SunPower Equinox: The Top Integrated Solar PV System With Perfectly Matched Components

SunPower is among the largest solar companies in the U.S. solar industry, with a history dating back more than 30 years in the past. Products manufactured by SunPower feature cutting-edge Maxeon solar technology to deliver high conversion efficiencies, generating up to 60% more power than conventional options. These solar panels are covered by industry-leading warranties and feature a lifespan of up to 40 years or more.

Solar solutions by SunPower are suitable for residential, commercial, and utility-scale applications, with modules rated as the #1 in durability test performed by Fraunhofer. One of the most relevant solar innovations by SunPower for residential applications is the SunPower Equinox system. In this SunPower Equinox review, you will find a complete explanation of the system, its components, and other interesting details about it.

SunPower Equinox Solar System Installed on Residential Roof
Image: SunPower

What is the SunPower Equinox system?

Traditional residential PV systems can feature several components designed by different manufacturers, this can generate incompatibility between products that tend to translate as power losses, communication malfunction or mismatch. All components in the SunPower Equinox solar system are perfectly engineered to seamlessly work together, reducing power losses and creating perfect synchrony between all components, manufactured by a single brand.

The SunPower Equinox system produces a large amount of solar energy by featuring high-efficiency Maxeon solar cell technology. This energy is converted into AC power right at the output by a built-in microinverter and is transferred to the home to be used as regular electricity. Excess energy is sent to the grid to be accounted for as credits for future consumption.

The aforementioned process is monitored and supervised by the EnergyLink hardware and software in the SunPower Equinox. This system offers you detailed information about your home PV system and gives you control over it. The SunPower Equinox solar system can be expanded into a battery-based or off-grid PV system by adding the SunVault storage system.

What does the SunPower Equinox system include?

The SunPower Equinox system is comprised of 5 main components: high-efficiency solar panels, built-in microinverters, the mounting system, and monitoring software & hardware. Additionally, this solar solution can be expanded to include a battery storage system. In this section, we will explain each of these components.

Diagram of Equinox System by SunPower

SunPower AC solar panels

All AC solar panels used by the SunPower Equinox system are excellent options featuring Maxeon solar technology with a high conversion efficiency of up to 22.8%, which converts more sunlight into electricity. Maxeon solar cells are designed with a solid-copper foundation, making them robust against breakage and corrosion, which increases the durability of the module in general.

SunPower Equinox solar panels can feature an elegantly superior aesthetic with an all-black design. This makes them ideal for homeowners who want to enjoy solar power while maintaining the aesthetics of their homes.

Built-in microinverters

Each AC solar panel used in the SunPower Equinox solar system features a built-in microinverter at the DC output. The SunPower Equinox microinverter maximizes energy production, minimizes DC power losses and disruptions, and eliminates the need for external inverters by automatically converting DC power into AC to be used at the home, stored at the SunVault storage system, or send back to the grid.

InvisiMount racking hardware

Designed by SunPower to maintain aesthetics, the InvisiMount is the mounting system of the SunPower Equinox system. This is a rail-based frame racking hardware designed to secure the SunPower Equinox panels in place. The system stays completely hidden, even when seen from the ground, unlike traditional mounting systems.

EnergyLink hardware: SunPower PV Supervisor (PVS) monitoring

The EnergyLink Hardware or SunPower PVS monitoring system is the main supervisory system integrated into the SunPower Equinox. This hardware is designed to fully monitor and control every aspect of the SunPower Equinox solar system, sending real-time reports to the SunPower servers to be delivered to the user via the web or mobile EnergyLink software.

EnergyLink software: mySunPower web & mobile apps

The EnergyLink software grants you access to detailed information about your SunPower Equinox solar system. Here you can check out the power generation of the system in real-time or analyze the data on a daily, monthly, or yearly basis. The EnergyLink software is available in web & mobile versions. This system also helps you control and optimize energy savings, monitor energy usage, estimate bills, and more.

Add-on: SunVault storage system

The SunVault storage system is a component of the SunPower Equinox system installed as an add-on to the five standard components. This is a smart battery designed to seamlessly work alongside every other component in the system. The SunPower Equinox battery can store excess energy produced by the SunPower Equinox to reduce bills during peak-time hours, ensure power continuity during outages, or even living off-grid.

Can the SunPower Equinox system be the right fit for you?

The SunPower Equinox is an extremely efficient and reliable energy solution, suitable for many homeowners. In this section we analyze several key aspects of the system, allowing you to evaluate if it is the right fit for you.

Superior Aesthetics

Many homeowners going solar, struggle to find the balance between aesthetics and performance, but this is not a problem for the SunPower Equinox system. This system delivers an outstanding performance that generates up to 55% more energy than traditional systems while featuring a highly aesthetic design, thanks to the inclusion of the InvisiMount, the All-Black solar panels, and the built-in microinverters.

Complete Monitoring

Traditional PV systems do not include a monitoring & control unit like the SunPower Equinox. The EnergyLink hardware and software is a great feature providing you with complete details & statistics in an easy-to-digest format. The information is processed by SunPower and delivered to you in real-time via the EnergyLink software, giving you complete control & recommendations on the SunPower Equinox. The best thing about this monitoring system is that it is done at the module level thanks to the integrated microinverter.

Outstanding Performance

The success of the SunPower Equinox as an energy solution is the result of using AC solar panels with Maxeon solar technology that features an efficiency of up to 22.8%, alongside perfectly engineered components designed to seamlessly work together. This fully integrated PV system surpasses traditional ones by generating more energy, delivering monitoring options, and featuring superior aesthetics.

One-of-a-Kind Warranty

One major proof of success for the SunPower Equinox is the warranty backing the whole system. The SunPower Equinox is backed with an industry-leading 25-year warranty that covers the products and their performance, but it also ensures that every component seamlessly integrates into the system. This is not something usually covered by manufacturers of traditional PV systems.

One Price for the Whole System

The price for traditional PV systems varies depending on the manufacturers of the components and the salesman of each product. This does not occur with the cost of the SunPower Equinox system, since every component is manufactured by SunPower. The only price variation comes from choosing different module series, modifying the generation capacity, or adding batteries to the system.

The only downside of the system is that to provide this top-quality product, the SunPower Equinox cost tends to be higher than conventional systems. This is why the system is mainly chosen by the most demanding clients, looking for extremely outstanding performance, higher aesthetics, and a fully integrated system.

How does the SunPower Equinox system compare against other solar PV systems?

The SunPower Equinox can easily surpass the most efficient PV systems in the market. To truly understand the reach of the system, we contrast it against conventional systems and similar competing options like the Tesla Solar Roof.

SunPower Equinox system vs. Conventional PV systems

The SunPower Equinox system is far superior to traditional PV systems. This is achieved by including the highest efficiency solar panels in the industry, built-in microinverters, an industry-leading warranty, components seamlessly working together, and the possibility to add the SunVault storage system.

Traditional systems are bulkier and have several downsides to them. They usually require more space to fit low-efficiency solar panels, require a traditional inverter with basic or non-monitoring capability, feature different warranties for each component, and may require large installations to add batteries.

SunPower Equinox system vs. Tesla Solar Roof

The Tesla Solar Roof is a great adversary to the SunPower Equinox system. Tesla roof elegantly blends into the home, delivering far superior aesthetics, but this system does require an inverter box and features lower efficiency for the PV solution.

On the other hand, a single unit of the SunVault storage system with its 13 kWh capacity, surpasses the 12 kWh of the Powerwall, but Tesla has a point in favor by allowing the stacking of up to 10 Powerwalls while the SunVault only allows to stack up to 4 batteries for a total 52 kWh. Both systems include a monitoring system, but the SunPower Equinox gives you full control of the system, displays generation details for each module, and more, while the Tesla system only gives you a general display of the system and control over the Powerwall.

The warranty is where SunPower overcomes Tesla. Tesla delivers a 25-year warranty for the tiles, but limits the warranty for the Powerwall and inverter to 10 years, while SunPower covers each product by 25 years.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What SunPower series solar panels are compatible with the SunPower Equinox?

SunPower Equinox system is compatible with white or all-black solar panels from the M Series, X Series, and E Series. SunPower is also recently adding the U Series as another main option for the SunPower Equinox, but there is little information about this new addition.

How much money will I save with SunPower Equinox?

The SunPower Equinox system is more expensive than conventional options, but it also delivers up to 55% more energy. The system delivers higher savings by producing more energy and featuring the EnergyLink system that helps you optimize savings and reduce energy consumption during peak-shaving hours. You can estimate your savings with the SunPower Equinox at the SunPower Solar Power Calculator.

Does the SunPower Equinox work during a blackout?

The standard SunPower Equinox system operates as a grid-tied system, delivering savings by generating solar power, which is accounted for in your Net Metering (NEM) System, but it does not operate during power outages unless you add the SunVault storage system.

If you opt for the SunVault storage system add-on, you can store excess energy at home. This smart battery will automatically switch energy sources during outages to power critical loads at your home. The autonomy of the system varies on the capacity of the SunPower Equinox battery and the load of the home.

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