Solar Panel Maintenance: Why is it Important and How to Do It?
Every season has its own negatives and positives. The positives being the change of general setting and atmosphere for people, which helps keep things interesting. The negative being the challenges for people in terms of having to adapt to various climates. Such is also true for solar panels. Especially during the winter season, the performance of the solar panels is particularly weak due to sparse sunlight. And if they’re not maintained, the solar panels just stop working altogether.
Couple that with the less than spectacular overall environment, and the maintenance of the solar panels becomes elementary. The dirt particles in the atmosphere start accumulating on the surface of the solar panels after some time. And when that happens, the photovoltaic cells become unable to store any sunlight, which results in a poor generation of power. Therefore, it is advisable to have the solar panels go through regularly.
However, do bear in mind that the entire solar energy system is a complicated setup. The tiniest error can result in a colossal failure of the entire system. Plus the repair and reinstallation cost can cost a fortune. So, in order to avoid the risk of damage, these tips must be followed:
- The ‘How’ Factor – The most basic and advisable form of solar panel maintenance for the homeowners is cleaning the solar panels. Cleaning solar panels is quite an easy and straight-forward process and can yield great results if done right. But in order to do it right, it would be wise for the homeowners to consult the manual regarding what to do and what not. In a short and sweet version, here is a standard set of ‘whats’’ and ‘what nots’’ that must be followed while cleaning your solar panels:
|What to Do||What Not to Do|
|Before you begin cleaning the panels, make sure that the entire system is powered off.||Never use powdered detergent on the panel surface. The solid grains of powdered detergent can scratch the surface of panels, ruining their ability to store solar energy.|
|The loose dirt and dust particles should be removed with a soft brush. Once the dirt has been removed, water can be used later for further cleaning.||A cracked solar panel should never be cleaned with water. Any form of liquid or moisture to enter beneath the surface, can cause panel failure.|
|Keep the water pressure moderate. High water pressure can damage the panel surface, causing it to malfunction.||Never throw huge splashes of water onto the panels. The water splashes that enter the solar power system internals can damage the electronic components, causing the system to shut down.|
|Only use the soft cotton microfiber cloth or a sponge to clean the panel surface.||Using rough or abrasive materials is not advisable since they could scratch the surface of the panels.|
|To avoid corrosion or accumulation of mineral deposits on the panels, make sure to dry them after washing.||The panel surface, albeit sturdy, cannot hold excessive physical stress. Therefore, it is advisable to not put too much weight on or lean against the panels.|
Although there is no fixed time for the maintenance of the panels. But it is important to be regular in terms of maintenance of the panels, so as to ensure favorable performance and lifespan of the setup. With that said, it is advisable for the homeowners to do an inhouse maintenance of the panels once every couple of months, as per the above mentioned tips.
If there is a more serious technical issue, then it is advisable for the homeowners to contact the local technician in the area. Someone who has expertise in working with solar panels should be brought in to have a look, in order to have the problem sorted in a favorable fashion.
And there you have it! This is how you can maintain your solar panels by yourself, and gain noticeable results. So give your panels a nice cleanup and enjoy free electricity.