JA Solar was founded in 2005, now grown to be a huge global PV producer. In 2020, they were named the second largest shipper of panels in the world, just behind Jinko Solar. One of their latest panels is JA 390w that we review here. Having both PERC technology and half-cut cells, adds to JA Solar panels output, lifting their efficiency well above 20%. These panels also carry an extensive 30-year performance guarantee too. JA Solar Australia has a local office in Newcastle, NSW
Table of contents
- JA solar 390w review
- Why is JA Solar different?
- What are half cut solar cells about?
- JA Solar panels are “PERC”. What is that?
- How did JA Solar come about; What’s their story?
- Does JA Solar have good warranty in Australia?
- Does JA Solar have an office in Australia, and why is this important?
- So, are JA Solar panels worthwhile?
- 10kw JA Solar 390w Price
JA solar 390w review
60-cell Mono PERC Panels
These JA panels have a multi-busbar PERC cell design. The half-cut cells help to increase the power output, and reduce issues you can get with shading. This technology helps to keep the panel temperature low too, and reduce the risk of hot spots. The JA solar 390w that we review here, are Mono PERC Panels and have an impressive efficiency of 21%. JA Solar confidently back their products with a 30 Year performance guarantee, and also a 15-year product warranty. The JA Solar 390w are one of the best options in solar PV today.
Why is JA Solar different?
Most panel makers claim to have an “edge” that sets them apart from their competitors. This is what the glossy advertising says. However, JA Solar display that their claim of superiority, is no idle boast, and have shown that their products continue to improve with better cell design in their modules that help them meet or exceed many solar industry benchmarks, for both build quality and performance.
What are half cut solar cells about?
The JA design has a half cut cell structure. What this does is enable one half of a cell to work, even though the other half is shaded and not operating. It also makes the connections within the cell shorter, which increases the energy flow through the cell, and lifts its efficiency rate.
JA Solar panels are “PERC”. What is that?
You may well ask what on earth is “PERC”? Are you ready for it? What this acronym stands for is “Passive Emitter Rear Contact”. Again, you ask; what is that!? I’ll try to make this as simple as possible. A solar cell is made up of various layers of silicon that are sandwiched between light reflective layers. The top layer that faces the Sun, enables light to travel through it easily - but only one way. When the ‘captured’ light is between the layers it ‘bounces around’ and excites the ions in the silicon material. Its these ions that move through the layers to the connectors that can then channel them as electricity – as power. A “PERC” cell performs this sequence better than an ordinary solar cell.
How did JA Solar come about; What’s their story?
The JA Solar story began in 2005, in Beijing, China and quickly grew to be listed on the US NASDAQ by 2007. The company has come back into private hands under JASO Acquisition Limited. The firm now has 9 manufacturing plants in China, Malaysia and Vietnam with an annual production capacity of over 13GW. This places JA Solar as the third largest solar panel producer as of Q4, 2020. As of 2019, the company operates from 32 locations around the world, and employs about 22,000 people.
Does JA Solar have good warranty in Australia?
JA Solar recently increased their panel product replacement warranty to 15 years in Australia. This is in addition to the existing 30-year panel output warranty too. Many panels only offer at best a 12-year product warranty with a 25-year performance guarantee. So, it’s reasonable to say that you’re well covered with this brand. This is on top of any Australian Consumer Law provisions that apply as well. At the time of writing, we hadn’t heard of any issues whatsoever with JA Solar in Australia or elsewhere.
Does JA Solar have an office in Australia, and why is this important?
Firstly, Solar Power Panels only offers products that are well-established in the Australian Market. Over the years, as the solar industry grew, many companies arrived on the local market, they were products just handled through agencies and distributors. This caused many problems for those customers who experienced problems with their solar products, who then tried to get help back through either the installer, or the manufacturer’s agent. This arrangement did not end well for many people.
Its well documented that many solar companies of all sizes have come and gone, and left a trail of unhappy purchasers in their wake. If a customer was fortunate enough to have purchased their system through a reputable company, then there was always a strong possibility that that company would try and assist the customer even if the manufacturer or distributor had disappeared. This is great news for the end-user customer, but not at all great news for the reputable company, as they are left to underwrite and clean up someone else’s mess. Therefore, we as a solar retailer and installer will never buy to re-supply to any of our clients, equipment from companies that do not have a solid Australian presence, and a reputation for reliability, in the actual performance of their products, including the ease of dealing with them, should a warranty situation arise.
At the time of writing, JA Solar Australia Pty Ltd operates an office with a small staff at 755 Hunter Street, Newcastle West NSW 2302 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
So, are JA Solar panels worthwhile?
Yes, at this time, there are more reasons to buy than not. The company and its products meet all the requirements price and performance-wise. In addition, their warranty appears to be sound. However, we haven’t heard of any issues of any kind and haven’t had to actually process any warranty claims through them. Which is probably a good thing!