How Long Do Solar Panels Last?

Sustainability and efficiency are no longer just industry buzzwords, homeowners and businesses across the country are turning to solar power to make their lifestyles more sustainable while gaining energy independence. 

It is important to understand what the average lifespan of solar panels is to determine whether solar power is right for your home or business.

Our team at Super Solar discusses how long solar panels last, how you can extend their lifespan, and why degradation may occur. Keep reading to learn more! 

How Long Do Solar Panels Last? 

The industry standard for a solar system’s productive lifespan is 25-30 years. It’s important to note that a solar panel doesn’t die after 20-30 years, rather, their energy product declines by what their manufacturers consider to be a significant amount. 

Solar panels will work efficiently for many decades if they aren’t damaged by wind, debris, or other external factors. Solar panels are a great investment because they rarely break and are usually only damaged due to inclement weather or a poor racking setup. 

Learn More> Is Solar Power Reliable?

Why Does Degradation Occur?

Solar panels can degrade faster than expected for many reasons. Solar panels may degrade at a higher rate if:

  • They are exposed to extreme changes in climate
  • They experience heavy soiling
  • They are improperly installed

Rate of Degradation 

Over their lifetime, solar panels will show a reduced ability to absorb sunlight and convert it into energy, thus a lack of efficiency due to degradation. Keep in mind that it takes many years for this slow loss of efficiency to occur, and many factors can cause this degradation to occur. These factors and how quickly they cause solar panel degradation is known as the “degradation rate.” 

Higher quality solar panels with a low degradation rate will produce more energy over their lifetime. On average, a solar panel will lose 0.8% of its output each year. However, some manufacturers offer solar panels with degradation rates as low as 0.3%. 


Weather plays a crucial role in the longevity of solar panels. Solar panels are more efficient in cool weather, so extreme heat will cause solar systems to degrade faster. Heavy snowfall ( not something we worry about here in Tampa!) can accelerate degradation as well. 

Most solar manufacturers test and certify their solar panels to withstand inclement weather and storms. 

Installation Issues 

Solar panels aren’t usually prone to problems because they are built for durability. However, they should always be installed by a professional company like Super Solar, to ensure that they are installed correctly. 

Problems could occur later on if roofing problems aren’t addressed before solar panel installation, so make sure to do your research and hire a trusted and experienced solar installer from Super Solar to get the job done right. 

How Can I Extend My Solar System’s Lifespan?

Though solar panels are extremely durable, they will need some slight maintenance from time to time to keep them in optimal shape. Here are some ways to ensure that your solar system is working efficiently as long as possible: 

Work With a Reputable Solar Company

Trustworthy and experienced solar companies have the experience and education to install your system correctly, not to mention all those glowing reviews from previous customers! 

Have Your System Inspected 

Though solar panels are pretty much maintenance-free if production begins to decline, call a solar pro from Super Solar to check your system in person to look for any potential issues like loose racking, microcracks, exposed wiring, and more. 

Don’t try to dismantle your system on your own. You may do more damage or end up voiding your warranty! 

At Super Solar, we recommend an inspection and cleaning once a year to ensure that your solar panels are operating at their peak level. Call us to schedule your solar system inspection today! 

Maintain and Replace Batteries 

If your solar system includes a backup battery system, consider the periodic maintenance that you will need to perform on the batteries. Most lithium-ion and sealed lead-acid batteries need to be inspected periodically. Their warranties generally last between 3-10 years. 

You can extend the life of your solar backup battery system by inspecting the batteries periodically and replacing them when needed. 

Keep Your Panels Clean 

Though solar panels require very little maintenance, you can do your part to extend their lifespan by keeping them clean and clear of debris, leaves, dirt, and more. 

If you notice any debris or damage on your panels but cannot safely access them, call Super Solar to assist you! 

Learn More> Solar Panel Maintenance 101 

Install Solar with Super Solar Today! 

Harness the power of the sun and install a solar panel system with Super Solar today. You’ll soon be on your way to energy independence! Call our pros at Super Solar to schedule a solar consultation today; (813) 680-5627!