Types of Solar Panels: Which is Best For You (2023)


Types of Solar Panels: Which is Best For You (2023) 1

Photo voltaic panel set up affords many benefits to your dwelling, reminiscent of decrease electrical energy payments, power independence and clear power. Whenever you are contemplating including photo voltaic panels, you need to think about different factors reminiscent of power effectivity, look and prices. These are important components and can play a big half in your determination. One of the necessary features of shopping for photo voltaic panels is the kind of photo voltaic panels you select to purchase. 

In the end, your particular state of affairs and what you want to obtain will decide which photo voltaic panel is best for you. This beneficial information will define the several types of photo voltaic panels, their advantages and easy methods to decide one of the best photo voltaic panels for you. 

Key Factors

  • The three kinds of photo voltaic panels are Monocrystalline (environment-friendly, costly), Polycrystalline (budget-friendly), and Skinny-Movie (versatile, shortest lifespan).
  • Monocrystalline panels are most effective, thin-film are least costly, with polycrystalline panels balancing each features.
  • Lifespans of panels differ by sort (monocrystalline longest, thin-film shortest). Different components embrace temperature coefficient, fireplace and hail resistance.
  • Choice relies on location and house. Polycrystalline for giant residential roofs, monocrystalline for small areas, thin-film for business use.
  • The highest photo voltaic manufacturers embrace Q Cells, Solaria, and REC Group for his or her high quality, warranties, and assist.
  • 8MSolar affords experience in set up, high quality merchandise, and tailor-made options for each residential and business prospects.
the three types of solar panels


What Are the Three Sorts of Photo Voltaic Panels and What Are They Fabricated from?

The three several types of photo voltaic panels are thin-film, polycrystalline and monocrystalline photo voltaic panels. Every of all these photo voltaic cells is made in a novel means and has a distinct aesthetic look. Right here is the breakdown for every sort of photo voltaic panel.

1. Monocrystalline Photo voltaic Panels

monocrystalline solar panel- types of solar panels

Monocrystalline photo voltaic panels are probably the most developed of the three kinds of photo voltaic panels. Monocrystalline photo voltaic cells created from pure silicon create the sort of panel. Due to their manufacturing course of, these panels are prone to be the costliest in the marketplace. 

This course of is known as the Czochralski method. Throughout this course of, a silicon crystal is about in a vat of molten silicon. From there, an expert will extract the crystal rigorously and slowly, so the molten silicon can harden right into a crystal shell known as an ingot. This ingot is sliced into skinny silicon wafers that are a cell. These cells are organized to make a photo voltaic panel. 

As soon as totally fashioned, the monocrystalline cells resemble squares without corners, leaving small gaps in between cells. These kinds of photo voltaic cells will seem black due to the pure silicon in them, although you will have the ability to select from quite a lot of colors for the frames and again sheets. 

2. Polycrystalline Photo voltaic Panels

polycrystalline solar panel- types of solar panels

Due to their effectivity, polycrystalline photo voltaic panels are gaining in recognition. Although they nonetheless use silicon-like monocrystalline photo voltaic panels, polycrystalline cells are created from a more moderen course of. Utilizing silicon fragments somewhat than one silicon crystal makes these panels extra budget-friendly. 

On this manufacturing technique, fragments of a silicon crystal soften collectively in a vat of molten silicon. Fairly than extracting the crystal slowly, professionals will go away it to chill and fragment. After cooling in its mould, the silicon is sliced into polycrystalline photo voltaic wafers, that are then organized to create a panel. 

When daylight displays on polycrystalline crystals, the cells will seem blue in coloration. Totally different from pure silicon, which seems black within the daylight, fragmented silicon will give a lighter, extra bluish tinge. Polycrystalline panels are square-shaped and devoid of gaps between them. Frames will usually are available in silver.

3. Skinny-Movie Photo Voltaic Panels

thin film solar panel- types of solar panels

That is the newest sort of photo voltaic panel. It stands as probably the most versatile of the three varieties due to its distinctive flexibility and course of — as a substitute of solely counting on silicon, thin-film photo voltaic panels may be created from numerous supplies, reminiscent of copper indium gallium selenide (CIGS), cadmium telluride (CdTe) and amorphous silicon (a-Si).

On this course of, the fabric is about between skinny sheets of conductive materials with a prime layer of glass serving as safety. The a-Si panels use non-crystalline silicon topped with glass.

You’ll be able to simply establish the sort of photo voltaic panel due to its skinny look — thin-film panels are approximately 350 times thinner than photo voltaic panels created from silicon wafers. Nonetheless, the frames of thin-film photo voltaic panels can nonetheless be massive and resemble that of the opposite two varieties. The colours of those panels will depend upon the fabric used however will normally be black or blue.

key differences between solar cell types
Types of Solar Panels: Which is Best For You (2023) 2


What Does Every Photo Voltaic Panel Look Like?

Monocrystalline panels are usually black attributable to how mild interact with the silicon crystal. Though you could find completely different colours for the again panels, they may usually be white, silver or black with both silver or black frames. 

Polycrystalline panels seem blue as the sunshine displays from the silicon fragments. You too can discover completely different colours for the again sheets and frames, however, you’ll most frequently see silver or white again sheets with silver frames. 

Skinny-film panels have a distinct aesthetic than the earlier two varieties. These panels are slimmer and might create a distinct search for your property in comparison with the opposite two. Relying on the panels’ supplies, thin-film methods will doubtless seem in black or blue hues. 

Evaluating the Three Sorts of Photo Voltaic Panels

Moreover manufacturing and look, there are some variations in how every of the kinds of photo voltaic cells performs. The important thing classes are effectivity and worth. Right here is how every sort of photo voltaic panel performs in effectivity and affordability in addition to different components to think about.


Effectivity is how a lot power the completely different photo voltaic panel varieties can produce from the quantity of daylight it receives. Basically, effectivity determines how a lot energy a photo voltaic panel can produce. There are numerous issues you are able to do to extend your solar panel efficiency, however some photo voltaic panels are designed to be extra environment friendly from the start. Probably the most environment friendly photo voltaic panel is the monocrystalline photo voltaic panel.

Monocrystalline photo voltaic panels can attain over 20% efficiency. These panels have a excessive capability, with most able to offering greater than 300 watts and a few exceeding 400 watts. Then again, polycrystalline panels can normally solely attain 13%-16% effectivity. This hole between the 2 panels could also be closing in the future as know-how improves to make polycrystalline panels extra environment friendly. 

Skinny-film normally affords effectivity hovering between 7% and 18%. The ability capability of a thin-film panel can differ although as a result of there’s no commonplace dimension, and a few fashions may produce extra energy than others.


Value could make or break a photo voltaic determination, and the kinds of photo voltaic cells you select are one of many components that have an effect on the value probably the most. The most affordable photo voltaic panels are thin-film panels as a result of they are often manufactured on the lowest price. The CdTe are the most affordable photo voltaic panels in the marketplace, however the CIGS may be dearer. 

Skinny-film frames are normally lighter, so you possibly can usually save on set up prices. Then again, monocrystalline is the costliest photo voltaic panel choice proper now. Manufacturing pure silicon may be costly, and the panels and frames are heavy, resulting in increased set up prices. 

Polycrystalline panels had been developed to cut back the price of photo voltaic panels, and they’re normally extra reasonably priced than monocrystalline. However this hole between monocrystalline and polycrystalline panels might shut as innovators uncover extra environment friendly methods to fabricate monocrystalline photo voltaic cells. Remember that on prime of photo voltaic panel prices, there are sometimes installation costs and monitoring prices as properly.

Professionals and Cons of Every Sort of Photo voltaic Panel

Photo voltaic Panel Sort Benefits Disadvantages
Monocrystalline Excessive effectivity and efficiency Increased prices
Polycrystalline Decrease prices Decrease effectivity and efficiency
Skinny-film Moveable and versatile Decrease effectivity and efficiency

Different Elements to Contemplate for Your Photo voltaic Panels

Moreover price and effectivity, there are a number of different components to think about when selecting photo voltaic panels. Evaluating the life span, temperature coefficient, fireplace and hail resistance and different concerns will enable you decide one of the best photo voltaic panels to your dwelling or enterprise. 

Life Span

Each solar panel type is capable of making its value back in the money it saves on you on electricity costs.

How lengthy your panels will final shall be an important deciding issue. You wish to make sure the panels you select will keep up and operating for so long as possible so you will get probably the most use out of them. 

Monocrystalline panels usually final between 25 and 40 years, whereas the polycrystalline life span ranges from 20 to 35 years. Skinny-film panels supply the shortest life span, usually lasting between 10 and 20 years. The upfront price of some panels may counteract your long-term dedication and require you to speculate extra later. Nonetheless, every photo voltaic panel sort is able to making its worth again within the cash it saves on you on electrical energy prices. 

Temperature Coefficient

One issue is the temperature coefficient. Monocrystalline and polycrystalline photo voltaic panels usually have a temperature coefficient of round -0.3% / °C to -0.5% / °C. Skinny-film panels have coefficients nearer to -0.2% / °C.

What this implies is that because the temperature rises, sure kinds of photo voltaic panels will produce extra energy than others. That is particularly necessary to think about in an space like North Carolina, the place the temperature excessive may be vital. 

Fireplace Resistance, Hail Resistance and Hurricane Ranking

Climate circumstances are one other necessary side to think about when choosing the right photo voltaic panel system to your dwelling. One necessary issue to think about is fireplace score, which may differ based mostly on the kind of roof you’ve got and the kind of panel you select. 

  • Class A: Class A-rated supplies decrease flames to six ft and successfully cease fireplace unfold. Many city areas with wildfire or fireplace severity dangers require this score. 
  • Class B: Class B-rated supplies are efficient at defending buildings from average fires and might stop flames from exceeding 8 ft. 
  • Class C: These supplies will solely shield towards mild fireplace exposures and might permit flames to succeed in as excessive as 13 ft. 

Class A supplies would be the greatest choices for safeguarding your own home or enterprise, particularly in areas the place fires are widespread or prone to happen. 

Fireplace is just not the one pure catastrophe that may strike your roof, so that you will additionally wish to take into account hail rankings. Most monocrystalline and polycrystalline panels can stand up to 25mm falling at roughly 50 miles per hour, however the precise score can differ and might have an effect on the life span of your photo voltaic system.

Though there is no such thing as a classification for hurricane score methods, there are new specs to safeguard your property from extreme climate. Search for panels with the next:

  • The best score for wind and snow loading in the front and back
  • Fasteners with true locking capabilities
  • Via-bolting modules somewhat than clamping fasteners
  • 3-frame rail methods for assist towards twisting and improved rigidity
  • Fencing across the system to dampen wind forces

UL and IEC Listings and Different Issues

You additionally might wish to take into account discovering heterojunction photo voltaic cell know-how (HJT) to your system that mixes monocrystalline silicon wafers with amorphous silicon. HJT has peak effectivity with the bottom temperature coefficient and no Mild Induced Degradation (LID). Lastly, you will wish to take into account LID as a result of degradation of effectivity can have an effect on the quantity of power you are in a position to produce.

All of those numerous components are thought-about by our engineers when designing and recommending a solar PV system. We have a look at the general system life cycle and efficiency not simply in superb eventualities however in all circumstances that your photo voltaic PV system shall be subjected to.

It’s a nice thought to have a primary understanding of how solar panels work, however we perceive it may be overwhelming to decide on the right sort of photo voltaic panels. Our photo voltaic specialists at 8MSolar can be found to evaluate your wants and enable you make one of the best determination to your distinctive wants.

best solar panel for residential properties
Types of Solar Panels: Which is Best For You (2023) 3


Functions and Set up for Every Sort of Photo voltaic Panel

Now that you simply perceive a few of the defining traits of every photo voltaic panel, their purposes can assist you consider which one is best for you. You will see one of the best sort of photo voltaic panel when you think about the installation locations and the panels’ goal. For residential properties with a big roof house or property, your best option of panels could also be polycrystalline. These panels are probably the most reasonably priced for giant areas and can present sufficient effectivity and energy. For residential properties with smaller areas, monocrystalline photo voltaic panels could also be your best option. These panels work properly for individuals who wish to maximize their power payments in a small house.

Monocrystalline photo voltaic panels and polycrystalline photo voltaic panels are glorious decisions for houses and related property buildings. Owners nearly by no means make the most of thin-film photo voltaic panels as a result of they’re decrease in effectivity. As a substitute, enterprise homeowners and business buildings use thin-film photo voltaic panels after they can not deal with the extra weight of conventional panels. Though thin-film is much less environment friendly than the opposite panel choices, business buildings have extra roof house to cowl the floor with panels. 

Which Sort of Photo voltaic Panel Is Greatest?

Wanting via all the varied kinds of photo voltaic panels and understanding their distinctive traits will enable you slim down your determination. Nonetheless, one of the best photo voltaic panel for you’ll doubtless be based mostly in your particular state of affairs — be sure you are having a look at what you want most so you possibly can select the most suitable choice for you.

Contemplate a few of the core components concerned within the choices like operate, dimension and value:

  • Operate: Contemplate the principle purpose you wish to buy photo voltaic panels. You would be in search of financial savings in your power invoice or making an attempt to lower your power footprint. Determining your main purpose for switching to photo voltaic can assist information you towards the precise selection of photo voltaic panels for you.
  • Measurement: Check out the floor space and the variety of home equipment you’ll want to energy. A comparatively small, easy dwelling may require a distinct type of photo voltaic panel than a sprawling home with extra intensive facilities.
  • Price: One of the vital components you will wish to take into account on the subject of choosing the proper photo voltaic panels for you is your funds. Whilst you can nonetheless deviate a bit from a sure quantity, stepping into with a worth vary in thoughts will assist maintain you on monitor and mean you can select one of the best photo voltaic panel for you.

Be sure you are holding these necessary traits in thoughts as you store for photo voltaic panels. Though understanding all the numerous variations between varieties and determining what you want may be useful within the course of, you should still need some further assist to decide on the precise product. Be sure you hunt down professionals within the trade who can assist you discover one of the best product for you.

Greatest Photo voltaic Panels on the Market by Model

As a design and engineering-based agency we will set up any make and mannequin of panels. We continually and usually survey our out there panel choices and decide one of the best match for every buyer and their state of affairs. That being mentioned, there are usually three main manufacturers we gravitate in direction of, attributable to their firm energy, high quality of panels, guarantee course of, and post-installation assist.

Q Cells

Q Cells gives among the best panels in the marketplace for an excellent worth within the Q.Peak DUO BLK G10+ panel. Q Cells has the biggest photo voltaic panel manufacturing facility in North America positioned outdoors of Atlanta, Georgia. We right here at 8MSolar consider this is among the prime panel choices in the marketplace. Q cell additionally gives a 25-year energy output guarantee that ensures as much as 86% energy output out of your panel in 12 months 25 of the guarantee, in addition to a 25-year product guarantee masking materials defects. For extra data read our Q Cells’ Review.


Solaria is a premium panel producer positioned out of California. They specialise in high-quality residential panels. 8MSolar generally works with two of its panels, the Solaria PowerX and the Solaria PowerXT. The Solaria PowerX comes with a 25-year guarantee, and the Solaria PowerXT comes with a 30-year guarantee. – each are glorious choices to your dwelling.  For extra data read our Solaria review.


REC Group is one other producer offering glorious premium residential panels. Our two hottest REC panel choices are the REC Alpha Pure and the REC N-Peak 3. Each assure 92% of 12 months 1 energy output in 12 months 25 of their 25-year energy output guarantee – an trade greatest. 8MSolar is a REC ProTrust Installer, so our prospects are eligible for REC’s prolonged guarantee program! For extra data read our REC Review.

Contact 8MSolar for Solar Panels in North Carolina


When you are unsure which of the kinds of photo voltaic panels will work greatest to your venture otherwise you need some steerage on understanding photo voltaic panel know-how, our specialists can assist you establish the precise panels for your distinctive venture.

At, we provide reasonably priced, efficient photo voltaic options to each residential and commercial customer. From experience to power financial savings, we give you many benefits:

  • Experience: To make sure there is efficient communication, steady engagement and high-quality set up throughout the entire process, we assign an area venture supervisor to every of our prospects. These venture managers have expertise in each building and engineering and know precisely easy methods to set up your photo voltaic panels the precise means. You will have the ability to believe that a skilled skilled is caring for the method.
  • High quality merchandise: At 8MSolar, we ensure that we are providing our prospects the most recent and highest-quality merchandise in the marketplace. You will have the ability to belief the sturdiness and effectiveness of our merchandise. If one thing goes fallacious, our engineers are ready to make immediate repairs.
  • Worth: We provide unequalled worth that mixes high-quality panels with great prices. Even in case you are on a funds, you could find a photo voltaic panel that shall be efficient in attaining your power and financial savings objectives. Our streamlined enterprise mannequin helps us eliminate pointless prices in order that we will make costs extra reasonably priced for our prospects.
  • Financial savings: As soon as your photo voltaic panels are put in, you will quickly begin to see power financial savings. Photo voltaic panels are an funding in your future that can continue to give you returns.

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