The Pro's and Con's of Buying Cheap Solar Panels

by:Longsun     2020-04-10
Cheap solar panels may sound like a good idea, and sometimes they are- but sometimes buying cheap backfires, leaving home-owners wishing they had chosen another route. Before you decide to go for that great deal or that 'limited time only' offer, learn how others have been disappointed by their decision to buy cheap solar panels. Problems Sometimes Associated with Cheap Solar Panels When solar panels first came on the market, only the most wealthy individuals could afford them. But over time new technology and experimentation have made them more cost efficient. Some of the least expensive solar panels on the market today are made with Cadmium Telluride, otherwise known as CdTe. Cadmium telluride is much less expensive than traditional materials used to manufacturer solar cells. Studies have shown, however, that the material is also far less efficient than silicone materials. Some evidence exists to suggest that cadmium telluride solar panels function better if installed over a larger area. This also means, however, that you will need more panels. It also means that a larger installation project will have to be undertaken. Even with these additional steps, however, CdTe panels have still been shown to function at an efficiency rate of at least 10% below that of other materials. Inexpensive Versus Cheap There can be a big difference between high quality products which are purchased for a good price, and 'bargain bin' products, which may be already damaged. Some of these products are poorly constructed and others simply do not work at all. Choosing to purchase solar panels off of auction web-sites or from companies which are promoting 'advanced construction methods' (which they say makes it possible to offer their products for a fraction of the cost) can end up being a costly mistake. Imagine the disappointment a home-owner experiences, when after installing an entire system of panels, it becomes apparent that the system does not work at all. Cheap Installation As most home-owners know, hiring a contractor is often one of the most difficult decisions to make, when it comes to a home improvement project. All too often fly-by-night contractors take advantage of consumers, by doing poor work or no work at all. Whether it is a roofer, painter, builder, or solar energy installer, if a contractor quotes you a price that is well below the cost of other professionals, it's a good idea to be skeptical. Many home-owners have been taken advantage of, paying money up-front, with the promise of government rebate checks, which will supposedly reimburse them for their initial expenses. Part of the routine is to put the pressure on, saying things like 'if you are going to do it, you should do it soon, because there is no telling when the government is going to stop these incentive programs.' In cases like this, the contractor often turns out to be not a contractor, but a con man, skipping town with a consumers hard earned money. If the solar panels are installed, in many cases they don't work. The home-owner is out the initial money that he paid, and generally there was never a government rebate requested. What You Can Do To Protect Yourself As with any other product, when it comes to purchasing solar panels, it's always best to compare prices before making a purchasing decision. Keep in mind that you need to look at more than just the price tag. Compare efficiency rates, the cost of additional parts, installation prices and maybe most importantly, business reputations. Always inspect any warranty or guarantee information and look for fine print stipulations about returns and refunds on merchandise. Another option which is becoming more popular with home-owners is building and installing solar panels themselves. This option may be time consuming, but many who have done it say that it was worth the extra effort, to ensure that the job was done right.
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