Trina Wins SQ ‘Best Value Solar Panels’ For The 3rd Year In A Row

Why Trina Solar won best value panels 2023 - SQ Installers' Choice Awards

For the third year in a row, Trina Solar has won “Best Value Panels” in the SolarQuotes Installer Choice Awards. Added to that, they’ve also rocketed up the list in the “Best Panels” category from 9th place last year to taking out the bronze in 2023.

Trina is obviously doing something right, so to shed some light on this we’re once again talking to those in the know. Here are some observations from several installers who work with Trina Solar panels, among others, every day.

And just a reminder – this is not an advertisement for Trina Solar. SolarQuotes do not take money from solar manufacturers and we have no commercial relationship with Trina Solar! We’re just reporting the sentiment of solar industry professionals.

Why Did Trina Win Best Value Panel?

Trina haven’t cemented their reputation as a solid performer by accident. This company is one of the oldest Chinese solar manufacturers, having been around since 1997. They’ve invested heavily in research and development, and have held more than 20 world records for panel efficiency. They understand the market and know exactly where they fit (right in the low to mid-priced bracket).

Best Bang For Buck

Focusing on performance and value for money has enabled Trina to produce the right balance of efficiency with price. Coupled with that they have very good warranties and solid support.

John Lyons (JFK Electrical Solar & Air):

“The thing about Trina is the technology they have and the price point is the best value for money for the customer out there. You can pay a lot more for a panel but you’re not getting the same value for money.”

Bobbi McKibbin (Solar Integrity):

“Trina’s prices have always been very attractive, and they’re a good quality entry panel for those people that are budget conscious.”

Aaron Traeger (Traeger Solar):

“Trina is a good panel that is priced really well. Their efficiency is 21+%, so they’re very high efficiency. Their warranties are 25 (product) and up to 30 (performance) years which is exceptional.”

Jonathan Fisk (Solaray Energy):

“For those that are budget constrained, the Trina panel is a good choice.”

Payback Period

An interesting perspective that’s often overlooked by solar buyers is to have a strategy of considering a use-by-date for a rooftop solar system, then actively replacing it periodically to keep up with technology. It may not however be the best strategy for a good environmental outcome!

John Lyons (JFK Electrical Solar & Air):

“At the end of the day, it’s about payback. You can get the nicest brand out there but if you’re paying a few thousand dollars extra for something that says it’s European, you still have to pay that back. It can add years to the equation.

 

The reality is that most people change their system within 10 to 15 years. Technology changes, panel sizes change, roof space isn’t getting bigger, their energy needs are going up so they need to evolve with the latest technology.

 

With Trina you’re at that price point where it doesn’t matter if you have to replace your system in 15 years, you’ve paid for it 4 or 5 times over. With a more expensive panel, you’ve got to wait a few more years to get the value out of it, but in the meantime, technology has moved on.”

Support And Warranty

Trina Solar has had a presence in Australia since at least 2010. In that year they established a subsidiary, Trina Solar Australia Pty Ltd, which is based in Sydney. They also have offices in 21 other locations around the world.

Most Trina Solar panels come with a 25-year product and 25-year performance warranty these days. The Vertex S+ has a dual-glass design to increase lifespan and an added 5 years (30-year) performance warranty.

Aaron Traeger (Traeger Solar):

“One of the most important things when choosing a product when you’re the retailer or installer is that you want to make sure there’s an Australian presence there if something goes wrong. Not that we’ve needed it. I’ve been working with Trina for 5 years and had no product-related issues so far.”

Jonathan Fisk (Solaray Energy):

“Trina has been in Australia for a long long time. We have installed many megawatts of Trina panels over the years. If we ever have a problem, the warranty process is fairly streamlined. If we’re going to sell a Chinese panel they are the brand of choice.”

Bobbi McKibbin (Solar Integrity):

“Trina has offered good support with issues that they’ve had in the past, and those issues certainly seem to be behind them now.”

Have you had to make warranty claims with Trina?

“We have had to make a number of claims.”

Is their claims procedure seamless?

“Yes. Honestly, they are one of the better companies out there to deal with.”

John Lyons (JFK Electrical Solar & Air):

“You’re getting an industry leading warranty from a company that’s been around since the late nineties in Australia, with products that have stood the test of time in the Australian climate. If there’s ever an issue, which there rarely is, they’re onto it. We’ve been doing Trina panels for about 6 years and had 2 panels go down. There were no questions asked, they just swapped them.”

Installer’s Perspective From The Roof

Although not directly related to the customer, a solar panel’s journey from the shipping container to the roof, if not considered, could be the difference between the panel reaching its life expectancy or not.

Aaron Traeger (Traeger Solar):

“The physical dimensions of Trina panels are just right, particularly for residential systems.”

And what is “just right?”

“As small as it can possibly be for the most wattage! This relates to lifting them up and moving them around in an easy manner. Trina, along with some other manufacturers have now been going for panels that are a little bit shorter and fatter, which make them easier to work with.”

In Summary

I don’t know about you, but this is what I got from having a chat with the installers above about why Trina won “Best Value Solar Panel” this year:

If you’re budget constrained and you want a solar panel that’s close to the efficiency of a premium panel without the price tag, from one of the most popular manufacturers in the world with proven support, then Trina Solar would be a safe bet.

Trina is currently listed on SQ’s recommended solar panel brands chart. You can compare Trina panel specifications and estimated pricing side-by-side with a bunch of other brands on SolarQuotes’ solar panel comparison table.

About Kim Wainwright

A solar installer and electrician in a previous life, Kim has been blogging for SolarQuotes since 2022. He enjoys translating complex aspects of the solar industry into content that the layperson can understand and digest. He spends his time reading about renewable energy and sustainability, while simultaneously juggling teaching and performing guitar music around various parts of Australia. Read Kim's full bio.

Comments

  1. Peter Zoz says

    May I ask two questions please which of these two panels is better is it the ZNSHINE 415w of solar panel or the TRINA VERTEX S 415w solar panel

    Also is the Trina Vertex S panel comes with a built in microinverter please

  2. Lorraine Soich says

    When Trina panels are installed if not standard can I ask for micro inverter go under each panel as to 1 inverter for all connected panels?

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