Panasonic vs. LG Solar Panels: Comparing Two Leading Brands

When Panasonic and LG are mentioned, you probably think about home appliances and electronic gadgets. But both companies have also become major players in the renewable energy industry, and they produce excellent solar panels.

LG solar panels on a snowy rooftop of a two story house with a gable roof

via LG Solar

EnergySage has listed Panasonic and LG among the four best solar brands in the US, along with REC and SunPower.

If you’re planning to install a solar power system for your home or business, you can achieve excellent results with either Panasonic or LG.

While the two brands are comparable, their products are not identical, and each brand excels in different aspects. Here we will provide a detailed comparison of their solar panels, focusing on the following features:

  • Main product lines available
  • Energy conversion efficiency
  • Typical costs per watt
  • Warranty conditions
  • Performance when used at high temperature

We previously published a detailed article about each brand, in case you want to read more about them. You can read them by clicking on the following links:

Panasonic and LG Solar Panels: Main Product Lines

Panasonic home solar panels on a metal roof

via Panasonic

As mentioned above, Panasonic and LG have both developed some of the best solar panels available in the industry. Panasonic offers the EverVolt series, while LG offers the NeON series, and both have comparable performance as you can see in the following table:

Solar Panel Efficiency Rating Wattage
Panasonic EverVolt Up to 21.7% Up to 380W
Panasonic EverVolt Black Up to 21.2% Up to 370W
LG NeON 2 Up to 21.1% Up to 380W
LG NeON R Up to 22.3% Up to 440W
LG NeON R Prime Up to 21.5% Up to 425W
LG NeON R ACe Up to 21.8% Up to 395W

LG is slightly ahead in sunlight conversion efficiency, reaching up to 22.3%. However, the 21.7% efficiency rating offered by Panasonic is also exceptional. In fact, LG has the 2nd highest efficiency in the solar industry, while Panasonic is in 3rd place.

For reference, the solar panel brand with the top efficiency is currently SunPower, reaching up to 22.8%.

The LG solar panels listed above have higher wattages, but that happens because they come in multiple sizes. For example, the 425W NeON R Prime has 66 cells, and its dimensions are 41.0” x 75.2”.

Larger solar panels generate more watts simply because they capture sunlight with a larger area, but their size can be a limitation on smaller roofs. On the other hand, all Panasonic EverVolt panels have a compact design, measuring 40” x 67.75”.

To summarize, both brands offer top efficiency, with LG being slightly ahead of Panasonic. LG also offers solar panels with higher wattages, but this is achieved by making them larger. In terms of watts per square foot of roof covered, both brands are comparable.

  • For example, a 425W LG NeON R Prime module and a 380W Panasonic EverVolt module both generate around 20 watts per square foot covered.
  • The LG NeON R Prime panel has a rated wattage that is 12% higher, but it also needs 14% more space.

Comparing the Installed Price of Panasonic and LG Solar Panels

EnergySage gathers pricing data about top solar brands, and this includes Panasonic and LG. They found that home solar systems with LG panels have an average price of $2.75 per watt, while systems with Panasonic panels have an average price of $2.71 per watt.

However, keep in mind that these are average EnergySage marketplace prices (no affiliation). The exact cost of your system will depend on several factors, such as the complexity of your roof and local labor costs.

In December 2021, the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) reported an average price of $3.06 per watt for home solar systems in the US.

LG and Panasonic are both premium solar brands with below-average costs, which means they offer an excellent return on investment.

Regardless of the solar brand you choose, you get a federal tax credit equivalent to 26% of your investment.

  • This tax credit is claimed on your next declaration, and it will remain available until the end of 2022.
  • You can still get a 22% tax credit in 2023, but the benefit drops to 10% in 2024, and it will only be available for businesses.

In addition to the tax credit, there may be additional incentives from local authorities or power companies. For example, you may get an upfront cash rebate, or your state government may give additional tax exemptions or credits.

Pro Tip: To make sure that your home solar system is eligible for incentive programs near you, look for a qualified installer who is familiarized with their requirements.

How Do LG and Panasonic Solar Panels Perform Under the Heat?

Solar panels from leading manufacturers are tested under the same laboratory conditions, to ensure that their specifications can be compared directly.

The Standard Test Conditions include a temperature of 25°C (77°F) and a radiation of 1,000 watts per square meter. Keep in mind that when solar panels are under the sun for many hours on a summer day, they can get much hotter.

Manufacturers use the temperature coefficient to describe how their solar panels perform when they heat up.

All solar panels lose some performance at high temperature, but this is just a temporary effect and not permanent damage.

  • Panasonic currently has the best temperature coefficient in the solar industry, which is -0.26% per °C. This means they only lose 0.26% of their capacity for every Celsius degree of temperature rise.
  • The temperature coefficient of LG solar panels ranges from -0.29% to -0.40% per °C, depending on the specific product. Their performance at high temperatures is decent, but Panasonic comes out on top in this area.

Let’s assume your solar panels will be operating at around 45°C, which represents a 20°C increase over the Standard Test Conditions.

A temperature rise of 20°C would result in a 5.2% performance loss for Panasonic solar panels, while LG solar panels would lose between 5.8% and 8% of their performance (depending on the specific product).

The lower temperature coefficient of Panasonic solar panels (-0.26% per °C) gives them an advantage when operating under the heat.

LG solar panels have a wider range of temperature coefficients, and you should look for products at the lower end of the scale (-0.29% per °C) to minimize the effect of heat.

Do LG and Panasonic Solar Panels Have Good Warranties?

As you might expect from premium solar panel brands, LG, and Panasonic both offer excellent warranty terms. Both brands offer 25-year coverage, which means your investment is well protected, and each dollar spent upfront can be recovered multiple times.

LG offers a triple warranty that covers product, performance, and labor. However, your solar panels are only covered if installed by contractors who are licensed according to all applicable laws and regulations in your location.

  • The product warranty covers you if solar panels have material or workmanship defects, and LG will repair or replace them at no cost.
  • The performance warranty specifies that your solar panels will have at least 95% of their initial capacity after 5 years, and at least 87% of their capacity after 25 years. All solar panels lose some performance over time, but this happens very slowly when you have a high-quality product.
  • The labor warranty also applies when replacing solar panels that malfunction, and it covers up to $450 of the associated labor costs.

Panasonic offers the TripleGuard Warranty, which also covers product, performance and labor. The coverage period is 25 years if you work with a Panasonic approved installer, and 15 years if you don’t meet this requirement.

  • If you need to replace defective solar panels during the 25-year warranty period, product and labor costs are both covered.
  • The performance warranty specifies 98% of rated capacity after the first year, and 92% of rated capacity after 25 years.

Panasonic also offers the AllGuard Warranty, which applies if you purchase their solar panels bundled with microinverters or monitoring systems from Enphase and racking systems from Unirac or IronRidge. All components are covered for 25 years, except for the monitoring system, which is covered for 5 years.

As you can see, both brands offer solid warranties. Panasonic offers slightly better performance in the long run, with 92% output after 25 years, while LG offers 87% output.

That said, LG gives you more flexibility when choosing your installer, while Panasonic reduces the product warranty to 15 years if you don’t work with one of their approved installers.

Conclusion: Two Top Solar Brands with Different Strengths

LG and Panasonic both make top quality solar panels, achieving the 2nd highest and 3rd highest efficiency ratings in the industry, respectively. LG offers more product variety, which includes 66-cell modules of higher wattages, and the NeON R ACe panels with integrated microinverters.

That said, Panasonic offers the best temperature performance in the industry, with a loss of only -0.26% per °C, while LG is slightly behind with coefficients from -0.29% to -0.40% per °C.

Both brands offer 25-year warranties, with slight differences but excellent coverage overall. If you live in a place with high electricity rates and your roof gets decent sunshine, solar panels can achieve a payback period in as few as five years (average solar payback period is between 8 to 10 years), which is just 20% of the warranty period. By this point, you will still have two decades of guaranteed performance.

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