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Life Expectancy of Solar Photovoltaic Panels

You’ve bought into the idea of generating electricity through solar means, so now what? Naturally, any homeowner or business interested in photovoltaic power wants to know how long these panels will actually last. Since solar modules have no moving parts, they actually can last a pretty long time. Typically, solar panel manufacturers issue a 20 or 25 year warranty on panels, but most installers say they can endure more than 40 years with proper care.

Andy Black, one of the leading solar financial analysis experts and instructor, recently published his report on the lifespan of solar panels. His analysis showed that the first solar panels manufactured about 40 years ago are still creating power at about 80% of their original power. From that study combined with his other analysis, he concluded that most solar panels will lose about a half percent a year in efficiency.

This new information should affect how homeowners and businesses analyze a solar investment. If you spread the investment over 30 years (or 40 years) rather than 20 years, the return on investment is much more substantial. Thereby, those who investment in solar power can feel more secure that they are making the right decision.

Although the solar array on your home will likely not be worth as much as new panels with the same wattage in 25 years, it should have paid itself off many times over and will still be producing free power for your home. There is no reason to buy new panels if the ones you already have are still producing enough power for your needs.

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