Question #10: How Long Will a Solar Energy System Last?

Sarah Hancock

Last Updated: January 25th, 2023

 This is the tenth question in a twelve-question series. Please click here to read the introduction, as well as access the other questions in the series. Or, download the printable ebook to view the entire series.

solar panels

"Most solar panels are warrantied for 20 to 25 years, which is considered the life of the average solar project, but panels can potentially continue to generate power at lower than 80% of rated power output for 30 years or more." -Kathie Zipp

"The performance of systems are warrantied for 25 years, however they will be producing energy long after that (50+ years)." -Matt Stoutenburg

"Most are guaranteed for 25+ years, but they are likely to last 40+ years." -Julio Daniel Hernandez

"Solar panels degrade slightly (approximately 1%) every year, but the very clever people that design them estimate that the panels will last up to 40 years. The inverter will tend to have a life span of 12-15 years and may need to be replaced. In reality, we propose a 20-year life, as there will be newer and more efficient technologies in place in 2038." -Mark Stevenson

"Most are warrantied for 25-30 years." -Geoff Mirkin

"Life expectancy of most solar systems should be at least 20 years or longer - this remains relatively new, so we do not have many decades of experience yet. But, 30- and 40-year life expectancy is certainly attainable." -Greg Reed

"It's warrantied for 25 years; useful life is 30 years. It will likely last longer, but we assume after 30 years, it is better to replace." -Teris Pantazes

"Most systems are expected to last about 25 years or more. However, depending on the equipment you use, you will likely have to replace some parts, such as an inverter, roughly midway through the system's life. Fortunately, the cost of this equipment is a relatively small percent ( ~10%) of the total system cost." -Samuel Adeyemo

Click here to go on to Question #11: What Effect Do Solar Panels Have on a Home's Value?

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