Cheap vs Expensive Solar Panels In Canberra: What Are The Differences?

by | Nov 17, 2021 | Solar Panel | 0 comments

Like most goods we buy, there are different price ranges for solar panel installations in Canberra. You can categorise these solar systems into entry-level, mid-range and high-end. But the problem is, you can’t rely on price alone to gauge quality.

So the question is, “How do I know which of these systems are priced fairly?”

After all, we’d hate for you to buy a system that’s too powerful for your needs. Or worse, pay way more than you have to for inadequate solar panels.

There are a few different strategies you can use to identify systems that perform as expected. For example, consulting solar experts or reading reviews from previous buyers.

However, in this post, you’re going to learn everything you need to know about each solar panel category. So you can make an informed decision on your own.

Let’s get started.

Entry-level, mid-range and high-end solar panels: What are the differences?

When deciding between the different ranges of solar panels you can expect that:

    • Entry-level solar panels will be budget-friendly while still performing efficiently
    • Mid-range panels balance performance and durability with value
    • High-end solar panels provide the best performance and durability but come with the biggest price tag

You can keep these summaries in mind as a rule of thumb. However, we’re going to dive deeper into why each category has these definitions below.

Entry-level solar panels in Canberra

Entry-level solar panels are the cheapest option you can find and will generally fall into the tier 2 or tier 3 categories. These solar panels tend to be made by relatively new companies that may or may not control every aspect of the solar panel.

When made correctly, entry-level solar panels will still last for 20+ years and operate efficiently. However, their warranties tend to only cover half their lifespan (around 10 years, potentially less.) Plus, these panels lose their efficiency faster than premium panels.

Features of tier 3 solar panel companies:

    • New companies with only a year or two of experience
    • Assembles your solar panels but may not be responsible for creating the silicon cells
    • Relies on human labor to assemble the panels
    • Doesn’t bother with research and development (potentially leading to lower quality panels)

Features of tier 2 solar panel companies:

    • More experienced companies with between two to five years of experience
    • Incorporates both humans and automated machines during solar panel assembly
    • Invest in research and development showing that the company cares about their quality

While choosing entry-level solar panels in Canberra can provide you with great value for money, there are some pitfalls. For example, you may run into fly-by-night companies who care more about profits than the quality of their panels.

To avoid any irresponsible, low-quality companies, make sure that:

    • Your chosen company has good reviews from existing customers
    • The company has a warranty and some way to uphold it even if the company ceases to exist
    • The company charges a fair price for their solar panels (we’ll touch on average prices later)

Don’t write off tier 3 and tier 2 solar panels, though. It’s definitely possible to find a reputable up-and-coming manufacturer within these categories.

Mid-range solar panels in Canberra

Mid-range solar panels in Canberra provide a nice middle ground between affordability and performance. These panels are usually known as tier 1 panels which tend to be higher quality and therefore more expensive than lower tiers.

Like other solar panels, tier 1 panels should last for 20+ and will usually have warranties of at least 10 or more years.

Features of tier 1 solar panel companies:

    • They’ve been making solar panels for over five years
    • Invest tonnes of profit into research and development (a good sign that they want to be around for many years)
    • They have a fully automated manufacturing process ensuring fewer defects
    • These companies tend to control every aspect of production which ensures higher quality solar panels

Mid-range solar panels are usually manufactured by reputable companies that care about their products. So, it’s safe to say that these panels are a smart choice if you want peace of mind.

High-end solar panels in Canberra

High-end solar panels in Canberra are the best of the best when it comes to performance and quality. These panels tend to be made by tier 1 companies and are technically tier 1 panels, except that they’re made with premium materials.

Features of high-end solar panels:

    • Efficiency levels of 20+ percent
    • Product warranties for 20+ years showing that they truly believe in their products
    • Improved durability with some panels still operating efficiently after 30 years
    • Tend to perform better even when conditions are less than optimal

With high-end solar panels, you’re assured that your panels will be working for many years to come. However, if you’re not a big energy user, these panels may not be worth the investment.

In saying that, make sure to contact a reputable Canberra solar panel installer who can advise you on the best solar panels for your needs.

How much should I pay for my solar panels in Canberra?

While each brand’s prices will vary depending on their manufacturing process, it’s good to be aware of average prices.

In Canberra, these are the average solar system prices:

    • 2 kW: $3,520
    • 3 kW: $3,730
    • 4 kW: $4,630
    • 5 kW: $5,130
    • 7 kW: $7,540
    • 10 kW: $9,010

(Source: Solar Choice)

Since these are the average prices, you can use these as a gauge for mid-range solar panels in Canberra. However, if you’re looking for an entry-level or high-end system, make sure that the prices are reasonably different from the ones above. Otherwise, you may end up with low-quality and expensive panels.

Find high-quality solar panels in Canberra without the hassle

Here at Select Electrical, we’re both a Clean Energy Council Accredited Installer and an Approved Solar Retailer. So instead of doing research until your brain is fried, give us a call on 02 6103 0505 and we’ll ensure you get the right solar panels in Canberra.