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The 5 Best Solar Panels (2022 Review)

Installing solar panels can reduce your environmental impact and save you money on your utility bill. In this review, the This Old House Reviews Team researched the five best solar panels on Amazon to help you find the product that’s right for you and your home. The products included in this article are available at various home improvement stores, local home centers, and online retailers like Amazon.

Solar Panel Courtesy Amazon

Whether you’re converting your home to solar energy or you need electricity in remote areas while you’re camping or hiking, consider investing in a set of solar panels. As opposed to other sources of power, solar panels are better for the environment because they convert typically unused sunlight into energy. To learn about the best solar panels on Amazon, read our review below.

Top 5 Solar Panels


Most Portable: Jackery SolarSaga Portable Solar Panel

You can bring this solar panel with you on your camping or hiking trip. It’s lightweight at under 10 pounds and features a foldable design with carrying handles. In addition to its outdoor functionality, this product can also be used with power stations to run your devices during power outages.

Key Features

  • Two monocrystalline panels
  • 100 watts
  • Two handles
  • Two kickstands
  • Two-year material and workmanship warranty

What Customers Are Saying

Satisfied customers said that the product was easy to install and use as well as efficient, stable, and sturdy. However, some customers said that their model had poor charge capacity, and others said theirs stopped working after a short period of time.


Best Kit: Renogy Monocrystalline Solar Starter Kit

This kit from Renogy comes with a solar panel, a charge controller, connectors, a tray table, and mounting brackets for a boat or RV, giving you everything you need to set up your power source. The included charge controller features protection against short-circuiting, overcharging, discharging, and overloading.

Key Features

  • One monocrystalline panel
  • 100 watts
  • Five-year material and workmanship warranty

What Customers Are Saying

Satisfied customers were impressed with the thorough installation instructions, build quality, and value for the money. Dissatisfied customers said that their kits didn’t come complete and that communicating with customer support was frustrating.


Best Single Panel: Renogy Monocrystalline Solar Panel

While this product only has one panel instead of two or four like some of the other products in this review, it’s still efficient enough for camping or other off-the-grid trips. The panel’s transparent, iron-tempered glass is anti-reflective and impact-resistant for better performance.

Key Features

  • One monocrystalline panel
  • 100 watts
  • Five-year material and workmanship warranty
  • 25-year transferable power output warranty

What Customers Are Saying

Happy customers liked this panel’s affordability and craftsmanship. One customer said that the output was impressive considering the panel’s compact size. A few disappointed customers said that the solar panel they received didn’t match the specifications advertised on the Amazon listing.


Best Value: HQST Monocrystalline Solar Panel

This solar panel from HQST is the most affordable product in this review, but it still produces plenty of renewable energy for smaller needs, such as charging electronic devices, with its output of 500 watt-hours. Additionally, this product includes a junction box and solar connect leads, which help protect its electronic components from the elements.

Key Features

  • One monocrystalline panel
  • 100 watts
  • One-year warranty

What Customers Are Saying

Positive reviews mentioned how affordable, sturdy, and well-made this product was. However, consumers who were disappointed with their purchase expressed frustration that their HQST solar panel became defective shortly after the one-year warranty period.


Most Panels: PAXCESS RV Solar Panels

This product from PAXCESS has four panels in a row for a total length of 66.7 inches, making it capable of absorbing a lot of sunlight and generating a lot of power for your electronic devices. For example, the panels can charge an iPhone 11 Pro with a dead battery to 50% in just 30 minutes.

Key Features

  • Four panels
  • 120 watts
  • One handle
  • Two kickstands

What Customers Are Saying

Happy customers liked the product’s versatility, portability, and affordability. Other customers mentioned the product’s built-in stand, which helped the panels absorb more sunlight by sitting at an angle. While there weren’t many low-rated reviews, one customer mentioned the stand succumbing to high winds.


Buyer’s Guide

Solar panels use complex science to operate, so understanding solar power is a must before buying a set. Keep reading to learn about what to look for in your purchase.

Panel Type

There are three types of materials used to make solar panels: monocrystalline, polycrystalline, and thin film.

  • Monocrystalline: Panels made of this material are the most efficient. They have a high energy output and last a long time. However, they are the most expensive, stop working if any debris even partially covers the panel, and lose efficiency over 77 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Polycrystalline: This material is affordable and environmentally friendly, but it’s less efficient than other panel materials.
  • Thin film: The use of film is an emerging technology, so it isn’t as readily available to consumers as the other two types. Thin film panels are flexible and lightweight, and temperature and shade have less effect on their performance. However, they are the least efficient out of the three types and are affected by snow and rain.

Energy Output

Solar panel energy is measured in watt-hours. This is the amount of energy it takes to use one watt per hour. The higher the watt-hours, the more energy a solar panel can produce.

Panel Size

Solar panels come in many shapes and sizes, though most are rectangular. Think about how much space you have for the panels, and purchase the right size and number to best fill that space.

Use/Installation

There are many uses for solar panels, including charging electronics and powering your house. If you’re purchasing a solar panel to bring with you on a trip, consider buying a portable one that doesn’t require installation. However, if you plan on using solar panels to power your home, you’ll need to have them installed on your roof, which will require professional installation and cost several thousand dollars.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do solar panels work?

Solar cells have two layers of silicon sandwiched between two conductive layers. These layers are covered by anti-reflective glass to prevent any of the light from bouncing off and going unused. When light hits the cells, it causes the electrons to move, which creates electricity.

How long do solar panels last?

On average, solar panels last for 20 years. Because solar panels lose about 1% of their efficiency every year, you’ll want to consider switching them out after they reach 80% efficiency.

How do I clean my solar panels?

Dirt, bird droppings, and other debris on your panels make them less efficient, so you’ll have to routinely clean them. Before cleaning them, read your manufacturer’s manual for specific instructions. If your manual doesn’t provide cleaning instructions, follow these basic guidelines:

  • Use a garden hose to gently spray the glass with water to remove debris.
  • If you don’t have a garden hose, fill a bucket with warm water and gentle soap, and use a cloth or sponge to lightly wipe debris off of the glass.

Why Trust The This Old House Reviews Team

This Old House has empowered homeowners for more than four decades with top-notch home improvement content in the form of television programs, print media, and digital content on its website and social media platforms. The This Old House Reviews Team focuses on creating in-depth product and service review content to help inform your purchasing decision for just about any item or resource that you might need for your home. The This Old House Reviews Team has written over 1,000 reviews on products in the home space, from cordless drills to kitchen trash cans, lawn mowers, and dining room decorations.

We recommend products in each review using an intensive research process, spending hours combing through the best available models on Amazon. For a product to make our list of top picks, it must hold a solid sales record on Amazon, have consistently positive customer reviews, and offer unique features, among other factors. After narrowing down our list of recommendations, we conduct additional research and sometimes in-person testing to ensure that the products meet our standards. Once we conclude the research phase, we craft a well-rounded, user-friendly article that includes our recommended products and additional information to help homeowners like you make the right purchase.

To share feedback or ask a question about this article, send a note to our Reviews Team at reviews@thisoldhousereviews.com.