Solar Equipment Warranties - What should you look for?
Some of the questions our team at SolarPanelStore.com are asked about quite a bit involve product warranties. Especially right now, after Santa and his reindeer have been tromping around on roof top solar panel installations! Here is a quick look at some of the general warranties that are fairly typical with the equipment we sell.
Solar Panel Warranties:
For the most part, the solar panels in a renewable energy system tend to have a very standard power output warranty of between 20-30 years which basically means that the panels are guaranteed to produce at least 80% of their nameplate power at year 20. This varies a bit with "linear power output warranties".
Here's an example of a linear power output warranty:
≥ 97% end of 1st year
≥ 90% end of 12th year
≥ 82% end of 25th year
Product warranties for solar panels tend to be between 10 and 12 years. The product warranty covers things like manufacturing defects, such as a faulty junction box or cable. It's very rare that we run into these types of warranty issues because solar panels are really quite simple in construction, and have no moving parts.
For code compliance, nearly all string inverters for grid-tie applications are a 10 year warranty, most of which have warranty extension programs that can be purchased at a reasonable cost to add 5-10 year increments typically. Micro-Inverters and Power Optimizers, like Enphase and SolarEdge products, are usually a 20 year warranty.
Off-grid inverters, are usually less, with 5 year warranties being the standard for a high quality product. Again, many of the inverter manufacturers offer warranty extensions for the battery based inverters as well. It would be nice if the standards for battery based inverters was a little longer, but they do typically get much more of a workout than their grid-tie counterparts.
Charge Controller Warranties:
Charge controller warranties can be all over the board, but in general high quality charge controllers have a standard 2 year or 5 year warranty. A lot of charge controllers for large battery based systems also have warranty extensions available from the manufacturer.
Mounting and Racking Warranties:
Solar panel racks and mounts have all seemed to be gaining big jumps in their warranty periods, 10 years used to be typical, but these days a lot of them are going to 20 and 25 year warranties which is nice! Our go to roof mounting racks from SnapNRack for example increased their warranties from 10 to 20 years. Again, due to the simplicity of these parts a racking warranty claim is a pretty rare thing that we encounter.
We are here to help!
Our team here at SolarPanelStore.com will always assist our customers in warranty issues for the products they purchase from us, although it's fairly common that we simply connect them with the right contacts and they deal directly with the manufacturer for claims and replacements. This is why we only choose to work with the best and most reputable companies in the industry!