Tips on How to Maintain a Solar Panel System
Once your system is installed, you may be asking yourself a number of questions: “How do you maintain solar panels? Do they require the same attention that a car does? A pool in the backyard? What do I need to be doing to take care of my system?” Thankfully, solar panels are extremely durable pieces of equipment with no moving parts, making their potential issues appear few and far between. However, even with a 25 year warranty, there are several things you can do to maintain solar panels that will keep your system operating at peak performance for decades to come.
In this blog, we highlight some of the key maintenance tasks you can do regularly to ensure the longevity and health of your solar panels!
1. Clean Your Solar Panels
One of the best (and easiest) things you can do to keep your solar panels in tip top shape is to make sure they’re clean. Dirt and debris can not only affect the physical appearance of your panels, making them an eye sore on your home, but they can also affect their performance. When covered with dust, pollen, leaves, etc., your panels are not going to produce as much energy as they should be due to the sunlight being blocked by debris. While rainfall does remove some of this dirt and grime, it doesn’t always wipe away everything it needs to; if you live in an area that doesn’t receive much rain, relying on nature to clean your panels won’t give you any results.
In order to operate at peak efficiency and continue producing enough energy to power your home, cleaning your solar panels is a relatively simple way to maintain your system. If you’d like to try your hand at solar panel cleaning DIY-style, we have another blog that walks you through the process called “How to Clean Solar Panels.”
2. Utilize a Solar Monitoring System
A solar monitoring system is a software paired with your solar panel system that allows you to monitor its performance from the comfort of your own home. With real-time updates, you’ll always be able to know how much energy your panels are producing, making it easier to compare production levels for future reference. Many solar monitoring systems even come with the option to email you directly if it detects anything is amiss, so you don’t even have to monitor it yourself! If you start to notice your panels aren’t performing as they should, calling a professional solar maintenance company will help you get to the bottom of the issue. Staying on top of this is a great way to solve a problem before it actually becomes a problem!
3. Install a Squirrel Guard
Squirrel guards consist of a special netting that blocks off the area under your solar panels, keeping squirrels, birds, and other critters from getting underneath. These animals, while small, can do damage to the wiring of the panels by chewing, building nests, etc. By installing a guard, you’re keeping wildlife safe from the equipment while also protecting your equipment from any damage that squirrels and birds can cause. If you live in an area with lots of trees, squirrels have easy access to your roof, so a squirrel guard is a great way to protect your system.
4. Check Your Panels After Severe Weather
For those living in the Carolinas, you’re no stranger to storms – especially this time of year. With heavy rain and thunderstorms coming what seems like daily, your panels could take some hits from falling debris, branches, and more. The occasional hail storm can also damage your solar panels by nicking the surface of the glass. In the event of severe weather, it’s important to check on your system to ensure it hasn’t been harmed, as this could affect the efficiency of your panels. This can be done pretty easily, as you can usually tell just by eyeing the panels that there’s been some damage done to them, but you can always check your monitoring system for updates as well.
As always, when you’re climbing onto your roof, please wear the proper protective gear and use proper safety equipment. Also use extreme caution. If you’d rather leave this to the professionals, give us a call and we’d be happy to help.
5. Maintain Your Solar Inverter
Many solar inverters come with error codes to alert you when there’s something wrong with the system. Keep an eye out for this by regularly checking on your inverter to make sure it’s running smoothly. If you notice any error messages, we recommend calling a solar maintenance service immediately. Don’t try to fix this yourself; you could damage the equipment and the integrity of the system.
Maintain Solar Panels with Sun Service Specialists
With over 50 years of combined experience in the solar industry, the team at Sun Service Specialists are no strangers to maintaining and servicing solar systems. Thanks to our dedicated solar technicians, we’re able to provide a number of services such as panel cleaning, wildlife remediation, overall system maintenance and system assessments. If you’re interested in any of these services, please contact us today to schedule an appointment! We look forward to hearing from you and helping you make the most out of your solar system.