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How long do solar panels last?

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How long solar panels will last is an important factor to understand when considering solar, and we know there are a lot of myths out there.

As solar panels have no moving parts, there is very little that can ‘fail’. This means solar panels can last for decades with minimal maintenance. But because the New Zealand solar industry is still young, most of the panels that have been installed are still on the roof. That means there’s not a lot of real-world, local data on the longevity panels. 

So a definitive lifespan is tricky to say. What we can look at are warranty periods and guaranteed power performance. Let’s take a look at one of the main panel brands we use:

SunPower Solar Panels and their Lifespan

SunPower solar panels are known for their high efficiency and long-term reliability. Their Performance 6 solar panels come with a 25-year warranty, offering a guaranteed peak power of 87.2% in the 25th year. Given the panels will still be performing at 87.2% of their max power output, you can expect them to last for decades beyond that.

SunPower Maxeon panels are even more impressive, with a 40-year warranty. Maxeon panels have a guaranteed peak power of 88.25% after 40 years. It’s hard to say how long they will last, but we can almost guarantee they will outlive us!

In conclusion

Good quality panels, installed correctly, will perform close to their maximum output for 25-30 years. After 30 years their efficiency may decrease slightly, but they will still be an excellent source of energy, likely for decades to come. 


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