Longi Solar solar panels reviews

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About Longi Solar, Solar Panels

Longi Solar solar panels review

Longi Solar is a Chinese company that is a tier one manufacturer of solar panels.  They only produce monosilicon panels and may be the largest monosilicon solar panel manufacturer globally.  Their panels come with a 10 year product warranty. Longi Solar's Australian office can be reached for warranty support or assistance on 02 8484 5806.

Longi Solar Panel Production

Longi Solar was the world's fastest growing solar manufacturer in 2016 and has continued to grow rapidly since.

In 2019, it shipped 7.394 GW of cells and modules, an increase of 23.43% over 2018. By the end of 2019, Longi reached 42GW of monocrystalline silicon wafer and 14 GW of mono panel production capabilities.

Longi is a member of the "Silicon Module Super League";  which a small group of companies that account for the majority of the world's solar panel production.

Most of the company's production had been used in China, but the firm has been expanding into overseas markets and Longi solar panels are becoming a more common sight on rooftops in Australia. In 2019, its overseas shipments grew 154.59% year over year.

Company History

Founded in 2000, by 2007 Longi boasted 100 tonnes of monosilicon production capacity - enough for approximately one gigawatt of solar panels these day. In 2007, it was likely less, as silicon ingots were still being cut into the thicker "toast" slices instead of the thinner "sandwich" type silicon ingot loafs they do today. These days, ingots are cut so thin, there's only approximately half a gram of silicon in each solar cell.

Longi shipped 2.5 gigawatts of silicon wafers in 2014, which are slices of silicon ingot before they are turned into solar cells.  2014 was also the year Longi stopped producing silicon ingots and wafers exclusively and expanding into solar panel manufacturing by buying Lerri Solar.

After acquiring Lerri Solar, which had been making solar panels since 2007, Longi continued to produce panels under the Lerri name until early in 2017 when the company rebranded as Longi Solar.  Longi may have held off on the rebranding to ensure solar panel reliability was up to par before associating the Longi name so closely with them.

From 2014 to 2016 Longi expanded rapidly.  Fortunately this success did not lead to them becoming arrogant and developing a Longi 'tude. 

Longi Headquarters

Longi is headquarted in Xian, or Xi'an; which located in Shaanxi Province, but Longi says on its website this city is located in the neighboring Shanxi Province.  Somehow the company confused Shaanxi and Shanxi when writing about themselves in a foreign language.  I can't imagine how that happened.

Longi is headquartered in Xi'an rather than further south near Shanghai where the majority of the world's solar panels are made because they began operations as a silicon manufacturer.  Monosilicon production requires a great deal of electrical energy, so they were founded in an area with access to cheap coal power.  Fortunately, China is taking steps to reduce their coal use and one of them is a massive build out of solar capacity. In March 2020, Longi committed to sourcing 100% renewables-based electricity across all its operations by 2028.

Local And Overseas Production

Longi has 9 factories in China, spread across Shaanxi, Jiangsu, Zhejiang, Ningxia and Yunnan.

In addition to their Chinese factories, Longi expanded production overseas.  Longi constructed a factory in India with the ability of manufacturing 500 megawatts of solar panels annually.  The facilility is situated in the Special Economic Zone (SEZ) in Sri City in Andhra Pradesh.  The factory employs 1,000 people, which is a significant number for a 500 megawatt plant these days, but as wages are lower in India compared to China, it's not unusual to be hiring more staff than they would back on their home turf.

Longi has also purchased a facility in Malaysia capable of 500 MW of solar panel capacity a year . The plant will ship in silicon ingots, slice them into wafers, produce solar cells and panels, and then melt all the waste silicon to produce new ingots on site.

Longi Makes Monosilicon Exclusively - No Polysilicon

There are two types of silicon used in the production of solar cells -- polysilicon and monosilicon.

Polysilicon is comparatively easy to make.  The molten silicon is poured into a mold and allowed to cool.  It's quick, easy, and there's little in the way of waste.  Its disadvantage however, is it is made up of multiple crystals of silicon; which impacts on the efficiency of solar cells.

Monosilicon is significantly more difficult to produce and consequently more expensive, but the process results in a single large crystal of silicon, enabling solar cells be more efficient.

Longi only makes monosilicon and is the world's largest producer -- at least in respect to ingots.  They own a massive number of specialised slow cookers called crucibles that bake and rotate at the optimum rate to produce cylindrical ingots of silicon using the Czochralski process.  Ingots used for solar cell production are typically 10 to 20 centimeters across.

The crucibles, which reach temperatures of 1,425 degrees Celcius, are usually made from quartz which has a melting point of 1,713 degrees Celsius.

Longi's Vertical Integration

As Longi produces silicon ingots, wafers, solar cells and solar panels, they are considered a vertically integrated company.  While this provides the company a secure supply of silicon, there is potential that by making the company larger, it becomes more cumbersome and less able to react to sudden changes in solar technology and the market.

Monosilicon = Efficient Panels

As monosilicon enables panels to be more efficient in converting sunlight to electricity than polysilicon, Longi Solar panels have reasonably high efficiencies. Their 60 cell panels, which are likely to be used on Australian rooftops, have efficiencies ranging from 17.4% to 20.3%.

Longi is a participant in China's Top Runner Program, which is a government scheme with a goal of boosting the efficiency of Chinese solar panels.

Multiple Records Set

Longi has achieved a number of records for solar cell efficiency in the last few years, and this drive to achieve recognition for its research and development efforts is something that benefits us all. As one manufacturer sets a record, another breaks it - and the cycle goes on. While these are often just incremental improvements, these added up make for significant progress.

Risk Of A Monosilicon-Only Approach

With a sole focus on monosilicon and owning so many dedicated monosilicon crucibles means Longi is potentially running the risk being saddled with a great deal of outdated expensive equipment if there are significant declines in the cost of silicon production using other methods.  However, as solar production is expanding very, very quickly; even if more economical methods do appear, old and new technologies could coexist for a significant period.

Longi Performance Warranty - Better Than Average

Most tier one solar panels at the lower end of the pricing range only guarantee around 80% of their originally rated power after 25 years.  But Longi promises their standard panels will still produce at least 83.1% of their original output after this time and their PERC panels will provide at 84.8%. 

With a little luck, other lower cost tier one panel manufactuers will feel confident enough in their engineering to bump up their performance warranties to being them in line with Longi's.

Warranty Procedure For Orphaned Longi Customers

If you have purchased Longi solar panels from a solar installer who has since gone out of business, the responsibility for warranty claims shifts to Longi as the manufacturer. Their Australian office can be reached on 02 8484 5806 - affected customers should contact this line for assistance. Longi have advised that customers will be asked to send through photos and serial numbers of affected panels to an email address that they will provide, and they will then arrange for the replacement of the panels. If required, Longi will be able to recommend installers to carry out the work if a customer is unable to organise one themselves. They will also reimburse customers for labor costs involved with replacing the panels.

Recommendation

Longi solar panels are tier one and so should be reliable and I would not have a problem with installing them on my roof.  They will also appeal to people who are interested in panels that should lose little in capacity over the years, but don't want the expense of purchasing premium panels.

While many companies have run into financial difficulties after rapidly expanding, Longi's financial position appears reasonably sound.  While I don't have any solid evidence, I suspect they will be around for a longi time.  I can feel it in my gut.  Specifically, my longi intestine.

Longi Solar Solar Panel Reviews

Bought From: ShineHub Show additional information
As far as we can tell these mid-tier panels Longi 370W LR4-60HPH are performing according to manufacturer specifications and appear fit-for-purpose.
Without the benefit of professional grade test equipment, our experience with similar panels indicated minimal (less than 2%) performance degradation after 10 years so we decided to select these nominal 350W panels.
Dimensioned at 6.66kW peak, the panel array is in excess of the grid feed-in 5kW limit and we are expecting any panel degradation to be insignificant over the next 15 years or more.
Bought From: Solaire Connect
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No issues at all - everything still working as expected
Bought From: Schumacher Solar & Electrical
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Bought From: Helcro Solar Show additional information
Bought From: SOLARLAB Pty Ltd Show additional information
Bought From: Expert Electrical Beaudesert to Warwick Show additional information
Bought From: Solaire Connect Show additional information
Bought From: Formosa Electrics Pty Ltd Show additional information
Bought From: iGreen Energy Show additional information
Appear to be working as expected and tp performance specs at present
Bought From: Quest Energy
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Very good panels
Bought From: Your Green Planet
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Bought From: CJ Electrical and Solar Pty Ltd Show additional information
Seem to be going great. Still great after 12 months.
Bought From: Ahlec Pty Ltd
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Bought From: Accord Electrical Sunshine Coast Show additional information
So far so good!
Bought From: Solaire Connect
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getting 63 kW/h through the summer months and 40 through the winter months.
Bought From: Quick Fix Solar and Electrical Pty Ltd
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Bought From: My Energy Group Sydney Show additional information
It is still early days but so far so good!
Bought From: Advanced Energy Management VIC
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So far so good. Panels look good on the roof (not that I really care about this), and still generate enough power to make my home self sufficient when it is overcast and stormy.

We had a hail storm a few days ago, and the panels were not damaged.
Bought From: Solaire Connect
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Kiama Platinum solar installations are second to none for the install and the after sales service supplying a 30 pages manual document showing the panel sizes names about of panels and much more very happy
Bought From: Platinum Solar Designs NSW
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Bought From: Oz Solar World Show additional information
Bought From: Solar Tactics Show additional information
The panels are still working fine.
Bought From: Empower Solar Perth
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16x370W panels and optimisers
Bought From: Sologistics
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Solar panels come with a 10 year manufacturers guarantee in a 25 year output guarantee
Bought From: Uni-Industries
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Bought From: Auswell Energy Pty Ltd Show additional information
Bought From: Solenergy Group Brisbane Show additional information
Bought From: Central Solar Services Show additional information
Bought From: Ahlec Pty Ltd Show additional information
Bought From: Pristine Solar Show additional information
Bought From: Connect Energy Group Show additional information
Bought From: MJ Solar Solutions Port Stephens Show additional information
Bought From: Quest Energy Show additional information
Bought From: Urban Renewables Wangaratta Show additional information
Bought From: Green Wiring Show additional information
Bought From: Target Solar Sydney Show additional information
Bought From: Class A Energy Solutions Show additional information
Look good and quality
Bought From: Formosa Electrics Pty Ltd
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Solar panels are working well no issues since it was installed 7 months ago
Bought From: GoRun Solar
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Bought From: Sunwise Energy PV Show additional information
Bought From: Everlite Electrical Pty Ltd Show additional information
Bought From: Skylight Energy Show additional information
Bought From: Solstra Residential Show additional information
So far so good.
Bought From: Solar Intelligence
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Bought From: Your Green Planet Show additional information
Bought From: Solar Tactics Show additional information
Bought From: 3 Phase Solar Show additional information
The panels were installed exactly to plan and our wishes. No problems with them at all. Roof has been water tight thru heavy rains.
Bought From: OTI Power QLD
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Bought From: Skylight Energy Show additional information
10.36KW of Longi Hi-MO4m panels with PERC Monocrystalline Half Cells. 12 year Product Warranty and 25 year Linear Power Output Warranty from Uni Industries Pty Ltd.

Even the installers said they were an excellent panel. I've heard they are the top of the range for Chinese solar panels.

Panels are on three strings to the 8KW SG8K-D Sungrow inverter. No problems so far.

While there may be better panels out there, considering the price of my system I considered it would be cheaper to replace these (if required) than buy a system for double the price. PLUS if I did have to do this, I end up with a more modern system.

I encourage you to do the math.

** 12 month update ** We've had no electricity bill since installing this product. Excellent service and follow up support when we had a hiccup after six months and the app wouldn't work. Uni Industries followed up with Sungrow on our behalf and undertook some electrical work for $120.
Bought From: Uni-Industries
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Longi Solar has 1 solar panel in our database

Model Type Size PTC Performance Ratio Californian Approved
LR6-72PD-365MMonocrystalline36526873.42No
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