As we head into 2023, the benefits of solar energy are clearer than ever, with businesses of all sizes taking advantage of this renewable energy source. But with so many options available, which solar panels are the best for your business? In this article, we’ll take a closer look at the top solar panels for businesses in 2023, helping you make an informed decision and take the first step towards a more sustainable future.
What are solar panels and why are they good for your business?
Solar panels are devices that capture energy from the sun and convert it into electricity. They have become increasingly popular in recent years due to their efficiency, cost-effectiveness, and environmental benefits. Solar panels for small business can achieve the following: significantly reduce energy costs, improve the company’s image and give access to rebates and incentives.
Solar panels can help small businesses save up to 100% on their electricity bills. For example, a small retail store that consumes 10,000 kWh of electricity per year could save around $2,000 annually by installing a 6–8 kW solar panel system. In addition to cost savings, solar panels can also enhance a business’s reputation and attract environmentally-conscious customers.
What’s more, a small business may be eligible for various tax incentives, grants, and rebates when it invests in solar energy. The federal Investment Tax Credit (ITC) allows businesses to deduct up to 30% of the cost of solar panel installation from their federal taxes, while many states and localities offer their own incentives. For instance, the California Solar Initiative provides cash rebates for small businesses that install solar panels, and the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) offers incentives for small commercial projects.
Five best solar panels for small businesses in 2023
Our solar experts have compiled a list of the top five solar panels for a small business in 2023. Keep reading to find out which panels made the cut and why they are the best options for your business.
JA Solar Deep Blue 550 W
A 144-cell 550 W panel from JA Solar is fantastic for both small and larger businesses. The module clocks an impressive 21.3% efficiency. Three bypass diodes and a half-cut cell design decrease the impact of shading. The panel withstands 5400 PA of front load. Busbars and half-cut cells improve the longevity of the panel and current flow. It is designed to last for over 25 years and comes with a 12-year warranty for the product and a 25-year warranty for performance.
Trina Solar Vertex 670 W
Vertex solar panels from the Chinese brand Trina Solar provide up to 670 W power output with up to 21.6% efficiency. It’s one of the most powerful panels out there, just a few of these things can provide plenty of solar power for small business. It features multi-busbar technology and improved PID and microcracks protection. The low cost of this panel guarantees a better return on investments.
Jinko Solar Tiger Neo 615 W
Tiger Neo is a panel series from Jinko Solar. Tiger Neo models reach up to 615 W power output under Standard Test Conditions. The efficiency of this module goes as high as 22%. The panel has 156 half-cut n-type cells and it’s almost as large as the previous panels in our list: 97 × 44.6 inches. Tiger Neo comes with 12/30 years warranties for product and output. The panel retains over 87.4% of its production by the year 30.
Phono Solar Helios 690 W
Helios is a bifacial panel by Phono Solar, another Chinese brand, and it’s among the best solar panels for small business. It would be a good option for those aiming to build larger systems. The most powerful panel in this line is rated at 690 W. Active rear side provides up to 25% bonus production. Taking bifacial gain into account, you could get up to 828 watts from a single panel.
Suntech Ultra V 555 W
A monofacial panel Ultra V from Suntech is a great solar panel for business installations. Ultra V provides up to 555 watts of output with a 21.5% efficiency. It has demonstrated improved production on cloudy days and doesn’t heat up as much while operating. After 25 years this panel retains over 84.8% of its initial power. There is also a bifacial variation of this model for those who fish to maximize the gains.
What are the types of solar panels?
There are several types of solar panels available in the market, each with its own unique features and characteristics.
- Monocrystalline solar panels: The most efficient solar panels made from high-purity silicon. They are known for their sleek black appearance and can generate more electricity per square foot than other panel types.
- Polycrystalline solar panels: Modules with cells made from multiple silicon crystals, not a single one like the monocrystalline. They are slightly less efficient than monocrystalline panels. However, they are more affordable and are a popular choice for homeowners and businesses.
- Thin-film solar panels: Lightweight and flexible panels that are ideal for curved or uneven surfaces. They are less efficient than crystalline panels but can be more cost-effective in certain applications.
- Bifacial solar panels: Produce energy from both sides and are typically installed in a way that maximizes their exposure to light. They are more expensive than traditional panels but can produce up to 30% more energy per year.
- Building-integrated photovoltaic (BIPV) panels: These panels are designed to blend in with the building’s architecture and can serve as a structural component of the building. They can be more expensive than traditional panels but can provide a more aesthetically pleasing option for some applications.
It’s important to consider the specific needs of your project when choosing a solar panel type. Polycrystalline panels may be cheaper, but if you have limited roof space or a tight budget, monocrystalline panels become a better choice. Likewise, if you’re looking for an innovative design or have unique installation requirements, thin film or BIPV panels may be the way to go.
Average cost of solar panels for small businesses
The average cost of solar panels for small business can vary greatly depending on a variety of factors such as the size of the system, location, and incentives available. On average, small businesses can expect to pay around $2 to $3.5 per watt for solar panels, which means a 10-kilowatt system can cost between $20,000 and $35,000 before incentives.
Other factors that can affect the cost of solar power for small businesses include the type of panels being used, installation fees, and ongoing maintenance costs. Additionally, the availability of incentives such as tax credits and rebates can significantly reduce the overall cost of a solar panel system. In some cases, it is possible to achieve more than 50% savings!
It’s important to note that although the upfront cost of solar panels for small businesses can be high, the long-term savings on energy bills and the potential for generating revenue through selling excess energy back to the grid can make it a worthwhile investment.