Solar Warranties Explained

When you are first looking at installing solar, the warranties with solar panels can be a little confusing. You will see the ads for solar systems boast the panels have a 25 year “performance warranty”. What is a performance warranty? How is it different from a product warranty? In this article we will explain the difference between a solar panel performance warranty and product warranty and examine the different warranties that come with solar inverters.

Solar Panel Performance Warranty

All solar panels degrade over time and as they age the energy output of the panel decreases. After 25 years the performance output of the panel could be up to 20% lower than the rated output of the panel when new.

The largest performance decrease happens in the first year after installation of the panel and after 2 years the panel performance will have typically fallen by 3%.  Thereafter the rate of degradation decreases to around 0.74% per year to year 25 when the panel output will be around 80% of the original rating.

Different panels degrade at different rates depending on the cell type and technology and the panel quality. When looking at solar panels always check the linear performance warranty on the panel data sheet.

A better performance warranty means that over the lifetime of the system it will produce more power. The Max Power 370 Watt panel is rated at 83.1% output after 25 years meaning each panel will still be producing over 307 Watts at 25 years.

Solar Panel Product Warranty.

The product warranty is the most important warranty associated with the solar panel. Just because a solar panel has a 25-year performance warranty that does not mean the panel is still warranted for workmanship and materials for 25-years.

The product warranty is the separate warranty covering the workmanship and materials in the panel. Many panels on the Australian market only come with a 10-year product warranty. Some very expensive solar panels may come with a 25-year product warranty as well as a 25-year performance warranty.

The Max Power Solar panel offers a great value 15-year product warranty – a 50% better warranty than many other panels on the market without requiring the significant extra investment a 25-year product warranty entails.

Solar Inverter Warranty

Solar inverters come with a product warranty covering workmanship and materials. The standard warranty on inverters historically has been 5 years. Now some inverters are offering 5+5-year warranties. The first 5 years is the standard product warranty that also covers the labour costs involved in removing and re-installing the repaired/replaced inverter.

In order to get the second 5-year warranty uplift  the consumers needs to register the warranty on line with the manufacturer. This second 5 year uplift typically only covers the replacement or repair of the inverter and does not cover the labour costs of removing and re-installing the inverter.

The Max Power MPS5000 inverter comes with a 12-year warranty.