years of performance that your solar panels are going to lose no more than 10%  of their optimum power output, and only 20% for 25 years. This should be  considered the bare minimum acceptable warranty. Don’t forget that a promised  warranty is only as sound as the company providing it, thus a long standing  organization holds more weight in comparison with a new startup.

Useful solar panel reviews provide the P.T.C. and cost per panel, therefore  you simply divide the P.T.C. by the cost. To illustrate a 250 Watt panel from ET  solar carries a P.T.C. rating of 223.6 Watts. If the solar panel costs $250,  then the P.T.C./Cost would be $250/223.6W = $1.12/Watt. The lower we can bring  this number the better deal we certainly have found. Solar panels are becoming  more efficient and less expensive by the day, but on or after November 2012 a  good target is $1.00/Watt or less.

Make certain when looking at solar panel reviews on the internet or when  talking with salesmen on the phone you will always ask for the P.T.C., and not  the considerably higher system Watt rating. Divide the P.T.C. by the purchase  price, and keep negotiating the price unless you get to $1.00/Watt or less. This  may not include shipping, so be sure to compare shipping separately. Unless you  want to talk on the phone you may get a discount online by attaching items to  their cart and doing the checkout until just before completion. By backing out  at the final moment they will initiate the negotiation by contacting you by  email with a lower price.

For the full story on how I was able to reduce my cost in half when buying my  system or for quality solar panel reviews check out my post on

By John C Berg

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