Solar panel maintenance and aftercare: A comprehensive guide.

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Let's delve into the essential aspects of solar panel maintenance and aftercare to help you make the most of your solar investment.

Solar panel maintenance and cleaning.

The short answer is that you shouldn’t need to clean your solar panels. They’re designed to be self-cleaning.

The solar panels have a hydrophobic coating, which prevents water droplets sticking to the surface and instead as water falls off, it takes take dirt and debris with it. You might need to clean your panels if:

  • There's been an excessively dry period with little or no rain.

  • If you live in a particularly dusty or sandy area.

  • If there’s a build-up of dirt such as bird droppings on your panels.

If this is the case, we recommend using a local specialist solar panel cleaning company.

Regular inspections and performance monitoring.

Solar panel maintenance requires regular inspections to identify any potential issues early on. Industry experts and solar professionals highlight the significance of solar panel inspection and performance monitoring for solar panel efficiency.

  • Visual checks: Periodically inspect the solar panels for physical damage, such as cracks, chips, or signs of wear during solar panel inspection.

  • Check connections: Ensure all wiring and connections are secure, and there is no sign of corrosion during solar panel inspection.

  • Performance monitoring: Take advantage of any monitoring tools provided by your solar installer to keep track of your system's performance. Sudden drops in energy production may indicate a problem.

  • Shading and vegetation: Check for shading issues caused by overgrown trees or nearby structures. Trim surrounding vegetation to prevent shading and debris accumulation.

Seasonal considerations.

Different seasons may require adjustments to optimise solar panel efficiency. The solar industry experts highlight these seasonal considerations:

Summer.

  • Temperature management: High temperatures can affect solar panel performance. Ensure proper ventilation around the panels to prevent overheating during the summer.

  • Summer rain: Regular summer rain showers can help clean the panels naturally, but it's still essential to inspect them periodically.

Winter.

  • Snow removal: In regions experiencing heavy snowfall, gently remove snow from the panels using a soft-bristled broom to maintain energy production during the winter for maintenance.

  • Tilt panels: If possible, adjust the tilt of the panels to allow snow to slide off more easily during the winter.

Autumn and spring.

  • Check for debris: During these seasons, leaves and pollen may accumulate on the panels. Regular cleaning and maintenance is necessary to maintain solar panel efficiency during autumn and spring.

Troubleshooting solar panel issues:

Electricity connection check.

Ensure your home's electricity supply is active. If there's a disruption or if your prepayment meter runs out of credit, your solar system will cease power generation.

Trip switch status.

Examine the fuse board for your system's trip switch, designed to automatically disconnect electricity in case of faults. If it's off, it has been tripped.

Isolator switch position.

Isolators, which are on/off switches, allow you to disconnect system parts occasionally for maintenance. Confirm they are in the "on" position.

Inverter issues.

If all else seems fine, the inverter might be the culprit. Should you suspect an inverter malfunction, reach out to your installation provider or an MCS Accredited specialist.

Your solar panel maintenance summary.

Solar panels are inherently low-maintenance, especially when compared to boilers. In the UK, the frequent rainfalls naturally clean the panels. However, for any concerns, E.ON's Solar Care team, with expertise since 2011, is available for guidance. Regular inspections are essential to detect potential issues early.

This encompasses visual checks for damages, ensuring secure connections, and using monitoring tools to observe system performance.

Addressing shading problems caused by overgrown vegetation is also crucial. Seasonal adjustments include ensuring proper ventilation in summer, removing snow in winter, and cleaning debris during autumn and spring to maintain optimal efficiency.

Solar panel maintenance and cleaning FAQs.