SunPower P-Series Panels Now Available In Australia

sunpower p-series panel

UPDATE 27th August 2018:  It has kindly been brought to my attention the warranty for SunPower’s P17 panels excludes normal residential installation.  The SunPower P17 warranty says it does not apply to:

“PV Modules which have been installed on single-family homes or semi‐detached homes, including but not limited to duplexes and townhomes. For clarity, apartment and condominiums are not excluded.”

UPDATE 31st August 2018:  P18 and P19 panels will be covered by SunPower’s warranty when installed on residential homes.  Warranties for P-series panels can be downloaded from SunPower’s Australian site on this page


SunPower Performance Series solar panel, or P-Series for short, are now available in Australia.  These attractive panels aren’t available in a wide range of colours and are a lower efficiency but cheaper alternative to SunPower’s E-Series and X-Series panels.  While sold overseas for more than a year, they’ve only been available Down Under for a few months and they’ve been on the down low, as their arrival was devoid of fanfare. [Read more…]

LG Introduces 20.8% Efficient LG NeON R Panel With 25 Year Replacement Warranty

LG NeonR

LG’s NEoN-R panel is very good, very well warranted and very expensive.

LG Solar has introduced a new high efficiency solar panel they call the LG NeON R. [Read more…]

SunPower And SMA Choose To (Very Discreetly) Manufacture In China


sma sunpower Chinese welcome

High end manufacturers SunPower And SMA have chosen to manufacture in China. But they aren’t exactly advertising the fact.

China produces far more solar panels, far more solar inverters, and god knows how many more batteries than any other country in existence.  China has been called the workshop of the world1 and has repeatedly shown itself to be capable of producing high quality, reliable goods. [Read more…]

Congratulations! Your 10 Year Solar Panel Product Warranty Is Probably 25 Thanks To Australian Consumer Law

magician turning a 10 year warranty in to 25 year warranty

Has your solar panel’s ‘product warranty’ has been magically transformed from 10 to 25 years thanks to Australian Consumer Law?

When people ask me about solar panel warranties, I tell them to look at the product warranty.  This is usually for 10 or 12 years.

I tell them not to worry about the performance warranty, which is normally for 25 years or sometimes 30.  You see, while most manufacturers are happy to honor their product warranties, not all of them expect to replace solar panels that fail while they are only covered by their performance warranty. [Read more…]

Solarwatt Solar Panels’ 30 Year Product Warranty Is World’s Best

solarwatt homepage

SolarWatt’s German homepage claims their panels are “Perfekt”. That’s a big call, but their warranty certainly seems as good as it gets.

When it comes to product warranties for solar panels, the American company SunPower has long been king with one that lasts for 25 years.  Not only will they replace any of their panels that fail in that time, but they will send people around to install a new one free of charge and cart away the corpse of the dead panel for autopsy to discover why it died so young.

But SunPower is no longer king.  They have been dethroned. Their quarter of a century product warranty has been beaten by the 30 year product warranty Germany’s Solarwatt has placed upon their double glass panels, which is three times the 10 year industry standard.

That is a very long time.  With the average age of first time home owners in Australia now around 38 years, people could buy a set of Solarwatt panels for their first home and they won’t be out of warranty until after they retire. And maybe they’ll die of old age before any of their panels start to fail.

While in practical terms for most homeowners there is not a huge difference between a 25 year and a 30 year product warranty, But I am very impressed with the confidence Solarwatt has in their solar panels and I am interested in seeing if SunPower will eventually extend its product warranty to meet or beat theirs. [Read more…]

SunPower X-Series Panels Set New Efficiency Record Of 24.1%

sunpower panel efficiency

Sunpower X series panels have breached 24% efficiency.

I have previously mentioned SunPower makes excellent solar panels. This definitely includes their uncanny X-Series, which are a high efficiency, high reliability, line of monocrystalline panels. In January they broke the record for most efficient solar panel with a figure of 22.8%. And now, less than six months later, they have increased that by an impressive 1.3 percentage points to 24.1%.

I can only marvel at the improvements in PV efficiency that have occurred so far in 2016. Just six months ago I would have said the chance of any panel exceeding 24% efficiency this year would have been a long shot, but lately improving efficiency has been smashing records like an unstoppable juggernaut. [Read more…]

SunPower Solar Panels: One of the best panels lots of money can buy

sunpower solar panels

SunPower make very good, very expensive panels.

SunPower make some of the best solar panels in existence. Or at least some of the best on this planet. Perhaps Spectrolab regularly shoots better ones into space to mars or somewhere, I don’t know. But if you want to buy something that is meant to go on a roof and not a space probe, then SunPower solar panels are hard to beat.

Now note that I did say some of the best and not some of the cheapest. If you haven’t worked out that the words cheap and best don’t normally go together, then I have a really low quality laptop held together with superglue and wooden rulers that I’d like to sell to you at a really high price. [Read more…]

Adelaide University Solar Racer Taken For A Spin

Today the Solar Racing Team of the University of Adelaide gave Finn and I the opportunity to take Lumen, their solar racer, for a spin. And I was there to take Finn’s picture as he nailed it and completely managed not to hit or destroy anything at all. Well done, Finn!

Finn Peakcock sitting in the cockpit of the Adelaide University's Solar Racing Team's Car, Lumen, about to take it for a drive.

Finn, about to take the University of Adelaide’s Solar Racing Team’s vehicle for a spin.

[Read more…]

The race is on as Panasonic snatches lead as most efficient solar panel

panasonic most efficient panel

Panasonic snatch the title for most efficient panel from Sunpower.

Well that didn’t take long! No sooner had we published our article on SunPower grabbing the unofficial prize of most efficient solar panel for commercial use, than Japanese manufacturer Panasonic surprises with a late sprint to the line.

The Japanese manufacturer has now jumped into the lead in the solar conversion Premier League with not one but two records. The new record, which was verified by the Japanese government-funded National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology, is an eye-catching photovoltaic module conversion efficiency of 23.8 percent. This leaves SunPower’s previous record in the dust by a full percentage point. [Read more…]

Sunpower grabs lead in bid for most efficient solar panel

sunpower solar panels efficiency

Sunpower – the ‘Rolls-Royce’ of solar panels regain the ‘Most Efficient Panel’ Trophy.

It’s on for young and old in the battle for the prestigious title of the most efficient solar panel. For a number of weeks we’ve brought you commentaries on the remarkable breakthroughs achieved by Trina (here and here). Now Sunpower — the French-owned, US-based solar panel manufacturer — has stepped up to the plate with an announcement they have achieved a module efficiency rating of 22.8 percent for its X-Series solar panel. Another world record. [Read more…]

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