If you are one of those who recently decided to convert and use solar energy to power your home, you might ask yourself: How to clean solar panels? What are the basic solar panel cleaning tips that I can use on my own?
Surprisingly, cleaning your solar panels is fairly easy, and yes, you can do it on your own. The process does not require a lot of maintenance or an extensive set of cleaning tools. Read below to know some of the simple solar panel cleaning and maintenance tips you can follow.
Basic solar panels cleaning tips
When you have your solar panels successfully installed in your home, the next best thing to do is prioritize maintaining them and taking care of them. You are getting a lot of benefits from your panels, and you are helping mother earth as well in the process. Here are some tips you can easily do at home.
- Always have your cleaning kits. Your kit should have a mild soap, a wiper, a soft cloth. You can always use this kit when you want to check and clean your panels regularly.
- Stick to natural products. Remember to stick to natural soap products without bleach. Applying soap with harsh chemicals regularly can cause possible damages to your panels.
- Don’t be tempted to scrub. Never scrub your panels with harsh materials. Stick to wipers and soft cloth as you can damage or scratch the glasses.
- You can always run water into it. When it gets dusty, you can always run a hose on your panels to remove the dirt. Panels are not sensitive to water, and you can do this step regularly, especially if you live by the road.
- Always check for accumulated dirt. Make it a habit to check your panels regularly. Clean panels convert solar energy effectively well, so you may always want to keep it that way.
Maintaining your panels
Now that you have the basic knowledge in cleaning your panels, below are some simple maintenance tips to keep them effective and efficient.
Make it a habit to check for dirt build-up regularly
Solar panels are immovable, and even if they look fragile, They are very sturdy. You can clean your panels regularly with a soft cloth, and because they are made of glass, clean each panel the way to clean your mirrors and other glass surfaces. Solar panels work very efficiently when they are clean. Don’t let the dirt and dust accumulate at all. In case of rain and when dirt turns into mud, you can hose the surface so water will wipe down the mud directly. Some roofs have built-in sprinklers, and this can be a great option to have as well.
Check frame wiring and alignment
Experts suggest having the electrical conduit, ground conductors, and other electrical hardware inspected by professionals at least once a year, even if you feel that they are working completely fine. Sometimes, you tend to overlook signs of hidden damage because you don’t see them regularly. Even if you are not an expert on inspecting electrical wirings, you can periodically check the frame’s wirings and alignments by yourself. Remember that all PV wire needs to be fastened securely on the panels with a wire clip. Check for cracks where water can penetrate or other signs of possible damages by inspecting frames.
Know that you can always monitor energy usage
Today’s solar panel system lets you monitor your energy usage date through a digital screen or online by creating an account as instructed by your solar panel provider. Usually, the data online is more complete and accurate, and it directly monitors through your inverted. Solar panels can help reduce your energy bill. However, they may not always function 100% of the time because of many factors. Regularly checking your energy data can give you an idea if it is still working efficiently. If you’ve noticed that the performance is quite low, you may check your panels for dirt, or you may check if the sunlight is consistent in your area.
Other things you need to know
When you finally decided to convert to solar panels, know that you are making the right choice not just for your household but for the environment. But while maintenance is easy, take care of your panels should be a priority. You also have to check on the warranty as you will rely on your panels for energy for many years.
Weather can affect how to clean and maintain your solar panels. If you live in a place where it constantly snows, you may always want to check and clean your panels free from the snow as they, too, can cause damages. Solar panels, however, are so durable that they can withstand all kinds of weather, even a hail storm, according to an article posted in energy.gov.
If your panels need replacement or repair, it is best to contact your solar panel provider or a solar panel professional to help you. Never attempt to do repairs on your own at it can cause more harm than good. Remember that it can cost you a lot to replace a panel, and this is something you should never DIY.
Solar panels last for about 25-30 years, according to energysage.com. However, you need to properly clean it and follow a good maintenance routine. Hiring a professional is a big help, especially if your panels are on top of a building. Overall assessment should be done by professionals as well.