Monocrystalline vs Polycrystalline solar panels: understanding the differences

21st Mar 2023
solar panels on a house

Monocrystalline vs Polycrystalline solar panels

Solar panels are becoming increasingly popular as people seek to reduce their carbon footprint and lower their electricity bills.

There are two main types of solar panels available in the market: monocrystalline and polycrystalline. Understanding the differences between the two types of solar panels can help you decide which one to install.

In this article, we will discuss the key differences between monocrystalline and polycrystalline solar panels.

Manufacturing process

Monocrystalline solar panels are made from a single crystal of silicon, while polycrystalline solar panels are made from multiple crystals of silicon. The manufacturing process for monocrystalline solar panels involves cutting the silicon ingots into thin wafers. These are then assembled into solar cells. Polycrystalline solar panels are made by melting multiple silicon crystals together to form a single ingot. The ingot is then sliced into wafers, which are assembled into solar cells.


Monocrystalline solar panels are known to be more efficient than polycrystalline solar panels. This is because monocrystalline solar cells are made from a single crystal of silicon, which allows for a more uniform flow of electrons. As a result, monocrystalline solar panels are able to convert a higher percentage of sunlight into electricity. On the other hand, polycrystalline solar panels have lower efficiency because the multiple crystals in each cell create more barriers to the flow of electrons.


Polycrystalline solar panels are generally less expensive than monocrystalline solar panels. This is because the manufacturing process for polycrystalline solar panels is simpler and requires less energy than the process for monocrystalline solar panels. Additionally, polycrystalline solar panels can be made using silicon scraps, which reduces the cost of raw materials.


Both types of solar panels have a long lifespan, but monocrystalline solar panels tend to last slightly longer than polycrystalline solar panels. This is because the single crystal structure of monocrystalline solar cells is more resistant to degradation over time than the multiple crystal structure of polycrystalline solar cells.


Monocrystalline solar panels have a uniform black color, while polycrystalline solar panels have a bluish tint and a more speckled appearance. This is because the multiple crystals in polycrystalline solar cells create a textured surface, which reflects light in different directions.

Space efficiency

Monocrystalline solar panels are more space-efficient than polycrystalline solar panels. This is because monocrystalline solar cells are more efficient at converting sunlight into electricity, which means that fewer solar panels are needed to generate the same amount of electricity. This is particularly important for small rooftop installations, where space is limited.

Monocrystalline vs Polycrystalline solar panels: In conclusion

In conclusion, both monocrystalline and polycrystalline solar panels have their advantages and disadvantages. Monocrystalline solar panels are more efficient and longer-lasting, but they are also more expensive. Polycrystalline solar panels are less expensive, but they are less efficient and have a shorter lifespan. When choosing between the two types of solar panels, it is essential to consider your budget, the space available for installation, and the electricity you need to generate. By doing so, you can make an informed decision and choose the solar panels that are right for you.

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Reaching out to Sheerwater Solar is straightforward and hassle-free. Whether you’re interested in solar panels for your home or business in Woking, we’re here to guide you every step of the way. You can contact us directly by calling 01932 627 555 or by sending an email to

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What happens next?

In most cases, we’ll need to conduct an on-site survey at your property to assess the feasibility and provide you with a tailored quote. This visit allows us to understand your specific needs and explore the potential for renewable energy solutions. Following the survey, we’ll discuss the best options for integrating solar energy into your property, including detailed costs and the installation process.

We’re excited to assist you on your journey to renewable energy and look forward to hearing from you.