Trina Solar Panels: An Independent Review by Solar Choice

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Note: Solar Choice is not a solar installer and has no financial or other incentives to promote any product brand over another.

Overview of Trina Solar – Company History

Trina Solar was first established in 1997 by Gao Jifan. The company was one of the early pioneers of solar panel manufacturing in China and has a well-established position a top 5 solar panel manufacturer by volume.

Trina Solar are a publicly listed company on the Shanghai Stock Exchange with a market capitalisation of around 47 billion Chinese Yen (~AUD$10bn). In recent bankability listing by PV Module Tech, Trina Solar were AA rated which was the second high ranking.

As a long standing brand in the Australian market, Trina Solar panels have been used across a broad array of residential, commercial and solar farm projects in Australia dating back to the early 2000s.

Trina solar have operations in over 160 countries and employ over 40,000 staff. In Australia, they have a local office based in Macquarie Park in Sydney.

Key Panel Indicators

 Trina Solar Panel
Bloomberg Tier 1 RankingYes
DNV GL Top Performer (2024)Yes (7 out of 7 tests)
Office location in AustraliaYes

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.

See full list of Bloomberg Tier 1 Solar Panels

What is PV Evolution Labs Top Performer?

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.

Trina Solar was listed as a top performer for all 5 7 tests (the thermal cycling, damp heat, mechanical stress sequence, hail stress sequence, PID, LID+LETID and PAN performance) in the latest report. Trina Solar has been consistently named each year as a top performer since 2014.

See full list of PV Evolution Labs Top Performing Solar Panels

Why is office location in Australia Important?

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 we’ve seen many residential solar installers (including the large ones) go out of business well within the lifetime of the systems they are installing.

Trina Solar Australia head office is located in Sydney.

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How Much Do Trina Solar Panels Cost?

Based on Solar Choice’s database we have provided the below-average costs as an indicative guide. These prices include:

  • Full turnkey Solar System with Trina Solar Panels
  • Installation from a pre-vetted reputable installer from Solar Choice’s network
  • The STC rebate and GST
System SizeAverage Fully Installed Cost
6kW$5,282
8kW$8,687
10kW$11,244

 Important Note: Prices will vary depending on location, inverter brand and which installer is used

Trina Solar Panels – Points of Difference

There are many solar panels out there, what makes Trina solar panels stand out?

The large solar panel manufacturer

Trina Solar is one of the largest solar manufacturers in the world. By the end of April 11th, 2022, their annual production capacity cumulative shipments of PV modules had exceeded 100GW. 

Trina has 3 manufacturing plants located in China, Thailand and Vietnam, it is reported that they have a 50GW+ company-wide production capacity. This makes them a top 5 solar panel manufacturer globally.

Vertically integrated supply chain

Trina also owns most steps in the vertical supply chain to produce a solar panel including producing ingots, silicon wafers and solar cells which are all upstream components of solar panels. This strategy enables them to keep greater control over the supply and quality of each step of the process.

Trina Solar Panel Technologies

Trina currently has 261 solar panels approved by the Clean Energy Council in Australia under the name “Trina Solar Co Ltd”. This is a requirement to be eligible for the federal STC solar rebate.

Currently, in Australia Trina offers three series of panels Honey, Tallmax, and Vertex. And several sub-series for each one.

Honey SeriesTrina Honey M Solar Panel

The Honey Series was Trina’s most popular solar panel in Australia striking a balance between efficiency and quality along with an affordable price. Available with both monocrystalline and multicrystalline cells, the Trina Honey solar panel with 120 half-cut cells is perfect for small rooftop systems. All panels in the Honey Series come with Trina’s 12-year product and 25-linear power output warranty. This series included the panels that were ranked as top performers by PV Evolution Labs testing. They also provide all-black options for the customer (Honey Black Series). However, only the series of Honey M (360 – 380 WP) solar panels are on sale now in Australia, the other series are discontinued.

Vertex Series

Trina Solar panel duomax series

Vertex Series are the most used Trina solar panels in the Australian market now. There are several sub-series including Vertex S, Vertex S+, Vertex N, Vertex Backsheet and Vertex Bifacial. All the Vertex Series solar panels use monocrystalline solar cells which means the Silicon used is purer than polycrystalline.

The Vertex S is the solar panel directed at the residential market as the smaller dimensions enable the panel to cater to more complex residential roofs. There are two versions of the Vertex S solar panel which could be considered a standard and a premium option.

The standard Vertex S solar panel features 120 half-cut monocrystalline cells giving the solar panel an overall dimension of 1754mm x 1096mm including the aluminium frame. The panel total output ranges from 380W to 405W with a maximum efficiency of up to 21.1% which is impressive. This panel offers a 15 year product warranty which is slightly ahead of most panels in the market which offer 12 years.

The premium Vertex S solar panel utilises 144 monocrystalline solar cells giving the overall panel slightly larger dimensions at 1762mm x 1134mm. As a result these panels watt ratings range from 405W to 435W and a higher maximum efficiency up to 21.8% which is approaching the best on the market. The big kicker for these panels is they come with an additional 10 years on the product warranty giving a total 25 year warranty which matches the best options on the Australian market for residential customers.

Tallmax and Duomax SeriesTrina Solar duomax series solar panel

These two series were one of the main products of Trina, however, similar to Honey Series, only Tallmax M (435 – 460W) are now less commonly found in the Australian market as their production has been discontinued.
Tallmax and Duomax series are the predecessors of Vertex Series and you can see some Tallmax & Duomax in Trina’s new products with higher efficiency and better performance.

Independent Testing of Trina Solar Panels by PV Labs Australia

In late 2023, PV Labs Australia completed some independent testing of solar panels which way paid for by the ACT Government. A sample of 121 solar panels from 14 different manufacturers were borrowed from suppliers in the market.

The solar panels were tested via a visual inspection, STC power, electroluminescence, wet leakage and potential induced degradation. 

Trina Solar scored 85 out of 100 placing them in the middle of the pack. This confirms the widely accepted knowledge that Trina solar is positioned as a mid-range quality solar panel with consistent performance.

See the full report here.

Trina’s Warranty Offer for Australian Customers

Solar panels in the Australian market come with a performance warranty and a product warranty.

Solar panel manufacturers typically offer product warranties ranging from 10-12 years to cover manufacturing faults that may lead to damage or malfunction. Trina offers a variety of product warranties, starting from 10 years for their cheaper options and going up to 30 years for their bifacial solar panels, which are designed for ground-mounted solar projects. Trina Solar have a new ‘Vertex’ solar panel range for the Australian residential market which offers a 25-year product warranty. 

Solar panels come with a performance warranty that guarantees a certain level of energy output throughout their lifetime. Typically, this warranty ensures that the panels will produce 80-82% of the nameplate output even after 25 years of use. Trina offers a variety of solar panels with different performance warranties. Their warranties range from 84.7% to 87.4% after 25 years of use. The dual glass monocrystalline Vertex S+ and Vertex N series have the highest performance warranty at 87.4%.

Upon examining Trina’s warranty documentation, it is evident that there is a well-defined process for filing a warranty claim, and ample remedies are available after an evaluation has been completed. Trina has an Australian office to assist with the process, which means customers can easily access the claim process even if their installer is no longer available to help.

See Trina’s full warranty documentation here.

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Trina Solar Panel Specifications

 Trina Solar Honey MTrina Solar Vertex S
Cell Number120120
Cell TypeMonocrystallineMonocrystalline
Power Output375 Wp400 Wp
Nominal Power Voltage34.4 V34.2 V
Panel Efficiency20.5%20.8%
Annual Power Degradation0.55%0.5%
Dimensions1763 x 1040 x 35mm

(1.83m²)

1754 x 1096 x 30mm

(1.92m²)

Weight20kg21kg
Product Warranty 12 years15 years
Performance Warranty25 years25 years
Operational Temperature Range-40°C to 85°C-40°C to 85°C
Made inChinaChina

Pros and Cons of Trina Solar Panels

Pros:

  • Safe option as they are a large manufacturing capacity and healthy financial position
  • Vertically integrated manufacturing process
  • Have a local office in Sydney, Australia

Cons:

  • Having a lot of models available in the Australian market we have had feedback it is confusing for customers to determine what reviews are relevant to what they have been quoted

Should I Buy Trina Solar Panels?

If you are looking for a reliable solar option for either commercial or residential projects, Trina Solar is definitely worth considering. However, it’s important to note that the quality of their solar panels can vary depending on the model you choose. To ensure that you are getting the best value for your money, we recommend that you obtain the datasheet from your installer and do your own research.

Feel free to contact Solar Choice for some impartial expert advice on your quote.

Trina Solar Panels Used On UOQ 1.2MW Installation

University of Queensland Trina Solar Panels

The University of Queensland has a total of 5000 polycrystalline Trina Solar panels installed across 4 of the buildings on campus. The installation totals 1.22MW and at the time when it was completed, it was Australia’s largest rooftop grid photovoltaic system. The system is responsible for powering approximately 6% of the University’s peak electricity demand. To put it into perspective, the same amount of electricity could power 800 typical Queensland households at once. The system produces around 1.85GWh of electricity per year, reducing the University’s carbon footprint significantly. The reduction would be equivalent to taking 335 cars off the road each year.

As of January 2019, the University of Queensland had 49,336 solar panels in operation. These panels generate almost 9 million KWh of clean energy, which is enough electricity to power over 1,500 typical Queensland homes.

Read more product reviews from Solar Choice

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Jeff Sykes

Reviews from Australians who have installed Trina Panels

Rated 4.75 from 107 reviews
8th June 2024
Easton
-
9kW system
5.00

Happy so far and placed in good places on roof

8th June 2024
Alex
-
10-15kW system
5.00

3rd June 2024
Robert
-
7kW system
5.00

Moderate affordable price for a quality product.

26th May 2024
NSW - 2540
10kW system
5.00

Panels look good, still produce power on overcast days

23rd May 2024
Therese
-
15-20kW system
5.00

10th May 2024
VIC - 3030
15-20kW system
5.00

5th May 2024
TAS - 7054
10-15kW system
5.00

Happy with the performance so far

30th April 2024
NSW - 2548
9kW system
5.00

29th April 2024
NSW - 2031
10-15kW system
5.00

16th April 2024
NSW - 2034
10kW system
4.00

Really unsure about the different options and none of the companies were able to give us any information that could help us choose. Note of explanations about the output and things didn't really seem to make sense. In the end this just chose a brand that seemed to be commonly used.

11th April 2024
Sam
-
6kW system
4.00

3rd April 2024
John
-
6kW system
5.00

31st March 2024
TAS - 7030
7kW system
5.00

22nd March 2024
NSW - 2119
30-50kW system
5.00

No issues todate.

21st March 2024
QLD - 4565
10-15kW system
5.00

IEC61701 compliant for sea mist conditions. Output looks good.

20th March 2024
QLD - 4860
15-20kW system
5.00

12th March 2024
Ahsan
-
10-15kW system
5.00

2nd March 2024
SA - 5168
7kW system
5.00

Looks great on roof spread over 2 areas to maximize output

25th February 2024
VIC - 3500
6kW system
5.00

22nd February 2024
Colin
-
10-15kW system
5.00

Quality panels

22nd February 2024
Sarah
-
6kW system
4.00

So far I think the panels are running fine but lots of problems with Fronius GEN24 Primo 5.0 inverter.

4th February 2024
WA - 6101
6kW system
5.00

performing well no issues

30th January 2024
ACT - 2611
7kW system
5.00

Haven’t had any problems to date (3 years).

29th January 2024
SA - 5076
6kW system
5.00

We have a good amount of energy generated daily

24th January 2024
Mursil
-
5kW system
5.00

15th January 2024
NSW - 2753
9kW system
5.00

Very neat, attractive and efficient solar panel array made up of 22 x 440watt panels, which have a high power output, even in overcast conditions.

1st January 2024
John
-
6kW system
5.00

Everthing is working well so far.

31st December 2023
Andy
NSW - 2576
5kW system
5.00

system paid for itself in a little over 3 years, and still seems to be generating as much energy now as when first installed (nearly 6 years ago)

27th December 2023
Fred
NSW - 2114
5kW system
5.00

20 375-watt panels. Have given no problems, and continue to perform at the level they did when installed.

26th December 2023
Ross
NSW - 2107
7kW system
5.00

Panels have worked well for 6 years with little or no sign of degradation (have separate inverters on each panel so can be monitored individually)

2nd December 2023
Mark
VIC - 3193
5kW system
5.00

20th November 2023
Glenn
NSW - 2582
10-15kW system
5.00

No issues so far and appears to be working as anticipated.

6th November 2023
Rodney
NSW - 2049
7kW system
5.00

5th November 2023
Mark
SA - 5109
7kW system
5.00

As November 23 the panels have produce excellent output

30th October 2023
Harry
NSW - 2077
5kW system
5.00

Panels are performing to expectations. No issues at all

29th October 2023
Andrew
NSW - 2066
10kW system
5.00

Output is occasionally over-spec, warranty is excellent

27th October 2023
Andy
NSW - 2113
10-15kW system
5.00

Found them from the Best Value list on Solarquotes. No complaints here

26th October 2023
Julian
NSW - 2444
6kW system
5.00

Working well

20th October 2023
John
NSW - 2759
10kW system
5.00

They are performing extremely well.

16th October 2023
Van
NSW - 2198
6kW system
5.00

10th October 2023
James
VIC - 3187
6kW system
5.00

I dont know much about it, but thwy are working at present...time will tell

9th October 2023
Glenn
-
7kW system
5.00

25 year guarantee

2nd October 2023
Palwinder
-
5kW system
5.00

21st September 2023
John
-
10kW system
5.00

20th September 2023
Christian
ACT - 2618
10kW system
5.00

This will become an issue over the years - but works flawless...

12th September 2023
Kylie
NSW - 2153
7kW system
5.00

2nd September 2023
Bob
-
9kW system
5.00

1st September 2023
Bonnie
-
6kW system
5.00

Good value panel

29th August 2023
Leo
NSW - 2479
5kW system
5.00

Looks good from my angle

26th August 2023
Mark
VIC - 3437
30-50kW system
5.00

Seem to be good. Checked the best for value and performance and they were in the top 5 list. Wait to see how they go. Got the black framed ones which look great on the roof. Look like one large panel. Recommended as look good on the house.

25th August 2023
Stuart
QLD - 4121
6kW system
4.00

A little bit of water pooling around the frame.

25th August 2023
Jacqui
-
10kW system
3.00

I know nothing about them.yet as we have.not been able to use our solar since installation.

18th August 2023
Karen
NSW - 2581
6kW system
5.00

They look good but as to efficiency too early to tell. On the solar app it shows them working in bright winter sunshine even on a slightly cloudy day. Time will tell.

11th August 2023
Aditya
-
10-15kW system
5.00

10th August 2023
Kieran
-
6kW system
4.00

4th August 2023
Dean
-
6kW system
5.00

3rd August 2023
Michael
VIC - 3194
7kW system
4.00

The Trina panels provided good overall working coverage at a competitive price.

2nd August 2023
Leigh
-
10kW system
3.00

11th July 2023
Geoff
QLD - 4164
6kW system
5.00

They look good but time will tell how well they perform

6th July 2023
Asim
-
6kW system
5.00

Excellent

5th July 2023
Sumit
-
10-15kW system
5.00

21st June 2023
David
QLD - 4680
10-15kW system
5.00

All good so far

17th June 2023
Gavin
NSW - 2096
6kW system
5.00

The only measure on this is output. No issues with panels at all and they do what they said on the tin.

15th June 2023
Martin
-
7kW system
5.00

The panels are working well.

1st June 2023
Allan
NSW - 2760
5kW system
3.00

Not a bad brand.

23rd May 2023
Percy
-
8kW system
5.00

22nd May 2023
David 2
ACT - 2607
8kW system
5.00

25th April 2023
Geoffrey
NSW - 2430
3kW system
5.00

dont know yet

21st April 2023
Yulia
-
10kW system
5.00

13th April 2023
Geoff
-
7kW system
5.00

22nd March 2023
Angela
SA - 5125
6kW system
4.00

Don't know much about Trina Solar panels but reviews of this panel were good.

13th March 2023
Adrian
-
6kW system
4.00

I do not know enough about the specifications to comment meaningfully.

2nd March 2023
Aaron
-
10-15kW system
1.00

21st February 2023
John
QLD - 4272
7kW system
5.00

Look great and so far no problems.

14th February 2023
Ted
VIC - 3431
6kW system
5.00

Look Fantastic.

14th February 2023
Shane
QLD - 4005
8kW system
5.00

20 Trina Vertex S+ NEG9.28

7th February 2023
Graham
NSW - 2795
6kW system
4.00

No comment

25th January 2023
Col
-
6kW system
4.00

20th January 2023
Flynn
-
6kW system
5.00

10th January 2023
Susheel
NSW - 2263
6kW system
5.00

Works great!

29th December 2022
Stewart
WA - 6536
7kW system
5.00

Working beautifully.

27th December 2022
Danilo
VIC - 3909
5kW system
5.00

5 star

25th December 2022
Ross
NSW - 2560
9kW system
5.00

23rd December 2022
Kevin
SA - 5162
10-15kW system
5.00

Working fine after 3 months time will tell 30 year warranty

22nd December 2022
Steve
-
6kW system
1.00

The real problem I am advised is the inverter. The problem with the panels is that they are influences by shade on any one area drags down the entire installation, although shading is not an issue here. It was prior to installation but was rectified. Apparently, a separate controller for each panel should have been supplied. I even relocated satellite dish to try and improve performance impact, but it made no difference

16th December 2022
Rachel
-
6kW system
5.00

16th December 2022
Mitch
NSW - 2210
9kW system
5.00

Great value. Very efficient.

7th December 2022
Rafael
NSW - 2122
10kW system
3.00

Don't have enough statistic to have an opinion.

5th December 2022
Kai
-
10-15kW system
5.00

4th November 2022
Jordan
ACT - 2615
6kW system
5.00

Early days but no drama to date.

31st October 2022
Tony
-
6kW system
5.00

30th October 2022
Mark
-
6kW system
5.00

17th October 2022
Scott
-
6kW system
5.00

14th October 2022
Emerson
-
6kW system
5.00

13th October 2022
Mike
-
6kW system
5.00

7th October 2022
Joan
VIC - 3551
6kW system
5.00

27th September 2022
Collette
NSW - 2756
20-30kW system
5.00

Was recommended them as a great fit working together with Fronius inverter. Even in winter we have already generated more power than I would have expected

6th September 2022
Tony
NSW - 2171
6kW system
5.00

As yet cannot really comment but seems fine.

6th July 2022
Simon
SA - 5251
10-15kW system
5.00

30th June 2022
Leonor
-
6kW system
5.00

1st June 2022
Karen
-
6kW system
5.00

Excellent quality for the price. Really good value.

20th April 2022
Chris
-
5kW system
5.00

19th April 2022
Steve
VIC - 3222
15-20kW system
5.00

The Trina Solar panels are a medium quality product that have good back up and a long life with good efficiency. They are a well known and recommended brand.

10th February 2022
Stephen
NSW - 2760
8kW system
5.00

good so far

20th September 2021
Sander
WA - 6061
4kW system
5.00

8th July 2021
Jon
-
20-30kW system
4.00

All working fine

11th June 2021
Stephen
NSW - 2540
6kW system
5.00

Working fine.