Procurement of photovoltaic modules
There are many different photovoltaic modules worldwide, however, it is not easy to determine whether the product and its suppliers are reliable. It is very important to ensure the safety and quality of photovoltaic modules and their electrical installation. Poor product quality and poor installation bring serious risks to the safety and economic feasibility of investment. The following is a list of considerations when purchasing a photovoltaic system. Keep in mind that a good system is not only physically sustainable during the warranty period, but should also work effectively during this period. This means that all components, additional devices, mounting brackets and roofs must have the same life span as the components, or can be replaced during this time.
The photovoltaic modules sold should have a long manufacturer’s guarantee period, for example, 80% of the output will still be guaranteed after 25 years. However, the guaranteed output must be included in the system output. Buyers need to know that if a product with such a long warranty period is installed, structures (such as buildings and roofs) and other system components need to continue to be used for such a long time. For some equipment such as inverters, it may be necessary to make a replacement plan in advance during the entire life cycle of the photovoltaic system.
The photovoltaic industry is growing very rapidly, and many new photovoltaic module manufacturers have emerged. It is very important to ensure that only qualified modules are installed. Therefore, a series of standards are required. Common standards applicable to photovoltaic modules are as follows:
·IEC 61215 Terrestrial Crystalline Silicon Photovoltaic (PV) Modules-Design quality and type approval.
·IEC 61646 Terrestrial silicon thin film photovoltaic (PV) modules-design quality and type approval.
·IEC 61730 Photovoltaic (PV) module safety conditions-construction requirements and test requirements.
These standards are derived from the International Electrotechnical Commission: www.iec. ch. In many countries, photovoltaic modules must meet the requirements of IEC 61215 or IEC 61646 (depending on thin film battery or crystalline silicon battery technology) and IEC 61730 standards.
Qualified components should not only comply with IEC standards, but also meet local standards. In addition to the prescribed photovoltaic standards, certification usually guarantees that the components meet all relevant standards, such as wind load and salt spray corrosion resistance (IEC 61701). The two most common certifications are as follows:
CE mark: CE mark is the European Common Market mark. By using this logo, the manufacturer declares that its photovoltaic modules meet the basic requirements related to EU health, safety and environmental protection regulations. The CE mark is mandatory for photovoltaic modules sold and installed in EU countries.
Underwriters Laboratories (UL): Underwriters Laboratories is a testing organization headquartered in the United States. PV modules with the UL mark have been tested in accordance with IEC standards and local standards (according to the country code next to the UL mark).
There are three typical guarantee levels for photovoltaic module products:
1) 1 year, 2 years or 3 years of PV module physical structure guarantee, such as frame, encapsulation, glass, module junction box, etc.
2) Ensure that the components have 90% of the rated output after 10-12 years.
3) Ensure that the components have 80% rated output after 20-25 years.
If any of the conditions are not met, a warranty request can be made in accordance with the warranty clauses announced by the manufacturer and/or the commercial law of the country where the components are sold. For example, if someone buys photovoltaic modules from abroad and uses them for sale or personal use, suppose they know that in order to request warranty, they must send the modules back to the country where the modules were sold.
If you purchase imported components from the product “distributor”, that is, not the manufacturer or its agent, there should be an agreement between the distributor and the manufacturer, and all warranty requests are handled directly by the manufacturer; in some countries, the importer It is regarded as a manufacturer, so all warranty requests are handled by them.
Photovoltaic modules are very reliable and stable products, but it is still best to figure out the warranty regulations for any products to be purchased and installed.