Considering Purchasing Used Solar Panels? Read This First
August 9, 2023
Solar energy has gained serious popularity as one of the cleanest and most sustainable power sources on Earth. And as more home and business owners embrace alternative energy solutions, the market for solar panels only continues to grow.
Because of greater demand, some people are turning to purchasing used solar panels as a cost-effective alternative to new ones. However, you should consider important factors before making that decision.
In this article, we’ll explore the pros and cons of buying used solar panels, as well as cover essential insights that help you make an informed decision.
[Related: A Complete Guide to Solar Panel Recycling]
Pros of Buying Used Solar Panels
Every coin has two sides! Let’s check out the pros of buying used solar panels.
One of the most appealing aspects of buying used solar panels is the potential for substantial cost savings.
As you’d expect, people often sell used solar panels at a fraction of the price of new ones. That makes them a more affordable option — especially for those on a tight budget.
When you choose used solar panels, you’re extending the product’s life span. Meanwhile, you’re further reaching your sustainability goals.
You’re reducing waste and softening the environmental impact associated with panels’ production by giving them a second life.
Manufacturers design solar panels to last for several decades, with most providing warranties ranging from 20 to 25 years.
When purchasing a used solar panel, you can rest assured that it’s already proven its reliability over a certain period. In other words, just because it’s used doesn’t mean it’s useless!
Think of it as buying a used car. A used car (depending on its age and condition) from a dealership could just as likely be in as good a shape as a new car. Sure it’s used, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t run well or do what it’s meant to do.
Cons of Buying Used Solar Panels
Now for the other side — if you don’t shop with a certified solar master dealer, you can’t guarantee the quality of what you’re getting. Furthermore, you may not be able to find an installer that can put it on your roof.
Let’s look at some of the cons of buying used solar panels.
Unlike new panels, a used solar panel may not come with a warranty or may have a limited warranty period remaining.
This lack of coverage leaves you vulnerable to potential performance and maintenance issues, which could lead to additional costs down the line.
Over time, solar panels undergo a gradual decrease in efficiency due to general wear and tear.
However, the degradation level varies according to multiple factors:
- Exposure to harsh environmental conditions
- Previous installation
Unfortunately, a used solar panel may have already experienced significant efficiency loss per the factors above. As a result, it’ll produce less energy than a new panel would.
[Related: Who Makes the Best Solar Panels?]
Unknown History and Condition
When buying used solar panels, make sure to consider their history and condition. Why? Because as we noted, factors such as age, maintenance practices, previous installation and exposure to extreme weather conditions can affect their performance.
Assessing the overall quality and longevity of the used panels you want to buy without the proper information is challenging. The person selling the used panels should willingly provide as many details as possible, too.
[Related: Winter Storm Power Outage: Uri in Texas]
As you can see, you have to weigh dozens of variables. Here are a few more areas to consider before buying used solar panels.
Source and Reputation
Thoroughly research the seller’s history, and read as many customer reviews as possible. Reviews in particular help you gain insights into their credibility and their products’ quality.
Note: Freedom Solar offers SunPower solar panels, the highest-rated solar panels on the market. We also offer prime backup power solutions, including the SunPower SunVault and Tesla Powerwall, to ensure you have the best solar products available.
Compatibility and Installation
Consider the compatibility of the used solar panels with your existing solar system or the system you plan to install.
Then, consult with a professional installer to evaluate any technical issues and additional costs that may arise during the integration process.
Understand the seller’s return policy and warranty terms, if any. Clearly understanding the options available in case of panel failure or unforeseen issues is essential to protecting your investment.
Contact Freedom Solar for New SunPower Solar Panels
Purchasing used solar panels is an attractive option when you’re seeking affordable alternative energy solutions. However, before you make that choice, you must carefully weigh the pros and cons.
By conducting thorough research, inspecting the panels and consulting with professionals, you can make an informed choice that aligns with your energy needs and long-term goals.
Call (800) 504-2337 or complete our online inquiry form for a free consultation and quote. One of our energy consultants will be in touch!
Featured image via Unsplash