Talesun Solar Panels: An Independent Review by Solar Choice
Note: Solar Choice is not a solar installer and has no financial or other incentive to promote any product brand over another.
Overview of Talesun Solar – Company History
Talesun Solar is a wholly owned subsidiary of Zhongli Science and Technology Group which is a Chinese manufacturer of industrial components including fibre optic cables. The Zhongli Sci-Tech Group made an initial investment of USD 850 million into Talesun Solar in 2010.
According to their website (which seems a bit out of date) Talesun’s annual manufacturing capacity has grown to 2GW of silicon cells and 2.8GW of Solar Panels making them a mid-tier manufacturer in terms of size. Most of their panels are sold domestically in China (1.8GW) and they have sales networks established into Europe and Japan.
Talesun Solar panels are not commonly used in Australia, however they do have a supply agreement set up with Sol Distribution. Talesun do not have an Australian focused website or an Australian office.
Talesun Solar Panels
Bloomberg Tier 1 Ranking
PV Evolution Labs Top Performer
Office location in Australia
What is a Bloomberg Tier 1 Solar Panel?
Bloomberg’s infamous tier 1 ranking is NOT a measure of Solar Panel quality in any way. It is simply an indication of the bankability of the manufacturer based on publicly released information on the financial health of the company. This should give you an idea if the company is a large, well-known manufacturer.
PV Evolution Labs with support from DNV GL independently test solar panel reliability. The tests are voluntary, with solar panel manufacturers paying to participate in the testing. This testing process is internationally renowned and is an accurate reflection of the solar panel’s performance.
Talesun Solar Panels have not featured in PV Evolution Labs Top Performers lists.
Most solar panel manufacturers entering the Australian market first set up their distribution channels and worry about customer service later. This has led to many unhappy customers who are left trying to contact Chinese head offices to claim on their 10-year product warranty.
Relying on your solar installer is not always an option as since 2011 we’ve seen over 700 residential solar installers (including the large ones) go out of business well within the lifetime of the systems they are installing.
At this stage Talesun Solar to not have an Australian office.
How much do Talesun Solar Panels cost?
Based on Solar Choice’s database we have provided the below-average costs as an indicative guide of the wholesale costs of Talesun’s solar panels. These prices are only available to solar installation companies, not to end customers.
Price (per watt)
MONO HALF CUT
MONO 144 CELL
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Talesun Solar Panel Technologies
Unfortunately at the time of writing this all the links to Talesun’s product sheets on their USA and EU website are not working. We have been able to dig up some information on the 3 main series of panels Talesun offer into the roof top solar market:
Talesun Solar’s main residential panel features 60 monocrystalline silicon cells. The panels have 5 electrical busbars which assist providing temperature resilience. The cells also feature PERC technology (originally developed at UNSW) which contribute to an overall efficiency of 17.9% (TP660M 290W model). In comparative terms this efficiency rating is pretty low compared to whats now available on the market. The panel also comes with a All Black variation which provides an aesthically pleasing options for homeowners with visible roof spaces.
Talesun’s BISTAR series which is a step up in quality from the HIPRO series, comes in a few variations with a 120 cell and 144 cell version along with an all black option. These panels feature half cut cells which reduce the electrical resistance within the panel and enable a higher overall efficiency up to 19.6% (TP6H60M 330W model). Some of the BISTAR series also feature 9 busbars which decreases the efficiency losses.
Talesun offer a standard 25 year performance warranty and 10-12 year product warranty (depending on the model). This is on par in length with most panel manufacturers offering products to the Australian market. The value of warranty depends on much more than these 2 numbers.
Talesun’s warranty document for Australia is a grammatical nightmare, and appears to be a Google Translation gone wrong. The most concerning part of this warranty is the missing information on how to actually claim the warranty:
“How to obtain warranty If the customer according to “standard PV products limited warranty” can make legitimate claims, complaints and belong to completely reasonable warranty scope, should be immediately in written notice of the complaint to the following address, Talesun, electronic mail or email to the following.”
There are 2 emails listed at the end of the warranty document (firstname.lastname@example.org & email@example.com) and a list of Chinese phone numbers that you can call.
It’s safe to say that, if your installer was no longer around to apply pressure to the product distributers, you would have a pretty tough time claiming anything from Talesun given they do not have an Australian office, phone number or website.
Comparison of Talesun Solar Panel Specifications (common modules)
Talesun Hipro 290W
Talesun Bistar 330W
Nominal Power Voltage
Operational Temperature Range
So, Should I Buy Talesun Solar Panels?
Although some of Talesun’s solar panels offer competitive technical specifications, given the companies lack of presence in Australia, there are many better options to go for with proven performance characteristics. In Solar Choice’s view, the challenges that may arise under a warranty claim do not seem worth it, even if this solution was offered at a discount to a bigger and more reputable brand.