silfab solar panel review

Silfab solar panels: the complete review

Silfab is a Canada-based solar photovoltaics (PV) manufacturer offering monocrystalline and bifacial solar panels to customers throughout the world. The company was founded in 2010 and is one of the few major solar panel brands to manufacture its products exclusively in North America. Their all-black, SIL NL series of panels are very power dense, and are matched with an unbeatable 30-year warranty. As a result, Silfab is one of the most popular brands in offers to homeowners and businesses shopping for solar on the EnergySage Solar Marketplace. 

EnergySage has reviewed the product specifications of each Silfab solar panel series to make your solar research process easier. As the leading online marketplace for homeowners considering solar, EnergySage is uniquely positioned to evaluate the technical specifications of Silfab solar panels and help you compare them to other manufacturers on the market. 

This is an unbiased review: EnergySage is not paid to review brands or products, nor do we earn money from affiliate advertising in this article. The content of this blog is based on research and information available at the time of writing. Learn more about our mission and how we make money as a company.


Key takeaways


  • Silfab’s solar panels range in efficiency from 19.2% to 21.4%, and they have an output warranty lasting for 25 years.
  • Silfab solar panels cost between $2.45 and $3.09/W on the EnergySage Marketplace – that’s $14,700 to $18,540 for a 6 kW system, before the federal solar tax credit.
  • Shop for Silfab solar panels (and many other brands!) today on the EnergySage Marketplace.

How Silfab solar panels compare to other panel manufacturers

There are four key metrics that you should review as you evaluate solar panel quality: efficiency, performance, warranties, and price. EnergySage has developed Silfab solar panel reviews for each metric to help make your solar decision easier.

Based on EnergySage’s analysis, Silfab solar panels are a smart choice for your money. The majority of Silfab panels are mid to mid-upper tier, as some have higher efficiency ratings and longer warranty offerings that put them a cut above more standard solar panel options. They’re also manufactured in Canada, making them a particularly popular choice for shoppers comparing solar quotes on the EnergySage Solar Marketplace who are concerned with purchasing North American-made products.

Take a look at how Silfab solar panels compare against other leading panel manufacturers that are frequently featured in offers to homeowners and businesses shopping for solar on the EnergySage Solar Marketplace. You can learn more about each of these criteria in the breakdown below.

Efficiency

The term “solar panel efficiency” refers to how well a solar panel captures sunlight and converts it into useful electricity. In the same conditions, a high-efficiency solar panel will produce more electricity than a lower-efficiency panel of the same size. For this reason, a higher efficiency rating is generally preferable.

The efficiency of your Silfab panels will vary depending on the specific model that you choose for your system. Panels in Silfab’s product line have an efficiency rating of 19.2% to 21.4%.

Performance (Temperature Coefficient)

For this portion of EnergySage’s Silfab solar panel reviews, we use the temperature coefficient to evaluate solar panel performance. The temperature coefficient is an indicator of how well your solar panel can handle less-than-ideal conditions. Solar panels, like other electronic equipment, perform better when they are kept cool (ideally around 25° C/77° F). The temperature coefficient tells you how much your panel’s performance will change during hot sunny summer days.

For every degree above 25° C (77° F), your solar panel’s electricity production will decrease by its temperature coefficient. For example, the Silfab SIL-320 NL panel has a temperature coefficient of -0.36%/°C. This means that, if the panel’s temperature increases by one degree from 25° C (77° F) to 26° C (79° F), its electricity production will decrease by 0.36%. If its temperature increases all the way to 35° C (95° F), electricity production will reduce by 3.6%.

Your solar panels will likely see more than a few hot and sunny days over the course of each year, so ideally, they will have the lowest temperature coefficient possible. The best Silfab panels have temperature coefficients of -0.36%/°C.

Warranties

Whether you’re buying a TV, a car, or solar panels, the manufacturer should stand behind their product with a strong warranty. A solar panel’s materials warranty (sometimes referred to as the product or equipment warranty) is a guarantee from the manufacturer that they will replace your panel if it fails as a result of manufacturing defects or environmental issues.

Silfab offers a 25-year warranty, with a performance guarantee that was increased in mid 2020.

Check out our in-depth review of Silfab’s warranty.

How much do Silfab panels cost? 

For many homeowners, the final decision around the solar equipment you choose rests on cost. The total price you pay for a solar energy system with Silfab panels will vary depending on the other equipment (such as inverters and mounts) used in the installation, as well as the characteristics of your roof.

To identify the range of prices for Silfab PV systems, we analyzed quotes including Silfab solar panels that homeowners received from installers on the EnergySage Solar Marketplace. Most Silfab PV systems are typically priced between $2.45 and $3.09 per watt, which makes them a strong value in the market for home solar.

This means that, for a 6 kW system, your gross cost (before you subtract any tax credits or other incentives) would be anywhere from $14,700 to $18,540. Additionally, most homeowners end up paying much less than the total gross cost. With the 26 percent federal tax credit for solar, which everyone is eligible for, a 6 kW system with Silfab panels would cost anywhere from $10,878 to $13,720. There are plenty of state-level solar incentives and rebates that can help you reduce upfront costs even further.

How to find the best price on Silfab solar panels

The best way to determine whether Silfab offers the best solar panels for your home is to review multiple quotes with different solar equipment options before making a decision. When you compare all of your options on the EnergySage Solar Marketplace, you’ll find the right combination of price and quality that meets your needs.

Many of our qualified, pre-vetted solar installers offer Silfab in their quotes to EnergySage users. When registering, simply note in your profile that you’re interested in receiving quotes that include Silfab panels for your home.


12 thoughts on “Silfab solar panels: the complete review

  1. Charles

    I have a system with 22 silvan panels on the garage roof. They have accumulated dust and pollen on their surface since installation. What’s the best approach to cleaning them? Is a Rain-X product suitable?

    Reply
    1. Travis

      Short answer: no. I would not suggest RainX or any repellents. Different chemicals that are made to coat surfaces can adsorb or reflect different spectrums of light, degrading the production ability of your panels. RainX themselves notes that its not suggested too.
      https://www.rainx.com/faq/rainx-original-glass-treatment-safe-use-solar-panels/

      That said, if seasonal rain isn’t cleaning them, you can use water and cloth. Theres even companies like sola-tecs that make products for this purpose if you want to go that route. The site below says as much, and from talking to my installer they agree in avoiding cleaning agents. More importantly if you need a cleaning agent for some reason, make sure you check your warranty first.
      https://www.solarpowerworldonline.com/2020/05/pro-tip-never-use-soap-to-clean-dirty-solar-panels/

      Reply
  2. Jo

    I don’t understand why everyone is jumping on the OMG China. China is known to manufacture most solar panels HOWEVER this is a Candian Company. It says it in the description above and in my research, it’s also manufactured in the U.S.

    And tell me something useful in your comments – ratings, efficiency, mono vs. poly, the average cost per watt – and your experience with it – that’s what I want to hear. Not the whining about a china company. Make a good solar panel and then you’ll get my attention and my $$.

    Reply
  3. Cliff Johnston

    Jason, what are the differences, prices and quality of the four different panels as listed. SLA-M
    SLG-M

    SLA-X
    SLG-X

    Reply
  4. Pey

    @ Jason — I definitely agree with your assessment of Chinese materials. However, you do receive a 30% federal tax credit ITC on solar products made anywhere. Which can come in handy when all your Chinese panels go bad and need to be replaced.

    @Bill — hold on to that 30% tax credit, you’re going to need it when all your Chinese solar panels fail.

    Reply
  5. Jason

    @Bill, you misunderstood the “cost per watt”. That was an “Installed cost”, which includes all labor, parts and accessory devices for a “complete system”. I know, for a fact, that NOTHING that comes from china, at the moment, will come close to this value. You will have failures after two years and NO SUPPORT, because the company that made your stuff, is gone and unreachable by US lawyers. You will have to buy your system five to ten times over, or just buy this system once.

    Youtube real-world use of china-dream/nightmares related to electronics and solar systems. You are also forgetting the 30% incentive that you WILL NOT GET from a China producer. Only from a North-American producer. Yes, Canada is part of North-America…

    Reply
  6. Bill Stewart

    Hey,… I’m trying to save money here.. @ $2.86-$3.35 per/watt, I would be spending $88,000 at the lowest tier.., for a 31 – 36 kilowatt FIT power generation facility…
    It would cost me, before duties imposed because “these” people are not cost-effective (labor/supply ends), I’m looking to spend about $30,000 for the same panels from China, FOB Toronto, and my trucking costs..
    Where do you think I’m going to purchase my panels..??
    This is ridiculous to pay that amount, for a Canadian manufactured product.. Way out of the ball park as far as my purchasing power..
    I am a small farmer looking to generate a residual income revenue for the future of this farm, and my Chinese wife’s son when he decides to move here, and take over the farming operation..

    Reply
    1. Carl

      Bill…. Did you Kung Fu your plans for solar or did you install a system?… Curious to know what size system, costs per what?, what brand of modules, and was your wife, wife’s son and your expectations met?

      Thanks,

      Conscience Observer

      Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.