This is my hands-on review of the Renogy 100 Watt Monocrystalline Solar Panel.
I spent weeks testing it on its own as well as alongside other top 100 watt solar panels. I tested it with a multimeter, inspected its build quality and measured its power output on a sunny day.
After all that, I think the Renogy 100W Mono panel is the best 100 watt solar panel for most people. It’s my favorite combination of size, build quality and power output.
Its only real downside is price. It’s a bit pricier than most other 100 watt panels.
Full review: Best 100 Watt Solar Panels
Renogy 100W 12V Monocrystalline Solar Panel
The best 100 watt solar panel
Its combination of size, build quality and power output make this my favorite 100 watt solar panel. It’s the most compact panel I tested, making it a great option when mounting space is at a premium. It is a bit pricier than most other 100 watt panels, though.
|Solar cell type:||Monocrystalline||Max power (Pmax):||100W|
|Max power voltage (Vmp):||18.6V||Max power current (Imp):||5.38A|
|Open circuit voltage (Voc):||22.3V||Short circuit current (Isc):||5.86A|
|Dimensions:||42.4″ x 20″ x 1.38″
(1077mm x 508mm x 35mm)
|Weight:||13.6 lbs (6.2 kg) weighed
14.3 lbs (6.5 kg) listed
Renogy Solar Panel Review
Unboxing & First Impressions
Upon arrival, I took the panel out of the box and gave it a quick rundown. It arrived well-packaged and in good condition. The box was sturdy and the panel was well protected.
The first things that stood out to me were its size and weight. It was noticeably smaller and lighter than other 100 watt panels I’ve used. I also liked its thick frame. Because this is a monocrystalline panel, its cells have a black hue rather than the blue hue of polycrystalline panels. As silly as it is, I must say I prefer black.
Everything looked in order, so I took it outside for some multimeter testing.
I angled the panel toward the sun, propped it at the optimal tilt angle and took some measurements with my multimeter.
First I recorded the open circuit voltage (Voc).
I got a Voc of 22.2V. The panel claims a Voc of 22.3V at STC.
Next I measured the panel’s short circuit current (Isc).
I got an Isc of 5.66A. The panel claims an Isc of 5.86A at STC.
These are perfectly good results for a multimeter test. The open circuit voltage was spot on. The short circuit current was a little less than claimed, but I did this test in December when the sun isn’t as strong, so that’s to be expected.
Related: How to Test Solar Panels
Installation & Mounting
Of the five 100 watt panels I own, the Renogy Mono is the easiest to mount out of the box.
It has the most pre-drilled mounting holes of any panel I tested, which gives you a bit more flexibility in how you mount it.
Plus, its frame is 35mm thick. Many 100 watt panels have thinner 30mm frames. 5mm doesn’t sound like much, but in practice it makes a panel easier to mount.
Power Output Testing
To test power output, I connected each solar panel to a battery via an MPPT charge controller. Then I used a watt meter to measure each panel’s output in watts.
Here are the results:
The Renogy Mono output a max of 71.6 watts. The only panel that performed better was the WindyNation Poly, which output a max of 72.7 watts. I’ve also tested 100 watt solar panel output on a cloudy day, and in cloudy conditions you can expect to get around 10-20 watts.
Note: I tested the panels at 33.7° latitude in early December.
The panel seemed well-built and held up just fine during my testing.
Its MC4 connectors were my favorite of all panels tested. I gave them a little tug test to test the crimps, and found no looseness.
I do think Renogy skimped a bit on their cables. This panel has 2-foot, 14 gauge (2.5mm2) cables, as opposed to the 3-foot, 12 gauge (4mm2) cables I’ve seen on other 100 watt panels. In practice these are negligible differences, though.
Everything else — from the panel glass to the junction box — looked solid.
Size & Weight
Here’s how the Renogy panel’s size (length * width) compares to other top 100 watt panels:
And here’s how its weight compares:
The Renogy Mono is the most compact 100 watt panel I tested. It’s also the second lightest, weighing only 0.1 pounds more than the Newpowa Mono.
Its compact size makes it a good option if you have space constraints, such as when mounting to a van, boat, RV, or small roof. It lets you generate the same amount of power in less space.
- Solar cell type: Monocrystalline
- Max power (Pmax): 100W
- Max power voltage (Vmp): 18.6V
- Max power current (Imp): 5.38A
- Open circuit voltage (Voc): 22.3V
- Short circuit current (Isc): 5.86A
- Dimensions: 42.4″ x 20″ x 1.38″ (1077mm x 508mm x 35mm)
- Weight: 13.6 lbs (6.2 kg) weighed, 14.3 lbs (6.5 kg) listed
What I Like
- It’s an all-around great 100 watt solar panel. Its combination of build quality, power output and size made it my favorite of the five 100 watt panels I tested.
- It’s small and compact. It’s the most compact 100 watt panel I tested, and the second lightest.
- It has good power output. It placed second in my power output test.
What I Don’t Like
- It’s a bit pricey. Renogy is one of the most popular brands in DIY and mobile solar power. As such, many of their products come with a small but noticeable price premium.
Who This Solar Panel Is for
- You have space constraints. Its compact size makes it great for mounting on vehicles and small roofs.
- You want a top 100 watt solar panel. After testing five of the best 100 watt solar panels, this panel was my favorite. I think it’s the best 100W panel for most people.
Who This Solar Panel Isn’t for
- You want a cheap 100 watt panel. As of this writing, it has the highest retail price of the 100 watt panels I tested. For a cheaper option, look at the Newpowa Mono or Rich Solar Poly.
- You have lots of space to mount your panels. In this case, I’d recommend looking at a polycrystalline panel. They are bigger and heavier, but cheaper.
- Newpowa 100W 12V Monocrystalline Solar Panel. This is the best 100W mono panel for those on a budget. It’s nearly as compact as the Renogy Mono, and a tad bit lighter. Its power output lagged a bit behind the Renogy panel’s, though. Check out my side-by-side comparison of the Renogy and Newpowa solar panels.
- WindyNation 100W 12V Polycrystalline Solar Panel. A top option for those looking for the most power output. It placed first in my power output test, beating the Renogy Mono by a watt. It’s also a great value if you buy directly from WindyNation. It is the biggest and heaviest panel tested, though. Read my full WindyNation 100 Watt Solar Panel Review.
- Rich Solar 100W 12V Polycrystalline Solar Panel. This is my budget pick for 100W panels. It had good power output, generating only 0.7 watts less than the Renogy Mono. Its average price on Amazon is also among the cheapest. Read my full Rich Solar 100 Watt Solar Panel Review.
The Bottom Line
After testing five 100 watt solar panels side by side, I think the Renogy 100W 12V solar panel is the best 100 watt solar panel for most people. It has the best combination of size, build quality and power output.
It’s best suited for people who want a monocrystalline panel or have space constraints, such as those mounting panels on a vehicle or small roof. If you have lots of space for mounting, I’d recommend looking at a cheaper polycrystalline panel.
A small ask: If you found my Renogy solar panel review helpful and are planning to buy one, please consider buying through one of my affiliate links below — I’ll get a small commission which will help fund more reviews like this one. Thank you! 🙏