The technology in solar panels has made great progress in recent years and will continue to for the foreseeable future. It is an exciting time to be working in this field, and Baker Renewable Energy is right at the cutting-edge of the Southeast’s solar energy market.
People who are aware of the various options available today in solar energy often ask us which type of panels we generally recommend and why. In a recent blog post, we gave some detail on what the various options were, but now we will make clear which of these we prefer for our customers.
The Baker family of brands has been around since 1915, and since the beginning has made a point of standing for quality and doing the best work possible. W.P. Baker, the founder, hung a sign in the original shop in Raleigh saying, “We shall do good work. At a profit if we can, at a loss if we must, but always good work.”
It is because of this legacy that when we look at the options available today, we want to provide our customers with only the best available. Thin film panels only provide a 7-13% efficiency in energy production. They are often less expensive, but because of their inefficiency, they do not provide as much power and are much larger.
The silicon-based options cover the remaining 90% of the market. These can be broken down into monocrystalline and polycrystalline panels. The polycrystalline panels also are not as efficient as they could be, at 13-16% efficiency. This is an improvement in quality from the photovoltaic options, but the silicon has not been processed much to enhance its purity.
This is why the third major option, monocrystalline panels, we believe is the option that stays true to W.P. Baker’s commitment to quality and excellence. These panels are made of the highest quality silicon that has gone through state-of-the-art purification processes to ensure it will perform at the best level possible with today’s technology. These often operate at around 20% efficiency, with some even 22 or 24%!
Not only are they superior in power generation, but monocrystalline also lasts much longer than lower quality varieties. There are early model monocrystalline panels from the 1970’s still in operation today and that was before the technology of the panels reached its modern state.
When someone is planning a project of the long-term importance and benefit of a residential solar power array, it doesn’t make sense to then just throw money at bulky, cheap models that won’t last as long or generate power as efficiently. We believe this is a process to be taken seriously and an investment that is worth making on the right equipment. As an experienced retailer and installer of high quality monocrystalline solar panels, we hope you will partner with us on your solar project.