Tier 1 Solar Panels –Why Are They So Important?

Solar panels are an excellent way to cut energy costs for residences and businesses. If you’re considering a new solar system, make sure you’re getting more bang for your buck. Identifying top-of-the-line panels is made easy thanks to the tier classification system. Several factors are considered before a solar panel is classified:

  • Where parts are manufactured and assembled
  • Quality control factors
  • Product research and development
  • Company reputation and standing
  • Location of the company (domestic or foreign)
  • Age of the manufacturer
  • Product quality and conformity
Tier 1 Solar Panels

Of all manufacturers, only 2% are Tier 1 classified. To earn this distinction, each part must be Australia-made. The manufacturer does lots of research and development. Manufacturing processes are automated to ensure high quality. For the business to instil more trust in its ability to honour warranties, it has to be in operation for more than five years.

Tier 2 Solar Panels

Mediocre in quality, Tier 2 panels are produced by 8% of Australian manufacturers. These businesses have been around for more than two years, but less than five. Their investment in research and development is wanting. Quality standards aren’t guaranteed due to poor automation or lack of it during production.

Tier 3 Solar Panels

90% of all manufacturers are Tier 3 suppliers. These are “Johnny-come-lately” start-ups with minimal experience. Solar parts are made overseas and imported for assembly. Such parts are rarely tested and there’s little research and development. Quality is inconsistent because the products are handmade. There’s little chance for these companies to honour warranties. Most of them will be consolidated with another provider or go out of business within one or two years.

Assessing Your Options

Doing a little research goes a long way toward choosing the right system. Tier 1 solar panels lead the pack. They’re a viable investment for professional investors and commercial solar farms. If you’re in the dark about a specific solar panel brand, look it up on Google. Think local because foreign providers don’t do repairs and honour warranties down the road.

High-quality panels have established websites packed with lots of in-depth information. If there’s no info about the manufacturer, move on. Make sure the solar panels are Australia-tested.

Before purchasing, find out:

  • How the solar panels are made – their parts and material composition.
  • Where the firm is located and its contact info.
  • Where the panels are manufactured.
  • How long you’ll wait before realising a Return on Investment (ROI).

Other things to consider include warranty information, manufacturing diagrams and system yield estimates. Think local, Tier 1 and professional installation.

Reliable companies walk clients through the buying process. They’ll hide nothing from you and will keep in touch with you even after you’ve made a purchase. Go for quality and reputable products to find the right solar system for your residence or business. If you need some profession advice, then we recommend none other than www.velocitysolar.com.au. They work mainly from Geelong, in Victoria, but now have a ballarat location. Contact them for more resources.

If you’re on a shoestring budget but eager to go solar, don’t fall for dirt-cheap products. Cash in on solar leasing and power purchase agreements. Pay out of pocket if possible to accrue more long-term savings.

Solar Panels Buying Guide: 10 Shopping Tips

Buying solar panels is an exciting experience. But don’t fall for low prices and catchy adverts. Focus on the features and benefits of your purchase because it’s a substantial investment. Here’s what to look for when shopping for a solar system.

Recommendations

Consult colleagues, friends and family members who have gone solar. These trustable guys are willing to share their solar Darwin experiences – the good, the bad and the ugly. They will tell you what to adopt and what to shun. Read online consumer guides to avoid tricks and traps.

Length of Manufacturer’s Warranty

Your solar system will last a long time if the warranty is substantial and the manufacturer is reputable. A system that lasts long enough is able to make you a profit and pay for itself. Steer clear of manufacturers with no track record. In case they go out of business, they won’t honour your warranty.

Have Realistic Price Expectations

Quality equipment and service aren’t cheap. Mind you, you get what you pay for. Don’t shop around for extremely low prices. You may get poor installation work or poor quality equipment, or both. Compare components and warranties instead.

Solar Panel Certifications

This applies to every solar panel purchase, especially one that attracts government rebates. Certification indicates the kind of testing that has been done on solar panels. A solar panel should meet its advertised specifications and be tested by a third party or independent laboratory.

Type of Panels

Consider panel size versus power output. Mono-crystalline solar panels are highly efficient but very expensive. But you have other choices including polycrystalline panels and thin-film technologies. Factor in the size and condition of your roof.

Solar Panel Mounting

Make sure the mounting system is engineer certified, cyclone rated and wind certified. Several suppliers skimp on the mounting system regardless of its essence. Ask about warranty arrangements and weather certifications.

Solar Inverter Efficiency

Before purchasing a system, look at the efficiency of the inverter. Efficient inverters are the best because there’s no wastage of electricity during the conversion of DC to AC. With an efficient inverter, it takes less time to recover your investment.

Get a Few Solar Quotes

Prices vary widely between solar providers. But don’t let the prices sway you. Certain companies use inferior components to reduce the cost of the system. Such systems are cheap up-front but, costly in the long run, in terms of efficiency and reliability.

Avoid High-Pressure Sales People

In the solar industry, high-pressure tactics are common. Try not to make rash decisions. Instead, take the time to think about the offer. All too often, pressured decisions turn out to be more regrettable and less advantageous.

Expert Advice

Numerous solar experts offer free, no-obligation and no-pressure advice to people who’re eager to migrate to solar. Turn to these prodigies for solar counsel. Follow their recommendations to get your hands on the best solar panels.

What you’re looking for is a solar system that’s long-lasting and fulfils your needs: Anything else than that is useless. As always, quality beats price.

The Most Sought-After Solar Systems on the Market

Looking for the right solar panels Gold Coast for your business or home?

In Australia, the Stand-Alone and Grid-Connect systems are the most popular. Hybrid systems are in demand too.

To make a suitable and sensible choice, first determine what type of solar panel suits your needs.

Grid-Connected (On-Grid)

An on-grid system runs on electricity and doesn’t need battery power. During the day, the system owner uses solar energy, and at night, draws power from the electric grid. In hotter days, the system generates surplus energy which it exports back to the grid.

On-grid systems must meet utility requirements. For instance, inverters must switch off when the grid fails and not emit electrical noise that interferes with reception.

Pros
  • Easy to operate
  • Cost-effective
  • Low-maintenance
  • Doesn’t need sizing to meet peak loads
  • Utility companies buy surplus energy from consumers and feed it back into the grid.
Cons
  • System won’t work during a power blackout

Hybrid (Grid Connected With Battery Storage)

“Hybrid” power systems are driven by wind, water and solar. But “Hybrid” solar systems are powered by electricity and batteries.

A battery backup generates power when the electric grid fails. For businesses and homes that require uninterrupted power, hybrid systems are ideal.

Pros
  • Electricity is available even during a power outage
  • Excess power can be sold to electricity retailers
  • Users can enjoy “the best of the electric and battery worlds”

Stand-Alone (Off-Grid)

Off-grid systems are common in remote areas where electricity isn’t available. Most off-grid systems store power in batteries during periods of low-to-zero sunlight.

If the system has insufficient power, it’s advisable to connect it to a diesel generator. You can use an off-grid system for greenhouse ventilation and water pumps.

PV Panels

Using a generator, wind or batteries, a PV system can generate enough power even in the worst sunlight conditions. During summer, the use of the generator (as backup power) is minimal. This reduces maintenance and fuel costs.

Pros
  • Is the only option where electricity isn’t available.
  • Negates the need for purchasing electricity
  • It’s cheaper than connecting to the grid
  • Powers large appliances, water pumps and hot water systems

Portable Solar Systems

These panels are lightweight and robust. In situations where electricity is unavailable or inaccessible, a portable system is set up quickly to generate power. Such a system is suitable for farming, camping and fishing.

Pros
  • Easily transportable
  • Lightweight and robust
  • Very reliable
  • Powers USB devices, large appliances and electric generators
Cons
  • Limited functions
  • Isn’t suitable for commercial or large-scale residential applications

Solar Batteries

Hybrid and off-grid solar panels store energy in battery banks for later use when there’s insufficient or no power generation.

Pros
  • Power is available during blackouts and periods of scant power generation
  • Independence from the mains grid
  • Batteries can generate additional power

Before you make a buying decision, it’s important to know what you’re getting. You want an energy-efficient system that pays dividends, not a costly system that doesn’t meet your energy needs.

Advantages Of Solar Generators

One of the most asked questions, when people search for information about solar generators, is what their advantages are over normal generators.

By “normal” generators, we are of course referring to gas generators. Right offhand, that should clue you into some of the advantages of solar generators.

Gas is expensive, dirty, and potentially toxic. Most gas generators are very loud, meaning that you don’t want to operate them nearby. Worse, the fumes that gas generators put out mean that you cannot operate them indoors, as it would be unsafe. As a result, gas generators must be kept outside which means you’re going to be dealing with a mess of cables coming through windows and doors that you have to extend repeatedly to get to your devices. Further, if your power is out, typically it entails harsh conditions outdoors and heading outside is often not advised.

Perhaps the most important and unknown of the disadvantages of gas generators is that gas pumps require electricity to operate! Yes, that’s right. If you use up all of your gas (or didn’t have any ahead of time) you will not be able to get more because gas stations themselves cannot operate without power!

Contrary to gas generators, solar generators are whisper quiet, meaning you could use them right next to your TV if you so desired. Their energy is 100% clean and they are 100% safe to operate indoors. That means no trips out into the harsh weather, and it means no running cables through windows and doors or trying to extend cables multiple times to reach far away appliances. Just set the generator down right next to it!

Of course, the largest advantage of solar generators outside of convenience is expenses. They may cost a bit more up front, but solar generators will more than make up for it over time since, once you have one, you never have to pay another dime. The sun is free and provides 100% free energy with an endless supply (well, nearly endless, though we don’t think you’ll be here to worry about it when the sun runs out of energy 5 billion years from now!).

Another oft-overlooked advantage of solar generators is that you can charge them while they operate. With a gas generator, you fill it with gas and then run it until the gas runs out. When using solar power, your generator will continue to charge while it’s in use so long as it’s daytime out! That brings us to yet another advantage, solar generators can save you money even when the power isn’t out! You’re not going to use your gas backups when the electricity is working fine because that would be a waste of both money and environmental pollution. But with a solar generator, since you’re collecting that free and clean sunlight anyway, you may as well have it running all the time on one of your appliances and take that appliance off the electric bill!

The last advantage I’d like to talk about today is less focused on your individual gains and more focused on what we all gain. Every day our environmental stability gets weaker, largely due to the excess of gas fumes put out by automobiles and the like. While a small gas generator is unlikely to contribute to that significantly, every little bit helps and removing yet another gas fume producing device from sending its fumes up into our atmosphere is yet another step in the right direction.

So, let’s recap:

  • Advantages of Solar Generators
  • Can be used indoors
  • No messy cables or extensions running outside
  • Clean air
  • Can recharge even when gas stations lose power and fail
  • Can recharge as they are in use
  • No operating costs. Sunlight is FREE!
  • Can use even when power is not out to save on electricity costs
  • Environmentally friendly

If you’re sold on the idea of solar generators but don’t know which one to pick, be sure to check out our solar generator reviews page to find out which is the best for you. Here’s a hint, our runaway favorite was the mysolarbackup unit which has really taken the nation by storm and becomes the defacto solution for cheap, portable solar power.