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ET Solar solar panels review

Overall Rating From 39 Reviews:

ET Solar solar panels review

Average Customer Rating:

Tier 1

ET Solar

ET Solar is a Chinese panel manufacturer that was founded in 2005. They produce tier one solar panels with an industry standard 10 year product warranty and 25 year performance warranty.

While ET Solar did have an Australian office, they no longer list it on their contacts page and when I tried to ring them I found their number had been disconnected, so it appears they no longer have an Australian office. 

If a company does not have an Australian office, then whoever imports the solar panels is responsible for their warranties. 

ET Solar Is A Mid-Sized Solar Manufacturer

While ET Solar was founded in 2005 and, according to them, has over 3,000 employees, it hasn’t expanded to become one of the giants that dominate the solar panel manufacturing industry.

ET Solar claims to have reached 1 gigawatt of panel manufacturing at the end of 2011. In addition they also claim to have produced a total of 5 gigwatts of panels since 2005. So while they may have reached 1 gigawatt of manufacturing capacity in 2011, their capacity does not appear to have increased since then.

ET Solar Is Vertically Integrated

ET Solar is vertically integrated, which means they generally produce their own silicon ingots and cut it into the wafers used to make solar cells without needing to rely on other suppliers. This makes them less vulnerable to supply disruptions. It may also give quality control advantages, but if there is a silicon ingot or wafer manufacturer out there that can’t produce consistent quality at this point in time, they need to move into a business that is less demanding such as bubble wrap production.

Company Location

ET Solar has its headquarters in Nanjing, which is 300 km west of Shanghai. The city is probably better known to English speakers as Nanking and tragically is known for atrocities committed there by Japanese forces during World War II.

With a population of 8.2 million, Nanjing is China’s 11th largest city and is famous for being unbearable in summer and is locally known as one of the three furnace cities of the Yangtze River Valley. This may or may not be a factor in their trying to beat global warming by producing solar panels.

Company Leadership

ET Solar’s website describes their leadership as:

“Young and experienced, ambitious and conscientious, innovative and hard headed, flexible and decisive.”

I can’t decide if this means their leadership is fantastic or whoever wrote their site is taking a subtle dig at them by pairing adjectives that cancel out to zero.

Because English language sites by Chinese companies are generally not known for their subtlety, I'll go with it meaning they’re fantastic.

Advanced Technological Boasting

On their website ET Solar likes to boast about their high technology and advanced automation. But this makes me wonder why they have 3,000 employees, because there are other companies have lower employee to solar panel production ratios. Surely they should have fewer employees if their automation is really advanced?

But those employees might be doing other things than just manufacturing panels. For example, they are heavily involved in project development, which is the construction of solar farms. Also, it may be due to ET Solar being more vertically integrated than the average panel manufacturer.

One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish

On their website, ET Solar states they are:

“...freed from red ocean competition and is able to establish differentiated advantages in the blue ocean.”

This sounds like it might be some kind of direct translation of a Chinese saying, but it’s far worse than that. It’s corporatese and from a book on management that was a massive hit in China. The red fish, blue fish gibberish is business consultant speak for them claiming they will avoid engaging in bloody competition with other companies which turns the ocean red, and instead they will use advanced technology to ensure they have no competition. It's a great idea, provided they can out compete the dozens of other companies attempting to do the same thing.

ET Solar Panels And Corrosion Resistance

Looking at the datasheets for ET Solar panels, I see a number of them do not state they are certified as meeting the IEC 61701 standard for corrosion resistance. Oddly enough this includes their Elite Black Mono panel, but not its twin, the non-black Elite Mono panel.

This may have been an oversight, but if you live within 200m of the ocean, I would definitely check that any ET solar panels you install are certified as corrosion resistant.

ET Solar Panel Efficiency

ET Solar has a variety of panels they refer to as “mainstream modules”. These have efficiencies of up to respectable 17.8%.

They Have A Cell-String Optimised Panel

For solar installations that don't use microinverters, which is most of them, a single poorly performing panel can bring down the performance of others that are on the same electrical cable, known as a string. To get around this problem a variety of companies produce smart panels that have electronics that optimize their performance and make sure one panel never pulls down the performance of others.

ET has produced the ET-P660 series of panels that optimise individual cells-strings within a panel, similar to technology used by Maxim Integrated. This makes the panels more resistant to the effects of dirt and shading give great flexibility in the directions they can face. These panels are up to 16.6% efficient but their optimisation may boost their output by 5-15%, depending on circumstances.

ET Solar Has An AC Panel With Built In Microinverter

Et Solar produces a solar panel with a built in microinverter they call the ET AC Module. These panels can have up to 270 watts of solar cells and a 250 watt microinverter that will change the DC current the solar panel produces into the AC current that homes use.

Impressive Result in Photon 2013 Outdoor Test

Photon Laboratory is an independent testing organisation and in 2013 an ET Solar panel came third out of 176 in their outdoor module yield measurement test.

This doesn’t mean all of ET Solar’s panels will perform this well, but it is a good sign.

My Recommendation

As ET Solar produces tier one panels at a competitive price.  As they no longer appear to have an Australian office, I would check who is responsible for their warranties before purchasing them.  But even if I was certain their warranties would not be honored, I would still be okay with installing them on my roof, provided the price was right.  This is because the chance of any of the panels failing over the next 20 or so years should be quite small. 

Rating Comments Name State Postcode
My 6 panels are 260w .
Bought From: Green Sun Solar Review Date: 30 August 2016
Susan WA 6211
I did not appreciate how an increase in the ambient temperature detrimentally affects the output of the panels. eg a 10% reduction from 20 degrees to 30 degrees
Bought From: ZEN Home Energy Review Date: 3 August 2016
Graham NSW 2643
As with the inverter nothing has had to be touched since installing.
Bought From: Green Energy Technologies Review Date: 6 July 2016
Lionel QLD 4805

Bought From: Green Wiring Review Date: 10 November 2015
Rick WA 6110

Bought From: ZEN Home Energy Review Date: 2 September 2015
Chris SA 5068
On my 5kw system, I have had peaks of 5.04kws with my 20 panels.
Bought From: Carbon Footie Pty Ltd Review Date: 19 August 2015
Ian WA 6027

Bought From: Blu Sky Solar Review Date: 28 March 2012
Margaret SA 5171

Bought From: Blu Sky Solar Review Date: 18 April 2012
Peter SA 5169

Bought From: Positronic Solar Review Date: 11 March 2012
Josh QLD 4074
Given me no problems what so ever. 1.5 KW System. Between summer and winter max credit $240 odd dollars, in winter no lower than $65 dollars credit Does not appear to have dropped off in any manner.
Bought From: Blu Sky Solar Review Date: 17 April 2012
Max SA 5010

Bought From: CSA Services Review Date: 10 April 2012
David QLD 4017

Bought From: Blu Sky Solar Review Date: 27 January 2012
Janos SA 5038

Bought From: RK Solar And Consulting Review Date: 2 November 2012
Robert NSW 2221

Bought From: Jims Solar Review Date: 7 January 2012
Lee NSW 2580

Bought From: CSA Services Review Date: 4 February 2012
Trevor QLD 4124

Bought From: ZEN Home Energy Review Date: 3 March 2011
Josie SA 5107
Panels are working great. Lots of energy is being generated even during the winter months and we live in the Adelaide Hills.
Bought From: Blu Sky Solar Review Date: 10 October 2011
Michelle SA 5244

Bought From: Harelec Review Date: 17 June 2010
Murray NSW 2444

Bought From: RK Solar And Consulting Review Date: 19 June 2011
Rob NSW 2747
I have no idea how to isolate the performance of the solar panels from the system in general, so this answer is generic.
Bought From: Blu Sky Solar Review Date: 7 July 2011
Jillian SA 5007
4 panels are sometimes blocked by a tree in the early mornings. Panel orientation is north-east, so there is some significant loss of power generation possibilities in the late afternoons.
Bought From: ZEN Home Energy Review Date: 16 August 2010
Charles SA 5159
No problems, so far!
Bought From: Blu Sky Solar Review Date: 30 September 2011
Gary SA 5255

Bought From: ZEN Home Energy Review Date: 26 February 2011
Tony SA 5556

Bought From: NQ Solar Review Date: 5 August 2011
Michael QLD 4882

Bought From: Jims Solar Review Date: 20 March 2011
Greg NSW 2233

Bought From: Blu Sky Solar Review Date: 16 July 2011
Alan SA 5159
In 12 months there has not been a single day when we haven't generated anything even when it has been overcast and raining. While we have the ideal aspect to capture available energy I also believe the quality of the panels is a factor.
Bought From: ZEN Home Energy Review Date: 30 March 2011
Audrey SA 5159

Bought From: Jims Solar Review Date: 3 May 2011
Anthony NSW 2142
300W panels installed and appreciated the smaller required for the chosen size of the system.
Bought From: Blu Sky Solar Review Date: 9 September 2011
Gianni SA 5159

Bought From: Positronic Solar Review Date: 3 April 2011
Michael QLD 4022

Bought From: Jims Solar Review Date: 17 May 2011
Hugh NSW 2073

Bought From: ZEN Home Energy Review Date: 19 November 2010
Richard SA 5048

Bought From: ZEN Home Energy Review Date: 19 August 2010
Margaret SA 5043

Bought From: Positronic Solar Review Date: 18 August 2010
Gareth QLD 4220

Bought From: Jims Solar Review Date: 5 November 2010
Margaret NSW 2159

Bought From: ZEN Home Energy Review Date: 25 December 2010
Colin SA 5171

Bought From: Positronic Solar Review Date: 31 August 2010
Brian QLD 4159
Very good panels, so far no problems (it's been 2 years).
Bought From: Jims Solar Review Date: 19 September 2010
Bogdan NSW 2145
No problems to date. Expansion from 1.5 to 2.0kw was easy and a very good move. The good thing was that A Woman's Spark was still in business and exists still to provide my service if required.
Bought From: A Womans Spark Review Date: 1 June 2010
Malcolm WA 6065

ET Solar has 80 solar panels in our database

Model Type Size PTC Performance Ratio Californian Approved
ET-M572185BBMonocrystalline18516588.97Yes
ET-M572185BBZMonocrystalline18516588.97Yes
ET-M572185WWMonocrystalline18516589.35Yes
ET-M572185WWZMonocrystalline18516589.35Yes
ET-M572190BBZMonocrystalline19016989.11Yes
ET-M572190WWMonocrystalline19016989.11Yes
ET-M572190WWZMonocrystalline19016989.11Yes
ET-M660235BBPolycrystalline23521189.57Yes
ET-M660235BBZPolycrystalline23521189.57Yes
ET-M660235WWPolycrystalline23521290.21Yes
ET-M660235WWZPolycrystalline23521290.21Yes
ET-M660240BBPolycrystalline24021589.63Yes
ET-M660240BBZPolycrystalline24021589.63Yes
ET-M660240WWPolycrystalline24021790.29Yes
ET-M660240WWZPolycrystalline24021790.29Yes
ET-M660245BBPolycrystalline24522089.67Yes
ET-M660245BBZPolycrystalline24522089.67Yes
ET-M660245WWPolycrystalline24522190.33Yes
ET-M660245WWZPolycrystalline24522190.33Yes
ET-M660250BBPolycrystalline25022489.72Yes
ET-M660250BBZPolycrystalline25022489.72Yes
ET-M660250WWPolycrystalline25022690.36Yes
ET-M660250WWZPolycrystalline25022690.36Yes
ET-M660255BBPolycrystalline25522989.80Yes
ET-M660255BBZPolycrystalline25522989.80Yes
ET-M660255WWPolycrystalline25523190.43Yes
ET-M660255WWZPolycrystalline25523190.43Yes
ET-M660260WWPolycrystalline26023590.46Yes
ET-M660260WWZPolycrystalline26023590.46Yes
ET-M672285WWPolycrystalline28525589.37Yes
ET-M672290WWPolycrystalline29025989.41Yes
ET-M672295WWPolycrystalline29526489.39Yes
ET-M672300WWPolycrystalline30026889.43Yes
ET-M672305WWPolycrystalline30527389.48Yes
ET-M672310WWPolycrystalline31027889.52Yes
ET-P660230WBPolycrystalline23020890.22Yes
ET-P660230WBZPolycrystalline23020890.22Yes
ET-P660230WWPolycrystalline23020890.22Yes
ET-P660230WWZPolycrystalline23020890.22Yes
ET-P660235BBPolycrystalline23521189.57Yes
ET-P660235WBPolycrystalline23521290.21Yes
ET-P660235WBZPolycrystalline23521290.21Yes
ET-P660235WWPolycrystalline23521290.21Yes
ET-P660235WWZPolycrystalline23521290.21Yes
ET-P660240BBPolycrystalline24021589.63Yes
ET-P660240WBPolycrystalline24021790.29Yes
ET-P660240WBZPolycrystalline24021790.29Yes
ET-P660240WWPolycrystalline24021790.29Yes
ET-P660240WWZPolycrystalline24021790.29Yes
ET-P660245BBPolycrystalline24522089.67Yes
ET-P660245WBPolycrystalline24522190.33Yes
ET-P660245WBZPolycrystalline24522190.33Yes
ET-P660245WWPolycrystalline24522190.33Yes
ET-P660245WWZPolycrystalline24522190.33Yes
ET-P660250BBPolycrystalline25022489.72Yes
ET-P660250WBPolycrystalline25022690.36Yes
ET-P660250WBZPolycrystalline25022690.36Yes
ET-P660250WWPolycrystalline25022690.36Yes
ET-P660250WWZPolycrystalline25022690.36Yes
ET-P660255BBPolycrystalline25522989.80Yes
ET-P660255WBPolycrystalline25523190.43Yes
ET-P660255WWPolycrystalline25523190.43Yes
ET-P660260WBPolycrystalline26023590.46Yes
ET-P660260WWPolycrystalline26023590.46Yes
ET-P672250Polycrystalline25022389.28Yes
ET-P672255Polycrystalline25522889.33Yes
ET-P672280WBPolycrystalline28025189.57Yes
ET-P672280WWPolycrystalline28025189.57Yes
ET-P672285WBPolycrystalline28525589.37Yes
ET-P672285WWPolycrystalline28525589.37Yes
ET-P672290WBPolycrystalline29025989.41Yes
ET-P672290WWPolycrystalline29025989.41Yes
ET-P672295WBPolycrystalline29526489.39Yes
ET-P672295WWPolycrystalline29526489.39Yes
ET-P672300WBPolycrystalline30026889.43Yes
ET-P672300WWPolycrystalline30026889.43Yes
ET-P672305WBPolycrystalline30527389.48Yes
ET-P672305WWPolycrystalline30527389.48Yes
ET-P672310WBPolycrystalline31027889.52Yes
ET-P672310WWPolycrystalline31027889.52Yes
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