Solar Products We Use and Recommend
You can’t design and install Best of Class solar systems without Best of Class components. We choose our preferred components and their manufacturers carefully: The components themselves for their ability to deliver outstanding and predictable performance at a fair price, and the companies that manufacture them for outstanding balance sheets and a proven ability to withstand the sometimes turbulent financial times in the evolving solar industry.
You’ll note that terms like “cheapest” or “least expensive” don’t appear anywhere else on this page, for a very basic and simple reason: Those terms and Best of Class Systems just don’t live in the same neighborhood.
Our goal is to deliver the best possible value with the emphasis on:
- Best design and engineering
- Using the best components in the industry to meet your specific technical situation and goals.
- Consistent use of industry Best Practices during installation with strict adherence to applicable national building and electrical codes
- Best team of highly qualified and credentialed engineers, electricians and installation technicians. (You’ll never have a group of taxpayer-funded trainees, supervised by a fundamentally unqualified foreman, using your roof for on-the-job training). Check our credentials. Check our reference installs.
Any discussion of solar systems usually starts with the modules. Lots of solar modules are out there in the marketplace. Some of these modules are quite frankly junk, some are pretty good, and some are extremely good. Until both Suniva and SolarWorld went bankrupt, their products were examples of the very best of the Tier One modules. They were also assembled in the USA. We’ve installed a lot of each, and they were tough acts to follow. REC Solar and Silfab Solar modules are very good, and Panasonic 330 HIT modules are arguably the world’s best(see below).
Most of our solar installations include backup storage these days, so batteries are a major component. You may not know this, but there are different types of lithium-ion batteries, based on a wide range pf different chemistries. Tesla and LG chose lithium-manganese-cobalt-oxide (NMG) chemistry. This the same chemistry that led to an LG recall in 2020. We use batteries with lithium-iron-phosphate (LFP) chemistry. Their pricing’s gone down, they’ve become more compact, and they have an established safety record.
Here are some, but not all, of our favorite companies and products. We do use others – including Enphase micro inverters and SMA inverters – when they provide the best solution and value for an individual customer.
We custom-design our solar systems to meet your property’s technical aspects, your production goals and priorities, and your budget constraints.
There’s no such thing as a single best system or solution – it’s the solution that works best overall for each individual customer. Cisco Systems called it a consultative approach – a term I like a lot. To say we are agnostic as to the name on the products we install would be an understatement.
All that said, the following lists some of our favorite products at this point in time.
|A select few solar modules are among the best of the best. Panasonic
solar modules are one of the best two or three best solar modules in the
world in terms of efficiency, performance in high ambient temperatures,
and expected production over time.
If you understand a solar module datasheet, check out the Panasonic 330
HIT and prepare to be impressed. We’re proud to say that we’ve been selected as an authorized installer
of this outstanding product. World class quality is never cheap, but if you review the total cost
over time, compared to anticipated production, and an outstanding
warranty (that covers more, for longer, than most), you may agree that
this is an initial investment worth making
|A number of years ago, when we first started installing these
battery backup and off-grid systems, they were Xantrex. Since Schnieider
purchased the brand, they’ve done a lot to enhance it. We’re huge fans
of this technology because it meets all the requirements of stability,
scalability, configurability – and very predictable performance in a
huge variety of battery-based deployment scenarios, large and small.
Topping this off is the world-class technical support we receive
|SolarEdge has fundamentally changed the solar industry with its
innovative optimizer/inverter technology. This system has it all –
exceptional performance, module level monitoring and 25-year warranties
available on the optimizers and inverters.
|From the outstanding flashed roof attachments to the self-grounding
mids, ends and rail splices, the IronRidge racking system is a truly
complete, integrated system. This is nowhere close to the lowest-priced
racking system. But we think it is one of the best – at least for most