Solar Nerd articles about: Reliability

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Photo of the sun
Can solar panels get too hot?
When solar panels get hot, they become less effective at generating electricity. This is because as temperature increases, electrical resistance increases too. This means that as a solar panel gets hotter, more and more of the electricity it generates is lost as heat. It’s possible to know exactly the effect of heat on your solar panels by checking its specification sheet and looking up the power temperature coefficient. It’s expressed as a percent reduction of efficiency for every one degree Celsius increase in temperature.
Photo of a large home with solar panels installed.
Do solar panels wear out over time?
Adding solar panels to your home is a long term investment. But for that investment to work out, your solar equipment needs to last. One question people often have is: do solar panels wear out over time? The answer is that solar panels have a limited lifetime, and they wear out and lose efficiency as they get older. There are two ways this can happen. The first is a small loss in power generation each year as the solar cells in the panel degrade due to exposure to UV light and the elements.
Photo of a broken solar panel. Image courtesy NREL.
Do solar panels go bad?
If you’re going to drop a few thousand dollars on anything - a car, a saltwater aquarium stocked with Clarion Angelfish ($2,500 each!), or solar panels for your home, you want to make sure that your investment is going to last. Cars come with warranties, but expensive fish do not. Fortunately, solar photovoltaic equipment does come with warranties. However, even if a failure is covered by a warranty, the labor to replace it may not be, plus there’s the downside of losing power generation while waiting for a repair.