Find a Solar Supplier

So you need to find a commercial solar panel supplier?

With the solar market exploding globally, the number of solar manufacturers has grown with it, giving solar installers many to choose from. Selecting the right commercial solar panel supplier is integral to the success of your solar installation business. To that point, many solar installers refuse to install consumer-purchased solar kits because they were unable to vet the manufacturer. The newfound market saturation means that it’s easier to wind up with solar materials that have issues in terms of workmanship or durability.

It’s imperative you do your due diligence when choosing your solar materials supplier. Your reputation with customers (and the parameters of your company’s warranty) will depend greatly on the quality of the solar materials you purchase from the supplier.

What to consider when choosing a commercial solar panel supplier near me

What to do before committing to a commercial solar panel supplier?

1. On behalf of your customer (the end user of the solar panels), ask about the long term energy output and efficiency of the solar materials offered by the manufacturer.

  • Many manufacturers have specifications sheets to show tested efficiency ratings. Look for efficiency levels above 16.5%.

2. Inquire about the warranty the manufacturer can offer to your customers.

  • You can use an attractive manufacturer warranty to make your installation services more marketable.
  • Look for a solar manufacturer with at least a 10-25 year warranty.

3. See if any surplus solar materials are available:

  • The manufacturer may have too much product on hand, or want to offload product when going out of business (or because a model is discontinued).
  • Make sure that the solar materials you buy under such circumstances still meet modern efficiency standards and technical specifications.

4. Depending on the size of the systems you typically install, you may qualify for more sizable bulk discounts from the manufacturer or distributor.

5. Ensure the solar materials offered by the manufacturer meet building codes, and grid-tie specifications.

6. Inquire about your solar panel supplier's industry experience, reputation and the type of solar installer they typically sell to (i.e. residential, commercial, off-grid), to ensure they are a good fit for your commercial solar company.

7. Ask for references from solar installers like you. Dependable commercial solar panel suppliers should have a repertoire of good references. You should also do your research online and read reviews of the different solar suppliers you are considering.

8. Check the breadth of solar products offered by the manufacturer:

  • From charge convertors to inverters, solar batteries, replacement parts, and panel types, inquire about the types of solar parts the manufacturer provides.

How to find a good commercial solar panel supplier near me?

Billd offers a rich supplier directory to help contractors like you find a commercial solar panel supplier in your area. Once you’ve compiled your list of serious contenders within your budget, reference the list of considerations above to choose the solar panel supplier that best fits your needs.

What kind of commercial solar panels do I need?

There are several different types of solar panels, depending on the location and energy level needed. For some projects, for example, you may require solar panels for the roof of your building while others may require them to be placed in a parking garage. Consult with solar panel manufacturer on the types of projects you typically take on and get their recommendations on the best materials to use.

Examples of the different types of solar panels and related products include:

  • Monocrystalline Solar Panels - High power output, occupy less space, and last the longest.
  • Polycrystalline Solar Panels - Lower final price but also lower power efficiency, lower space efficiency, and a shorter lifespan.
  • Thin-Film Solar Cells - Easiest to produce, ideal for commercial projects, short lifespan, high energy efficiency.
  • Amorphous Silicon Solar Cell - Thin, low-cost, less effective.
  • Cadmium Telluride Solar Cell - Lower cost to produce energy, resulting in quicker payback, most eco-friendly solution.
  • Concentrated PV Cell - Most energy efficient, more costly and spacious.

What methods of payment do commercial solar panel suppliers accept?

Many flooring manufacturers are flexible and willing to work with installers on payment methods. Common commercial flooring payment options include:

  • Supplier Terms - Supplier terms are a popular way to pay for commercial solar panels, but will typically require an existing relationship or a comprehensive credit check on the business owner. Supplier terms range from 30 to 60 days.
  • Loan - Banks and credit unions alike can issue a loan, allowing you to pay for your solar panel materials over time. However, bank loans are challenging to obtain, take weeks to process, and are slow to fund. Bank loans tend to place a higher importance on business owner credit rather than the project. Lastly, banks tend to start at lower credit limits, creating a challenge when the purchase you need to make far exceeds the credit limit.
  • Cash - Paying cash upfront is the ideal payment solution for suppliers in any industry, but not always ideal for the contractor. For commercial solar panel suppliers, this still holds true. Many commercial solar panel suppliers will negotiate a lower final price for contractors that pay with cash upfront!
  • Line of Credit - Some commercial flooring suppliers offer a dedicated line of credit that allows contractors to gradually pay off what they owe over time, rather than paying the entire bill upfront. This may even be presented as a supplier-branded credit card, issued with credit approval through a major bank.
  • Material Purchase Financing - One method solar contractors can take advantage of is material purchase financing, a form of financing uniquely designed for commercial construction materials like solar. Typically, this type of financing gives contractors extended terms that exceed that of the supplier, with the ability to purchase materials upfront and pay it back later. Financing solutions like Billd can be the ideal material purchase financing solution.

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