Are you considering harnessing the power of the sun to generate electricity for your home or business in Victoria? Installing solar panels can be a smart and eco-friendly choice, but before you make the leap into renewable energy, it’s crucial to understand the ins and outs of solar panel warranties.

In this guide, we’ll break down the key aspects of solar panel warranties in Victoria in 2024, helping you navigate the world of solar power with confidence.

Why Warranties Matter

Before we dive into the specifics, let’s understand why warranties are so important when it comes to solar panels. A solar panel system is a significant investment, and you want assurance that your investment is protected. Warranties provide you with the confidence that your solar panels will perform as expected over the long term, and if any issues arise, you have a plan in place for resolution.

Types of Solar Panel Warranties

1. Performance Warranty:

The performance warranty of a solar panel guarantees its energy output over a specified period. In Australia, most solar panel manufacturers offer performance warranties ranging from 20 to 25 years. These warranties typically ensure that the panels will produce a certain percentage of their rated power output over the covered period.

2. Product Warranty:

The product warranty, also known as the equipment or material warranty, covers defects in the solar panels themselves. This warranty is essential for protecting against manufacturing defects or premature equipment failure. In Australia, product warranties commonly range from 10 to 25 years, depending on the manufacturer.

Understanding Performance Warranties

Performance warranties are a critical aspect of solar panel protection. They assure you that your panels will continue to generate electricity efficiently over the years.

Here’s what you need to know:

Degradation Rates:

Solar panels gradually lose efficiency over time due to factors like exposure to sunlight, weather conditions, and other environmental elements. Performance warranties specify the degradation rate, indicating how much efficiency the panels are expected to lose annually. It’s common to see degradation rates between 0.25% and 0.5% per year.

Guaranteed Performance Levels:

Manufacturers guarantee that the solar panels will produce a minimum percentage of their original power output at the end of the warranty period. For instance, a 25-year performance warranty might guarantee that the panels will still operate at 80% or more of their initial efficiency after two and a half decades.

Proactive Monitoring:

Some solar panel manufacturers offer proactive monitoring systems to track the performance of your solar panels in real-time. This can be a valuable feature, as it allows for early detection of any issues, facilitating timely maintenance or replacement under warranty.

The Importance of Product Warranties

While performance warranties focus on the energy output of solar panels, product warranties are all about the physical components.

Here’s what you should keep in mind:

Manufacturing Defects:

Product warranties protect against defects that may arise during the manufacturing process. This includes issues like faulty soldering, delamination, or other material defects that could impact the overall performance of the solar panels.

Coverage Period:

The length of the product warranty is a crucial factor. It typically ranges from 10 to 25 years. A longer warranty period indicates the manufacturer’s confidence in the durability and quality of their product.

Inverter Warranties:

In addition to the solar panels, pay attention to the warranty provided for the inverter – a critical component of the solar power system. Inverters typically have shorter warranty periods than solar panels, often ranging from 5 to 15 years.

Choosing the Right Warranty for You

Now that you understand the key components of solar panel warranties, let’s explore how to choose the right warranty for your specific needs:
Research Manufacturers:

Not all solar panel manufacturers are created equal. Research different companies and their reputation for standing behind their warranties. Look for manufacturers with a track record of reliability and customer satisfaction.

Compare Warranty Terms:

When evaluating solar panels, compare the terms of both performance and product warranties. Consider the degradation rate, guaranteed performance levels, and coverage periods. Opt for a combination that aligns with your expectations and budget.

Check Additional Features:

Some manufacturers offer additional features such as extended warranties, proactive monitoring, or comprehensive coverage. Evaluate these extras and determine if they provide added value for your specific circumstances.

Installer Warranties:

In addition to the manufacturer’s warranties, inquire about warranties offered by your solar panel installer. Some installers provide workmanship warranties, covering the installation process and ensuring that your system operates as intended.

Common Warranty Pitfalls to Avoid

While solar panel warranties offer protection, it’s essential to be aware of potential pitfalls:

Warranty Exclusions:

Read the fine print. Some warranties may exclude certain types of damage, such as damage caused by extreme weather conditions or unauthorized modifications. Be aware of these exclusions to avoid surprises down the line.

Understanding Warranty Claims:

Familiarise yourself with the process of making warranty claims. Know whom to contact and what documentation is required. A smooth claims process can make a significant difference in resolving issues promptly.

Regular Maintenance:

Keep in mind that warranties often require regular maintenance to remain valid. Follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for maintenance to ensure that your panels operate efficiently and that you can make warranty claims if needed.


Choosing solar panels for your home or business is a positive step toward a sustainable future. Understanding solar panel warranties is equally crucial to safeguard your investment. By considering the performance and product warranties, researching manufacturers, and being aware of common pitfalls, you can make an informed decision that aligns with your energy goals.