Jump to content
ScottiE

Flexible solar panels

Recommended Posts

Buying on price is, can be, false economy.

 

About 6-7 years ago me and D1 built a eco micro dwelling that is solar powered. I had a BP made panel of unknown age and I brought 2 more, which was done based on cheap, not the cheapest but they were still at the cheaper end of the spectrum. All were installed the same way and get washed every few months etc. Their life would be pampered compared to one uses on boats.

 

The BP panel still looks identical to the day we put it up and is going great guns. The other to have lots of signs they are not long for this world and their output is down a fair bit, I suspect the cells are backing up and in a variable manner i.e. some are OK and some are not.

 

Hence when I brought the panels for my boat I went top end. But then they are also very mission critical so not a situation to skimp in.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Buying on price is, can be, false economy.

 

About 6-7 years ago me and D1 built a eco micro dwelling that is solar powered. I had a BP made panel of unknown age and I brought 2 more, which was done based on cheap, not the cheapest but they were still at the cheaper end of the spectrum. All were installed the same way and get washed every few months etc. Their life would be pampered compared to one uses on boats.

 

The BP panel still looks identical to the day we put it up and is going great guns. The other to have lots of signs they are not long for this world and their output is down a fair bit, I suspect the cells are backing up and in a variable manner i.e. some are OK and some are not.

 

Hence when I brought the panels for my boat I went top end. But then they are also very mission critical so not a situation to skimp in.

 

Did you ever use that Maxon 12v - 240v inverter with this setup?

I ended up giving them all away and never kept one for myself hence I'm interested to know if it was any good?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Another thing that sets panels apart is the clear covering. Cheap panels can use a clear acrylic, the better clear glass but even though it looks clear to our eyes, apparently not so to the Light Bugs. Apparently some just bounce off instead of through. You will usually see in specs of the more expensive panels, a figure that relates to light transmission through the covering. This goes hand in hand with the fact that many of the more expensive panels also work in a wider bandwidth of light and the two extreme ends of the light they can use tend to get reflected of the cover rather than transmitted through it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have been going through old threads with particular reference to Flexible Solar Panels. There is so much negativity around flexible panels and I understand that there have been some very poorly manufactured cheap panels that have justified this reaction. Clearly Solbian have been setting the standard at the premium end and unashmedley, with a price to match. I am sure there must be some other brands with good experience and a track record to challenge them, but the difficulty is how to sort out which ones. I would be interested in any feedback from those who have been running flexible solar panels for a while and what brands they have used.  Do they appear to be holding up to the UV??  Any drop off in output??  I dropped in to Enertec this week and had a look at their 3rd generation "Juice" panels which have a more UV stable outer skin, instigated from earlier iterations not going the distance. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've used multiple brands. The best was uni-solar, did 10years. Unfortunately they no longer make panels small enough for a yacht.

Several Chinese panels, 1-2.5 years. I've done a few Juice panels as well, wont be doing more, failure rate too high. I have no recommendations right now, but would like to find something not cost prohibitive- like solbian.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

bought 2x Goflex from Beacon about 3yrs ago and they are dieing rapidly. Each year the performance drops off. I reckon by next year (4) they’ll be next to useless. I was told at the time that the extra price of the premium flexible brands doesn’t but you more power but more lifespan. Regardless, I’d never buy flexible again.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

×
×
  • Create New...