If you’re thinking about buying solar panels for your home, you are probably also wondering how long do solar panels last in Illinois. Solar panels are designed for long-lasting durability, but their lifespan can vary depending on several factors.
These factors include the quality of the panels, the manufacturing process, and the environmental conditions where they are installed. On average, most solar panels have warranties that guarantee their performance for 25 to 30 years.
Performance is defined as solar panels continuing to produce a certain percentage of their original power output, typically around 80% or more. However, this doesn’t mean you should expect your solar panels to stop working after their warranties expire.
In fact, many solar panels continue to produce electricity for decades beyond their warranty period, although at a slightly reduced efficiency. It’s not uncommon for well-maintained solar panels to last more than 30 years.
5 Considerations To Get You The Most Out Of Your Solar Panels
1. Is There Really A Big Difference In Solar Panel Quality?
As you might expect, higher-quality solar panels last longer. They use better materials, coatings, and manufacturing processes that resist wear and degradation. Generally speaking, you can expect higher quality from Tier 1 manufacturers such as Hanwha, SunPower, REC, and Panasonic.
These Tier 1 manufacturers have been making solar panels for more than five years, with vertically integrated manufacturing processes and investment in continuing research and development to improve their products. Tier 1 solar panel manufacturers typically offer longer and better warranties to give extra confidence that their solar panels are long-lasting.
However, the tradeoff is that Tier 1 solar panels are also more expensive. You pay extra for quality.
2. Do Midwest Environmental Conditions Play A Role?
Extreme heat, cold, and humidity can accelerate solar panel wear and tear and affect how long your solar panels last. The hotter it is where you live, the more likely your solar panels will degrade over time. Heat causes solar panel materials to break down faster than in colder conditions.
So, if you live in Illinois, Wisconsin, or Michigan, your home’s solar panels are likely to last longer, all other considerations being equal, than if you live in Florida. On the other hand, Floridians can take advantage of better sun exposure year-round.
Other weather elements such as hail and high winds, can also negatively impact your solar panels and cause additional damage to other parts of the panel. Something the Midwest homeowners are not foreign to.
3. How Often Do Solar Panels Need To Be Cleaned & Maintained?
Regular maintenance can extend the life of your home’s solar panels. Solar panels get dirty over time. Dirty solar panels are inefficient solar panels. Maintenance involves cleaning the solar panels to remove dirt and debris and checking for any damage or defects.
The frequency of solar panel maintenance depends on where you live and local climate conditions. If you live where there’s a regular heavy storm season where a lot of debris lands on your roof, you may need more frequent maintenance than in a relatively storm-free area. If you’ve experienced an extensive dry period without a drop of rain, there’s likely an accumulation of dirt on your solar panels that needs more frequent cleaning.
The general rule of thumb is to clean your solar panels at least twice a year, regardless of the weather conditions and where you live in Illinois. Keep in mind, that the more time passes, the more buildup and the harder it might be to clean.
4. How Long Is The Solar Panel Warranty?
Tier 1 brands offer the best warranties, which gives you an idea of how long your home’s solar panels are expected to last. The industry standard is 20 to 30 years, though Maxeon offers an industry-leading 40-year warranty.
Some solar panel manufacturers offer two kinds of warranties:
- Performance Warranty: guarantees the same level of energy efficiency and operation over time.
- Product Warranty: guarantee on the useful life of the solar panels.
Also, look at the inverter warranty. The inverter converts DC electricity from the solar panels into AC electricity. The inverter typically has a shorter lifespan than the solar panels, and it is not unusual to replace it at some point during the lifetime of the panels.
5. Does The Installation Of My Solar Panels Affect Longevity?
Proper installation is crucial for the longevity of solar panels. Solar panels must be mounted securely and at the correct angle to maximize their efficiency and minimize the risk of weather damage.
TruHome Pros solar panel installers are highly experienced in providing 5-star service to deploy full and effective integration of highly efficient and long-lasting solar panels, power inverters, and premium parts and accessories from leading manufacturers that ensure optimum performance and ROI.
Our sleek and durable solar panels are manufactured by top-of-the-line Tier 1 companies. The solar panels we select for your Illinois home offer the highest efficiency and the longest probable lifetimes. Especially when paired with our maintenance service.