The Best Solar Panels in 2023
- A comparison of the best solar panels in the UK market today
- How different manufacturers compare. Who’s on top?
- Most PV panels come with a warranty that lasts 25 years (or up to a lifetime)
When it comes to going solar, you want to make sure you’re getting the best deal. Both price and quality are important factors to consider, and the best solar panels available in the UK feature both competitive pricing and market-leading efficiencies. In fact, there’s never been a better time to buy a solar system, as prices dropped by 82% between 2010 and 2019. Currently, VAT has been scrapped on the technology as well, cutting prices further.
This article will explore the best solar panels in the UK today and their performance. It will go over how these differ and which manufacturer they belong to. Thanks to competition in the market, manufacturers improve their technology to be the best it can be, and then push this further. That’s why this article will discover which companies are at the top of their game.
What's On This Page?
Click the links below and head straight to a specific section of the article.
- Top 5 Solar Panels
- The Best Solar Panels for Efficiency
- The Best Solar Panels for a Lifetime
- The Best Solar Panels for Reliability
- The Best Solar Panels for Power Output
- The Best Solar Panels for Price
- UK Energy Generation for Last Year
- The Best Solar Panel Manufacturers
- How to Choose the Best Solar Panels for You
- Do You Need the Best Solar Panels on the Market?
Top 5 Solar Panels
SunPower Maxeon 6
Project Solar Evolution Titan 445
Jinko Solar Tiger Neo 72HL4
JA Solar JAM72S30
Suntech Ultra V Mini
The Best Solar Panels for Efficiency
SunPower Maxeon 6
We’re starting off our list with the SunPower Maxeon 6, which has efficiencies up to 22.8%. The best solar panels from SunPower offer a high output whilst remaining strong enough to handle minor impacts and corrosion. Where most panels are designed to be as strong as their weakest cell, the SunPower Maxeon features cells that work independently, which increases power by about 50%.
The Best Solar Panels for a Lifetime
Project Solar UK Evolution Titan 445
The second on our list is the Evolution Titan from Project Solar. Their best solar panels are one of the best all rounders on offer today. They are designed with a lifetime warranty and have an impressive 21.4% efficiency rating. Breakages are covered under the 99.9 year warranty, provided they can’t be fixed by their maintenance team. Featuring great performance in low light, you won’t miss out on energy generation either.
The Best Solar Panels for Reliability
Jinko Solar Tiger Neo
Third on the list is the Jinko Solar Tiger Neo. This panel can achieve up to 22.23% efficiency and features Potential Induced Degradation (PID) resistance, which prevents greater efficiency loss over time. Jinko’s best solar panels work well in extreme environmental conditions, which is useful for coastal properties or areas prone to storms. A 25 year warranty helps to put your mind at ease, along with a 30 year warranty on power.
The Best Solar Panels for Power Output
JA Solar JAM72S30
The fourth panel on our list is the JA Solar JAM72S30. Featuring an impressive 550W output, they are resistant to hot spot degradation and weathering. In terms of price and power output, their best solar panels can’t be beaten. On the downside, they are heavier than other types, at 28.6kg, and the product warranty only lasts for 12 years.
The Best Solar Panels for Price
Suntech Ultra V Mini
From as little as £155, the last solar panel on our list is the Suntech Ultra V Mini. Featuring panels that work well in all conditions, including low light, these present great value for money. Shaded areas are no longer a problem as the silicon wafers from Suntech’s best solar panels are designed to capture as much energy as possible. Also with a 12 year warranty, these panels are up to 20.7% efficient.
UK Energy Generation for Last Year
Last year, the UK generated 30.5GW of energy, which was 101.3% of demand. You can see a breakdown of which fuel types were used most in the interactive graph below.
Solar power, including the best solar panels on residential properties that exported to the grid, only accounted for 4.7% of the total, which is still an impressive 1.403GW. The biggest renewable energy generator was wind.
The Best Solar Panel Manufacturers
Based on the best solar panels in the UK outlined above, the manufacturers ahead of the competition are:
Project Solar UK
Established in 1985, SunPower is at the top of its game. The company boasts about its industry-leading warranty that lasts 40 years. This is backed by independent third party data collected on over 35 million solar panels installed around the world, so you know that they produce technology that you can rely on.
According to their website and research, SunPower Maxeon solar cells are made in such a way as to remove 86% of the reasons traditional solar panels break. The company is also quick to point out that they have had the most efficient solar panels in the industry for over 10 years, generating more power per square metre than their competitors. SunPower makes the best solar panels in terms of efficiency, power, warranty length and durability.
Project Solar UK
Having been in the solar game since 2011, Project Solar UK is a company that prides itself on its success as much as it does its quality products. Having installed over 45,000 solar panels and batteries in their time, they are the largest residential solar panel installers in the UK. Additionally, the company has the most accreditations of any solar installer out there.
Offering a lifetime warranty, Project Solar’s crowning achievement is the development it has put into its technology. Their website claims their solar panels can achieve up to 10% more power per metre squared than standard modules and work incredibly well in low light. This ensures their best solar panels will work for you as much as they do for them.
Operating on a global scale and providing solar technology to over 180 countries, Jinko Solar prides itself on its position in the renewable technology industry. It is continuously improving its products with more than 2,000 research and development professionals that have helped the company receive various awards.
The residential solar panels on offer from Jinko Solar come in several types and technologies, including half-cell, bifacial and tiling ribbon. Because of their global presence, the company has been able to produce their best solar panels for efficiency and durability, and at a cheap price.
Delivering solar products to over 130 countries and regions, JA Solar is continuously looking to develop its technology. Employing over 30,000 staff worldwide, they reached several important milestones in the last few years. In 2022, they developed the DeepBlue4.0 X panel that has power output up to 615W. They also reached 25% efficiency in their n-type cells and started mass production of their p-type mono cells at 23.7% efficiency.
One of the reasons why JA Solar is looking good as a business right now is their drive to improve their technology. This is why they can offer some of their best solar panels, such as the JAM72S30, at such an affordable price with an impressive power output. As the company has been going since 2005, you know that you can trust their solar power.
Producing solar panels for over 20 years, and with more than 600 patents, Suntech prides itself on the amount of time it spends developing its technology. Their wide range of products offer efficiencies above 24.5%, which is beneficial for their worldwide customer base. Not only are more products available, but they are stress tested to ensure the quality and reliability is there too.
You can be sure that the best solar panels from Suntech can be trusted as they receive third party certification. The technology is rigorously tested to ensure it works in the harshest conditions, such as deserts and the coastline. This is why they can offer a 25 year performance warranty and a 30 year one for double glass products.
How to Choose the Best Solar Panels for You
Sometimes, it’s not just a case of picking the most efficient panels on the market. There are other considerations to think about that go beyond the price. To find out what the best solar panels for your home are, think of the following key points.
Depending on how much energy you will need for your home, you can benefit from more power generation throughout the year with higher power outputs. If you need around 850kWh of electricity a year, the best solar panels for you will be enough for a 1kW system. Any more than this and you’ll be wasting money. It's crucial to understand how many solar panels you'll need.
Likewise, if you have a higher electricity demand, and need 4,500kWh, a 5kW system will cover what you need. Anything less than this and you will struggle to cope. Anything more and you’ll be spending money for the sake of it. The higher the output of a single solar panel, the fewer you’ll need to install, which can help you save. Similarly, fitting the same number of higher wattage panels will give you more power.
Better efficiencies mean more sunlight converted into electricity. Even though degradation is expected as the years go by, you are usually guaranteed to have at least 80% of a panel’s original efficiency after 25 years. The longer they are in use, the less they are able to generate electricity, until a replacement is more worthwhile.
The best solar panels for you could have the highest efficiencies on the market, such as the 25% in JA Solar’s n-type cells. Alternatively, even a reliable 20% efficient panel could work for you, depending on how much energy you need to generate. It will also depend on the weather at any given point to determine how much electricity is produced.
Every quality product should feature a warranty, both for the product and for its performance over the years. One is for the physical structure of the module, against breakages, damage and labour, while the other is for the energy generation after a given time period. The longer these warranties last, the more you can trust the product.
The best solar panels have product and performance warranties that last for at least 25 years. Some manufacturers err on the side of caution and only offer a 12 year warranty, but this doesn’t mean it’s likely to fail after this time. The lifetime warranty (99.9 years) from Project Solar is the most impressive in the market.
It may be the simplest choice to pick the least expensive option available, but if it’s not going to last or will be inefficient within a short time frame, you’ll end up wasting money on replacements. In the same time frame, you could have paid out a little more to get the quality and durability that would suit you better.
While cost is always a factor, the best solar panels for you and your home could be vastly different from the next person’s. While the £350 modules could be of more use, the £170 option could work for you just as well without giving you any issues. If you’re installing 6 panels on your roof, this could save you £1,080 on the unit cost alone, let alone the upfront costs.
Do You Need the Best Solar Panels on the Market?
The best solar panels don’t have to be the most expensive, but superior quality certainly pays off, especially when it comes to solar technology. More intuitive use of materials and manufacturing processes ensures you won’t have to replace your system for a long time, and gives you the energy you need year after year.
There’s never been a better time to make use of the best solar panels in the UK, as innovation is always improving. Some of these cells are being offered at incredibly competitive prices as well, keeping the option of going solar more realistic for hundreds of thousands of homeowners.
If you’re struggling to afford solar panels, you may be able to make use of various solar panel grants that are currently available throughout the UK.
Deciding on the right system for you is difficult, which is why it’s more useful to get tailored quotes from local solar installers. Find the best solar panels for you by using the button below.