I spent a week testing the WindyNation 100W solar panel.
I inspected its build quality. I tested it with a multimeter. And I rigged up a testing system to measure its power output.
In many ways it’s a standard 100W polycrystalline panel. It output as much power as I’d expect from a 100W panel, and the build quality and mounting options are in line with similar options from other brands.
Where it stands a bit apart from the crowd is price and size — it’s a little cheaper and bigger than many other 100W panels.
WindyNation 100W 12V Solar Panel
Affordable and well-made
The WindyNation 100W solar panel is well-built, affordable, and performed well in my power output tests. It’s a little bigger and heavier than other 100W poly panels I’ve used.
|Solar cell type:||Polycrystalline||Max power (Pmax):||100W|
|Max power voltage (Vmp):||18.00V||Max power current (Imp):||5.56A|
|Open circuit voltage (Voc):||21.90V||Short circuit current (Isc):||6.13A|
|Dimensions:||40.1″ x 26.4″ x 1.4″
(1020mm x 670mm x 35mm)
|Weight:||19.6 lbs (8.9kg)|
Note: The specs listed above came from the label on the back of my solar panel. They’re a little different than the specs listed for the same panel on Amazon and WindyNation. I’m not sure why this is.
WindyNation Solar Panel Review
The panel arrived with about as much packaging as a pizza.
I’m all for reducing packaging waste, so this didn’t bother me much. Other 100W solar panels I own came packaged with more padding, though.
I pulled the panel out of the box and did a quick lookover. The frame had a couple dents which I assume happened during transit.
Everything else about the panel seemed sturdy and well-built. In fact, the label on the back of the panel says it was made in Canada. This was a pleasant surprise — most solar panels I’ve tested were made in China.
Speaking of testing…
…it was time to see how the panel performed.
To kick things off, I took the panel outside at noon on a sunny day and put it in direct sunlight.
I used my multimeter to measure the solar panel’s open circuit voltage (Voc) and short circuit current (Isc) and compare them to the specs listed on the back of the panel.
The max open circuit voltage (Voc) I got was 21.9V. This was the same as the panel’s claimed Voc at STC.
The max short circuit current (Isc) I got was 5.83A. The panel’s claimed Isc at STC is 6.13A.
Overall, these were solid results. The short circuit current I measured was 0.3 amps less than that at STC, but in my experience that’s typical.
Installation & Mounting
I set up my WindyNation 100W solar panel by connecting a solar charge controller to a 12V battery and then connecting the panel to the charge controller.
Note: If you need help installing yours, check out my tutorial on setting up a solar panel system.
I also added an inline power meter on the solar cables and a Bluetooth module to my charge controller so I could measure the panel’s power output (keep reading for the results).
As far as mounting options go, the panel has the standard selection — two holes on either side of the frame. It also has a small hole on each side for grounding.
Power Output Testing
With my testing system rigged up, I took the panel outside and used a chair to stand it at the optimal tilt angle for my location.
I then measured the panel’s max power output over the course of four sunny days in September.
Over my four days of testing, the max output I measured was 88W on the last (and sunniest) day:
The power meter also measured a max power output of 88W (though I was too slow at pulling out my phone, and by the time I took a picture it had dropped to 86.3W).
A max power output of 88 watts is a solid result for a 100W panel.
Note: I tested the panel at 33.7° latitude. The temperature was 80°F (27°C).
I popped open the junction box and was pleased by the build quality I found inside. The soldering seemed good and the wire connectors looked well crimped.
The panel came with MC4 connectors, the industry standard. I tested their crimps by twisting and feeling for any looseness, but found none.
Everything else about the panel — cables, panel glass, and general build quality — seemed good. And the panel held up well over the course of my testing.
Dimensions & Weight
The WindyNation panel was a bit bigger and heavier than other 100W panels I own. I pulled some data from other top 100W solar panels and made charts comparing their size and weight.
Here’s how the size (length * width) of the WindyNation 100W panel compares to other 100W panels:
And here’s how its weight compares:
As you can see, the panel is the biggest and heaviest of this bunch. It’s also the biggest and heaviest 100W panel I own.
That’s only a concern if you have space or weight constraints. If you do, consider a monocrystalline solar panel. They have more efficient cells and are thus smaller and more compact.
- Solar cell type: Polycrystalline
- Max power (Pmax): 100W
- Max power voltage (Vmp): 18.00V
- Max power current (Imp): 5.56A
- Open circuit voltage (Voc): 21.90V
- Short circuit current (Isc): 6.13A
- Dimensions: 40.1″ x 26.4″ x 1.4″ (1020mm x 670mm x 35mm)
- Weight: 19.6 lbs (8.9kg)
What I Like
- It’s cheap. This is one of the cheaper 100W polycrystalline solar panels available.
- It’s made in Canada. Almost every other solar panel I’ve used has been made in China.
What I Don’t Like
- It’s bigger and heavier than many other 100W panels I’ve used. But, to be fair, in practice the difference is pretty negligible unless you have space or weight constraints.
- It ships with minimal packaging. Mine arrived with a couple small dents in the frame, which I assume happened during transit. I’d like to see the panel ship with a little more padding. Small dents in the frame don’t affect power output, though.
Who This Solar Panel Is for
- You want a good cheap 100W solar panel. It outputs as much power as I’d expect from a 100W panel, and it’s well-built and affordable.
Who This Solar Panel Isn’t for
- You have limited space to mount your solar array. This is the biggest 100W solar panel I own. If you need something smaller, consider a monocrystalline solar panel.
- You want a lightweight solar panel. This panel weighs 19.6 pounds (8.9kg), which is heavier than many other 100W panels. Consider a monocrystalline or flexible solar panel if you need something lighter.
The Bottom Line
The WindyNation 100W solar panel is cheap, sturdy, and performed well in my power output tests. It’s a little bigger and heavier than many other 100W polycrystalline solar panels, but everything else about it is pretty much standard.
A small ask: If you found my WindyNation 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! 🙏