Solar Panel Cleaning - The Only Guide You’ll Ever Need

Friday, April 8, 2022

People in Australia experience warm temperatures all year long. Consequently, most homeowners consider using this opportunity to fulfil their energy needs by installing solar PV panels in their properties. Using clean-sourced energy - solar offers countless benefits - from saving thousands on electricity bills and installation to reducing the negative impact on the environment. Since solar panels depend largely on sunlight to produce energy, you need to consider proper and timely maintenance of your PV panels.

Solar panel cleaning is an integral part of solar maintenance. A well-maintained and clean solar panel will produce optimal energy and fulfil your daily power needs. When left uncleaned, your solar PV panels will fail to absorb enough sunlight and generate insufficient power, thus limiting the energy output. You can easily prevent this by cleaning your solar panels every once in a while. 

In this article, we will explain the best way to clean solar panels and keep them free of any external elements affecting the energy production of PV panels.

How To Clean Solar Panel - Consider These 5 Tips

1. Switch Off The System Completely

Before starting with the cleaning job, make sure you shut down your solar system entirely. You can refer to a user manual or manufacturer's operating manual to switch off the solar system. Now, follow the mentioned procedure from the manual and shut down the system. Make sure the DC system is completely switched off. Shut down the AC system via the main switch connected to the solar supply.

2. Disconnect Rainwater Tanks and Gutters

Once you shut down the solar system, temporarily disconnect rainwater tanks connected to your guttering system. You can also choose to shut off the system completely. The reason for disconnecting the system is to ensure that no dirty water goes into your rainwater tank.

3. Clean Panels During Early Morning or Late Evening

Before starting with your cleaning job, it is essential to choose the right time of the day. Since solar systems use sunlight to generate energy, the glasses on your PV panels will be hot. Using cold water to clean such hot PV panels can increase the chances of damages or cracks. The prime reason for such damages or cracks is a sudden temperature change. Besides, cleaning PV panels with water under such soaring high temperatures may result in water evaporation, leaving dirt patches on your solar panels. You can consider cleaning your solar panels during the early morning or late evenings, whenever the temperature is below. Additionally, the morning dew will soften the dirt buildup from the panels, allowing you to use less water and efficiently clean your solar panels. 

4. Use a Soft Cloth and Mild Soap For Stubborn Grimes

Ideally, you should clean your solar panel with only water. However, cleaning stubborn grimes or dry patches can be complicated. If you come across any stubborn grimes on your solar panels, consider using a combination of water and mild soap to clean the surface. Gently wipe away the excess soapy solution using a soft cloth. 

5. Start With The Ground and Then Panels

We recommend you start washing solar panels from the ground first. The only reason is the matter of safety. You can use a hose with a long pipe to direct the water flow onto your panels. Different nozzle types may allow you to direct the water stream to the solar panels efficiently. However, make sure you only direct the water on the upper surface of your solar panels. Avoid directing water onto the back of solar panels or into the visible gaps between solar panels and roof.

Following these tips may help you obtain squeaky clean solar panels. However, if you want to avoid any potential damage to your solar panels while cleaning, you can always approach us. Our solar experts are highly experienced and well-versed in maintaining residential solar panels. Call us on 1300 616 111 for any solar query.

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