Best Flexible Solar Panels 2021/2022: Reviews & Buyer’s Guide

The best flexible solar panels provide several benefits to their users.

Whether it’s for the home, camping, a caravan, boat or another use, some of the benefits of using a bendable solar panel compared to rigid panels are:

  • They are still efficient at extracting sunlight energy
  • They can bend to a curved surface (like a roof or deck), or stick to the surface (in addition to being fixed)
  • They are usually much lighter than glass solar panels
  • They can be as durable (to breaking, corrosion, and water) as glass panels
  • They can be transportable and easy removed

In the following flexible solar panels reviews, list and buyer’s guide, we discuss some of the best bendable solar panel brands, such as Windynation, Suaoki and HQST.

 

Top Rated Flexible & Bendable Solar Panels List

In case you don’t have time to read the guide, you can check out our top flexible and bendable solar panel pick here:

Best 100 Watt Flexible & Bendable Solar Panel – Windynation 100 Watt Bendable Solar Panel (on Amazon)

Update – since first publishing this guide, ALLPOWERS and Renogy seem to have two of the better flexible panels on the market (which are worth you checking out). The Renogy panel is a 160 Watt panel currently.

 

Best Flexible Solar Panels: Reviews

Windynation 100W Bendable Solar Panel 

The Windynation 100W Bendable Solar Panel can bend/curve up to 30 degrees, and is intended for charging 12 volt batteries.

 

Who Is This Solar Panel For

  • Those looking for a solar panel to mount on an RV, boat, cabin, tent, or any
    irregular  or curved surface
  • Those looking for a solar panel that bends up to 30 degrees
  • Those looking to charge 12 V lead-acid and lithium batteries – marine batteries, rv batteries, bike batteries etc.
  • Those looking for solar panels that are extremely light and easy to move/transport

 

Who Is This Solar Panel Not For

  • Those who would prefer a rigid solar panel, or folding solar panel

 

What’s Good About It

  • Extremely versatile and portable – good for camping and camper trailers, RV batteries, cabin setups, marine batteries, car batteries, electric bikes etc.
  • Can be mounted by using the 6 pre-drilled holes in the panel
  • Can be mounted with adhesive or velcro if you have it
  • Solar cell type is Monocrystalline Silicon – mono panels work better than amorphous panels in direct sunlight
  • Works at 18 volts and can charge 12 volt lithium and lead-acid batteries
  • Can curve slightly to fit to curved and uneven surfaces – macimum bend of 30 degrees
  • Very lightweight – only weighs 4.1lbs – easy to transport, install and remove
  • Frameless design
  • Connector type is MC IV (MC4) Cables attached to junction box
  • Comes with 35 inch 12 gauge connector cables
  • Weather resistant
  • Can withstand up to 1 inch diameter hail
  • Dimensions are 41.7″ (length) x 21.3″ (width) x 0.1″ (thick)

 

What’s Not So Great?

  • No real major issues with these panels

 

What Else Might You Get With This Solar Panel

Some users get these extras with their solar panel:

 

Where To Check Out This Solar Panel

View the Windynation 100 Watt Bendable Solar Panel (on Amazon)

 

Suaoki 100W Flexible Solar Panel

View On Amazon

The ALLPOWERS 100W Bendable Solar Panel can bend/curve up to 30 degrees, and is intended for charging 12 volt batteries.

 

Who Is This Solar Panel For

  • Those looking for a solar panel for the home, travel, camping, and hiking – or, for mounting on a coach roof, RV, boat, cabin, tent, or any other irregular surface
  • Those looking for a solar panel that bends up to 30 degrees
  • Those looking to charge 12 V lead- acid and lithium batteries – marine batteries, rv batteries, bike batteries etc.
  • Those looking for solar panels that are extremely light and easy to move/transport

 

Who Is This Solar Panel Not For

  • While this panel is bendable, it is not foldable. If you want foldable panels – look elsewhere

 

What’s Good About It

  • Quality construction and manufacturing
  • 100 Watt power max
  • 23-25% efficiency
  • Works at 18 volts
  • Best for charging 12 volt batteries
  • Diode that prevents reverse current drain
  • Can be flexed to a max 30 degree curve
  • Pre drilled metal reinforced holes for fixing
  • MC4 connector with 31 inch cables
  • Frameless design
  • Water resistant
  • Good for mounting on a coach roof, RV, boat, cabin, tent, or any other irregular surface
  • Weighs on 4.85 lbs – easy to install, remove and transport – great for portability
  • Dimensions are only 43.3 length x 22.4 wide x 0.1 in thick

 

What’s Not So Great?

  • The Suaoki panels are usually OK – but can sometimes arrive to your house with a few packaging issues – loose wires for example. Check over the panels when you get them
  • Box instructions for set up are a bit lacking

 

What Else Do You Need To Use This Solar Panel

Some users get these extras with their solar panel:

 

Where To Check Out This Solar Panel

View the Suaoki 100W Flexible Solar Panel on Amazon

 

 

Suaoki 50W Flexible Solar Panel

This is the 50 Watt version of the Suaoki’s flexible solar panels.

The 50 Watt version is only 2.6 lbs, and has dimensions of 23.5 x 22.4 x 0.1 in

View the Suaoki 50W Flexible Solar Panel on Amazon

 

 

HQST 100 Watt Monocrystalline Semi Flexible Solar Panel

View On Amazon

Who Is This Solar Panel For

  • Those looking for a lightweight panel
  • Those looking for a lightweight panel that is easy to install and remove
  • Those looking for a lightweight panel that can be fixed in a number of ways – adhesive, grommets, zip ties or velcro

 

Who Is This Solar Panel Not For

  • Those looking for a panel that bends – this one does not

 

What’s Good About It

  • 10 inch panel cables with MC4 connectors
  • Operating voltage of around 18 volts
  • Monocrystalline cells laminated into plastic sheets – very lightweight at 5lbs
  • Very easy to install and remove – a good non-permanent or portable option
  • Can be fixed in a number of ways – adhesive, grommets, zip ties or velcro
  • Pre drilled holes in the panels for quick installation and removal
  • Junction box is sealed and waterproof
  • Dimensions of 41.7 X 21.3 X 0.12 inches
  • Box includes –

> One (1) 100 Watt Lightweight Solar Panel

> One (1) IP65 Rated waterproof junction box

> One (1) pair of IP67 Rated waterproof MC4 connectors

> One (1) pair of 14 AWG Panel Leads

 

What’s Not So Great?

  • These are just lightweight plastic panels – they are not bendable

 

What Else Do You Need To Use This Solar Panel

Some users get these extras with their solar panel:

 

Where To Check Out This Solar Panel

View the HQST 100Watt Semi Flexible Solar Panel on Amazon

 

 

HQST 50 Watt Semi Flexible Solar Panel

The 50 Watt version of the HQST semi flexible solar panel.

This panel is 21.8 x 21.2 x 0.12 inches in dimensions, and weighs 2.8 lbs.

View the HQST 50Watt Semi Flexible Solar Panel on Amazon

 

 

Best Flexible Solar Panels: Buyer’s Guide

Other Names For Flexible Solar Panel

  • Semi-Flexible Solar Panels
  • Bendable Solar Panels
  • Soft Solar Panels
  • Stick On Solar Panels
  • Lightweight Solar Panels
  • Portable/Transportable Solar Panels

NOTE: some flexible and semi-flexible solar panels are not meant to be bent – they are just made of a more flexible material than glass or aluminium.

 

What Is A Flexible Solar Panel?

Flexible solar panels are usually made of a plastic material, and have the monocrystalline or polycrystalline cells (that capture sunlight energy) laminated between them.

This is in comparison to the traditional glass or aluminium material solar panels.

 

Flexible Solar Panels vs Traditional/Hard Solar Panels – What’s The Differences?

Flexible solar panels and traditional/hard solar panels have several differences, with some of the main ones being:

Fixing vs Adhering – hard solar panels usually require some type of solid or structural fixing, whereas flexible solar panels can be adhered with adhesive, grommets, zip ties, velcro

Material, and Flexibility or Bend ability – hard solar panels are usually made with glass and/or aluminium, whereas soft solar panels are made with lightweight materials like plastic

Weight – hard solar panels are usually heavier than flexible solar panels because of the materials used

Efficiency – hard and soft solar panels might have differences in the efficiency of catching sun energy

Range of Applications They Can Be Used In – flexible solar panels can be used on curved surfaces, whereas hard solar panels usually need a flat surface

Cost – there’s usually a cost difference between buying a flexible vs hard solar panel

Damage To Panel – flexible solar panels are at risk of being damaged by sharp objects and scraping, whilst traditional solar panels are at risk of shattering or cracking

 

What Is A Flexible Solar Panel Used For, and What Does A Flexible Solar Panel Do?

Flexible solar panels are used as a more versatile option to glass and aluminium/hard solar panels.

They can be used on a rooftop, RV, boat, cabin, tent, and other irregular or curved surfaces where a hard solar panel might not be suitable.

Applications like the home, travel, camping, hiking and fishing are good for flexible and semi flexible solar panels.

Flexible and semi-flexible solar panels can usually be installed and removable, making them portable or transportable – suiting the above applications.

 

Types of Flexible Solar Panels

Flexible solar panels can be:

Flexible or Semi-Flexible – soft flexible material, but not be be bended or curved

Bendable – can be bended or curved usually between 10 to 30 degrees…good for curved and irregular surfaces

The above types of flexible and bendable solar panels can then be classified into 50 Watt max power, 100 Watt max power panels.

NOTE: flexible, semi-flexible and bendable solar panels are different to foldable and other types of solar panels.

 

Flexible Solar Panel Bits & Accessories

  • Solar Charge Regulator Display – regulates of limits the rate that electric currents are added to or withdrawn from the panels > protects against overshoot/overcharge, and discharge.
  • Cable Connectors – connects cables like MC4 cables, and extension cables
  • Cable Extensions – an extension cable for the cables on your solar panel
  • Solar Panel Assembly Tool – for installing and removing your solar panel/s

 

How To Choose A Flexible Solar Panel

The main things to consider when choosing a flexible solar panel are:

1. Do you want a solar panel that is just flexible, or one that can bend also?

2. What Watt/power do you want from the panel/s?

3. Consider the ‘features’ to look for below if you want something specific e.g. if you are looking for a certain hail or snow resistance level.

 

Features To Look For In A Flexible Solar Panel

  • What Wattage of power does it produce – 50w or 100w?
  • What’s the conversion efficiency of the panel?
  • What’s the panel made of – plastic?
  • Is the panel just made of plastic and is flexible, or is it bendable – if bendable – what degree can you bend it to…10 degrees, 30 degrees?
  • How to you fix/adhere the panel – adhesive, grommets, zip ties, velcro, screws? Or, does it need structural reinforcements?
  • Do you have to drill holes in the panel, or are they pre-drilled for you?
  • What surfaces can you adhere the panel on? In what applications? e.g. rooftop, RV, boat, cabin, tent, other irregular surfaces, AND in applications like the home, travel, camping, hiking.
  • How long are the connector cables – how many inches?
  • Is the junction box sealed and protected?
  • Has any testing been done on the panel to guarantee performance – are there any certifications?
  • What are the surface area dimensions of the panel?
  • What is the thickness of the panel?
  • How much does the panel weigh?
  • What other specs do you need to know about the panel – voltage, current etc.
  • Is the panel transportable and able to be uninstalled and re-installed?
  • What sort of resistance does the panel offer – air, snow, hail, water and heat resistance of some kind?

 

Tips For Installing A Flexible Solar Panel

1. Find out what the legislation and regulations are on solar panels in your area – can you install or does a professional have to install?

2. If you can install, make sure you follow the manufacturer instructions so you don’t void any warranty or guarantee.

 

Best Flexible Solar Panels: Resources

1. http://www.hqsolarpower.com/default.asp

2. http://www.windynation.com/

3. http://www.suaoki.com/

 

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