Renogy Brand Review – Are They Any Good? (WARNING)
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There are now more solar equipment manufacturers than ever before. With so many different solar brands competing for your business, knowing which company to choose can result in quite a headache.
You should see a solar power system as an investment, so you should choose components that are actually durable enough to withstand the test of time. Not only do you want to make sure you are choosing high-quality pieces of equipment that will last, but you also want to make sure that each piece of solar equipment you buy can actually perform as advertised.
After all, your entire solar power system is only as strong as its weakest component. There is no sense in running a high-capacity deep cycle solar battery if the solar panels it is connected to are inefficient and struggle to generate a meaningful amount of power.
How Can We Help?
To help you choose equipment that you can trust, we are going to take an in-depth look at one of the most well-known brands in the personal solar equipment industry. We will start by looking at the company’s origins and where it is heading, then focus on its reputation and the overall quality of its products and customer service.
Examining the Renogy brand and its product line will help us decide whether or not this major player in the solar industry is all it is cracked up to be. Whether you are new to solar or have been using it for years, knowing which brands to trust is incredibly beneficial!
Who Are Renogy and What Do They Do?
The Renogy brand was founded in 2010 as a small-scale project by a group of students from Louisiana State University. With the help of grants and the support of the Louisiana Business and Technology Center, the founders got their renewable energy start-up off the ground.
What is the Brand Mission for Renogy?
The current CEO and one of the company’s founders, Yi Li, grew up in China and went on to earn a Ph.D. in Physics from Louisiana State University. Yi Li and the other members of Renogy’s management team remain committed to the company’s original goal of empowering individuals by providing them with DIY-friendly renewable energy products that can help them achieve energy independence.
To reach this goal, Renogy offers a wide variety of affordable solar products. While their range of solar panels is certainly their bestsellers, the brand also offers affordable charge controllers, power inverters, deep cycle solar batteries, and complete solar kits.
How Do Renogy Products Stack Up to the Competition?
While the brand certainly has lofty and respectable goals, its reputation for quality and customer service is somewhat lacking.
While its solar products are certainly budget-friendly, the level of quality is not always the greatest, mostly because its products are made in China rather than domestically. While off-shoring their manufacturing certainly helps keep costs down, it means its products are not always built to high or consistent standards.
Solar brands that make their products domestically tend to be durable and capable of withstanding the elements as intended. That said, Renogy products have been known to break down and deteriorate prematurely, especially when left outside for extended periods.
Renogy products can certainly perform as advertised, and they have earned their reputation for having some of the lowest prices in the industry, the quality and durability issues are very concerning.
When you purchase any piece of solar equipment, you want it to last long enough that you see a return on your investment. The fact that domestically made solar products are almost always built to a higher standard makes you wonder if the money saved on the upfront cost of Renogy solar equipment is worth the risk.
Poor Customer Service:
Unfortunately, Renogy also has a fairly poor reputation when it comes to customer service. Many customers find it impossible to contact a real customer service representative, which is incredibly frustrating when dealing with a brand that does not have a reputation for quality.
According to consumer review aggregator www.trustpilot.com, Renogy has a rating of 1.4, meaning more than 90% of the reviews label the customer service as bad, which happens to be the lowest rating users can choose. Given that most of these reviews list poor customer service as their number one frustration, it is a significant issue.
Not only is the customer service issue a major concern, Renogy routinely suffers from delivery and supply chain issues, which, again, is an unfortunate consequence of having their products made off-shore. Some of their competitors have a quick turnaround and deliver products on time, but Renogy is considerably less reliable.
When you combine poor customer service with fulfillment and logistics issues, it is no surprise that many consumers find it is worth avoiding the potential frustration altogether.
Our Overall Impression of the Renogy Brand
It would be unfair to pretend that all of Renogy’s products suffer from quality issues, defects and faults seem to be a reoccurring problem. Simply put, we would feel more comfortable recommending a brand that has its solar products manufactured domestically.
With that said, Renogy certainly has some great prices on their solar equipment, especially when it comes to their beginner-friendly solar products.
For example, take this Renogy 200W 12V Eclipse Solar Panel Suitcase. Not only is the folding design convenient and highly portable, but the solar panel also features efficient, monocrystalline solar cells and a built-in Voyager charge controller. As a bonus, the entire solar panel is protected with a canvas case, which would really come in handy when putting the panel into storage.
Assuming it arrives on time and in the proper condition, this suitcase-style solar panel would be ideal for any portable solar power system. However, that is the problem with Renogy. Its products look great on paper, but the delivery delays and customer service issues are not worth the hassle, especially when similar products from more reliable companies are available.
Regardless of whether the products are delivered on time and in working condition, we cannot overlook the customer service issues. So many other companies respond quickly to questions and concerns their customers have. For example, one of Renogy’s competitors, Rich Solar, has a reputation for outstanding customer service.
When you encounter any issues with your solar equipment, it is worth having the peace of mind of knowing that the manufacturer will resolve your problems right away. When there are solar equipment companies out there like Rich Solar, EcoFlow, and BigBattery that provide lengthy warranties and superior customer service, it makes you wonder if the money you would save buying a Renogy product is worth it in the long run.
Overall, we believe Renogy offers some respectable solar equipment, and that it remains one of the most well-known solar brands is certainly a testament to that fact; however, we have major concerns about its logistical issues, quality control, and reputation for poor customer service.
If you are on a tight budget and cannot afford anything else, you might have some luck with Renogy products. But, you should be fully aware of the issues and limitations the company has.
As solar power becomes more mainstream and an increasing number of brands enter the industry, there is no doubt that consumers will benefit. Hopefully, the competition these new and innovative brands bring into the industry pushes some of the older companies, like Renogy, to innovate, improve, and overcome their current issues.