Solar Panel Maintenance Ideas

Posted on 14th June 2011 in solar

Solar panels are designed to capture the sun’s light and convert it into electricity. The panels feature an array of solar cells and are linked up to other compartments. They’re installed in groups of three or four in places where they can capture sunlight, often on the roof of homes and other buildings. To ensure your panels are able to function properly and provide adequate power, make sure that they are properly maintained.

Thankfully, these devices require only the minimum amount of upkeep. The heating pump is the really only component that features any moving parts and the only breakable part is the glass covering of the panels. Even though maintenance will be light, it’s wise to stay on top of it.

Inspecting your solar panels periodically is the first step. Dirt and other pieces of debris will have to be removed to prevent damage. Look at the owner’s manual supplied by the manufacturer to see how often you should check them. If there’s a reason to check them more frequently – a nearby tree for example – take that into consideration. Panels that are installed in exceptionally dusty environments will need to be inspected more often. If it helps, create a schedule or mark your calendar to keep track of the device’s maintenance.

In order to remove an accumulation of grime and dirt particles from the panels, scrub gently from time to time. Use soap and warm water to loosen the dirt and a clean cloth to wipe it away. Bird droppings are commonly found on solar panels, since they’re usually located on roofs. You’ll need to completely remove them to maximize the amount of sunlight that gets through to the solar panels. To avoid leaving streaks and water spots behind, cool the panels down with room temperature water before applying the soap.

Don’t remove the solar panels to clean them. That’s more work than it’s worth. You will have to use a ladder and some safety gear to climb up to them. A large amount of ladder and roof related accidents occur each year so it is very important that you take every safety precaution as you inspect and clean the panels.

In order to function properly solar panels must be kept completely clean. A dirty panel could mean that you get little or no use out of it. Cleaning them is not just cosmetic. It’s necessary if you want your solar energy system to perform its job.

There are other options besides climbing to the roof of your home. There is a tool available that allows a home owner to effectively clean their solar devices from the comfort and safety of the ground. Much like the devices used at a self service car wash, a long metal pole sprays a powerful steady stream of water. Most of the devices are intended to hook up to the water spigot in your yard.

Professional solar panel cleaners are also a possibility. These companies can send experts out to your home to inspect and clean rooftop solar panels. They have the proper tools and knowledge to keep them clean and working efficiently. Look in the phone book or online for local businesses that offer this service. Or ask the contractor that installed your system. Make sure you do your research and shop around for the company that offers the best overall deal.

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