Last Updated on November 17, 2022 by Hooria Batool

When you consider the installation of solar panels, you typically think about costs, aesthetics, cost, and efficiency of energy. While these are crucial aspects, another factor in solar panels can influence all three factors: the different types of solar panel you pick from. Different types of solar panel available today will impact the manufacturing and installation costs and how they will appear in your home. This is among the most crucial aspects to consider when planning the installation of solar panels.

The best solar panel will be based on your particular situation and the kind of work you expect solar panels can do for you. This article will look at the different types of solar panel, their advantages and disadvantages, and how to pick the right solar panel for you.

What are the differences between three different types of solar panel?

Here are the three different types of solar panel.

Monocrystalline Solar Panels

The monocrystalline solar panel is the most ancient solar panel and the most advanced. They comprise about 40 Monocrystalline solar cells. They are constructed out of pure silicon. The crystal is pulled out of the vat slowly, allowing liquid silicon to solidify into a shell called an ingot. The wafers are then transformed into a cell, and the cells are put together to create the solar panel.

Monocrystalline solar cells are black due to how sunlight interacts with silicon. Although the cell’s color is black, they come in various styles and colors for the frames and back sheets. The monocrystalline cells are designed as squares, with the corners cut off, which means there’s a small gap between cells.

Polycrystalline Solar Panels

The polycrystalline solar panel is not a recent invention, but they’re increasing in both popularity and effectiveness. However, polycrystalline cells are constructed from pieces of the melted silicon crystal. The silicon crystal is put in a vat of melting silicon in manufacturing. Instead of removing it slowly, the crystal is allowed to break up and cool. These wafers are subsequently glued to form a panel of polycrystalline.

Polycrystalline cells have a blue hue due to how sunlight is reflected off the crystals. The sun’s light reflects off silicon particles differently as it would when a silicon cell is pure. The back frames and frames are made of silver and polycrystalline elements, but there could be variations. The cell’s shape is square, and there aren’t any gaps between the corners of cells.

Thin-Film Solar Panels

The solar cells are made by putting the primary material between thin sheets of electrically conductive material and then adding the glass layer in the middle to provide protection. The panels that are a-Si do contain silicon, but they do so using non-crystalline silicon. They are also coated with glass.

As the name implies, Thin-film panels can be identified because of their slim appearance. They’re about 350 times smaller than panels that use silicon wafers. However, thin-film frames can be quite large at times, resulting in the formation of the whole solar system resembling those of a monocrystalline and a polycrystalline. Thin-film cells are usually blue or black, based on the substance they are made of.

Apart from appearance and manufacturing, In addition to appearance and manufacturing, there are differences in how each of the kinds of solar cells performs. The main factors are cost and efficiency. Each sort of solar panel performs concerning efficiency and affordability, along with other aspects to think about.


Efficiency is the amount of power the different types of solar panel produce depending on their sunlight. Efficiency determines the amount of energy a solar panel will generate. However, polycrystalline panels typically reach 15-17 percent efficiency. The gap between these two panels is likely to close shortly as technology advances to improve the efficiency of polycrystalline panels. Thin-film typically has lower efficiency and provides less power than the crystalline options, with efficiency being just around 11 percent. The power capability of a thin-film display can be different, as there’s no standard size, and specific models can generate more power than other models.



The price of the different types of solar panel can be the deciding factor in investment in solar, and the kind of solar panels you select is one of the aspects that determine the price. The most affordable solar panels can be thin-film because they are manufactured at the least cost. CdTe and CdTe are the most affordable solar panels available. However, the CIGS are more costly. 

Thin-film frames are typically smaller, which means you will usually save on the cost of installation. However, monocrystalline is probably the least expensive at the moment. Making pure silicon is costly, and the frames and panels are heavy, resulting in higher costs for installation; however, the gap between polycrystalline and monocrystalline panels is likely to narrow as the innovators develop more efficient methods to produce monocrystalline solar cells.

Coefficient, hail resistance, and the fire resistance

Beyond the cost and efficiency, There are many other aspects to consider when selecting solar panels. One can be the coefficient of temperature. Solar panels made of polycrystalline or monocrystalline generally possess a thermal coefficient of -0.3 percent per degC to -0.5 percent per degree Celsius. Thin-film boards have coefficients that are closer to -0.2 percent per degC. Specific solar panels will generate more power than other types when temperatures increase. This is particularly crucial to consider when you live in a place such as North Carolina, where the temperatures can be pretty high.

Another essential aspect to think about will be the rating for the fire that can differ according to the kind of roof you have and the kind of roof you pick. It’s not the only natural catastrophe that can affect your roof, and you’ll need to think about hail ratings. Most polycrystalline and monocrystalline panels can withstand 25mm of rain falling at fifty miles an hour.

However, the detailed ratings can differ and affect the longevity of your solar panel. You may also want to acquire the technology of heterojunction solar cells (HJT) for your system that blends monocrystalline silicon wafers and Amorphous silicon. HJT is extraordinarily efficient and has a low-temperature coefficient, and there is no Light-Induced Decreasing (LID). In addition, you should think about LID since a decrease in efficiency will affect the amount of energy you can generate. The most effective type of solar panels.

So are monocrystalline. Polycrystalline. Is thin-film panel superior? The ideal type of solar panels in all different kinds of solar panels will depend on the intended use of the panels and the location they’ll be placed. Polycrystalline could be the most suitable panel option if you live in a home with large roof spaces or other properties. They are economical for large areas and offer sufficient energy efficiency and power. If you live in a home that has smaller sizes, monocrystalline solar panels could be the ideal choice. 

They are suitable for saving money on energy within a limited area. Monocrystalline solar panels, as well as polycrystalline solar panels, are great for houses and similar structures. Thin-film solar panels are seldom utilized in homes since they’re less efficient. Instead, solar panels made of thin film are great for commercial buildings that aren’t built to withstand the added weight of conventional panels. While thin-film solar panels aren’t as productive, commercial roofs can have more excellent space to cover more roof areas with panels.

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Throughout this guide, you will learn about the different types of solar panels available today. A surge in solar energy use has been attributed to the push for renewable energy sources. Almost 50% of the solar industry has been boosted by federal subsidies in the past 10 years. The solar sector continues to grow, so it’s essential to study the solar industry’s backbone: solar panels.