Monocrystalline vs. Polycrystalline Solar Panels: What You Should Know

Typically referred to as just mono and poly panels, which type of panels — monocrystalline vs. polycrystalline — should you invest in for your solar installation project?

There are merits to each type. Without going into many technical details, here is a quick look at how these two main types of solar panels compare and weigh against each other.

Power Efficiency

Monocrystalline panels have higher efficiency compared to the poly panels. This disparity, which you should know is quite slight, is as a result of the purity of silicon used in the production process. Mono panels are made from pure, high-grade silicon and have the highest efficiency rates.

Mono panels also have a higher heat tolerance. This means that these panels are still more efficient even in warm weather, and the power output will not fall as much as the temperatures rise.

Space Efficiency

The power efficiency of solar panels translates to space efficiency. For the same power output, you will need fewer mono panels compared to poly panels. You don't have to worry about your array of mono solar panels taking up too much of the space on your roof or ground-mounted installation rack.

Cost Efficiency

The production process involved in making poly solar panels is quite simple, and the associated costs are significantly less compared to that of mono panels. The process also produces less waste silicon compared to the production process of mono panels. This all trickles down to the price that the final customer will pay. Of the two types, mono solar panels are more expensive.

Aesthetic Appeal

Mono solar panels have a more uniform look and tend to look better. Poly panels, on the other hand, have a speckled blue colour, which, in comparison, may not be as aesthetically pleasing. It comes down to what you think, though.

Which One Is For You?

For the longest time, mono solar panels were the most commonly used type, especially in residential installations. Then entered polycrystalline panel technology, and these panels have taken over in the last few years. There is also a third type, called thin-film solar panels.

When deciding which type to go for, consider the above points. You should also speak to your solar system designer and manager about the same. It comes down to how the panels perform, your budget, and, if it's not all the same to you, the aesthetics.

To learn more about solar panels, contact a supplier.