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Best solar panels UK in 2024

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We’ve rounded up the best solar panels in the UK by assessing which models performed best in key areas including efficiency, reliability and power. We also considered solar panel costs in our assessment. 

Project Solar’s Evo Super Max panel came out on top in our evaluations, generating the expected amount of energy even on cloudy days, with an unparalleled warranty and good reliability.  

What are the best solar panels on the market?

The best solar panels for UK homes have efficiency ratings over 20 per cent and a solid power output (anything from 420W upwards). They typically come with advanced features that increase their efficiency and longevity, and most can work in low-light and adverse weather conditions. The best solar PV panels are usually made from monocrystalline cells, which are more efficient than cheaper polycrystalline cells.

Important note: Not all of the brands whose panels are mentioned in this guide install solar panels. The best and most cost-effective way for you to purchase the panels we mention here is to compare quotes from local installers. You can request quotes from up to four local installers using our short form – it takes a minute to fill out, and is completely free to use.

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Our research into the best solar panels

We’ve compared more than 50 solar panels from 13 best-in-class manufacturers, evaluating them to decide which panel is the best overall. We considered a range of factors to do so. 

  • Efficiency: the percentage of sunlight each panel converts into electricity
  • Durability: resistance to environmental factors and harsh weather
  • Power output: how much electricity a panel generates under ideal conditions
  • Low light performance: how well panels generate power in less-than-ideal lighting
  • Degradation rates: how well panels maintain performance over time; lower degradation rates ensuring longer service life and better return on investment
  • Warranties: product and performance guarantees offer long-term reliability assurance
  • Size: to assess roof compatibility
  • Cost: the price of each panel

As part of our research, we also examined the manufacturers’ reliability and their expertise, experience, and ethical and sustainable practices. To find out more, read our article about how we review solar panels.

50
Panels reviewed
300
Customer reviews read
13
manufacturers compared
50
hours comparing products

Best solar panels at a glance

PanelOutputEfficiencyWarrantyPrice
Project Solar UK Evo Super Max Series455W22.01%Lifetime product warranty, 30 year performance warrantyPOA
SunPower Maxeon 6 AC440W22.80%25 years standard product warranty, 40 years with registrationPOA
Jinko Tiger Neo 420W N-Type 54 Cell420W21.51%25-year product warranty and 30-year performance warranty£76
JA Solar JAM72S30 Mono PERC Half-Cell MBB550W21.30%12-year product warranty and 25 performance warranty£164
Suntech Ultra V Mini 405Wp405W20.70%15-year product warranty and 25-year performance warranty£170

Best overall: Project Solar UK Evo Super Max Series 455W

The Project Solar UK Evolution Titan 445 (Project Solar)

Top takeaways

  • Project Solar’s product warranty is four times longer than that of the other panels we’ve reviewed
  • It has one of the longest performance warranties of our reviewed panels (30 years)

Key specifications

Efficiency 21.01 per cent
Power output 455W
Degradation Not specified
Price On enquiry
Warranty Lifetime, 30-years performance warranty
Weight 23.5kg

Pros

10 per cent more energy generation per metre squared than many other models Designed to deliver optimal energy generation throughout the year Lifetime guarantee

Cons

Prices only available on request

The Evo Super Max 455 solar panels are the newest Project Solar has to offer. Their solid output and efficiency, combined with the most generous warranty there is on the market, lands them as the best solar panel overall. 

These panels incorporate Passivated Emitter and Rear Contact (PERC) technology. PERC solar cells are enhanced versions of traditional cells, designed to increase energy production by 6 to 12 percent. This efficiency boost comes from an additional layer placed on the cell’s rear side, which captures sunlight reflected back into the cell, providing another chance for energy conversion.

The Evo Super Max 455 can be integrated into a smart solar system, which uses real-time data to monitor energy production using smart meters and inverters. The Super Max will suit homes of all sizes thanks to its high efficiency of up to 21.01 per cent. It retains optimum performance in low-light conditions, meaning cloudy days and winter months shouldn’t affect its performance.

Read our full Project Solar review.

Most efficient solar panel: SunPower Maxeon 6 AC

Image shows the SunPower Maxeon 6 AC.
The SunPower Maxeon 6 AC (SunPower)

Top takeaways

  • The most efficient panel we tested
  • Each Maxeon panel has a built-in inverter, meaning if one panel has an issue, the system will continue to generate energy

Key specifications

Efficiency Up to 22.8 per cent
Power output 420W – 440W
Degradation 98.0 per cent warrantied output for one year, then a minimum of 0.25 per cent degradation annually after that
Price On enquiry
Warranty 25 years standard, 40 years with registration
Weight 21.8kg

Pros

Very low degradation – 0.25 per cent annually after the first year 40-year warranty Guarantees 92 per cent efficiency after 25 years

Cons

Limited availability

Sunpower’s Maxeon 6 AC couples a high output with a high efficiency rating of up to 22.8 per cent. The panels are designed to be crack-resistant, to withstand corrosion, and they have enhanced shade tolerance. 

Generally, solar panels are designed so that the system is only as strong as its weakest panel; this can lower the efficiency of the whole array if there is an issue with a single panel. However, the Sunpower Maxeon AC solar panels are fitted so that each panel  works independently, improving the system’s overall power by around 50 per cent. This means less surface area is required to achieve the same energy output as other panels.

The Maxeon 6 AC panels also feature maximised power point tracking (MPPT), which enhances output when weather conditions are variable. This means that even on overcast days, the system output is optimised.Read our full SunPower solar panels review.

Most reliable solar panel: Jinko Tiger Neo 420W N-Type 54 Cell

Image shows the Jinko Tiger Neo 420W N-Type 54 Cell solar panel.
The Jinko Tiger Neo 420W N-Type 54 Cell (Jinko)

Top takeaways

  • PVEL, the solar industry’s independent testing lab, named JinkoSolar the top performer of 2023, and the company has been one of the highest-ranking performers in PVEL’s rankings seven times 
  • Jinko Solar is committed to sourcing 100 per cent of its electricity from renewables by 2025

Key specifications

Efficiency 20.48 – 21.51 per cent
Power output 400W – 420W
Degradation 0.40 per cent annual degradation over 30 years
Price Approximately £76
Warranty 25-year product warranty and 30-year linear power warranty
Weight 22kg

Pros

Small degradation factor – 0.4 per cent after year one Good power warranty of 30 years Great value for money

Cons

There are more efficient panels

Jinko’s Tiger Neo panels have Super Multi Bus Bar (SMBB) technology. Bus bars are thin copper or silver strips that connect the cells in a solar panel and carry the current; SMBBs have a more sophisticated design that uses finer, more numerous, and denser bus bars. This improvement reduces the effect of shading and optimises the path the current takes, increasing the panel’s efficiency. 

Better still, the Jinko Tiger Neo 420W N-Type 54 Cell includes reduced Potential Induced Degradation (PID). All solar panels degrade over time, losing the ability to harvest energy and becoming less efficient. This is caused by PID – the gradual leakage of electrical current from the solar cell to the panel frame. Jinko’s technology has lessened this leakage, meaning its panels hold their efficiency for longer than the average panel. They also deliver enhanced protection against extreme environmental conditions such as rain, wind and snow. 

This makes them the most reliable solar panel in the UK as they’ll continue to be productive even in harsh weather. So if you live on the coast or if your home gets shaded when it’s particularly windy, you’ll still be able to generate a stable amount of energy using these panels.

Jinko offers a 25-year warranty on the product and 30 years on linear power – more than double the market standard of 12 years.

Read our full Jinko Solar solar panels review.

Most powerful solar panel: JA Solar JAM72S30 Mono PERC Half-Cell MBB

Image shows the JA Solar JAM72S30 Mono PERC Half-Cell MBB.
The JA Solar JAM72S30 Mono (JA Solar)

Top takeaways

  • JA Solar’s panel delivers 550W of power, 100W more than the nearest competitor we tested
  • This panel’s frame is 5mm slimmer than many other panels we’ve tested

Key specifications

Efficiency 20.3 – 21.3 per cent
Power output 525W – 550W
Degradation 0.55 per cent linear degradation over 25 years
Price Approximately £164
Warranty 12-year product warranty and 25 linear power output warranty
Weight 28.10kg

Pros

Fantastic power output for the money Good efficiency Great weather resistance

Cons

Relatively short product warranty Heavier than many other panels A lower-than-average heat resistance of -0.30 per cent for every degree over 25°C

JA Solar’s panels have the highest power output of our reviewed and best-rated solar panels. Designed with shading and weather in mind and packed with desirable features – such as PERC cells and a high resistance to hot spot degradation – they’re a sound addition to any home where energy usage is high. 

The panels are quite heavy at 28.10kg, but their energy output easily compensates for the extra weight. Considering an output of 420W and above is standard for solar panels, JA Solar’s 525W to 550W panel is powerful – especially when paired with an efficiency rating of up to 21.3 per cent. In short, this means you can expect a healthy return of energy from these solar panels, even in lower light conditions.

Read our full JA Solar review.

Best low-light solar panels: Suntech Ultra V Mini 405Wp

Image shows the Suntech Ultra V Mini 405Wp solar panel.
The Suntech Ultra V Mini 405Wp (Suntech)

Top takeaways

  • One of the best low-light panels available
  • Designed to withstand the harshest weather conditions

Key specifications

Efficiency 20.7 per cent
Power output 405W
Degradation 2 per cent in the first year, 0.55 per cent annually
Price Approximately £170
Warranty 15-year product warranty and 25-year performance warranty
Weight 21kg

Pros

Good value for money Optimised power generation in shady conditions

Cons

Degradation is higher than many panels – 0.55 per cent after the first year

All solar panels will work to some extent in cloudy weather, but overall, low-light conditions are undesirable if you’re trying to generate power from solar. So if your home is shaded by trees, panels designed with low-light enhancements are a crucial investment. 

The Ultra V series includes modules comprising 182mm silicon wafers that optimise this solar panel’s layout and power generation. What’s more, these modules operate well in low light and more adverse weather conditions for a more consistent energy output during daylight hours. 

Excellent weak light performance means that your solar panels could absorb light even in the early morning, so you won’t need to wait until peak hours, typically between 11 am and 4 pm, to start drawing on your home’s solar energy supply. Suntech’s Ultra V panels perform well at lower temperatures and can withstand wind and other harsh weather, including heavy snow. 

Read our full Suntech solar panels review.

Other solar panels we reviewed

Aiko N-Type ABC Series – 72 Cell

Efficiency: 23.9 per cent 
Power output: 615W
Degradation: 0.35 per cent annual degradation from year two to year 30
Price: Approximately £188
Warranty: 15 years product warranty and performance warranty of 30 years

Pros

Long lifespan of 40 years High power output means a 6kW system can be achieved with 10 panels Full black design

Cons

Heavy panels

The Aiko Solar N-Type ABC White Hole offers almost 24 per cent efficiency, surpassing the average of around 20 per cent, and its 615W power output is among the highest of all panels on the market. Unlike other panels that can quickly lose efficiency over time, this model maintains approximately 89 per cent (about 550W) of its initial capacity after decades. This means that if you bought one now, by 2053, it might still outperform many new panels on the market. However, its price remains undisclosed, posing a challenge for cost comparison with similar models.

Read our full Aiko solar panels review.

REC Alpha Pure-R

Efficiency: 22.3 per cent 
Power output: 420W
Degradation: 0.25 per cent after year one
Price: £160 
Warranty: 25-year product warranty, and performance and labour warranties of 25 years, but only if installed by a REC-certified installer. Panels installed by any other installers are only eligible for a 20-year product warranty

Pros

Lead-free manufacturing High-strength frame design Good high-temperature performance – 0.24 per cent per degree over 25°C

Cons

REC’s product warranty doesn’t cover inverters, unlike many other warranties

The REC Alpha Pure-R panel stands out with its advanced technology, offering superior performance compared to others on the market. Constructed from 80 silicon cells, these panels are assembled with lead-free, gapless technology, encased in 3.2mm glass and framed with black aluminium. They achieve a peak efficiency of 22.3 per cent and boast a minimal annual degradation rate of only 0.25 per cent after the first year – significantly lower than the typical 0.5 per cent to 0.7 per cent for other panels.

Read our full REC solar panels review.

Perlight NTA 430W

Efficiency: 22.28 per cent 
Power output: 430W
Degradation: less than 2 per cent in year one, 0.45 per cent in years 2-25
Price: POA
Warranty: 30-year product and performance warranties

Pros
Certified against extreme weather conditions, resistant to wind and snow
Manufactured with low lead levels and no fluorine, more environmentally friendly
Cons
Higher price point compared to some other panels

The Perlight NTA 430W solar panel has an output of 430 watts and an efficiency rate of 22.28%. It incorporates n-type technology, which is known for its superior resistance to sunlight-induced degradation, thus ensuring a more consistent performance over the panel’s lifespan. 

Perlight’s manufacturing processes are certified under SA8000 standards, highlighting ethical production practices. This certification addresses labour conditions and environmental impact concerns, showcasing Perlight’s dedication to social responsibility and environmental stewardship in manufacturing its solar panels.

Get quotes on the best solar panels in your area

Discover how much solar panels would cost for your home by answering a few quick questions

How the best solar panels work

Essentially, solar panels capture daylight and turn it into usable power. The best solar panels are usually made from silicon cells or another semiconductor material set in a metal frame with a glass casing. When daylight hits these cells, electrons within the cells move, creating an electric current. This electricity is then used to power your home. 

What makes the best solar panel?

The best solar panels should be highly efficient, generate plenty of electricity, work well on overcast days, be equipped to cope with harsh weather conditions and come with long warranties. They should also provide a good cost-per-watt ratio to maximise your investment.

However, every household’s energy needs, property type and location is different. If, for example, your house is in an area with high sun exposure which doesn’t experience harsh weather regularly, a more basic panel with a lower power output and efficiency level could generate the energy you require. 

Katharine round image

Why choosing the right solar panel for you matters – Katharine Allison, Energy Saving Expert

The idea that every household requires a solar panel system tailored to its specific needs is a testament to the versatility and adaptability of solar technology. Solar energy isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution; different environments, energy requirements, and physical constraints demand a customised approach. Whether compact, high-efficiency panels maximising output in limited spaces, robust systems designed to endure high winds or corrosive salt mist in coastal areas, or options focused on aesthetic integration with existing architecture, the best solar panels address a broad spectrum of challenges. 

 

This customisation ensures that the benefits of solar energy – reduced electricity bills, decreased carbon footprint, and increased energy independence – are accessible to everyone, regardless of their unique circumstances. It underscores the importance of considering your individual requirements when selecting solar panels for your home, ensuring that your system delivers optimal performance and value.

If you want a more off-grid lifestyle or to maximise returns on your solar panel investment as soon as possible – which you can do by exporting energy back to the National Grid using the Smart Export Guarantee (SEG) – looking for the highest output and best efficiency percentage will be vital to finding the best solar panels for you.

Make sure you speak to suppliers and national and regional installers from the start to clearly explain your requirements and understand how they can accommodate those needs. You can do this quickly and easily with our free quote-finding form – simply fill it out to be matched with one of our trusted UK installers.

Finally, don’t be afraid to compare quotes or even to walk away if the suggested solar panels installation doesn’t suit your home or budget; solar panels are a big investment and you should be informed and confident in your decision.

The following are the key attributes to keep in mind when choosing the best solar panels for you.

Solar panel efficiency

Solar panels are given efficiency ratings which correspond to how much electricity the solar panels will produce. The higher the rating the better, and most panels tend to range between 18 and 22 per cent.  

Different factors such as roof pitch, your home’s location and the size of the solar panel system will also affect even the best solar panels’ efficiency. The aim is to ensure the panels are exposed to as much daylight as possible, but choosing solar panels with added features that increase their efficiency, and therefore their power output, is important especially if their position isn’t optimal.

Solar panel power output

A solar panel’s output is how much energy you can expect it to generate. The Pmax is a metric that defines the maximum power output of a solar panel module in clear and bright conditions. As with efficiency ratings, the higher the number the better. You can find a solar panel’s Pmax in its product description or data sheet. 

If you have a small roof space, choosing panels with a higher power output means you may be able to generate a good amount of energy by installing fewer panels.

Energy generated per solar panel per day

Module brand and typeWatts per moduleEnergy generated per panel/day* (Watts)
Project Solar Evolution Titan 4454451,891
SunPower Maxeon 6 AC4401,870
Jinko Tiger Neo 54c 415W N-Type4201,785
JA Solar JAM72S305502,338
Suntech Ultra V Mono 405Wp4051,721
* based on the panels’ maximum power output provided by the manufacturers in standard test conditions. Data based on an average of 4.25h sunlight hours in the UK.

Guarantees and solar panel degradation

Solar panels last between 30 and 40 years, but even the best panels will see their efficiency decrease over time. 

Degradation is usually measured over a period of years from the installation, and this will be noted on the solar panel’s data sheet. 

Keep an eye out for enhanced potential induced degradation (PID) resistance, as this helps maintain the panel’s generation rates over time. Without this feature, panels are more prone to seeing their power output decrease year after year. 

Performance guarantees are another important detail to look out for. Make sure to check how long your panels’ power output efficiency is covered for so that should it decrease quicker than expected, you’ll be able to get a replacement or another form of compensation.

Most domestic solar panels come with a 12-year product warranty, while performance warranties tend to start at 25 years. Some manufacturers offer a combined guarantee for both product and performance. We’d recommend reading the terms and conditions carefully when you choose solar panels, as warranties vary greatly. You should also find out how to report any complaints you have with your solar panels.

Smart and sustainable credentials

Most people who invest in solar panels do so in part for environmental reasons, so considering your chosen manufacturer is important. For instance, you might want to look into the brand’s stance on ethics and sustainability, as well as its treatment of customers and staff.

Solar panels often contain trace amounts of lead, particularly in the solder used to connect the solar cells together. Lead is used for its electrical conductivity and durability but due to environmental and health concerns, the industry is moving towards lead-free alternatives. 

Fluorine is found as fluorinated ethylene propylene (FEP) in some thin-film solar panels and as a component in the protective coatings of many solar panels to enhance their durability and performance. So, look out for low/no lead or fluorine use in production. 

Most solar panels can be connected to smart meters and solar monitoring apps, so ask your supplier or solar panel installer for details about this; it’s a good way to keep track of how much energy your panels are producing, and how reliant you still are on the National Grid. It’s also especially useful if you’re eligible for the SEG, as you could make cash back for any energy you put back into the grid.

Do you need the best solar panels?

Finding the best solar panels is all about finding which product is right for your home and individual circumstance. Take into account your home position, orientation and energy usage. You should also consider any location concerns, for instance overhanging trees, shade from other buildings, or if you’re often exposed to harsh weather. Your decision to find the best solar panels should also include if you want to export excess energy back to the grid, or if you want to install solar battery storage alongside your array.

How to get the best deals on solar panels

Once you’ve chosen the right solar panels for your energy needs, you’ll want to make sure you’re getting the best possible deal before you invest. 

Our solar quote process is easy, transparent and straightforward. Simply follow the following steps to get solar panel quotes tailored to your needs and budget in no time. 

1. Submit your details

Fill out our form with basic information about your home and energy usage. This enables us to show you only the most relevant quotes.

2. Receive customised quotes

You’ll receive customised quotes from some of our trusted suppliers based on the information you provide. Most installers use Google Earth to check the location and orientation of your property, as well as how much roof space you have available.

Each quote should offer various options, from the most advanced solar panels to more budget-friendly choices, all tailored to your specific needs.

3. Compare your options

Take your time to compare the benefits and costs of each quote, including the features they offer. This guide should give you all the information you need to compare the quotes side-by-side so you can make an informed purchase decision.

4. Make an informed decision

Once you’ve reviewed all the quotes, armed with our expert advice, you should be ready to choose the right solar panel system for your needs and sustainability goals.

Frequently asked questions about best solar panels

The best solar panels for your home will depend on your budget, property size and orientation and your household’s energy usage . Start your search by comparing quotes and speaking to various installers about what they have in stock, costs, and what will work best for your home.

The key elements to be aware of when researching the best solar panels are efficiency, power rating and enhanced design, like for example, if it’s built with Passivated Emitter and Rear Contact (PERC) cell technology and whether it runs off a string or microinverter system.

Researching the supplier you’re buying from is important, too – so be sure to thoroughly explore existing customer reviews and speak with neighbours who have installed solar panels for an honest, accurate perspective.

Monocrystalline solar panels are the most efficient type of panel, with efficiency rates of 15 to 22 per cent, but they come at a higher cost. Polycrystalline panels, while more cost-effective, deliver lower efficiency rates (around 12 to 17 per cent). Additionally, monocrystalline panels are much more durable, with lifespans extending up to 40 years.

The best angle for solar panels is between 30 and 40 degrees. During the solar panel installation process, your installer should consider the angle of your roof. The orientation and angle of your roof affect how much sunlight your solar panels will receive. Roofs at optimal angles maximise sunlight exposure and tend to convert more solar energy into usable electricity.

Solar panels calculator

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The data used to power this calculator is sourced from various solar companies and industry bodies, including the UK government, the Energy Saving Trust and Ofgem. Please note that costs are estimated and based on a UK average, and should not be taken as the exact price you would pay. If you’d like to get an accurate quote for solar panels, then you can use this form to get an estimate from one of our trusted partners.

Katharine Allison

Energy Saving Writer

As Independent Advisor’s energy saving expert, Katharine, a keen advocate for sustainability, is an authority on solar panels, double glazing, and cutting-edge renewable energy technologies. Her dedication merges with a commitment to enlighten and steer readers toward embracing eco-friendly solutions and the latest trends in sustainability.

With over 10 years of experience, she has worked with some of the UK’s leading companies and publications, including the Federation of Master Builders, Architectural Digest, and Denon Construction. 

Katharine is particularly passionate about consumer causes and animal welfare and has art, philosophy, and psychology degrees. She lives with her sled dogs in East Sussex.