It gets hot here in Southwest Florida. And if you didn’t already know, solar photovoltaic panels lose performance as the temperature increases.
You heard that right. Solar panels want cool and clear days to perform the best. All solar panels have a rate at which the solar panels lose performance called the temperature coefficient. It is expressed in percent loss per degree Celsius. Panels are tested at 25ºC, and for each degree above that they lose power output in a linear fashion, all else being equal.
In this video, Florida Solar Design Group Principle Solar Designer Jason Szumlanski discusses solar panel temperature coefficients and whether you should be concerned.
Spoiler Alert: while you shouldn’t ignore this factor, you have to consider the totality of the situation. You would not want to pay a huge premium price for a small increase in performance. You would be better off just getting more solar panels, provided you have enough space.
Temperature coefficient is an overrated and overblown factor that salespeople like to use to push premium panels. There is nothing wrong with premium panels, but just know what you are paying for!