A reliable solar power system is one that will meet performance expectations for 25 years or more, hassle free. Not all solar is created equal, and some PV panels will stand up better than others against difficult weather conditions such as high humidity, drastic temperature changes, snow and wind. SunPower’s Research and Development team works hard to ensure that SunPower solar panels are the most reliable in the market, delivering guaranteed performance.
With the end of the year upon us, we are kicking off a solar panel reliability blog series with a discussion about harsh winter weather conditions and solar energy systems.
Winter can bring howling winds, driving downpours and battering giant hail on your panels. In many regions, blankets of snow cover everything – including your solar panels. Like the third Little Pig in the children’s story, you shouldn’t have to worry about threatening conditions outside your door (or on your roof) if you’ve selected a high quality, built-to-last solar power system. The most reliable systems will continue to generate clean, renewable solar power regardless of weather conditions.
SunPower panels use quality materials and are designed for life in the real world. They are tested above and beyond industry standards to stand up to all manner of environmental stresses. Lower quality panels may easily crack or become damaged when the weather turns nasty, reducing power output. But, in side-by-side comparisons with competitors’ panels, SunPower high-efficiency solar panels continue to reliably perform despite degradation stresses.
Our rigorous panel tests include simulating conditions that are far more brutal than panels would normally endure on your rooftop. In one test, we repeatedly apply 880 pounds of weight to the panels, the equivalent of 90 mph (145 kph) hurricane-force winds, to guarantee long-term performance, no matter where you live.
We’ve heard from several customers over the years, testifying to the reliability of their SunPower solar panels. Here are some samples:
“2011 was our second winter with our SunPower solar PV installation. And, it was a tough winter... lots of snow that came and stayed. But I was never concerned about the snow loads on the panels. Our installer, Ross Solar Group, designed a solid rectangular array of panels that took into consideration both weather conditions and aesthetic appeal, and minimized any possible problems with snow accumulation. As a result, the heavy snow did not damage our SunPower solar panels at all; I am very satisfied with the way they stood up. Our system looks good, I expect it to last a long time, and I love selling electricity back to Northeast Utilities!”
“When the sun comes up, the panels quickly shed the snow. Throughout the morning the snow melts and falls off of each panel; by lunchtime they’re producing at full capacity. We've never had any damage from the snow. In fact, the panels help protect our roof from damage, keeping it cool in the summer and dry in the winter.”
Matthew Grocoff, Esq.
Want to go solar, but worried about weather? Watch this video and see how we ensure SunPower panels are the most reliable in all conditions: