Solar panels are very easy to manage. They require no special attention for the majority of the year. However, you should plan to clean them at least once per 12 months. Some regions may require more frequent cleaning, depending on the local environment.
Connect Electric wants to share tips and information on how to clean your home solar panels to maximize performance.
When Should I Clean My Solar Panels?
You should not clean solar panels on days where the weather could pose a risk. This includes days that may be stormy, windy, or snowy.
Also, keep in mind that the surface of solar panels collect sunlight. That means that they can get very hot. Intense heat makes water evaporate quickly, which can prevent you from giving the panels a thorough cleaning.
You should avoid going near them on bright days, especially during the sun’s peak hours. The best time to plan your cleaning session is on overcast days or during the early morning. Dew left from the morning can help soften dirt and debris, making it easier to remove.
Solar Panel Cleaning Methods
The best way to clean your solar panels will depend on where they are and how much access you have to them. No matter which way you do it, never use a harsh or abrasive product on the surface. This can scratch the glass. Scratches cast shadows that lower the efficiency of your panels. Also, do not apply detergents that can cause streaking.
Most of the time, all you need is a soft cloth and water. Keep in mind that your household’s water supply may be mineral-rich, which can leave deposits behind. If this is a problem, consider gathering rainwater to use instead.
The two main ways to clean solar panels include:
- Hose Them from the Ground – If you have a garden hose powerful enough, you can usually spray solar panels while standing on the ground. Using a different nozzle setting may allow you to extend the reach of the stream. This is often the safest option.
- Wipe Directly with Cloth or Sponge – If you can get up close to your solar panels, then you can wipe them off by hand. Fill a bucket with water and grab your soft sponge or cloth. Use a plastic scraper to remove sticky or caked-on substances.
Personal Safety Comes First
Always remember that personal safety must come first when cleaning solar panels. Never put yourself in a dangerous position.
If you don’t feel confident about your ability to climb up next to your solar panels, use a hose. Take your time and be mindful of puddles or pools of water that form around you as you work to avoid slipping.
What If I Can’t Reach My Solar Panels?
For those that cannot reach their solar panels by hand or with a hose, you will need to contact a professional for cleaning service. Connect Electric is available to provide services that will keep your solar panels working for years.