Best Solar Panels in India: 2021 overview

Updated: Mar 31

Rooftop solar installations are increasing at a rapid rate in India due to the favourable net metering policy introduced by the Indian government. The country is moving quickly towards renewable sources of energy and solar and has set up a forceful renewable energy installation target of 175 GW by 2022. If you are a home owner and are considering installing solar plant on your rooftop, you might be confused with the various options you get for the make of solar panels and inverters. It is a one time investment with a life of more than 25 years and thus careful study should be made before opting. I have covered on how to opt for solar inverters in an another article (link here), and lets focus on how to choose the best solar panels for your requirement.



Factors to consider:

There are mainly 4 factors you should consider broadly while selecting any brand of solar panel for your project.

- Technology

- Efficiency

- Warranty

- Durability


Lets see each factor in a bit more detail.


Technology:

For residential rooftop solar project, general options are Polycrystalline, Mono-crystalline and MonoPERC panels (you can check my article on Poly vs Mono here). Mainly the difference in them is in the additives added and their internal crystalline lattice structure while making the solar cell. MonoPERC (Passivated Emitter and Rear Cell) solar panels are basically monocrystalline cells, with a extra layer of film on the rear surface of the cells. This allows for more light energy absorption. The performance of these solar panels in low light conditions is quite better due to this.

You might get PolyPERC modules too, but they are generally not widely available due to the fact that MonoPERC price range is similar to PolyPERC and thus the former becomes a better choice.

Half cut solar panels consist of the same MonoPERC cells, but with the cell being divided into two parts. It helps to counter issue faced due to partial shadow falling on the solar panels. These are becoming increasingly popular nowadays due to lowered costs and much better performance.

Conclusion: Choose for MonoPERC solar panels for a better performance.



Efficiency: While surfing online you might be seeing multiple figures in the range of 17% - 22% for efficiency. If you are installing solar panels on your residential rooftop don't worry too much about the efficiency. This efficiency mainly refers to the power the panel can draw from a 1m2 area in sunlight. In layman's terms, if the efficiency of the panels is lower then you just need more panels to generate the same amount of energy.

For eg: if you want to install 5kW solar plant, then for panels with 325wp you would require 16 panels ( totalling to 5200wp). If you opt for 380wp solar panels, you would just need 14 panels (totalling to 5320wp). Thus you save the space of 2 solar panels if you install higher wattage solar panels.

Also one more thing to keep in mind is that the efficiency is calculated under standard testing conditions but in practicality the environment conditions differ year long everywhere. Thus there are multiple other factors like the temperature coefficient also, which comes into play while determining the actual efficiency of solar panels. It’s important to make sure that the efficiency of the solar panels you are getting have a positive tolerance.

Conclusion: There are multiple factors in play in the actual efficiency of solar panels. Choose for high efficiency solar panels to save space on your rooftop.



Warranty:

When it comes to warranty, higher the duration better it would be for you is the thumb rule!

Generally, good brands offer manufacturing warranty on solar panels for 10 / 12 years and 25 years for performance. Manufacturing defect warranty is in case there is any defect in the solar panels due to the premature wear and tear of the components used in the solar panel. Performance warranty can be used in case if the solar panel does not have any defect in it but still they are not performing up to the guaranteed levels. You can find these guarantee levels for each brand of solar panel on their data sheets.

Another important fact is the tier of the brand. If a company provides you with 25 years of warranty but folds it's operations within some years before, getting warranty on your solar panels would be a tough task. Thus it’s important to opt for well known tier 1 brands who are expected to provide you with service for 25 years. Some good brands are Panasonic, Trina, Canadian Solar and Vikram. You might find multiple brands other than these which are also good, but one thing to keep in mind is not to opt for a certain brand only for its lowest price benefit.

Conclusion: Opt for brands which provide higher duration of warranty, but also ensure that the brand is able to keep on its word.


Durability:

While solar panels are made to be in the rough and tough environment like heavy rains, hail storms, extreme wind it is better to opt for solar panels which are the most durable taking into consideration the location where you are installing the plant. You can easily get the history of weather conditions online at your location and also the physical stress strain testing certificates for any brand of solar panel online at their website or in the data sheet.

Conclusion: As panels are most prone to environmental damage, solar panels with high quality of BOM used should be preferred.


Top Brand of Solar Panels in India to install:

Lets go through a few well known brands of solar panels manufacturers providing good service in India.



Anchor By Panasonic:

The brand Anchor (Now known as Panasonic Life Solutions India Pvt. Ltd) is a is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Panasonic Corporation of Japan (Formed since 1918). The company already has a vast presence in consumer electronic products like electrical switches, wires, wires, etc. Solar panels under this brand are one of the top performing modules and have a excellent built quality.

They have a wide range of Solar panels, mainly polycrystalline, MonoPERC and MonoPERC Half cut.


Refrence Data sheet:

Panasonic MonoPERC 385wp solar modules


Main comparators:

Wattage: 345wp to 440wp

Warranty: 12 Years Manufacturing defect and 25 Years for performance



Trina Solar

Trina is one of the biggest name in Solar Panels manufacturing industry with its headquarter in China. They have a very wide range of solar panel offerings with introduction of 1/3rd cell. These cells provide more protection in generation losses than the half cut cell for partial shadowing. For residential or commercial rooftop in India, the availability of Trina is limited till solar panels supply, though they have very innovative products in solar structure and utility level financing options. The company also develops and sells smart micro-grid and multi-energy complementary systems and energy cloud-platform operations.

Though Trina has a range of extremely high wattage solar panels till 600wp, it is important to keep in mind that due to some technical restrictions they are not suitable for smaller rooftop installation.


Refrence Data sheet:

Trina MonoPERC (Half cut) 435-460wp solar modules


Main comparators:

Wattage: 330wp to 600wp

Warranty: 12 Years Manufacturing defect and 25 Years for performance



Canadian Solar

Canadian Solar Inc. is also a well known and reputed name in Solar Panels manufacturing industry and headquartered in Canada. They have various other products in the solar segment like energy storage solutions and solar inverters as well (Not commonly available in India yet). Canadian solar has set up a 25mW plant in India in Rajasthan.

It is the only reputed company which has a line of PolyPERC solar modules.


Refrence Data sheet:

Canadian Poly (Half cut) 355-370wp solar modules


Main comparators:

Wattage: 330wp to 600wp

Warranty: 12 Years Manufacturing defect and 30 Years for performance





Vikram Solar

Virkam Solar is a solar giant based out of West Bengal and the second largest solar company in India in terms of revenue. Along with a very strong India presence, the company also has its presence in Autralia, Europe and the USA as well. In production capacity and product availability, Vikram beats all other solar panel manufacturers in India.

In terms of service this is a very strong brand to rely on.

Their lineup consist of Polycrystalline, MonoPERC, MonoPERC half cut solar panels.

The company was listed as India’s only Tier 1 module manufacturer by Bloomberg New Energy Finance in 2014.


Refrence Data sheet:

Vikram MonoPERC Somera Grand Ultima Plus (Half cut) 400-425wp solar modules


Main comparators:

Wattage: 330wp to 425wp

Warranty: 10 Years Mnufacturing defect and 25 Years for performance



RenewSys

RenewSys is Indian company, and a part of Enpee group of companies having their headoffice in Mumbai. They are very well known company name in Indian manufacturers for solar panels. Due to the company being headquartered here, the service for this brand is very good and one the few companies who provide with DCR solar panels for subsidy purposes in India.

Their lineup consist of Polycrystalline and MonoPERC solar panels.


Refrence Data sheet:

Renewsys MonoPERC (Half cut) 345-400wp solar modules


Main comparators:

Wattage: 325wp to 450wp

Warranty: 10 Years Manufacturing defect and 25 Years for performance

Other then these brands mentioned above, LG Solar is a very good solar panel brand if price is not a barrier.


Other Brands to consider:

- Waree

- JA Solar

- Adani


If you are looking to install a solar pv plant or want to know more about the latest trends in solar panels and solar industry, please send us a query to sales@bigwitenergy.com.

You can also fill our contact form on the homepage or request a callback from our side here.

43 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All