Disclosure: FMB Home Picks is committed to delivering independent advice and reviews on home products and services. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more.
Sharp has been a trusted name in the solar industry for several decades and has made a name for itself by producing highly efficient solar PV panels. However, in the last few years, several solar companies have overtaken Sharp in terms of pricing and performance. So, let’s find out if Sharp still manufactures some of the best solar panels in the market today.
Sharp still remains popular with homeowners who trust its good name and love the look of the discreet black solar panels. As such, the Sunsnap ND-F2Q235 is one of the best-selling solar panels in the world.
The rail-free mounting system means that panels can sit flush with the roof, blending in seamlessly. The 60-cell panel design Sharp Sunsnap ND-F2Q235 delivers 14.4% and 235-watt production and comes with a 25-year warranty.
If aesthetics matter more to you than performance, Sharp is an excellent option.
Our recommended solar panels installers
Sharp uses monocrystalline silicon solar cells with half-cells and advanced wiring that ensure its solar panels produce energy even if half the panel is shaded. The Sharp Sunsnap ND-F2Q235 uses a rail-free mounting system which enables these sleek solar panels to sit flush with your roof, blending in seamlessly.
- Range: 325W
- Efficiency: 14.4%
- Warranty: 25-year guarantee
- Cost per panel: from £300 (excluding installation)
Highlights: Durable monocrystalline panels will last long past their 25-year warranty expires.
Key benefit: A discreet, low-profile, rail-free mounting system allows the panels to blend in against the roof.
Service: Sharp has a network of installers in the UK and other parts of Europe.
Warranty: A standard warranty of 25 years is available with all Sharp solar panels.
Cost: At £300 per panel, the Sharp Sunsnap ND-F2Q235 is affordable but not the cheapest on the market by any means.
Pros and cons
A solar panel system is an expensive investment for any homeowner, which is why it’s important to weigh up the pros and cons carefully. The Sharp Sunsnap ND-F2Q235 offers several attractive benefits, including:
- Appearance: The Sharp Sunsnap ND-F2Q235 offer attractive, low-profile and discreet solar panels due to the use of rail-free mounting.
- Durability: Sharp solar panels were built to withstand potential-induced degradation, as per the warranty offered by Sharp. Panels are coated to protect them from rust and salt corrosion, making the Sunsnap ND-F2Q235 a solid option for coastal homes.
- Suitable for all weathers: Sharp coats its solar cells with an anti-reflection coating to increase the absorption of light in cloudy areas.
- A heritage brand with a stellar reputation: Sharp has been in the business for more than 100 years, providing great customer support across the UK and Europe.
However, there are a few disadvantages to the Sharp Sunsnap ND-F2Q235 that should be taken into account:
- Cost: At £300 per panel, the Sharp Sunsnap ND-F2Q235 is expensive compared to similar solar panels.
- Efficiency: The Sharp Sunsnap ND-F2Q235 is not the most powerful on the market, with only 14.4% efficiency.
- Loss of power: Degradation is quite high for the Sharp Sunsnap ND-F2Q235. The output will drop by 4% in the first year, followed by an annual reduction of 0.667% in power thereafter.
How the Sharp Sunsnap ND-F2Q235 solar panel works
Sharp uses monocrystalline cells and thin-film panels to create their residential use solar modules. These film modules consist of two glass layers laminated with a vapour barrier. They are highly flexible and can be installed in either portrait or landscape.
Efficiency could be better, but the Sunsnap ND-F2Q235 solar panels are easy to install and highly wind-resistant. This makes them suitable for homes in areas that may experience adverse weather conditions.
Sharp Sunsnap ND-F2Q235 add-ons
The Sharp Sunsnap ND-F2Q235 doesn’t come with specific add-ons, but your local installer will be able to make recommendations for water cylinders, car chargers or storage systems that are compatible with your solar panels.
How does the Sharp Sunsnap ND-F2Q235 solar panel compare to other solar panels?
As we’ve mentioned, several brands have surpassed Sharp in terms of performance and even warranties. The SunPower Maxeon 3 is a good option. It’s one of the highest-efficiency solar panels on the market and comes with a generous 40-year warranty. The warranty even guarantees a power output of 88.3% in the 40thyear, which means your solar panels will only degrade by 0.25% every year.
If flexibility is what drew you to the Sharp Sunsnap ND-F2Q235 solar panels, you should also take a look at the Panasonic HIT N 245W. With outputs of 245W and a compact size of 160cm x 80cm, it’s highly adaptable and can be mounted in landscape or portrait. It has the Sharp firmly beaten in terms of efficiency, with 19.4% maximum efficiency. It has the attractive, low-profile look that many people enjoy.
If you are interested in a lengthy warranty, you might want to consider the Project Solar Evolution Ultramax. With an output of 345W and a lifetime product and performance warranty, Project Solar UK is aggressively pursuing residential solar customers. Each installation is overseen by its own project manager, and if you refer a friend who completes an installation, you’ll be rewarded with a £7,500 cash incentive.
What does the Sharp Sunsnap ND-F2Q235 cost?
The Sharp Sunsnap ND-F2Q235 is one of the pricier models on the market, considering its lower efficiencies. Here’s how it compares to other solar panels:
|Name||Output||Cost per panel|
|SunPower Maxeon 3||400W||From £350|
|Sharp Sunsnap ND-FQ235||235W||From £300|
|Panasonic HIT N 245W||245W||From £250|
Maintaining Sharp Sunsnap ND-F2Q235 solar panels
Sharp Sunsnap ND-F2Q235 solar panels don’t require a good deal of maintenance. If your solar panels become obscured by dirt, debris or dust, they can be cleaned from the ground with a hose. It can also be cleaned with a soft cloth or sponge and water, although no chemical cleaners can be used.
What the professionals say
“Sharp’s thin-film modules are made of two glass layers laminated with a vapour barrier. Their thin-film modules can be installed either in portrait or landscape, making them more flexible in terms of positioning. Efficiency-wise, Sharp’s thin-film panels are the best in the industry. Their efficiency leaves something to be desired, with rates of up to a mere 9.6%. Their depth of 6.7mm, however, makes them super-slim, attractive, easy to install and wind-resistant.”
“Sharp is another long-standing brand in the solar and consumer electronics markets, and this reputation coupled with its 25-year warranty makes it a safe bet. You know what you’re getting with Sharp, and its discreet, rail-free mounting system is perfect for anyone in an urban area – and those living in a listed home or in a neighbourhood with strict home aesthetic requirements. However, at 235W of maximum power output and 14.4% efficiency, it’s one of the least powerful and efficient options on our list. You will get value out of it, but if a discreet solar panel installation isn’t vital for you, it is worth considering other options.”
- EcoWatch, The 5 Best Solar Panels in the UK review
“I am slowly building a solar backup system. I made no mistake in ordering these panels. They are very good, and they came to me in a special delivery truck with no other items in the back. Outstanding.”
“Require annual cleaning to maintain peak performance.”
- Heather, Solar Quotes
“No one tells you about the need to get up and clean bird poo and other things that stick to the panel surface to maintain efficiency.”
- Stephen, Solar Quotes
A solar panel system is a considerable investment, which is why we took great care in compiling this review. We read hundreds of online customer reviews, technical documents, professional opinions and media articles to form this review. We rated Sharp Sunsnap ND-F2Q235 out of a total of 100 points, based on criteria that homeowners would take into account when evaluating their solar panel providers.
During our research, the total score was comprised of:
- The power rating of the solar panel for a total score of 10 points;
- The efficiency of the solar panel for a total score of 15 points;
- The pricing of the solar panel per panel for a total score of 10 points;
- The length of the warranty for a total score of 10 points;
- The level of service and support for a total score of 5 points;
- Durability of the solar panel for a total score of 15 points;
- The design of the panel for a total score of 5 points;
- The overall performance of the solar panel for a total score of 15; and
- Online ratings and reviews for a total score of 15 points.
More about solar panels
Read our guide to the best solar panels in the UK in 2022 or learn about how solar panels work. You can also find out if the economics add up for you in our guide which asks: are solar panels worth it?