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Old 20-08-2015, 09:17   #1
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Best Canadian source for Solar Panels

Hi folks -

looking to pick up 200W-400W of solar panels soon. I'm just starting my research on sources, but I'm seeing a lot cheaper pricing in the US I think. I'm in Nova Scotia, Canada; and wondering if anyone has made this purchase recently in Canada. If so, what is the best bang for buck that has been seen north of the border?

thanks in advance-

bg
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Old 21-08-2015, 12:03   #2
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re: Best Canadian source for Solar Panels

Sorry this doesn't answer your question, but I am in Canada (Toronto) and I bought 5 x 135W from * * *Custom Marine Products - Custom Marine Products early 2014 based on price and size (output and physical dimensions).

Now, I was able to drive to Detroit to pick them up, and this was before the duty on Chinese panels was reinstated (I believe), but the guy was very helpful.

Worth checking out anyway.
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Old 21-08-2015, 12:17   #3
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re: Best Canadian source for Solar Panels

Google Rib Lake Power. He imports cheep panels from China, or he used to, plus associated equipment. Hes located in southern Ontario.

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Old 21-08-2015, 12:25   #4
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re: Best Canadian source for Solar Panels

Is Canadian Solar in Canada?
http://www.canadiansolar.cc/
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Old 21-08-2015, 12:30   #5
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re: Best Canadian source for Solar Panels

Hi NSboatman,

If it's semi-flexible panels you're looking for we are the Canadian distributors for premium quality high output Italian made Solbian and Gioco panels.

I think part of the reason you may be seeing lower prices in the US on many of the rigid panels is that they are manufactured in China and Canada imposes anti-dumping duties of up to 286% on Chinese rigid panels.
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Old 21-08-2015, 12:33   #6
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re: Best Canadian source for Solar Panels

Canadian Solar is a Canadian firm however they manufacture many of their lines in China and the duty affects them. I may be wrong however there are a few companies that Canadian Customs deemed to have received a lower state subsidy and therefore have a lower rate of duty imposed on them. Canadian Solar had the duty imposed on it's panels however I believe at a much lower rate.
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Old 22-08-2015, 19:46   #7
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re: Best Canadian source for Solar Panels

This comes to mind. At the very least it gives you an idea of the work that goes into a good quality solar panel. He also sells kits so you can do it yourself.

Just a thought.

How to Build a Solar Panel
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Old 22-08-2015, 19:55   #8
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re: Best Canadian source for Solar Panels

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hybrid Power View Post
I think part of the reason you may be seeing lower prices in the US on many of the rigid panels is that they are manufactured in China and Canada imposes anti-dumping duties of up to 286% on Chinese rigid panels.
Yep. Import duties do raise the prices.

By my way of thinking....I noticed you are in Halifax. Maine is only a short sail away.

US Post Offices will hold packages for you, its called Package Intercept, for a fee of US $12.15. I'm sure you have a relative or a friend who has a US address you can use. And once the panels are on the boat.....

Just my thoughts.
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Old 24-08-2015, 07:55   #9
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re: Best Canadian source for Solar Panels

Thanks guys for all the suggestions - haven't had time to process them all yet but I will in the next few days. Very helpful. didn't know about the 286% duties!! damn.

sailing to maine is a lovely idea... but I just got back from 5 weeks off to sail to newfoundland and back (didn't make it - engine trouble in Cape Breton), so I can't take more time to get there this year. Maybe in the spring...

thanks again-

bg
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Old 07-09-2015, 06:38   #10
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re: Best Canadian source for Solar Panels

I used Solarandwindtechnology, based in Ontario, when I was shopping. Don't know how they compare in 2015 but they were resonnable when I was shopping. They have an eBay store too.


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Old 08-09-2015, 07:14   #11
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re: Best Canadian source for Solar Panels

I buy items in the U.S. And have them received at a UPS store or other small company just across the border. They hold them until I drive down to pick them up, I clear them through customs myself. I don't know if you could save enough to go through the hassle. I saved $350 on 4 tires last year.

I keep a boat in Florida, last year I bought a 325W Kyocera panel from eMarine for around $400 U.S. It is mounted above our bimini aft of the boom. We have no back stay so virtually no shadows. I'm using a Rogue MPPT controller. I'm very pleased with the performance. I think one large panel is more efficient. The controller only needs to deal with one panel, the voltage is higher, current lower. And only two connections on the one panel.

We run a fridge, freezer, LED lights. The one panel usually supplies all our power when we live aboard.

I have pictures of the install in an album on my profile here on this site.

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Old 08-09-2015, 09:30   #12
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re: Best Canadian source for Solar Panels

Quote:
Originally Posted by esarratt View Post
US Post Offices will hold packages for you, its called Package Intercept, for a fee of US $12.15. I'm sure you have a relative or a friend who has a US address you can use. And once the panels are on the boat......
You can also use USPS's General Delivery service that is free and provided the same result. I have used this to get solar panels, alternators, you name it, in the USVI and Spanish VI.


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Old 26-09-2015, 01:33   #13
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re: Best Canadian source for Solar Panels

The more panels are becoming popular yet somewhat expensive, lately I was wondering if groups of people shouldn't work together to to put together a group purchase buying group.
The advantages of course is cost reduction. The seems so much interest here, it might not be a bad idea to talk about it. There's potentially a lot of money to be saved in bulk ordering.
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