Although expensive, a good solar panel can represent a great investment by reducing your electrical bills considerably over the following years, resulting in great savings in the long run. At the same time, a solar panel can increase the value of your property.
Furthermore, a portable solar panel allows you to obtain electrical power even in areas that are outside of the range of the electrical grid. These reasons make getting a solar panel a smart investment. However, it can be hard to know which one to buy.
Quick Comparison: Renogy Vs. Goal Zero
|Product||Maximum Power||Open Circuit Voltage||Weight|
|#1. Goal Zero|
Our Best Pick
|#2. Renogy |
Solar Energy Conversion Efficiency
Referring to how much electricity a single panel produces per surface area, the rate of conversion efficiency is one of the most important aspects of a solar panel.
Efficiency percentages range from 10% (for cheaper thin film panels) to 20% (for the more advanced polycrystalline panels). Normally, anything above 14% efficiency is considered acceptable. However, if you have limited roof space, you may want more efficiency.
In the particular cases of both solar panels featured in this review, conversion efficiency is one of their strongest selling points. At 16% and 18% respectively, both the Goal Zero and the Renogy are very efficient.
It must be noted, however, that the Renogy solar panel has a slight advantage of around 2% conversion efficiency. However, the Goal Zero can also produce a surprising amount of energy using a relatively small area of your roof.
There is no doubt that solar panels can be a great investment. However, this is only true to the extent to which they will last. For that reason, for most people, durability is a big concern when trying to choose a particular model of solar panel.
In terms of physical durability, both the Renogy and the Goal Zero are up there with the best.
The former has a resistant aluminum frame that provides a great level of protection, allowing the panel to last for decades. The latter, however, combines lightweight aluminum and rugged tempered glass, making it even more durable than its counterpart.
Often, people who own solar panels need to be able to carry them to different locations. This is especially true whenever they own property that’s outside the range of electrical grids. Luckily, both the Renogy and the Goal Zero can be carried with relative ease.
Because they are made of lightweight materials such as aluminum and tempered glass, both solar panel models can be taken anywhere. However, the Goal Zero solar panel has the capability of being folded into a briefcase-like shape, making it easier to carry around.
Ease of Use and Installation
Being portable, both these solar panel models need to be easy and quick to install.
With that in mind, the Renogy has pre-installed diodes in its junction box. It also comes with two 31-inch cables with MC4 connectors for easy use. Thanks to its pre-drilled holes on the back of the panel, it can be easily mounted on a rooftop or the ground.
In order to facilitate its use, the Goal Zero can be hooked up using a single cable. Its connection to other compatible solar panels is also amazingly easy and straightforward. However, it can be difficult to mount, particular on uneven and slanted surfaces.
Power tolerance is a term that refers to the accuracy of the specified wattage in practical applications. Solar panels with a good power tolerance produce a wattage that’s both stable and reliable.
Nowadays, the best solar panels have a “positive only” tolerance. This means that they will only go over the specified wattage, never producing a lower wattage. Luckily for customers, both the Renogy and the Goal Zero have a positive only tolerance.
Perhaps ironically, even though they are made to absorb sunlight, solar panels are not great at handling too much heat.
As they get hotter, the ability of solar panels to convert sunlight into electrical energy drops. For that reason, it’s important to get a model with temperature resistance. Solar panels range from -0.4% per °C to -0.5% per °C in temperature coefficient.
Thankfully, both the Renogy and the Goal Zero have a temperature resistance coefficients of -0.4% per °C. This means that they are not as negatively impacted by extreme temperatures as they could be.
There are two types of warranty for solar panels: The performance warranty and the manufacturer’s warranty. Most solar panels have a performance warranty of at least 25 years. However, the most important warranty is the manufacturer’s warranty.
In this aspect, the Goal Zero has a huge advantage over the Renogy. While the latter only has a one-year limited warranty, the former has a 5-year material and workmanship warranty.
After going through this review, it’s clear that, despite both being fantastic options, there is one solar panel that clearly stands out. Thanks to its durable materials, energy conversion efficiency, portability and overall quality, the Goal Zero Solar Panel is better than the Renogy Solar Panel.