Axitec Solar panels: expert review

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Solar panels from Axitec Solar USA
Axitec solar panels: ja, or nein?

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.

Does German solar brand Axitec Solar belong in this vaunted list of German champions? We’ll answer that question in this comprehensive expert review.

Key takeaways

  • Established in 2001, Axitec LLC is a German solar panel brand with a subsidiary in the U.S.
  • They design their solar panels in Germany but appear to primarily use OEM manufacturers in low-cost Asian locations.
  • At costs between $2.00-$2.60 per watt, Axitec is among the cheapest major solar panel brands on the market.
  • Their best solar panel, the AXIpremium XL HC BLK, offers solid mid-range performance when compared to other flagship solar panel models.
  • Their warranty is above average, especially if you opt for a model with a 25-year product warranty.
  • Axitec isn’t the biggest nor the best brand, but they offer great value for their price.

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    Axitec company profile

    Here are some key facts about Axitec solar modules:

    • AXITEC Energy GmbH & Co. KG (the official name of the company) was founded in 2001
    • Axitec’s global headquarters is in Böblingen, Germany
    • Axitec has an engineering and design team based in Germany; production of the solar panels takes place in ‘Asia and Europe’ 
    • Axitec has maintained an active presence in the U.S. since 2013
    • Their U.S. subsidiary, Axitec Solar USA, has an office in New Jersey and warehouses in California

    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. 

    Axitec solar panel 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.

    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 the figures above make clear, Axitec solar panels are cheaper than average. In fact, when we conducted a comparison of all of the top 20 solar panel manufacturers in the U.S. in 2021, 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 Panasonic 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. 

    See live prices from solar installers in your area

    Axitec solar panel models and performance

    Axitec currently offers two solar panel models suitable for residential use (i.e. 60-cell or 120 half-cells) in the U.S. market. Here are their key specifications, drawn from their official data sheets: 

    Axitec Solar's residential solar panel models
    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

    *Axitec’s flagship residential panel in the U.S.

    Both models use monocrystalline solar cells featuring half-cell technology, which helps prevent output losses when there is shade on the panels. 

    The AXIblackpremium panel has an all-black look, which is often preferred for its superior aesthetics.

    How Axitec solar panels compare to other brands 

    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 is 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. 

    Axitec solar panels warranty

    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. 

    Are Axitec solar panels worth buying?

    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 Panasonic 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. 

    Estimate solar panel costs and savings for your home
     

     - Author of Solar Reviews

    Zeeshan Hyder

    SolarReviews Blog Author

    Zeeshan is passionate about promoting renewable energy and tackling climate change. He developed these interests while studying at beautiful Middlebury College, Vermont, which has a strong focus on sustainability. He has previously worked in the humanitarian sector — for Doctors Without Borders — and in communications and journalism.

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