7 Reasons Why Solar Panel Cleaning is Important

August 23, 2023

Are you wondering why solar panel cleaning is important? Solar panels don’t have moving parts that might collect dirt and dust. Also, their slick glass faces and angled installation encourage dirt and debris to fall away naturally. So why should a property owner clean those panels regularly?

Reasons why solar panel cleaning is important include:

  1. Maintaining efficiency
  2. Maximizing energy output
  3. Cost savings
  4. Panel longevity
  5. It’s required by warranty!
  6. Better return on your investment
  7. Improved maintenance

To find out more about how to maintain your home’s solar panels, keep reading! Knowing more about why solar panel cleaning is important ensures you get the job done right. Also, a solar panel installation contractor near you can explain these benefits in more detail. They can also prepare a price quote for a solar array on your property.

why solar panel cleaning is important

7 Reasons Why Solar Panel Cleaning is Important for Your System

Solar panel cleaning is important for several reasons. Regular cleaning directly impacts the efficiency, performance, and longevity of your solar power system. Note why solar panel cleaning matters in more detail:

1. Maintaining Efficiency

Dust, dirt, pollen, bird droppings, and other debris can accumulate on the surface of solar panels over time. This accumulation creates a barrier between the sunlight and the solar cells.

This barrier reduces the amount of sunlight that can be converted into electricity. Regular cleaning helps maintain optimal sunlight absorption and energy production.

2. Maximizing Energy Output

Clean solar panels can produce more energy compared to dirty panels. By ensuring that the panels are free from obstructions, you can maximize the amount of electricity generated by your solar power system. More energy from solar means less reliance on city-supplied power.

3. Cost Savings

The primary reason most people install solar panels is to save money on their energy bills. Clean panels operate at higher efficiency. In turn, you’ll get more electricity from the same amount of sunlight, leading to greater energy savings over time.

4. Longevity of Panels

Regular cleaning can help extend the lifespan of your solar panels. Accumulated dirt and debris often cause long-term damage to the panels. This risks the need for premature replacement or repairs.

5. Warranty Requirements

Many solar panel manufacturers offer warranties that include performance guarantees. Some warranties require proper maintenance, including regular cleaning, to remain valid. If you’re not sure about your panels, call your installer! They can usually check on your records and note warranty requirements.

6. Return on Investment

Solar panel systems represent a significant investment. Keeping them clean ensures you’re getting the best return on your investment. Cleaning optimizes energy production and savings and extends their lifespan, as said. In turn, you’ll enjoy more cost savings over time, increasing your investment return.

7. Regular Maintenance

Regular cleaning provides an opportunity to inspect the panels for any potential issues. These include loose connections, damaged wiring, or other maintenance needs. In turn, you can schedule prompt repairs. This ensures your panels are working optimally for as long as you own them.

In addition to these benefits of solar panel cleaning, consider aesthetic appeal. Clean solar panels contribute to the overall appearance of your property. If your solar panels are visible from the ground or neighboring properties, keeping them clean enhances the curb appeal of your home.

On the other hand, dirty solar panels can make your entire property look rundown! Debris can also then collect around the panels and on the roof. This can risk damage to the roof, clogged gutters, and more. Cleaning your panels also keeps dirt and dust from becoming airborne. In turn, you’ll enjoy improved outdoor air quality.

solar panels on a residential home

What Happens When Solar Panels Are Dirty?

When solar panels become dirty or covered with dust, this can impact their performance and efficiency. Check out in more detail what happens when solar panels are dirty:

  • The accumulation of dirt and debris on the surface of solar panels creates a barrier between the sunlight and the photovoltaic (PV) cells. This reduces the amount of sunlight that can reach the cells and be converted into electricity.
  • Less sunlight absorption directly translates to decreased energy production. Dirty solar panels generate less electricity than clean ones, leading to lower energy output and potentially reduced cost savings.
  • Clean solar panels can convert a higher percentage of sunlight into electricity. When panels are dirty, their efficiency decreases, and they require more sunlight to produce the same amount of electricity.
  • Dirty or shaded areas on solar panels can create hotspots where localized overheating occurs. Hotspots can damage the solar cells and negatively impact the overall performance of the panel.
  • Long-term accumulation of debris and pollutants can cause damage to the surface of the solar panels, affecting their ability to function properly. This damage might be irreversible in some cases.
  • If solar panels remain dirty for an extended period, the accumulated debris can etch or corrode the panel’s surface, leading to permanent damage.

How Often Should Solar Panels Be Cleaned?

The frequency of cleaning solar panels depends on your location, environmental conditions, and the amount of dirt and debris. If you live in an area with minimal dust, your solar panels may not require frequent cleaning. However, if you’re in a dusty or pollen-heavy environment, more regular cleaning is necessary.

Also, rain can help naturally wash away some dirt from solar panels. If you live in an area with frequent rainfall, you might not need to clean your panels as often. On the other hand, if your panels are under trees, this means leaves, sap, and bird droppings. In turn, they probably need more frequent cleaning.

As a general guideline, consider checking your solar panels every few months to assess their cleanliness. If you notice a visible layer of dirt or if you observe a decrease in energy production, it’s time to clean them.

Go Solar Rhode Island is happy to explain why solar panel cleaning is important. If you’re in the state, call our Rhode Island solar installation contractors. We can prepare a FREE solar installation price quote and answer all your questions about solar power.

 

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