Types of Solar Panels

According to U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), Arizona residents pay higher-than-average electricity bills. To mitigate this problem, the state is driving a shift towards cheaper, cleaner solar energy due to the abundant sunshine available throughout the year.

The cost of solar systems installations continues to fall and with multiple federal tax incentives, residents can now leverage the benefits of solar energy. As a homeowner, this is the best time to install a solar system.

Before commencing the project, you have to determine the best types of solar panels to use. The choice of solar modules determines how cost-efficient the system turns out to be.

Leveraging Professional Solar Panel Installation

For the project, you need to partner with a trusted solar installation company in the region. Total Solutions is a full-service solar installer in AZ and offers consultation in the design, supply, financing, installation, and maintenance of the solar panels. 

Here’s a breakdown of the solar panels you can choose for your project:

Monocrystalline Solar Panels

Monocrystalline solar panels have emerged as the top-selling modules on the market. The panel consists of a single continuous crystal structure. In appearance, the solar cells have a uniform dark look and rounded edges.


  • Highest efficiency: They boast high purity of silicon, which in turn leads to the highest efficiency rates of above 20%.
  • Space-efficiency: These panels also occupy less space.
  • Durability: These modules have better resistance to temperatures, which increases their lifespan. Most manufacturers offer a 25-year warranty on their monocrystalline solar panels.


These solar panels are expensive though the prices have consistently gone down over the last two decades.

Polycrystalline Solar Panels

These solar panels use newer technology, and in appearance, they have a blue, speckled look with uncut angles.


  • Affordability: Making e polycrystalline silicon panels is faster through melting raw silicon, and this makes them cheaper.


Lower efficacy levels: These solar modules have efficiency levels of around 15% compared to Monocrystalline solar panels.

Poor aesthetics: Compared to Monocrystalline solar panels, these solar modules are not easy to the eye.

Thin-film Solar Cells (TFSC)

These are lightweight, portable and flexible solar panels with an efficiency range of between 7-10%.  They are easy to produce, and this makes cheaper. The technology used to make film solar panels is considered 2nd generation.

A different type of silicon called amorphous silicon (a-Si) is used for production.  Manufacturers can also use materials with semiconductor properties known as CIGS (copper indium gallium selenide solar cells).


  • Affordability: Mass-production is faster and simple, making them cheaper.
  • Aesthetics: Thin-film solar panels have an appealing homogeneous appearance
  • Flexibility: they are easy to tailor for different applications.


These panels are not ideal for residential properties due to their low efficiency and low power output per square foot. They also require a lot of space which makes them impractical for residential use.

However, industrial applications still use them though the price of producing crystalline silicon cells keeps dropping.

3rd Generation Solar Panels

The solar industry has crossed another phase in solar panel production with innovative products hitting the market.  They include Biohybrid solar cells, Cadmium Telluride Solar Cell (CdTe), and Concentrated PV Cell (CVP and HCVP).

While these promise high-efficiency levels, the manufacturers have not launched products for the mass market.

If you want to learn more about solar panels available for your Arizona solar project, call us today at Total Solutions. We’re among the leading solar installers in AZ, and our commitment is to deliver the best solar energy solutions at the most affordable prices.

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