Why You Need to Clean Your Rooftop Solar Panels

May 22, 2015

When was the last time you cleaned your solar panels? If you can’t answer that question, it’s probably been too long.


Why do solar panels need to be cleaned?
A build-up of environmental debris on the surface of solar panels dramatically reduces their energy output. The National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), a Golden, CO-based federal research laboratory for the U.S. Department of Energy, reports losses as high as 25 percent in some areas.

Cleaning ensures peak performance and maximizes energy production. Aside from preventing energy production losses, it’s imperative that cleaning be performed to comply with the warranties provided by many solar panel manufacturers.


What conditions contribute to a build-up on the surface?
According to the NREL, “Dirt accumulation is location- and weather-dependent.”

Where a facility is located has a big impact on the amount and type of debris that builds up on solar panels. For example, accumulation of dust is more prevalent in dessert regions. Proximity to major highways and bodies of saltwater, as well as localized pollution and pollen levels, also increases the accumulation of environmental debris on solar panels.

Climates with infrequent rain, which can wash some debris away, may notice more rapid build-up of surface dirt. Additionally, strong winds can carry and deposit leaves and fine particulates, such as pollen and dust, which prevent solar panels from delivering their rated capacity of energy.


W
ho should I hire to clean my panels?
Anybody can clean your solar panels, but not everyone can do it right and do it safely. Think twice before you hire a window washer. The professional you hire should have defined processes to work safely on your roof. They should:

 

Contact D. C. Taylor Co. today to schedule solar panel cleaning at your facility.