The Independent’s journalism is supported by our readers. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn commission. Why trust us?

Best solar panels in the UK 2024

Get Solar Panels Quotes
The average home can save £1,190 every year with solar panels
Do you rent or own your home?

When judging solar panels, our experts are looking for the ones which offer good value for money and are best in certain situations. Our best overall solar panel offers a great balance between power output, lifespan, and cost.

We would recommend the Project Solar UK Evolution Titan 445 which, depending on your configuration, will generate plenty of electricity to power your home for a reasonable price.

Needing the best solar panels depends on your energy goals, budget, and location. While high-efficiency panels offer more power in less space, mid-range panels might meet your needs at a lower cost.

When judging the best solar panels in the UK, we are looking for ones that offer excellent value for money and excel in key areas, including efficiency, reliability, power, and performance in low-light conditions. Our best overall solar panel 2024 – the Project Solar UK Evolution Titan 445 – perfectly balances power output, lifespan, and cost. Depending on your configuration, it’ll generate plenty of electricity to power your home for a reasonable price.

In this guide, our experts explain the key aspects of purchasing the best solar system – from understanding the cost of solar panels, and how residential panels work to recognising the lead manufacturers – before unpacking the five top solar panels in the UK in 2024.

Important note: Not all of the brands whose panels are mentioned in this guide install solar panels. The best and most cost-effective way for you to purchase the panels we mention here is to compare quotes from local installers. You can request quotes from up to four local installers using our short form – it takes a minute to fill out, and is completely free to use.

Where do you want to install solar panels?
It takes just 60 seconds

Our research into the best solar panels

We’ve compared more than 50 solar panels from 13 best-in-class manufacturers, evaluating them to decide the best overall panel. We considered which rated highest on efficiency, reliability, power output, low-light productivity, degradation rates, and other key specs. We’ve also looked at how credible the manufacturers are regarding expertise, experience, and ethical and sustainable practices. To find out more, read our article on how we review solar panels.

50
Panels reviewed
300
Customer reviews read
13
manufacturers compared
50
hours comparing products

What are the best solar panels on the market?

The best solar panels for UK homes have high efficiency ratings (over 20 per cent), a solid power output (anything from 420W upwards), and technically advanced features that could boost efficiency, increase longevity, and elevate tolerance to shade or other adverse weather conditions. The best solar PV panels are usually made from monocrystalline cells, which are more efficient than cheaper polycrystalline cells.

Best solar panels at a glance

PanelOutputEfficiencyPrice
Project Solar UK Evo Super Max Series455W22.01%POA
SunPower Maxeon 6 AC440W22.80%POA
Jinko Tiger Neo 420W N-Type 54 Cell420W21.51%£76
JA Solar JAM72S30 Mono PERC Half-Cell MBB550W21.30%£164
Suntech Ultra V Mini 405Wp405W20.70%£170

Best overall: Project Solar UK Evo Super Max Series 455W

Project Solar UK Evolution Titan 445
The Project Solar UK Evolution Titan 445 (Project Solar)

Key specifications

Efficiency 21.01 per cent
Power output 455W
Degradation Not specified
Price On enquiry
Warranty Lifetime
Weight 23.5kg

Pros

10 per cent more energy generation per metre squared than many other models Designed to deliver optimal energy generation throughout the year Lifetime guarantee

Cons

Prices only available on request

The Evo Super Max 455 solar panels are the newest Project Solar has to offer. Their solid output and efficiency, combined with the most generous warranty there is on the market, lands them as the best solar panel overall. 

The panels are built with Passivated Emitter and Rear Contact (PERC) cell technology. This involves an additional passivation layer that increases conversion efficiency and can produce six to 12 per cent more usable energy than conventional solar panels.

The Evo Super Max 455 comes smart-ready and can be integrated into a smart solar system. (Smart systems use real-time data to monitor energy production using smart meters and inverters.) The Super Max will suit all-sized homes thanks to its high efficiency of up to 21.01 per cent. It retains optimum performance in low-light conditions, meaning cloudy days and winter months shouldn’t affect performance.

Read our full Project Solar review.

Most efficient solar panel: SunPower Maxeon 6 AC

SunPower Maxeon 6 AC
The SunPower Maxeon 6 AC (SunPower)

Key specifications

Efficiency Up to 22.8 per cent
Power output 420W – 440W
Degradation 98.0 per cent warrantied output for one year, then a minimum of 0.25 per cent degradation annually after that
Price On enquiry
Warranty 25 years standard, 40 years with registration
Weight 21.8kg

Pros

Very low degradation – 0.25 per cent annually after the first year 40-year warranty Guarantees 92 per cent efficiency after 25 years

Cons

Limited availability

Sunpower’s Maxeon 6 AC couples a high output with a high efficiency rating of up to 22.8 per cent. The panels are designed to be crack-resistant, withstand corrosion, and sport enhanced shade tolerance. 

Generally, solar panels are designed so that the system is only as strong as its weakest panel; this can lower the efficiency of the whole array if there is an issue with just one panel. However, the Sunpower Maxeon AC solar panels are fitted so that each panel can work independently, improving overall system power by around 50 per cent. This means less surface area is required to achieve the same energy output.

The Maxeon 6 AC panels also feature enhanced power point tracking, which helps maximise output – even in cloudy conditions.

Read our full SunPower solar panels review.

Most reliable solar panel: Jinko Tiger Neo 420W N-Type 54 Cell

Jinko Tiger Neo 420W N-Type 54 Cell
The Jinko Tiger Neo 420W N-Type 54 Cell (Jinko)

Key specifications

Efficiency 20.48 – 21.51 per cent
Power output 400W – 420W
Degradation 0.40 per cent annual degradation over 30 years
Price Approximately £76
Warranty 25-year product warranty and 30-year linear power warranty
Weight 22kg

Pros

Small degradation factor – 0.4 per cent after year one Good power warranty of 30 years Great value for money

Cons

There are more efficient panels

Jinko’s Tiger Neo panels have Super Multi BusBar (SMBB) technology to improve power output and increase maximum efficiency to 21.51 per cent with a maximum power output (Pmax) of 420Wp (Watt peak) under standard testing conditions; similar solar panels on the market usually sit around 350Wp to 400Wp with 20 per cent efficiency. 

Better still, the Jinko Tiger Neo 420W N-Type 54 Cell includes Potential Induced Degradation (PID) resistance and enhanced protection against extreme environmental conditions such as rain, wind and snow. This makes them the most reliable solar panel in the UK as, even in harsh weather, they’ll continue to be productive. So, if you live on the coast or if your home gets shaded when it’s particularly windy, you’ll still be able to generate a stable amount of energy using these panels.

Jinko offers a 25-year warranty on the product and 30 years on linear power – coverage which more than doubles the market standard of 12 years.

Read our full Jinko Solar solar panels review.

Most powerful solar panel: JA Solar JAM72S30 Mono PERC Half-Cell MBB

JA Solar JAM72S30 Mono PERC Half-Cell MBB
The JA Solar JAM72S30 Mono (JA Solar)

Key specifications

Efficiency 20.3 – 21.3 per cent
Power output 525W – 550W
Degradation 0.55 per cent linear degradation over 25 years
Price Approximately £164
Warranty 12-year product warranty and 25 linear power output warranty
Weight 28.10kg

Pros

Fantastic power output for the money Good efficiency Great weather resistance

Cons

Relatively short product warranty Heavier than many other panels A lower-than-average heat resistance of -0.30 per cent for every degree over 25°C

JA Solar’s panels have the highest power output of our reviewed and best-rated solar panels. Designed with shading and weather in mind and packed with desirable features – such as PERC cells and a high resistance to hot spot degradation – they’re a sound addition to any home where energy usage is high. 

The panels are quite heavy at 28.10kg, but their energy output easily compensates for the extra weight. Considering an output of 420W and above is standard for solar panels, JA Solar’s 525W to 550W panel is powerful – especially when paired with an efficiency rating of up to 21.3 per cent. In short, this means you can expect a healthy return of energy from these solar panels, even in lower light conditions.

Read our full JA Solar review.

Best low-light solar panels: Suntech Ultra V Mini 405Wp

Suntech Ultra V Mini 405Wp
The Suntech Ultra V Mini 405Wp (Suntech)

Key specifications

Efficiency 20.7 per cent
Power output 405W
Degradation 2 per cent in the first year, 0.55 per cent annually
Price Approximately £170
Warranty 15-year product warranty and 25-year performance warranty
Weight 21kg

Pros

Good value for money Optimised power generation in shady conditions

Cons

Degradation is higher than many panels – 0.55 per cent after the first year

All solar panels will work, to some extent, in cloudy weather – but low-light conditions are undesirable. So, if your home is shaded by trees, panels designed with low-light enhancements are a crucial investment. 

The Ultra V series includes modules comprising 182mm silicon wafers that optimise this best solar panel’s layout and power generation. What’s more, these modules operate well in low light and more adverse weather conditions for a more consistent energy output during daylight hours. 

Excellent weak light performance means that even in the early morning, your solar panels could absorb light – so you won’t need to wait until peak hours, typically between 11 am and 4 pm, to start drawing on your home’s solar energy supply. Suntech’s Ultra V panels perform highly at lower temperatures and can withstand wind and other harsh weather, including heavy snow. 

Read our full Suntech solar panels review.

Other solar panels we reviewed

Aiko N-Type ABC Series – 72 Cell

Efficiency: 23.9 per cent 
Power output: 615W
Degradation: 0.35 per cent annual degradation from year two to year 30
Price: Approximately £188
Warranty: 15 years for product and performance warranty of 30 years

Pros

Long lifespan of 40 years High power output means a 6kW system can be achieved with 10 panels Full black design

Cons

Heavy panels

The Aiko Solar N-Type ABC White Hole offers almost 24 per cent efficiency, surpassing the average of around 20 per cent, and its 615W power output is among the highest available. Unlike other panels that lose effectiveness over time, this model maintains approximately 89 per cent of its initial capacity after decades, equating to about 550W. This means that by 2053, it might still outperform many new panels on the market. However, its price remains undisclosed, posing a challenge for cost comparison with similar models.

Read our full Aiko solar panels review.

REC Alpha Pure-R

Efficiency: 22.3 per cent 
Power output: 420W
Degradation: 0.25 per cent after year one
Price: £160 
Warranty: 25-year product warranty, and performance and labour warranties of 25 years, but only if installed by a REC-certified installer. Panels installed by any other installers are only eligible for a 20-year product warranty

Pros

Lead-free manufacturing High-strength frame design Good high-temperature performance – 0.24 per cent per degree over 25°C

Cons

REC’s product warranty doesn’t cover inverters, unlike many other warranties

The REC Alpha Pure-R panel stands out with its advanced technology, offering superior performance compared to others on the market. Constructed from 80 silicon cells, these panels are assembled with lead-free, gapless technology, encased in 3.2mm glass and framed with black aluminium. They achieve a peak efficiency of 22.3 per cent and boast a minimal annual degradation rate of only 0.25 per cent after the first year – significantly lower than the typical 0.5 per cent to 0.7 per cent. Furthermore, REC Alpha Pure panels have a temperature coefficient of -0.24 per cent/°C, ensuring negligible performance loss in extreme temperatures.

Read our full REC solar panels review.

Get quotes on the best solar panels in your area

Discover how much solar panels would cost for your home by answering a few quick questions

What makes the best solar panel?

L shaped solar panel array on orange slate roof
What qualifies as the “best solar panels” will vary from house to house, but quality and efficiency will be important universally (Adobe)

It’s important to balance the power output, efficiency and cost of any panel you’re considering, and if you have a house that isn’t in a shaded area and doesn’t experience regular harsh weather, you might benefit from a more basic solar panel with a lower output and efficiency level.

However, many top-rated designs consider roof orientation, potential for degradation, and light levels. Most older solar panels typically only worked well in sunlight, for instance, but the latest enhanced models can now use daylight,. This is ideal if your panels face a direction other than south, or if you have a tree nearby that could decrease your panels’ direct access to sun.

Similarly, if you’re looking to go more off-grid or maximise return on your solar panel investment – which you can do by exporting energy back to the National Grid using the Smart Export Guarantee (SEG) – looking for the highest output and best efficiency percentage will be vital to finding the best solar panels for you.

Make sure you speak to suppliers and national and regional installers from the start to clearly explain your requirements and to better understand how they can accommodate those needs. You can do this quickly and easily with our free quote-finding form – simply fill it out to be paired with the best solar panel rates from leading UK suppliers.

Finally, don’t be afraid to compare, or even to walk away, when the suggested solar panels installation doesn’t suit your home or budget; solar panels are a big investment and you should be informed and confident in your decision.

The following are the key attributes all the best solar panels have, including efficiency, power output, guarantees and degradation, plus their smart and sustainable credentials.

Solar panel efficiency

Solar panels are given efficiency ratings, which tend to range between 18 and 22 per cent. The higher the rating, the better, as this will correspond to how much electricity the solar panels will produce.  

Different factors, such as roof pitch, location, and size of the solar array, will also affect the efficiency of even the best solar panels. The aim is to ensure the panels are exposed to as much sunlight as possible, and choosing solar panels with added features to prevent elements that could impact their efficiency, and therefore power output, is important.

Solar panel power output

Output is how much energy you can expect your panels to generate. The Pmax, as marked up on data sheets, defines the maximum power output of a module in clear and bright conditions. As with efficiency ratings, the higher the number, the better. Most brands share both the Standard Test Conditions (STC) and Nominal Operating Cell Temperature (NOCT) in their data sheets. The latter measurement tends to be more realistic as it considers fluctuations in temperature, weather conditions and time of day. 

Below are the values you can expect in terms of energy generation per day, per module, based on the Pmax provided by these manufacturers using standard test conditions:

Module brand and typeW per moduleEnergy generated per panel/day* (W)
Project Solar Evolution Titan 4454451,891
SunPower Maxeon 6 AC4401,870
Jinko Tiger Neo 54c 415W N-Type4201,785
JA Solar JAM72S305502,338
Suntech Ultra V Mono 405Wp4051,721

*based on 4.25h UK sunlight hours

Guarantees and solar panel degradation

Solar panels can last for up to 50 years, but typically there will be degradation over a 25- to 30-years period. This means that even the best solar panels’ efficiency will decrease over time. 

There are different types of degradation and suppliers and brands will mark up the estimated degradation on data sheets; it’s usually over a period of years from the onset or after a specific period, such as one year. Keep an eye out for enhanced PID resistance when picking solar panels for your home, as this should help maintain the panel’s generation rates over time. Without this, the panels are more prone to reducing in power output year after year. 

Solar panel guarantees are also an important detail to look out for. Examine how long the power output efficiency will be covered for so that, should the efficiency of your solar panels decrease far quicker than expected due to a manufacturing fault – or should they break – you’ll be able to get a replacement or another form of compensation.

Most domestic solar products come with a 12-year warranty; linear power warranties tend to start at 25 years, and some manufacturers offer a combined guarantee. However, read the terms and conditions carefully, as warranties will vary; and know how to report any complaints you have with your solar panels.

Smart and sustainable credentials

When investing in solar panels, it’s important to keep brand credibility in mind, as well as customer service, ease of installation, good ethics and the manufacturer’s stance on sustainability. Ensure that the panels are thoughtfully manufactured and look out for low/no lead or fluorine use in production. Similarly, check reviews, online ratings from websites such as TrustPilot, and certifications from industry bodies, like Trustmark.

Most solar panels can also be connected to smart meters and solar monitoring apps, so ask your supplier or solar panel installer for details about this; it’s a good way to keep track of how much energy your panels are producing, and how reliant you still are on the National Grid. It’s also especially useful if you’re eligible for the SEG, where you could make cash back for any energy you put back into the grid.

Do you need the best solar panels?

Finding the best solar panels is all about finding which product is right for your home and individual circumstance. Take into account your home position, orientation and energy usage. You should also consider any location concerns, for instance overhanging trees, shade from other buildings, or if you’re often exposed to harsh weather. Your decision to find the best solar panels should also include if you want to export excess energy back to the grid, or if you want to install solar battery storage alongside your array.

How to get the best deals on solar panels

From choosing the best solar panels for efficiency and sustainability, securing the best deal for your investment is the next step. 

Our solar quote process is designed to be informative, transparent, and supportive, ensuring you feel confident every step of the way.

1. Submit your details

Fill out our simple form with some basic information about your home and energy usage. This enables us to provide you with the most relevant options and quotes.

2. Receive customised quotes

You’ll receive customised quotes from some of our trusted suppliers based on the information you provide. These quotes will offer various options, from the most advanced solar panels to more budget-friendly choices, all tailored to your specific needs.

3. Compare your options

Take your time to compare each quote’s features, benefits, and costs. Our platform makes it easy to weigh your options side by side so you can make an informed decision.

4. Make an informed decision

Armed with comprehensive quotes and expert advice, you’re ready to make an informed decision. Choose the solar panel system that best meets your needs, fits your budget, and aligns with your sustainability goals.

Frequently asked questions about best solar panels

The best solar panels for your home will depend on your budget, property size and orientation and your household’s energy usage . Start your search by comparing quotes and speaking to various installers about what they have in stock, costs, and what will work best for your home. 

The key elements to be aware of when researching the best solar panels are efficiency, power rating and enhanced design, like for example, if it’s built with Passivated Emitter and Rear Contact (PERC) cell technology and whether it runs off a string or microinverter system.

Researching the supplier you’re buying from is important, too – so be sure to thoroughly explore existing customer reviews and speak with neighbours who have installed solar panels for an honest, accurate perspective.

This year (2024) is a great year to invest in solar panels. As we approach net zero targets, you’ll be playing a significant role in offsetting CO2 emissions. Solar panels are costly to install, but have experienced a sharp cost decrease over the years, especially considering the solar panels grants available, and the investment is a great way to save on energy bills long-term and be generally less reliant on the grid.

The best angle for solar panels is between 30 and 40 degrees. During the solar panel installation process, your installer should consider the angle of your roof. The orientation and angle of your roof affect how much sunlight your solar panels will receive. Roofs at optimal angles maximise sunlight exposure and tend to convert more solar energy into usable electricity.

Solar panels calculator

See how much it would cost to get solar panels installed on your home.

How many bedrooms does your home have?
Where do you live?
Number of panels needed
0
Cost of system
£0
Annual savings
£0
Weekly savings
£0
Daily savings
£0
You'll break even after
0 years

The data used to power this calculator is sourced from various solar companies and industry bodies, including the UK government, the Energy Saving Trust and Ofgem. Please note that costs are estimated and based on a UK average, and should not be taken as the exact price you would pay. If you’d like to get an accurate quote for solar panels, then you can use this form to get an estimate from one of our trusted partners.

Katharine Allison

Energy Saving Writer

As Independent Advisor’s energy saving expert, Katharine, a keen advocate for sustainability, is an authority on solar panels, double glazing, and cutting-edge renewable energy technologies. Her dedication merges with a commitment to enlighten and steer readers toward embracing eco-friendly solutions and the latest trends in sustainability.

With over 10 years of experience, she has worked with some of the UK’s leading companies and publications, including the Federation of Master Builders, Architectural Digest, and Denon Construction. 

Katharine is particularly passionate about consumer causes and animal welfare and has art, philosophy, and psychology degrees. She lives with her sled dogs in East Sussex.