With increasing awareness of the benefits homeowners get by the installation of a solar energy system, its demand is reaching a sky-high. Though it may sound like a big investment initially, there is a little you are required to spend on its maintenance over the long-term. There are no moving parts and the system doesn’t undergo much degradation over time.
On average, the lifespan of a solar panel can exceed thirty years. These panels do lose some effectiveness with each passing year but yet keep up the majority of their efficiency level even after the first twenty years. All thanks to the manufacturing technology becoming sophisticated and monocrystalline silicon material being introduced lately.
However, you do need to provide regular care and be careful that no dirt and environmental elements settle on the panels for too long. Here are some amazing tips to guide you:
Generally, solar panels are installed at top of the buildings where they are not vulnerable to damage and ground-level debris. But there may be possibilities of pollen or tree material in the air or dirt on windows making their way to the panels that can affect the efficiency and power over time.
So, it makes complete sense to have a close-up inspection of your solar panels, and clean and fix them from time to time; especially after hail storms and heavy rains.
Every solar panel manufacturer provides specific recommendations for cleaning. So, before you head to solar panel cleaning, do read through the manual carefully. Choose a relatively cool day as solar panels tend to become hot in the sunshine.
The cleaning product you pick shouldn’t be an abrasive one. Even the detergent cleaners aren’t recommended as they leave behind streaks and smudges and affect the amount of light passing through. Instead, use warm water and mild soap and wipe off with a soft cloth or sponge.
Special Winter Maintenance
During high snowfall, constant ice build-up may end up weakening the strength of your roof and also the integrity of your solar panels. Plus, there may be issues of corrosion on the panels as well. But you don’t have to be worried much if your panels are at least a fifteen-degree tilt. The dark surface of your panels will still be able to attract enough sunlight and melt off the accumulated snow.
In the situation where it is too cold for the snow to melt off, a long broom or snow rake will come handy to help you clear the drifts. You can also use a spray hose, just be mindful of the temperature shifts so you don’t freeze it further. Other than that, you can consider connecting to a residential solar panel cleaning company.
One must pay enough attention to the performance (i.e. energy output) of solar panels to know when the maintenance is required. With the installation of professional monitoring systems, you can know which areas of your solar panel are not functioning properly and need repair.
Most of all, you can understand how you are benefitting the environment by measuring the CO2 emissions.