diy solar

diy solar

Solar panel Grades

Jim Burrow

Solar Enthusiast
Joined
Jun 27, 2020
Messages
516
Done a little research on solar Panel Grades. What's everyone's opinion between buying Grade A or Grade B panels - assuming one is not super-rich!

Thiers obvious a price difference. But what about performance? Should one totally stay away from Grade B panels?

Is there a high risk of getting grapy panels buying them off ebay or just stick with Amazon?
 
There's a high chance of buying crappy panels off ebay and amazon. Crooked sellers always, always, state their products are A grade 100% most bestest high performance panels ever. No crooked seller says their panels are low grade, so that's something to consider too... a cheapie 'A' grade panel is less likely to be 'A' grade than a random 'B' grade panel is likely to be a 'B'.

A panel might look perfect and be sold as A grade but have underlying defects in the cells. Cell defects have been talked about in other parts of the forum, shading effects etc.
 
Last edited:
There's a high chance of buying crappy panels off ebay and amazon. Crooked sellers always, always, state their products are A grade 100% most bestest high performance panels ever. No crooked seller says their panels are low grade, so that's something to consider too... a cheapie 'A' grade panel is less likely to be 'A' grade than a random 'B' grade panel is likely to be a 'B'.

A panel might look perfect and be sold as A grade but have underlying defects in the cells. Cell defects have been talked about in other parts of the forum, shading effects etc.
I tried searching our forum posts before posting mine. I had no luck finding any discussion. Although there must be tons of them somewhere.
 
An article indicates that cheap backsheets may be the Achilies heel of many panels, see this thread:


So look for genuine Dupont Tedlar.


A lot of us are happy dealing with Santan solar. He describes the good/bad/ugly and makes good for any issues.

 
I would have happily bought from Santan Solar, but at the time the sizes available didn't fit the area I had for panels.

I picked up four Mission Solar 320 watt panels yesterday for $182.50 + tax. That was a great deal for me. Another local vendor wanted $244 for the same panel. The bonus here is I didn't have to pay for shipping.
 
Here's my thought -- if a Grade A and Grade B is going to produce the same result -- then save your money and go Grade B .... Grade B is normally 99% cosmetic ... We purchase allot of used solar panels from this place in Dallas Texas (search craigslist - Dallas - 355W JA SOLAR) for 90 bucks each ... I think they sale to the public for 120 now -- went up $20 in the last week due to an anticipated shortage about to hit due to silver prices ... BUT of the 100's of cosmetically "damaged" Grade B cells we have purchased -- we have had ZERO (0) issues -- not a single one has been less than what the manufacturer has stated it would be brand new ... just my .02
 
I have had good luck with used Sunpower panels I purchased from two different vendors on Craigslist. I am comfortable with my skills at risk management with regard to evaluating those kind of sellers. If you don't have that skill buy from Santan or others recommended here.
 
When you compare Grade A and Grade B panels, you won't find a much visible difference. But Grade A panel is always recommended over the Grade B one as it provides number of extra benefits and long term usage comparatively. One of my friends, faced the issue when he purchased from such notable sites as sellers sometimes do not properly mentions the grades and so, yes, it is better to purchase from a known and trust-able source only.
 
Back
Top