To ensure the optimal performance of your solar system, we at Zonschik recommend periodic maintenance. The frequency with which this must be done varies depending on your situation. On average, however, annual or semi-annual maintenance is sufficient. You can compare it with the maintenance of a car; it is just much cheaper and there are usually no unpleasant surprises. Below we explain How to clean solar light panels.
Okay, let’s get cleaning! But how do I do that?
Safety first: switch off your solar panel system completely before you start cleaning. Then remove any dry waste, such as leaves.
It is best to clean solar light panels with a soft brush, descaled or demineralized water, and preferably a biological cleaning agent.
For stubborn dirt, simply use a sponge. Are your solar panels difficult to reach? Use a water spray from the ground or an extendable squeegee for cleaning.
Don’ts: Absolutely do not use scouring pads, caustic cleaning agents, or high-pressure cleaners to clean your solar light panels.
These agents damage the glass or cause water to get between the solar cells and the glass. And you don’t want that.
What makes solar panels dirty?
The usual suspects for soiling solar panels are green deposits, algae, dust, bird droppings, and dirt caused by falling branches or leaves (mud).
The solar light panel is protected against the majority of these contaminants by a coating on the outer panels. This protective layer prevents scratches and repels a lot of dirt.
Dirt residues that remain are hardened by this layer, making them slide off the panel more smoothly. Rainfall is a natural cleaning service.
Perhaps the most important thing to pay attention to is bird droppings. If rain showers do not provide relief and bird droppings stick to the panel, this can damage the coating, resulting in dull spots.
Are you curious about how much return you can achieve thanks to your Sun-suitable solar system with glass-on-glass solar panels from Meyer Burger, Sonnenstromfabrik, or Denim?
Then request your own technical inspection directly online. Our experts are happy to come on-site at a time that suits you. They make a detailed audit of your situation and environment and provide professional advice.
Afterward, you will receive a clear quote tailored to your project, including a personal return plan. Completely free. Without charge.
If your solar panels are dirty, this will definitely have an impact on the efficiency of your solar system. Clean panels render better.
Particularly where dirt spots prevent sunlight from reaching the solar cells, dirt creates weak spots in the installation. The effect can be compared to that of shadows.
Since the energy flow of a solar installation is basically as strong as the weakest link, it is advisable to avoid shady areas.
They easily cost a return of 2 to 3%. You must consider on a case-by-case basis whether outsourcing maintenance is worthwhile.
What can you use to clean solar panels?
It is best to clean solar panels with osmosis water or pure water. This means water without added ingredients, in particular minerals, lime, and salts.
These types of additives can damage your solar panels, or they are bad for the protective coating. Rainwater is perfect osmosis water, it is a soft and natural product.
To clean your solar panels with osmosis water, simply use a bucket or a garden hose with a soft jet. You rinse the solar panels, as a (somewhat more generous) rain shower would do.
If any dirt remains afterward, you can repeat the process and then brush off stubborn dirt with a soft brush. Rinse afterward, again with osmosis water.
Never use a high-pressure cleaner to clean solar light panels, even if exceptionally stubborn dirt tempts you.
Under high pressure, there is a risk that water will penetrate the solar panel and end up between the glass and solar cells. This can lead to defects.
When should you clean solar panels?
An annual cleaning is usually a spring cleaning. At least that is a good rule for solar light panels. In winter, it is best to let any snowfall or ice layers melt naturally and it is also less safe to clean the solar installation.
In autumn, the most and coarsest dirt usually accumulates, for example, due to the falling of leaves. Summer months are too sunny and warm. Moreover, cleaning here is also a bit like figs after Easter.
With its moderate temperatures and emerging sunlight, the end of winter/beginning of spring is the ideal period, especially because the sunniest days lie ahead here.
You can help your solar installation now to achieve maximum returns when the summer peaks arrive. It is best to do this by working early in the morning or evening.
The water will then dry up less quickly, which makes your job a lot easier. Moreover, cleaning solar light panels in strong sunlight is not a good idea anyway.
How often should you clean solar panels?
That depends on a number of factors. For example, it is known that solar panels in contexts with more pollution (for example near highways) require more maintenance than solar light panels in contexts with normal pollution.
In addition, the weather conditions themselves also play a role. Seasons can be harsher or milder. After a bleak autumn and a harsh winter, there will be more maintenance work than after a mild autumn. Long periods of drought and sun keep it cleaner than long periods of rain and wind.
A third factor is the orientation of the solar light panels. Northern solar panels have the heaviest time here and can easily require cleaning 4 times a year.
Southern solar panels are the least demanding. In the best cases, they only need to be cleaned every 3 years. Nevertheless, at Zonfit we also recommend annual cleaning for these southern panels.
Everything can always be improved and you don’t want to miss anything during the peak months of your solar system.
The Golden 5
Finally, we would like to list here: the 5 golden rules when cleaning solar panels:
- Use osmosis water;
- Use a soft brush if necessary;
- Never work in full sun;
- Never use a high-pressure cleaner;
- Never use cleaning products.