Solar Panel Maintenance: What You Need to Know
August 5, 2021
Investing in solar panels is one of the most effective eco-conscious decisions you can make for your home or business. They typically require little maintenance, allowing you to reap their rewards for at least two decades before potential replacement. However, taking minor steps can ensure they continue to run as smoothly as when you first purchased them.
Here are a few tips on how to maintain your solar panel system.
Ground Panels and Roof Panels: What’s the Difference?
Ground panels are obviously solar panels stationed on the ground, and roof panels are placed on the roof, but does maintenance differ for each?
The main difference is that ground solar panels are much easier to install and keep clean.
It’s more efficient to sweep snow and debris off of ground panels than roof panels throughout seasons or after storms because, first, it’s easier to notice when something needs to be removed; and second, it’s safer to do cleaning work on the ground than on top of your home or business.
For those who are older or disabled, it’s not the easiest task to venture onto a rooftop to check on your panels.
Required tools might differ as well depending on your preference.
How Do You Maintain Solar Panels?
Solar panel maintenance isn’t as complex as you might think. They can easily be maintained with periodic cleaning to remove debris caused by certain weather conditions, such as storms or particularly windy days.
Some areas of the U.S. are more prone to regular snowfall. In these areas, keeping packed snow off of your solar panel system is essential to getting the most power out of them.
Both debris and snow can easily be removed with a leaf or snow blower, or even by hosing water onto your solar panel system to wash away anything unwanted. You can find these tools at most local hardware stores. If your climate is on the colder side, remember to use warm or hot water so that ice doesn’t form after contact with the snow.
How Often Do Solar Panels Need Maintenance?
Solar panels should only need maintenance or cleaning under five times per year. When you begin seeing a significant buildup of dirt, debris, or snow, it’s time to clean.
It’s impractical to clean your solar panel system every time a single leaf or speck of dirt falls onto it — they are outside, after all. Maintenance is only essential when a considerable amount of buildup exists.
Note that solar panel maintenance requirements differ based on the location of the installation, house style, and placement orientation as well as climate and weather patterns in your area.
How Much Does Solar Panel Maintenance Cost?
Solar panel maintenance is inexpensive. You can do it yourself!
If you own a ground solar panel system, you’ll have much easier access and can therefore clean with relevant tools you own or purchase, such as blowers.
If your solar panel system is on your roof, you might need to buy a ladder or other method to safely access it. It’s important that you feel comfortable and safe while doing so. Hiring Freedom Solar’s maintenance staff can rid you of this chore and any potential risks associated with your maintenance needs.
Climate and Weather Factors to Consider
Freedom Solar’s solar panel systems are designed and built to be highly durable. They can withstand any form of weather, including harsh wind and rain, heavy snowfall, hail, tornadoes, and even hurricanes.
However, if the hail is 1” in diameter and falling at least 54 mph, some damage can occur. If you are concerned that a strong hail storm may have damaged your solar panels, Freedom Solar will be happy to come and take a look.
One last note is heat. While high enough temperatures can affect your solar panels’ energy output (at about a half percent for every degree over 75 degrees Fahrenheit), you don’t need to worry about overheating, fire risk, or other damage.
Monitoring Your Solar Panel Energy Output
When a large amount of debris or snow is covering your solar panel unit, energy output will decrease.
You can monitor your system’s energy output with a device that comes included in your SunPower solar panel system purchase. By comparing the energy production rate on your monitor with your monthly utility bill, you can see if energy output has decreased.
To understand the “credits” on your utility bill, check the net metering guidelines for your state. Please note that any extra energy consumption you use due to weather or seasonal changes can affect this comparison. Take all factors into consideration.
Do Solar Panels Need to Be Serviced? Here’s Our Warranty Policy
Freedom Solar offers a great lifetime warranty spanning 25 years. We’ll cover 100% of your repair or replacement costs, including labor from our in-house service staff of licensed electricians and NABCEP-certified installation crews, as well as shipping costs for any equipment or panels needed for your unit.
Only about one in every 25,000 solar panel systems need to be replaced, so if you’re considering purchasing, you can feel reassured that our units are built to last.
Additionally, we want you to get the most out of your system. That’s why we offer completely free servicing and maintenance if your output production drops under 92%.
When and How to Replace Your Solar Panels
Freedom Solar uses SunPower solar panels, the most reputable and reliable in the industry. You should only need to replace your residential solar panel system or commercial solar panel system every 25 years — that’s a fourth of a century!
Freedom Solar will take care of any replacements free of charge if needed before 25 years. Our units are durable and long-lasting, but if an issue arises, our service professionals are here to help.
For more information on the services and products we offer, call +1 (877) 817-9271 or fill out the form on our contact page to schedule a consultation.