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Prudence Espies Difference: Know the Pros and Cons of the 3 Popular Solar Panels

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If you are interested in setting up a solar technology to provide energy to few or all of your household’s electrical systems, a piece of your decision-making task will include picking the right kind of solar to apply. Manufacturers usually utilize one of three methods to generate solar panels.

There are three main types of solar units available in the market today, and these are the Monocrystalline, the Polycrystalline, and the Thin Film. When setting up a solar technology, it is vital to select the type that properly suits a facility’s economic and energy consumption demands.

Although solar panels nearly have the same appearance, the three major types of units differ when it comes to performance. To make sure you are putting your investment to good use, then it is best for you to be knowledgeable about these different kinds of solar, as well as their pros and cons.

The Monocrystalline

Became relevant in the 1950s, this technology is the first model in solar modules. These solar units consist of “crystalline silicon,” which is a material also applied in computer chips. Figured from silicon in a round, cylindrical shape and the cells usually appear like rounded squares to make the best use of space on solar modules.



The Monocrystalline solar panels are usually constructed from first-rate silicon, offering them the greatest performance standards in the business, usually between 15 percent and 25 percent.

Monocrystalline technology also tends to possess a long life-span along with warranties of around 25 years, and a usable life which is usually more than 35 years. However, because of their work-intensive production method, the monocrystalline modules can sometimes be the most costly module choice per unit.

By comparison, the monocrystalline panels exceed the thin film panels by four to one. Monocrystalline modules make smart utilization of space, so they give a high power output per square foot.


Since they are superior regarding quality, the monocrystalline solars are also expensive. Electrical breakdown is common whenever the panel is shaded or blocked. The manufacturing course creates significant waste.

The mono crystalline panels perform best in a warm climate, with performance declining as temperatures rise.

The Polycrystalline

Silicon crystals are melted and discharged into a cast to create polycrystalline cells. This process help alter the silicon’s crystal composition, producing polycrystalline its blue, gemstone-like presentation. Different from the rounded square shape of monocrystalline cells, the polycrystalline cells are entirely rectangular.


High-temperature standards are somewhat lower than those of monocrystalline panels. But, the difference is insignificant, making these kinds of solar technology a great choice for a lot of household owners.

The manufacturing course creates limited waste, and the panel also allows for an effective function concerning its cost in GStore.


Its efficiency is lower, usually from 13 percent to 16 percent, making the polycrystalline solars not quite as powerful as the outputs for the monocrystalline solar panels. The panels need more space when set up to generate the same production as a panel built from monocrystalline.

The Thin film

Manufacturers create thin-film panels by setting layers upon layers of photovoltaic components, such as organic photovoltaic cells or amorphous silicon. The thin film modules are typically formed as one system, allowing for the modification of cell sizes. Some types are also bendable, which increases the flexibility of installation.


The advantages of the thin-film solar panels are many but typically do not excel its share of disadvantages. The thin film solars are lightweight, and they are usually immune to concerns from obstructions or shading.

Also, low-light conditions regularly do not slow down the panel’s performance. This particular kind solar panel is easy to produce making it an affordable choice.


However, the thin-film solars come with many heavy downsides:

  • Nearly all thin-film solar panels rank very low regarding performance, ranging from 7 to 13 percent, with a standard operating performance of around 9 percent.
  • Thin film panels usually need plenty of space. For business purposes, they frequently make sense. But for most household installations where available space is limited, they do not work.
  • Because of the number of panels needed for this kind of system, related expenses are also higher since you will need to buy more support components, cables and other things needed just to support the system.
  • Mostly, thin-film solar panels do not last long and suddenly surrender to the influences of weatherization. You will not typically find a company offering an extended warranty to run along a thin-film solar panel.


Nowadays, nearly all of the solar technologies available in the market are made of silicon (either polycrystalline or monocrystalline). Polycrystalline panels tend to be most popular variety because of their affordable price and their adequate efficiency.

On the other hand, it is still best to let professionals decide as to what kind of solar panel you must use to meet the requirements of your projects more.

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