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Thread: Solar flex mats vs glass panels

  1. #1

    Default Solar flex mats vs glass panels

    I have been increasingly using the peel n'stick 144 watt mats since they fit nicely on my aluminum roof. I also have some glass panels installed and was wondering if there are any electrical advantages to the mats vs glass as well as longevity. If anyone has any experience on the mats, I would appreciate the reply..Thanks
    4KW PV's, 2-Coleman 440 Diversion Controllers, 4- ProSIne 3K 24 volt Inverters, 6volt AGM Battery Banks running two systems, 12Volt and 24Volt.. Latitude 24.5

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    SF Bay Area (California)

    Default Re: Solar flex mats vs glass panels

    Personally, I am not convinced any flexible panel will last 10+ years on a roof. It is tough environment and plastics usually just do not hold up as well as glass to UV/temperature cycling on a roof.

    The other issue is, usually, thin film/flexible panels are around 1/2 as efficient at poly/mono crystalline solar panels at harvesting energy from the sun. So, thin film panels usually need about 2x the square footage to collect the same amount of energy.

    Also note that thin film panels will lose around 20% of their output over the first 6 months of sun exposure--So initially thin film panels will output more than their rating at first (mostly higher Vmp, and a bit more Imp).

    Not to say that glass panels always last their rated life either (already replaced my array after about 6 years under mfg. warranty).

    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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