Axitec Solar panels: expert review
Individual panel prices
Prices of DIY kits
Installed system prices
Adidas. BMW. Miele. Porsche. Siemens. These are just some of the famous brands that have earned Germany a well-deserved reputation for design and manufacturing excellence. But what about when it comes to solar panels?
Does German solar brand Axitec Solar belong in this vaunted list of German champions? We’ll answer that question in this comprehensive expert review.
Here are some key facts about Axitec solar modules:
Although Axitec doesn’t provide clarity on the issue, it appears that they rely on Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEM) - most likely ones based in China - for the production of their panels.
Let’s now look at the cost. Solar energy systems using Axitec solar panels generally cost between $2.00-2.60 per watt before incentives and rebates. This places Axitec solar panels well below the average solar panel cost, which is roughly $3.00 per watt in the United States as of October 2021.
So, if you were to buy a typical 6kW solar system using Axitec solar panels, that would cost you between $12,000 and $15,600 before incentives. This works out to $3,400-$6,000 less than the average pre-incentive price of $18,000 for a 6kW system.
As you can see from the figures above, Axitec solar panels are cheaper than average. In fact, in July 2021, when we conducted a comparison of all of the top 20 solar panel manufacturers in the U.S., Axitec solar panels were tied with Yingli Solar as the second cheapest in the market, behind only JA Solar.
An important takeaway from Axitec’s price point is they aren’t seeking to compete against top-end ‘premium’ solar panels such as LG Solar and SunPower. Instead, Axitec is offering a more affordable solar panel aimed at budget-conscious consumers.
Also bear in mind that solar power costs can vary significantly based on your state, roof layout, and availability of incentives. To get a more precise estimate of how much solar panels will cost for your specific roof, check out our calculator below.
Axitec currently offers four residential solar panel models in the U.S. market. Here are their key specifications, drawn from their official data sheets:
|Model||Power output (DC)||Max. efficiency||Temperature coefficient|
|AXIpremium XL HC BLK*||360 - 375 W||20.59%||-0.35% / C|
|AXIblackpremium XL HC||350 - 370 W||20.31%||-0.35% / C|
|AXIpremiumlite 25 Years Edition||325 - 340 W||20.15%||-0.39% / C|
|AXIblackpremium X HC||320 - 330 W||19.56%||-0.39% / C|
*Axitec’s flagship U.S. model as of October 2021
The models with the names starting ‘AXIblackpremium’ are panels with an all-black look, which are sometimes preferred for their aesthetics.
In order to compare like with like, we’ll compare the performance of Axitec’s flagship solar panel model - the AXIpremium XL HC BLK - against the other flagship models currently on the market.
First let’s look at solar panel efficiency, which refers to the percentage of sunlight hitting the panels that gets converted to electricity. Axitec’s best panel offers an efficiency of 20.59%, which is a mid-range - the very best panels in 2021 offer efficiencies of 21-22%.
When it comes to temperature coefficient - which indicates how well solar panels perform in high temperatures - Axitec’s figure of -0.35% / Celsius is, once again, mid-range. The best solar panels have temperature coefficients of around -0.30% / C (in this spec, a lower number is better) while those at the bottom of the pack have figures of around -0.40% / C.
In summary, Axitec solar panels offer solid mid-range performance.
The warranties that Axitec offers on their panels are above average.
Depending on the model, Axitec offers product warranties of either 15 or 25 years. This is better than the industry standard warranty of 12 years.
Their performance guarantee, meanwhile, is about average for a top brand. They promise at least 85% output after 25 years. (For comparison’s sake, the very best brands offer a performance warranty of 90% or higher after 25 years).
Let’s start with the original question we posed in the intro of this article: are Axitec solar panels a world-beating brand? The answer is an unequivocal no. Among our ranking of the top 20 solar manufacturers in the U.S., we ranked Axitec as #13, as it earned a middling score across all categories.
That said, Axitec is not competing to be a premium brand. Instead, they aim to offer solid solar panels at prices that are well below average, thanks to outsourced manufacturing in Asia (most likely in China).
Now, on to the more important question: should you buy Axitec solar panels?
Well, if you want an affordable solar panel that offers mid-range performance and a respectable warranty - and like the idea of a German-designed product - then yes, Axitec is worth considering.
But if you’re after a safer choice, stick to large, reliable Tier 1 brands like Jinko Solar, Trina Solar, and the like. Alternatively, if it’s high-performance panels you want, and you’re willing to pay extra for them, then look into offerings by LG Solar or REC Group.
Whichever solar panel you choose, in most parts of the U.S. homeowners will see an excellent return on their solar investment. To see how the math for going solar stacks up for you, enter your address into our solar calculator below.
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