Can different solar panels be mixed

Can different solar panels be mixed?

On many occasions we are in doubt as to whether we can mix different panels in the same installation, that is, can the panels I bought two years ago be mixed with new ones?

The answer to this question is yes, however, we must take into account some important details that we will detail below.

The first thing to know is that solar panels are manufactured in a wide range of power, sizes, and features. These data are what will limit us when combining the panels.

A distinction that we can make is in terms of the characteristics according to the type of silicon that makes up the solar cells: the panels can be polycrystalline, monocrystalline or amorphous. We leave you this blog so you can see the differences.

Another distinction that we can make is if we classify the panels by their working voltage, we will generally find panels with 36, 72 or 60 cells. These are cataloged as 12V, 24V and mains connection panels respectively.

Can the panels be mixed?

To be able to associate panels we must meet two conditions:

We must not combine panels or series of panels of different voltage in parallel. Each branch in parallel must have a similar voltage and be of the same number and type of cells. Therefore, the panels that make up a series (string) must all be identical.

If we do not comply with these two premises, we will not be able to associate two groups of different panels in the same circuit, but this does not mean that we cannot include them in the same installation.

How do we include panels of different power and/or voltage in our installation?

In this case, we are presented with a wide range of possibilities that we describe below:

1. We have 12V solar panels but with a much lower power compared to the ones we have bought . In this case we should not modify anything in our installation, we only need to acquire a regulator according to the panels that we wish to acquire.

An example would be two 200W 12V panels with an intensity of 11.64A, which we would connect to the system with a 30A charge regulator in the case of PWM and 400W in the case of MPPT.

2. We have 24V solar panels but with a much lower power compared to the ones we wish to acquire . In this case we should not modify anything in our installation, we only need to acquire a regulator according to the panels we have purchased.

An example would be two 325W 24V plates with an intensity of 8.70A, which we would connect to the system with a 20A charge regulator in the case of PWM and 650W in the case of MPPT.

3. We have a 12V installation and we have purchased 24V or grid connected solar panels and we want to connect them to the installation we already have , in the most economical way possible. To solve the problem we only need an MPPT regulator, this will regulate the output voltage to 12V directly connected to batteries and will give us the maximum possible performance in our new photovoltaic panels.

4. We have a 24V installation and we have acquired 12V or network connection panels and we want to connect them to the installation that we already have in the most economical way possible . To solve the problem we only need an MPPT regulator, this will regulate the output voltage to 24V directly connected to batteries and will give us the maximum possible performance in our new panels.

5. We have a 12V installation and we want to replace it with an installation with a voltage higher than 24V and we would like to keep the panels we already have . To solve the problem we only need an MPPT charge regulator, this will regulate the output voltage to 24V directly connected to batteries and will give us the maximum possible performance in our new panels.

6. We have a 12V installation and we want to replace it with an installation with a voltage higher than 48V and we would like to keep the panels we already have . To solve the problem we only need an MPPT charge regulator, this will regulate the output voltage to 48V directly connected to batteries and will give us the maximum possible performance in our new panels.

7. We have a 24V installation and we want to replace it with an installation with a voltage higher than 48V and we would like to keep the panels we already have . To solve the problem we only need an MPPT regulator, this will regulate the output voltage to 48V directly connected to batteries and will give us the maximum possible performance in our new panels.

Through all the cases mentioned above, we collect many of the situations in which we can find ourselves. However, if you have any questions or queries that may arise, our team of technicians will advise you on the choice of material, do not hesitate to contact us.

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