are solar panels recyclable
Solar panels reduce reliance on fossil fuels, help homeowners build wealth, and stabilize electricity prices. But at the end of their useful lives, can you recycle solar panels? The answer is yes. Glass, plastic, and aluminum are the raw materials of most silicon solar panels, and these three are widely recyclable. However, the material separation process can be time-consuming and needs sophisticated equipment.

Why You Should Recycle Your Solar Panels

Solar panel recycling has many benefits for the environment. The main one is that it keeps toxic materials out of landfills or incinerators, which helps reduce pollution. Landfills are one of the largest sources of methane emissions — a greenhouse gas that’s much more potent than carbon dioxide (CO2). By recycling your solar panels, you’ll help reduce methane emissions by keeping these toxic materials out of landfills and incinerators.

How You Can Recycle Your Old Solar Panels

As mentioned, solar panel recycling processes are possible only with elaborate expertise and equipment. It cannot be done by the everyday homeowner. Here is how the solar recycling process takes place:

Step 1: Disassembly

The panel is stripped down of its valuable materials which are: silicon cells, glass, and an aluminium frame.

Step 2: Glass and Aluminium Recycling

The glass and aluminium parts are recycled 100%. Solar companies typically just sell these materials to entities that are adept at recycling these.

Step 3: Separation and Purification of Silicon Cells

Chemical and thermal procedures are employed to separate 85% of the silicon wafers that are usually classified as reusable. The rest get melted for further reuse down the line.

Due to this complex recycling process, solar companies typically promote end-of-life programs where they offer to take the broken solar panels off your hands. Alternatively, homeowners can also opt for reusing or upcycling practices right before they buy new solar panels.

Solar panels that can no longer produce enough juice to power a household might still be useful for smaller projects like RVs and greenhouses. Furthermore, the metal casing of these panels allows them to be robust enough to serve as fences or even tables.

Choose Solar Galaxy for Your Solar System

If you’re thinking about getting your own solar power system to significantly save on electricity bills and help save the environment at the same time, then Solar Galaxy is the installer for you. We are an unquestioned leader in the solar industry with over ten years of experience and an unblemished track record. Our solar panels are also recyclable so you never have to worry about the pains of disposal.

Our team is comprised of industry experts and solar Installers/Engineers accredited by the Clean Energy Council (CEC). We’re compliant with all Australian solar standards and work to deliver the best possible results, regardless of your needs. Additionally, all panels and inverters we supply are approved by the CEC and use Mono Crystalline perc technology to maximize efficiency.