solar panels on a flat roof of a mediterranean house in arizona

How Long Do Solar Panels Last? 

Solar panels have an incredibly long lifespan, which is part of what makes them such a great investment. They are designed to last for decades, which gives you plenty of time to recoup your investment and make money off of it. 

Average Life Expectancy of Solar Panels 

Solar panels, like any other product, run the gamut from low-quality to premium. Naturally, high-quality solar panels tend to last longer than their cheaper counterparts. However, most residential solar panels are warranted last for 25 and many will remain useful long after the warranty expires

Solar Panel Warranties & Production Guarantees 

Reputable solar panel manufacturers back their products with a warranty to demonstrate durability and quality. Most solar panels are backed by a 25-year warranty, which is the industry standard. Some solar panel manufacturers offer extended warranties, which can provide additional protection and peace of mind. 

Solar Panel Degradation Happens Very Slowly 

One of the most important factors to consider when thinking about solar panel lifespan is degradation. Solar panel degradation refers to a drop in output (the amount of electricity it can produce). The less electricity your solar panels can produce, the less money they will save you, so it’s important to keep an eye on degradation as your solar panels age. 

Solar panels degrade continuously over time, but it happens very slowly. The degradation won’t be noticeable until they’ve been in use for about 25-30 years. At that point, you will start to notice a drop in output. They can—and likely will—continue to produce electricity after they’ve been in use for 25-30 years, but will eventually degrade to a point where they need to be replaced. 

Solar panel degradation is inevitable, but solar panel technology has improved dramatically in recent years. Today’s solar panels degrade very slowly, at a rate warrantied to be less than  0.5% per year according to the National Renewable Energy Laboratory. At a 0.5% degradation rate, a solar panel will produce 90% of the electricity it produced in year one in year twenty. 

How to Make Your Solar Panels Last Longer 

Solar panels are an investment that you want to protect so can get as high of a return as possible. Here are a few things you can do to help your solar panels last longer. 

Professional Installation 

How your solar panels are installed can impact their lifespan. The longest-lasting solar panels are installed by a professional on a durable racking system that is securely attached to the roof or ground mounts. 

Solar Panel Monitoring  

Solar panel monitoring allows you to keep tabs on your system’s performance so you can flag issues as soon as they arise. The sooner you notice a potential problem like a panel that’s not producing electricity, the sooner you can get a solar technician out to inspect and repair your system. 

Solar Panel Maintenance 

Solar panels don’t need a lot of maintenance, but a small amount of upkeep can help extend their lifespan. (add a link to one of our maintenance pages?)

Get the Longest-Lasting Solar Panels for Your AZ Home 

SouthFace Solar & Electric is the leading local solar installer in Arizona. Our mission is to bring more power to you, which starts with providing the highest-quality solar panels. We install premium solar panels that are highly durable and built to last, and we back them with a 25-year warranty. We also provide solar panel maintenance services and will be here to help you care for and maintain your system for its entire 25+ year lifespan. If you’re ready to take control of your electricity with solar panels, give us a call. We install rooftop solar, ground-mounted solar, off-grid solar, battery storage, and more.

Start saving with solar! Call 480-405-6105 or contact us for a free estimate.

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