Skip to content
Solar Panel Cleaning Machine. Solar panel washer

Solar Panel Cleaning Machine. Solar panel washer

    Solar Panel Cleaning Machine

    by US Admin June 15, 2022 Barnes Solar 0 Комментарии и мнения владельцев

    Get high-quality solar panel cleaning equipment

    Although solar panels are durable and durable, they’re not invulnerable. They are designed to withstand harsh outdoor conditions and are susceptible to failure if they aren’t maintained properly. Barnes Solar is committed to making life easier for customers through new solar panel cleaning tools. Our products will reduce your workload and increase the longevity of your solar panels. Make sure your solar equipment is protected by using a reliable and dependable solution. Our solar panel washing system is specifically designed to meet the requirements of our customers.

    Multiple Control Options Flexibility

    The different solar panels will have different needs. Clean panels in residential settings may not require a weekly or monthly maintenance. The Barnes Solar‘s solar panel cleaning machine is a fantastic help for panels in dirty and dusty areas. Cleansing solar panels is easy and adaptable. Cleaning can be approached using three different methods:

    solar, panel, cleaning, machine, washer

    Manual – Clients prefer to be in complete control of their schedule for cleaning. Customers prefer to clean their panels when it is necessary or when there is a lot of dust. You might want to run your system after a stormy or windy day. This flexibility allows clients to modify their system to suit their unique needs.

    Automated – This is for customers who prefer to be hands-off. Clients can arrange cleaning schedules for a month or a week and the solar equipment will handle the remaining tasks. All you have to do is select one of the scheduled options available in the solar panel washing machine.

    Pre-Programmed Scheduling is a great option for customers who require an individual option. When your panel is in a dusty and dry area You may want to clean them once every five days to ensure efficiency. It is possible to have the flexibility and control, while the custom-designed schedule allows you to have the optimal of both. This advanced feature is offered in our washing machines for solar panels.

    Contact our experts to learn more regarding cleaning schedules. Before they recommend a solution they’ll ask you questions about your solar panel’s installation, location and the use of it.

    Advantages of Solar Panel Production System

    People don’t like to spend their money on things that aren’t necessary. A lot of solar panel owners believe that the system needs to be cleaned once a year. Numerous studies have shown that solar panels suffer from poor maintenance and cleaning. Our robot will provide simple and efficient cleaning that can enhance the performance of your PV plant. Let’s look at the benefits:

    • Ultra-Soft brush. Barnes Solar solar panel cleaners have ultra-soft bristles. They are gentle on panels and can pick up dust easily and efficiently.
    • Dry Cleaning Solution. Solar panel washing machines don’t require water to clean the panels. This reduces the possibility of damage as well as preserving water.
    • Lower operating costs – The machines do not require a lot of maintenance or care. Clients won’t have to worry about frequent repairs or breakdowns so long as they follow the instructions.
    • SCADA-Responsive – Clients manage the robot through joining it with SCADA. The solar panel wash systems are sensitive to weather conditions. so they will not work during rainy weather.
    • Self-powered solar panel cleaner is self-powered. It doesn’t require you recharge the battery or connect it to the power source. It will automatically charge itself whenever it’s running out of power and then shuts off again.

    Solar panel efficiency can be improved through cleaning your panels once per year. Our solar panel cleaning device is a fantastic option. It can prolong the life of your solar panel even more and help you save money and boost your energy production. Barnes Solar dry solar panel cleaning equipment ensures you get the best out of your solar panels.

    The Price of a Solar Cleaning Robot – What You Should Know

    Permanent cleaning solutions are desired by many clients to keep their solar system free of dirt. Clients want a durable effective, reliable and cost-effective solution, but they are reluctant to spend much on it. Barnes Solar is a solar panel cleaning robot. The products result from more than three years of research and testing. They are constructed with by high-quality, durable materials, which means they’ll last for many years. The price of our solar cleaning machine is worth the cost.

    Solar Panel Cleaning System Cost

    Cleaning costs for solar panels are based on the size, amount of modules, and the availability of cleaning supplies. Customers who own 1MW solar plant spend 2.5 to 3.5 only on maintenance, while 80percent of the investment is spent on cleaning.

    Traditional solar cleaning systems use lots of pure water that can make them costly. There are estimates that suggest washing solar panels at an 1MW facility can require up to 40 million fluid liters of pure water during the lifespan of the facility.

    The Barnes Solar‘s Waterless cleaning solutions are more cost-effective and affordable. Our company’s Barnes Solar solar panel cleaning robots cost is affordable. Dry cleaning robots don’t need the most care or maintenance. On request, our experts will provide a precise cost breakdown for ownership. Our specialists are ready to answer any queries you might have regarding the cost of solar-powered cleaning robot.

    Are Solar Panels worth it?

    The robots are more than 1,000 deployed and we have received a number of repeat approval from 11 customers. Our experts are trained to provide tailored recommendations and are aware of the way robots perform in real-world scenarios.

    Here are a few good reasons why solar panel cleaners are worth the price.

    • Increases efficiency. Solar panel efficiency is increased by up to 5% through regular cleaning, dependent on the location that the project is being set up. Our solar modules cleaning robot will make your investment look more appealing. It’s well worthwhile to invest in solar panel cleaning robot.
    • Durability Dust can cause corrosive damage and cause serious harm the solar panel. A reliable system that cleans the panels on a regular basis can dramatically prolong their life.
    • Automated. Barnes Solar machines can be fully automated or semi-automatic. This means they don’t require much manual intervention. It is not necessary to employ specialists or technicians to your staff, or to hire a third party professional. The machine will run automatically in the event that you have a scheduled. Barnes Solar offers a more effective cleaning solution as well as an affordable price on solar panel cleaners.
    • Flexibility – Customers have the choice to follow a predetermined cleaning schedule or create their own cleaning schedule. The system can be operated either manually or automatically.

    Here are some of the reasons why an automatic robot cleaner is worth the initial investment.

    What is included in the price of solar panel cleaning equipment?

    We offer a comprehensive quote that covers all costs involved in the design, development as well as the installation, operation as well as maintenance for solar panels cleaning. We aim to ensure that our clients can plan their budget based on a reasonable estimate. The estimate includes:

    Assistance and Analysis – An expert team meets customers to talk about their requirements and priority areas. They address questions, look over the blueprints of solar plants and offer solutions. Our team will ensure that you get the most cost-effective and economical solar panel cleaning machine prices.

    The Design and Development phase – When our team has received all needed information, they’ll begin to design the custom design. Every PV plant requires a unique, efficient solution. When it comes to designing a custom setup, our engineers are highly knowledgeable and are willing to be willing to share their expertise. SolaBot guarantees efficiency and a reasonable price in solar panel equipment for cleaning.

    Testing. Product development is not complete without testing. Before a product is delivered to the consumer, it goes through extensive testing.

    After testing has been completed to our satisfaction, implementation will begin. All aspects of the implementation are covered as per the procedure for commissioning and execution.

    Barnes Solar Solar Cleaning System

    Our devices can be effective with little human intervention. In order to work properly they require only just a bit of attention. Customers will not face any issues if they follow the directions in the manual. Barnes Solar provides consistent customer support. For repairs, maintenance or troubleshooting we can be reached by our dedicated support team. We are available to answer any questions you may ask about the solar panels washing machine.

    Barnes Solar is the most reliable source for an efficient Solar Panel Cleaning Machine. We’re here to help with any questions you have about our products and the effectiveness of them.

    We are an established and veteran-owned solar panel cleaning business. We offer Residential Solar Cleaning as well as Efficiency Checks or Repair consultations.

    We are a top solar panel cleaning service and maintenance across Las Vegas, Barnes Solar.

    Why Solar Panel Cleaning?

    You can save money and produce more energy.

    To maximize the performance of your solar system, it is important to clean the panels.

    The efficiency of solar panels is severely affected by dirt, dust, and other environmental pollutants. Research has shown how PV panel efficiency could drop by as much as 20% without regular cleansing and maintaining.

    Barnes Solar is available to clean solar panels that are on your roof, solar carports and large underground solar arrays. Our specialists will examine the entire array and do more than just a basic cleansing system for solar panels.

    Solar panel washer

    How often do you clean your solar panels? Most people don’t clean theirs as often as they should, and a dirty solar panel can have a big impact on the amount of energy generated to power your home or equipment. If you live in a drier climate that doesn’t receive much rain, solar panel cleaning is even more crucial as there will be much more dust buildup on the panels with nothing to naturally clean them. While rainwater can help to clear off dust, it isn’t the best way to clean solar panels. When rainwater evaporates, it can leave rings of dust and debris, which will affect how efficiently the panels produce solar power. Read on to learn everything you need to know about solar panel cleaning, including how to clean solar panels, the necessary equipment to do so, as well as where to find solar panel cleaning services if the job is too big for you to do on your own.

    Why You Should Clean Your Solar Panels

    Do solar panels need cleaning? The short answer is, YES! Learning how to clean solar panels as well as how to maintain solar panels will go a long way toward extending not only their life but how efficient they are in the long run. Solar panels degrade at a rate of 0.5% every year, and regular solar panel cleanings will do a lot to slow this rate down and extend the life of the solar panel. Cleaning solar panels regularly will also keep them producing power at a maximum rate. A study found that a combination of dust and particulate air pollution reduces solar energy production by 17-25%.

    The most common reasons solar panels become dirty and less efficient are dust, leaves, water, and bird droppings. Birds are enemy number one when it comes to maintaining solar panels and keeping them clean. Birds and their droppings can cause much more damage to solar panels than a layer of dust can. Their droppings can chemically damage solar panels, and some birds like to nest underneath the panels, too, which can restrict air flow and cause them to overheat and get damaged. If you notice birds nesting underneath your solar panels, you can look into adding a bird barrier to the underside to deter them from doing so.

    How to Clean Solar Panels

    Can you clean solar panels yourself? You absolutely can clean solar panels yourself, but there are some things to know before you start the process. Before you start your solar panel cleaning project, you’ll need to invest in the right equipment to do so; there are solar panel cleaning kits to make this step easier. For those wondering how to clean solar panels on the roof or elsewhere on your property, follow the steps below to get your solar panels looking (and working!) their best.

    Solar Panel Cleaning Equipment You’ll Need

    • A simple garden hose can be used to spray down the panels, but don’t use a pressure washer, which could damage the panels.
    • Don’t be too hard on a solar panel. A cleaning brush with soft bristles or a squeegee can be used to scrub grime and bird droppings from the panels.
    • Create a gentle solar panel cleaning solution by using things like vinegar, mild detergent, and water. Avoid using harsh chemicals when cleaning solar panels.
    • Make the whole process of gathering the proper solar panel cleaning tools and mixing your own cleaning solution even easier by purchasing a solar panel cleaning kit.

    Steps to Solar Panel Cleaning

    Step 1: Choose a cool time of day to clean your solar panels. Cleaning them during the hottest part of the day can make the water evaporate quickly and leave marks behind, and the combination of cold water hitting the hot glass of the solar panels can cause them to crack.

    Step 2: Shut your system down completely before you begin to clean the solar panels. If you have rainwater collectors or gutters, shut them off or disconnect them from the system to avoid dirty runoff water going into them.

    Step 3: Remove any loose debris or leaves from the solar panels using a soft brush or cloth. It’s safest to clean solar panels from the ground, so use a brush with an extension to make it easier to reach.

    Step 4: Spray the panels down with a garden hose to wash the dust away and loosen any debris. Use a hose with a nozzle so you can easily direct the spray at the panels.

    Step 5: Use a soft brush and a solar panel cleaning solution to scrub any stubborn grime or debris off of the solar panels.

    Step 6: Spray the panels again with water to rinse away the loosened debris, and use a squeegee to wipe the leftover water off of the panels. Only spray water onto the top of the solar panels; do not spray water on the back of them.

    Step 7: Clean your solar panels every six months or less to keep them clean and operating at their best.

    Solar Panel Cleaning Services

    If the task of cleaning solar panels seems like too big of a job, there are also solar panel cleaning services that you can hire to do the job for you. By hiring a professional, you’ll know that your solar panel cleaning will be done correctly. To find the right person for the job, ask for a recommendation from others who have solar panels on their property, or do a Google search for “solar panel cleaning service near me” and review the options that come up. Check reviews of different companies to find the most highly rated ones to do the job.

    Solar Powered Washing Machines: How Much Energy Do They Use?

    Installing solar panels and sustainable energy usage has resulted in more questions than answers. Homeowners are now seen comparing notes and wondering whether a specific appliance can work on solar energy.

    You might also wonder if this switch will be cost-effective in the long run, considering how pricey solar panel installations have become.

    Washing machines and dryers are one of the great household essentials. If you’re planning to go off the grid, you must know whether they will work on solar energy. You should also know the factors involved in making this move an energy-efficient one.

    This article gives a breakdown of running a washing machine on solar energy.

    So, first thing first, how much solar power will you need to run a washing machine?

    How Much Solar Power Do Washing Machines Require?

    An average washing machine with an A consumer rating will need a 300-watt solar panel if it consumes 300 to 500 kWh electricity. However, it will only work if your solar panels receive sufficient sunlight and heat to convert renewable solar energy into electricity.

    Alternatively, you will need four to six times more electrical energy if you plan on running your dryer on solar power. These devices consume more electricity than a washing machine. Therefore, you might want to air dry your washed load outside under the sun instead of using the dryer.

    The Premise: How Much Solar Energy is Needed to Run a Washing Machine?

    Typically, a standard washing machine completes one cycle in half an hour. Using an energy-efficient model requires 500 watts per hour for optimal operation. That means it will need 2.25 kWh. These slight alterations in energy usage cut down the cost of your utility bill.

    Estimates show that you’ll only be charged 11.14 on your electricity bill for the wash cycle if you use it only through the solar grid. That’s an excellent feat for individuals running a household on a budget.

    How Many Solar Panels Should You Install to Use a Washing Machine?

    Typically, a residential solar system will consist of 20 to 25 panels. However, the exact number of panels utilized to run a washing machine depends on various factors, including our location, daily energy consumption, and the amount of power your specific panels produce.

    solar, panel, cleaning, machine, washer

    The space on your roof is another viable factor that can impact the size of your solar grid project.

    According to experts, a standard-sized panel can generate around 250-400 watts of power. The amount of sunlight and heat your solar panel receives determines the total amount of energy it will generate.

    To maximize solar output, you might have to change the direction of the panels and ensure nothing creates a barrier between your solar system and the sunlight.

    solar, panel, cleaning, machine, washer

    So, how many solar panels would your washing machine need?

    In most machines, a spin cycle utilizes around 240 watts of energy. When you compare it with the energy a premium-grade solar panel produces, the input-output requirement is almost equal.

    Therefore, you might only need one panel to complete your first load of sun-powered washing.

    On the other hand, if your washing machine requires more power, you might need an extra panel to ensure your household appliance runs smoothly.

    Factors Impacting Solar Power Consumption in Washing Machines

    Different variables come to play when running a washing machine on solar energy. For example, an older model would consume more solar power than modern, energy-efficient units. Top-load and front-load designs also have an impact on uses.

    Other factors include the load size, capacity of your unit, and water temperature. Energy efficiency elements and design details play an equally important role.

    We discuss some of these variables in greater detail below.

    Load Size: How Many Clothes Did You Put in the Washer?

    Overloading your machine causes it to demand extra energy from your solar grid. As a result, it strains your system and the appliance itself. Therefore, you should keep a reasonable load size for your next wash.

    Filling the machine with two-thirds of the load can optimize operation as the motor inside doesn’t have to experience strain in any form. That usually refers to 13-15 clothing items of various sizes. These can include shirts, skirts, dresses, and intimate garments. One extra piece can push the machine into overdrive when you least expect it.

    It would be best if you stick to the user guide and our insights to ensure you experience an uninterrupted and energy-efficient washing cycle.

    Capacity: How Many Clothes Can You Put in the Washer?

    The load size and capacity of modern washing machines are relatively different.

    Units with higher capacity consume more solar power because they run on a large motor. You tend to experience this problem more in older models since newer machines are manufactured to meet sustainable goals.

    Nevertheless, it’s good to know the motor and engine size before installing your residential solar panels. You can use this information to decide how many solar panels you’ll need for a cost-effective purchase.

    Hot vs. Cold Water: Temperature Setting of Your Washer

    Solar power consumption multiplies when you use hot water instead of cold water for your washer. Your water heating system will consume a significant amount of energy to boil room-temperature water.

    In some cases, your residential solar system might not manage the extra strain independently. Therefore, you might want to skip hot water on laundry day when running a washing machine on solar energy. Your strategic choice can cut down your carbon footprint.

    Front vs. Top-Load: Which is Better for Solar?

    Front-load washing machines have doors on the front of the device. Top-loaders are washers that you can chuck in your dirty clothes through the loading area on top.

    When running a washing machine on solar energy, homeowners need to weigh the installation costs of the device itself and its sustainable benefits. Many people hesitate to invest in a front-loading washing machine because they have a higher price and installation fee than top-loading machines.

    However, it’s a nifty investment when considering energy consumption rates between this model and its top-loading counterpart. That’s because front-load machines don’t consume as much energy as top loaders.

    As a result, you’d be using less solar power to wash an equal amount of clothes in front-loading machines without wasting energy.

    Can You Monitor Solar Energy Consumption with a Top Load Model?

    Yes, top load washing machines can be an economical option for households that don’t use washers as frequently.

    If you don’t use the washing machine regularly, you can make up the difference in solar energy consumption. But, more importantly, you save a few extra dollars on upfront costs by purchasing the more budget-friendly model.

    Your choice depends on your current household budget and the number of times you use the washer in a week.

    Sustainability Tips to Save Energy While Running Your Washing Machine on Solar

    Whether you want to save more on electricity bills or ensure your solar power grid withstands the continuous demands of the machine, we can help. Here are some valuable tips about saving energy when running a solar-powered washing machine.

    Invest in an Energy-Efficient Machine

    Old washing machines and top loading machines consume excessive electricity. These devices will do the same for solar systems by demanding more solar energy to operate efficiently.

    In contrast, front-loading machines and Energy Star washer models don’t consume much energy. That makes these devices a better fit for residential solar panel systems.

    Set an Energy-Efficient Laundry Schedule

    Do you wash your clothes every day? Washing a few items of clothing and other accessories each day uses up more solar energy than designating weekly routines. So instead of each day, washing clothes twice or thrice a week seems like a viable option for a small family household.

    Switching the device on and off and using it each day for an hour or two can use up more solar power than necessary. A streamlined laundry plan and alternative use of machines optimize solar energy usage.

    Use an Eco-Friendly Detergent

    Do you pour multiple scoops of liquid detergent into your machine? It would help if you swapped traditional cleaners with non-toxic detergent powder or eco-friendly pods to wash your clothes. These cleaning solutions require less water and discharge a lower number of carbon emissions than liquid detergents.

    over, they are more concentrated than diluted liquid solutions. This fact makes them a more effective cleaner and stain-remover than water-based solutions. Plus, less water usage means less energy consumption.

    Soak Your Clothes Before Washing Them

    Have you got dirty gym clothes? Do your kids’ sports jerseys have muddy stains on them? Did the baby spill juice on her dress?

    Messy clothes take double the time in the washer. You can cut down washing time by soaking them in lukewarm water for over an hour. Some hard-to-remove stains might require extra soaking.

    This designated period in water can soften the stubborn stains. In doing so, you won’t need multiple rinse cycles to clean your load. This one step can conserve water and solar energy, making your laundry routine more environmentally-minded and safe.

    Reduce Rinse Cycles

    Avoid running multiple cycles in the washer. In most cases, two rinses are enough to get clean and fresh clothes out of the washer.

    The first cycle allows the washing machine to deal with stains and spills while the other washes away the soap suds clinging to the fabric.

    Reducing rinse cycles prevents the washing machine from working in overdrive, meaning less solar energy consumption and more conservation. Your clothes are also less likely to become coarse and rough when you don’t overdo the wash cycle.

    Remember to Switch Off and Unplug Your Washer

    Washing machines kept on standby mode use power because they are still running.

    Even though the standby mode only consumes a small amount of energy, you might be wasting many watts if you calculate how many hours a day your washer is on standby. It could be a substantial loss when considering the solar energy wasted in a year.

    Not to forget that plugged devices are a fire hazard when not used. In addition, your washing machine and the grid can experience a short circuit due to power fluctuations or stormy weather.

    over, you are depleting your daily solar energy storage by keeping your washing machine switched on.

    Therefore, you should switch off your washing machine after doing the laundry.

    Parting Words

    A standard washing machine running on solar energy will need a 300-watt solar panel if it utilizes 300-500 Kwh energy. Usually, you only need one solar panel from a reliable manufacturer to power a washing machine.

    However, you will need more panels if you use a high-capacity device. Front-loading washers are an ideal choice in this scenario since they don’t use up solar energy.

    Aside from this, machine size, design, and usage significantly impact the amount of solar power you need to run a washing machine.

    It would help if you also become more mindful of using the washer. Taking steps to reduce water usage, minimize the rinse cycle, and opt for eco-friendly detergents are substantial steps toward this goal.

    We strongly advise you to upgrade old devices for newer energy-efficient models.

    Also, ensure you don’t leave your washer on standby whenever not in use. Setting a strategic laundry schedule is another thing you can do to ensure your washer does not drain away from your residential solar energy unit.

    Now that you know everything about running a washing machine on solar energy, would you be tempted to start practicing mindful machine usage? Let’s go!

    Did you find this article useful? Share it with your network here:

    What Homeowners Should Know About Solar Panel Cleaning

    The appearance of any unknown substance on your solar panels can be a cause for concern. One of our customers recently contacted us about a dusting of white powder they saw on their panels. Our examination revealed that the culprit was pollen that had accumulated on the solar panels, so there was no reason to panic, as the panels were still producing energy, they just needed a good cleaning.

    We suggested that they could start by spraying the pollen off using a water hose to clean the panels. Then we recommended that they sign up for a thorough panel cleaning service at least once per year. It would prevent build-up in the future and ensure maximum efficiency and savings from their solar power system.

    This homeowner’s concerns got us thinking about the sort of solar panel cleaning questions that most homeowners have:

    • Do solar panels need cleaning?
    • What solar power cleaning tasks can you do on your own?
    • When should you hire a professional cleaning company to clean your solar panels?
    • Will cleaning your solar panels improve their performance?

    This article will answer all your concerns regarding these and other questions.

    What are the Causes of Dirty Solar Panels?

    You need to oil, maintain, and clean your car so it runs more efficiently. Others want their house Windows to be crystal-clear and grime-free so they can enjoy the view of their property. For many of the same reasons, your solar panels also need cleaning. Accumulated leaves, bird droppings, and other debris can block a significant amount of the sun’s rays, reducing your system’s efficiency.

    Bird Droppings

    We all love trees, as they beautify and freshen up our property. But birds also love them for nesting or chilling spots. If branches hang over your solar panel array, you should be prepared to do some extra cleaning.

    Bird droppings tend to be more notorious than dust, leaves, and pollen, especially if they harden and stick on the panels. The accumulated debris from birds can block significant light from the sun, and it’s more difficult to remove just by spraying your panels with water.

    Thankfully, products and services exist that can indicate if bird droppings affect the current flow in your solar energy system. Microinverters help with this, as the technology allows you to see when a single panel is generating less electricity because of blockage or debris.

    Pollen and Leaves

    Pollen has evolved into a sticky material that doesn’t dissolve in water. As a result, it can be harder to clean since it doesn’t just blow away in the wind. If you live near farmlands or areas with a lot of vegitation, expect pollination agents like wind, insects, and birds carrying pollen to pass over your panels and drop some of it on them. In fact, windy weather is more likely to blow pollen onto your panels in the first place instead of blowing it away.

    You may also need to deal with leaves falling on your panels, especially if your trees are deciduous, meaning they lose their leaves each year in the fall. While dry leaves just blow away in the wind, wet leaves typically stick to panels as heavy rain can act like glue.

    Dust and Dirt

    Dust and dirt is a common enemy of solar power systems, and its effects go beyond the accumulation of grime. It’s true that sun rays may still pass through a thin layer of dust, and wind or rainwater can quickly sweep most of it off. But if your PV array is located near dustier areas such as farmlands, main roads, cement factories, and quarries, the story changes. Your solar panels will need special attention and frequent cleaning as they have to contend with far more dust and dirt.


    Now, you may be thinking, “Wait. You told that customer to use water to clean their panels. Why is it on the list?”

    Fair question! The issue has to do with the pooling of cleaning or rainwater on horizontal solar arrays. Apart from simply reducing your solar energy generation, the water layer can leave a muddy residue after evaporation, necessitating more frequent cleaning.

    Do Solar Panels Need Cleaning?

    Like anything that stays outside every day and night, solar panels will eventually accumulate dirt. But how frequently you may have to wash your panels depends on several factors, including:

    • System design
    • Installation angle(s)
    • Size/number of panels
    • Location
    • Types of dirt
    • Weather
    • Duration between thorough cleanings

    So, do solar panels need cleaning? Our definitive answer comes in three parts:

    Answer #1: Yes, and You Can Do It Yourself

    Bird droppings and other dirt agents can affect your solar panel’s performance, especially if your panels lie truly horizontal on the roof. That’s where washing the panels becomes important, though it doesn’t have to be a thorough or routine cleaning in many cases.

    As we suggested to the customer with the white powder on their panels, cleaning your solar panels is usually a relatively easy task. All you need to do is to spray the panels with average-pressure water from a well-angled garden hose while standing on the ground.

    If you want extra cleaning power, a long-handled squeegee or soft brush plus a medium-pressure hose nozzle can work wonders. With the nozzle, directing the spray will become easier. You’ll then wipe off the water using the squeegee for maximum electricity production. This approach provides even more cleaning power, but it does depend on the angle of your roof, roof height, and panel placement, because not everyone will be able to reach their roof, even with a long handle.

    Answer #2: Yes, but You Don’t Need to Do Anything

    Maintaining your panels is essential, but you don’t need to clean them as often as most people think. You may need to remove the occasional buildup of leaves, bird droppings, and other debris to maximize the amount of sunlight exposure your panels receive. Any regular wind and rain will typically sweep off most of the dirt, so it’s better to let nature take its course and only do one thorough cleaning every year to maximize energy production.

    When it comes to doing any thorough cleaning and maintenance, it’s best to hire a professional with the knowledge and tools to get the job done safely and correctly the first time.

    Answer #3: No, Unless Something Really Bad Happens

    Researchers at the University of California left solar panels on a roof for 145 days without cleaning. Their findings? The panels’ energy generation efficiency dropped by 7.4%.

    It may surprise you that the efficiency of your solar panels can remain intact over a long period, considering all that exposure to debris, dust, heat, and rainwater. But you can trust your panels to withstand the regular wear and tear of the elements.

    Solar companies employ only the leading technologies and engineering skills when manufacturing their products. Their design processes usually account for the effects of dirt, water, and pollen from everyday use.

    You still need to be on the lookout for any obvious structural issues with the panels, supports, and roofing.

    Can Cleaning Solar Panels Improve the Performance of PV Systems?

    As we’ve seen so far, the short answer is, The impact of dirty solar panels on solar power production depends on various factors. But we’re interested in the long answer, right? Let’s dig into the science and math a bit:

    An experiment involving solar panels on a low-slope roof sought out the difference in energy output before and after a thorough cleaning.

    The researchers found an average 3.5% boost in energy production (the amount of power produced over time) after cleaning the panels using a soft rag and water. The implication here is that the energy yield increase was low, despite the high amount of dirt accumulation.

    Things became interesting when heavy rain did the cleaning job. The average performance increased by only 1.9% after rainwater pounded on the dirty panels. What does that mean? A good shower from the skies can take care of some cleanup, but it’s not as effective as the proper equipment and some elbow grease.

    You may want to check how much your dirty solar panels are costing you in terms of energy generation. Here’s a simple formula for determining the value of solar panel cleaning:

    Yearly Energy Production (kWh) × Production Loss From Dirty Panels × Electricity Cost per kWh

    For example, if your residential solar energy system can produce 10,000 kWh of electricity per year, and you assume a 5% loss of production due to panels being dirty, and you pay 20 cents per kWh for electricity from your utility, your yearly cost of electricity loss from dirty panels is as follows:

    A 5% electricity production loss might not sound like a lot, but it can definitely add up, and suddenly you’re paying way more to your utility company on your electricity bill than you need to be.

    The Science of Cleaning Your Solar Panels

    Yes, rain helps wash solar panels and keep dirt at bay, but it comes with several downsides, which can lead to noticeable performance problems on panels set at low angles:

    • Rainwater comes laden with pollen and dirt
    • It can pool on the surface of your panels, especially if the glass surface sits lower than the frame
    • Once the rainwater evaporates, it can leave behind a muddy residue

    So, should we rule out the need for cleaning solar panels? Not yet. Researchers at Google’s solar farm have a different story.

    In one set of their experiments, they studied 1.6MW of horizontal solar panels on flat carports in Mountain View, California. These panels operated untouched for 15 months.

    After cleaning them, they realized that the energy production from their carport solar panels had doubled overnight! Eight months later, they cleaned those same solar panels and learned that the output had gone up by 36%.

    So, what’s our conclusion? All solar panels still need frequent cleaning, especially if they’re horizontal or almost horizontal on your roof. If yours are tilted appropriately, a reasonable amount of rainfall will get them mostly clean, but a scheduled annual visit from cleaning professionals may further help your overall renewable energy output.

    How Can I Clean My Solar Panels?

    Cleaning your solar panels doesn’t have to be extensive or risky work. If you’ve decided to clean your panels yourself, what matters is that you follow these cleaning tips to keep both you and the solar system safe.

    When in doubt, just remember that you can always call in the professionals to get the job done safely and efficiently. Because some solar installers are only focused on new installations, they don’t all offer services like solar panel cleaning. If that’s the case, rest assured that Palmetto can still provide any of your solar service and maintenance needs.

    Tips for Cleaning My Solar Panels

    Before setting out to clean your panels, you must keep in mind one crucial point: Avoid scratching or damaging the glass at all costs. You don’t want your energy production to plummet.

    When cleaning solar panels, you will always be gentle with them by using these solar panel cleaning tips and tricks:

    • Solar panel models are not all created the same. It’s prudent to check with your product’s manufacturer to see if they have specific instructions for cleaning.
    • Consider using a garden hose first. But if grime and dirt have built up on your equipment, it’s time for a thorough cleaning.
    • Most likely, the only equipment you need is a bucket with clean, warm water, a soft cloth, dish soap, and a soft brush or squeegee.
    • Pick an evening, a morning, or a cool day to do the cleaning. You don’t want to get burned by hot panels on a sunny day. If it’s too sunny, the soapy water can evaporate before you get time to wipe it away, which can leave a smear or residue that can reduce your panels’ efficiency.
    • Avoid splashing cold water on a hot glass surface. It can lead to cracks due to sudden contraction.
    • Apply the warm water and dish soap on the panels’ surfaces using a soft cloth or sponge. Do NOT clean the wiring underneath.
    • Use a squeegee to get rid of dirty water.
    • Never step on your panels, as this can damage them and cause premature failure.
    • Avoid brushes with sharp bristles that can scratch your solar glass surface.

    If you live near an airport or a route frequented by trucks, expect to find a few oily stains on your panels. In this case, you can use a rag and a little isopropyl alcohol to remove them.

    Pro Tip: Strong cleaning fluids should not touch your expensive investment at all. Harsh chemicals and liquids like laundry detergents, ammonia, and acids can react with or streak the glass surface, leading to damages and a loss of energy production.

    How Often Should I Clean My Solar Panels?

    In most cases, you only need to clean your solar panels once or twice per year. We recommend scheduling your annual cleaning routine during the spring. That avoids the heat of summer and harsh elements of winter.

    However, your solar panels might need extra attention in some locations. For example, the Southwest US experiences more significant dirt accumulation because of limited rainfall. Also, panels in homes near airports, factories, freeways, and other sources of pollution will need more frequent cleaning.

    Winter and autumn are other special cases. Removing heavier-than-average snowfall and leaves can boost your solar performance significantly.

    Do I Clean Off Snow?

    We get it. heavy snowfall days can make anyone nervous about their system not generating enough energy. However, snow on your solar power panels usually melts away quickly, thanks to the heat created by the solar panels, and their slick surface. Snow on a panel melts faster than on an empty roof due to the high difference in heat between the two surfaces.

    But if the snow is taking longer to melt and your battery storage is running low, you don’t have to wait. You can brush the snow off your panels to get them back to producing power right away.

    Make sure you use the right equipment to avoid damaging your investment and compromising its warranty. Thus, shovels, standard brooms, and other non-specialized tools should not come anywhere near your panels. A suitable snow roof rake created for the task will come in handy here. They typically cost around 30 to 150.

    Can I Use a Pressure Washer When Cleaning My Solar Panels?

    No. Not at all. High-pressure water is among the biggest enemies of your solar equipment.

    First, high-speed moisture can quickly force its way through the seals around the frames and get into vulnerable technology. These water leakages can promote corrosion of the fine wires, which leads to the failure of the solar panel and its photovoltaic cells.

    Also, the glass surface can break under high water pressure. We hear you asking, Why then don’t we see damage resulting from continuous rainfall pounding on the glass? That’s because panels are designed to resist hours of heavy rain falling across a wide surface area. But washing the panels with high pressure directs a focused beam of water in a highly concentrated spot, which creates an increased chance of stressed areas that can crack.

    What is Localized Soiling?

    Localized soiling of solar panels is when material like bird poop, leaves, and any other heavy blockages get stuck on your panels, but only cover part of the panel. Compare that to general soiling, where material like dirt and dust covers the entire panel surface.

    When rain and wind fail to remove localized soiling, this sort of debris may block some parts of the equipment, leading to hot spots.

    Your panel is made of several individual cells (60 in most cases). When localized soiling blocks sunlight from reaching one of the cells, its energy production drops. However, full current flowing from the adjacent cells may pass through the affected one. The result is overheating at that cell, a phenomenon that can cause damage to the panel.

    Yes, modern solar panels come with multiple built-in bypass diodes to keep hot spots at bay. But those extra-dirty areas can still lead to damage over time that can increase your solar panel maintenance cost.

    Key Takeaways

    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *