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polycrystalline vs. monocrystalline solar panels

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  • polycrystalline vs. monocrystalline solar panels

    I'm sold on using enphase inverters however my panel selection is not clear. I have both south facing and a west facing roof space where i plane to install my panels. Since I can install different panels with enphase should i get monocrystalline for my south facing roof and poly on my west facing roof space?

    The panels that i have to chose from are: Solarworld 235 poly/mono, Samsung 240 poly,Sanyo 215 poly, and Mage 230 poly/mono.

    Is Sanyo worth the extra $$. I understand I would use the m210 with sanyo compared to the m190 with the rest.

    Lastly, my installer has told me that the 230w+ panels with the m190 will produce more power over a longer period of time with the degradation of the panels. Is there any truth to that?


  • #2

    Re: polycrystalline vs. monocrystalline solar panels

    Re: polycrystalline vs. monocrystalline solar panels

    Figure out the cost per kwh between mono vs poly panels. Otherwise either is a good choice.

    Yes, you will get more power from the 230 watt panel over time. Is the 5-10% more power worth it to you vs the extra costs--your choice.

    -Bill
    20x BP 4175B panels (replacement) + Xantrex GT 3.3 inverter for 3kW Grid Tied system + Honda eu2000i Inverter/Generator for emergency backup.

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    • #3

      Re: polycrystalline vs. monocrystalline solar panels

      Re: polycrystalline vs. monocrystalline solar panels

      What you really need to consider is the total cost per watt. Mono panels are slightly more efficient at converting photons. Unless you have real estate issues for the amount of space to mount panels then either should be OK. I don't think the panel degradation is a concern with either, most manufacturers guarantee their output for long periods of time, like 80% over 20 years. I am not a enphase user but they seem like the right solution for differing orientations and and shading.

      Thin film panels are much less efficient and the cost of racking in material and labor the extra panels start to be a concern as does the amount of space they use.
      Sticking it to the power company one watt at a time!
      60 Ningbo Electric 175 watt panels and 12 Canadian Solar 180 watt panels with 2 PVP 5200 Inverters

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      • #4

        Re: polycrystalline vs. monocrystalline solar panels

        Re: polycrystalline vs. monocrystalline solar panels

        Any preference of panels from the selection below? and why?


        Solarworld 235 poly/mono, Samsung 240 poly,Sanyo 215 poly, and Mage 230 poly/mono.

        If price is the same I should go with the Mono panels?

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        • #5

          Re: polycrystalline vs. monocrystalline solar panels

          Re: polycrystalline vs. monocrystalline solar panels

          For your non-south facing panels (assuming same or close cost/watt), I would get the biggest panels possible to maximize output.

          For your south facing panels, I probably wouldn't go over 230W unless you live in an area where it gets very hot - unless the bigger panels are also cheapest.

          From your list of panels - Sanyo is probably the biggest brand name. Didn't even know that Samsung made panels and Mage appears to be primarily german. In the end - you have to look at $/watt to make a decision.
          18 ET-M572 180w panels | Enphase M190 micro-inverters | 3.24 kW STC DC

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          • #6

            Re: polycrystalline vs. monocrystalline solar panels

            Re: polycrystalline vs. monocrystalline solar panels

            As long as you have enough space, (and it a rare roof that does not) the polycrystaline modules are a lot better deal per watt with the same quality and reliability. At the wholesale level at least, you will pay almost 50% more per watt for the "high-efficiency" modules which will save you maybe 25% space. I even contend that the monocrystaline modules will potentially degrade faster as manufacturing processes needed to fab them are much trickier and the crystal structure etc has to remain perfect, whereas the poly modules are already "partially degraded" with many crystaline boundaries.
            2.7kW Trina/Xantrex GT, 3.7kW Trina/SolarEdge, 3kW CSI/SMA GT, Solar well pump on 6, 25yr old Holeck 48W modules. Toyota SR5 converted to 108V EV. Prius w/Enginer PHEV conversion. BSEE, R11-residential, NABCEP, SunnyPro, >800kW installed
            "Faced with the choice between changing one's mind and proving that there is no need to do so, almost everyone gets busy on the proof." - John Kenneth Galbraith

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            • #7

              Re: polycrystalline vs. monocrystalline solar panels

              Re: polycrystalline vs. monocrystalline solar panels

              Originally posted by solar roller View Post
              I'm sold on using enphase inverters however my panel selection is not clear. I have both south facing and a west facing roof space where i plane to install my panels. Since I can install different panels with enphase should i get monocrystalline for my south facing roof and poly on my west facing roof space?

              The panels that i have to chose from are: Solarworld 235 poly/mono, Samsung 240 poly,Sanyo 215 poly, and Mage 230 poly/mono.

              Is Sanyo worth the extra $$. I understand I would use the m210 with sanyo compared to the m190 with the rest.

              Lastly, my installer has told me that the 230w+ panels with the m190 will produce more power over a longer period of time with the degradation of the panels. Is there any truth to that?


              Where's your location? Generally in cloudier areas I'd recommend mono, in more sunny locales, poly will work just fine.

              Also there's a lot of BS out there about the Enphase inverters. Unless you have serious shading issues, go with a standard type inverter. Sanyo does make great panels, but how much are they charging you for them? Sanyo under $6.00 a watt is a great value I feel, but over that? Not so much.


              Solarworld makes great panels as well and you can't go wrong with their panels either and they tend to have a pretty fair price-point($5.35-5.75) a watt.

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              • #8

                Re: polycrystalline vs. monocrystalline solar panels

                Re: polycrystalline vs. monocrystalline solar panels

                Originally posted by drees View Post
                For your non-south facing panels (assuming same or close cost/watt), I would get the biggest panels possible to maximize output.

                For your south facing panels, I probably wouldn't go over 230W unless you live in an area where it gets very hot - unless the bigger panels are also cheapest.

                From your list of panels - Sanyo is probably the biggest brand name. Didn't even know that Samsung made panels and Mage appears to be primarily german. In the end - you have to look at $/watt to make a decision.


                From what I've heard, Samsung's panels although new, are pretty effective. I believe that the OP's installer is Sunwize, as they currently have a premium dealer agreeement with Samsung?

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