Advancements in solar power technology as well as multiple programs that assist homeowners in purchasing solar panels for their home has lead to a boom within the industry. It also means that there are more homes with solar panels than ever before. With residential solar power so prevalent these days, many are wondering if their panels need to be cleaned and if so, how to clean them. There are a lot of misconceptions, misinformation, and outright bad advice when it comes to cleaning Orange County solar panels but the following tips should help you care for your panels properly and safely.
Not Always Necessary
One of the biggest myths regarding solar panels is that they must be cleaned with great frequency. While this is true for homes in areas with a great deal of wind, dirt, precipitation, or excessive air pollution, the majority of solar panels need a good cleaning only twice and maybe three times a year. Over cleaning solar panels can actually cause damage to the photovoltaic cells within them and reduce their efficiency over time.
Which Cleaning Solution Should I Use?
When the time comes to clean your solar panels there exists a cornucopia of cleaning solutions; some of these great and others disappointingly sub par. It can be difficult to ascertain which ones are both effective and safe for your panels. The most important consideration here is the selection of a solution that won’t scratch panels. The safest route for homeowners whom find themselves in this scenario is to use a simple dish soap and water solution. This is because all dish soaps are made to be gentle on both glass and plastic and are therefore safe for use on solar panels.
As far as tools are concerned, there are a number that are safe for use on solar panels. The first and perhaps the most common is a soft sponge. Sponges of this variety are not abrasive and as such will not scratch solar panels. Another great tool is a soft cloth/rag. These can be found at any retail store, are cheap, and usually come in bulk. These cloths are excellent for scrubbing while soaped, wiping, and drying. In addition to sponges and cloths you’ll want to have a good squeegee at your side when you undertake a job of this nature. Squeegees remove excess water and prevent spotting and streaking. Never use scrub brushes on your solar panels lest you damage them and reduce their efficiency.
A great deal of homeowners mull over the idea of hiring a professional solar panel cleaner but don’t follow through for a number of reasons. The first and most prominent among these reasons is that homeowners believe professional cleaning services far too expensive. Nothing could be further from the truth however as most pros charge by square footage or the overall size of your panels. Even the largest panels aren’t that big and so these services are relatively affordable.
Another reason homeowners never pull the trigger on hiring a professional to clean their solar panels is that they believe they can produce the same results the pros do. Professionals utilize industrial grade tools and solutions too. Moreover they know exactly which solutions are safe for your panels so the risk of damage falls to zero. Many in this camp find themselves frustrated and unsatisfied with the results of their hard work.
The third most common reason homeowners forgo the services of a professional…time. They erroneously believe that the time it takes to do the work doesn’t warrant hiring a professional. In reality, the do-it-yourselfer finds that it takes him/her far longer to complete a solar panel cleaning than they originally thought. This is because homeowners lack the experience and tools needed to finish quickly. Professionals on the other hand can clean a home’s worth of solar panels very quickly, sometimes in less than an hour.
When In Doubt
You may be insistent on cleaning your solar panels yourself and/or you just may not have room in your budget for a professional. Either way professional Orange County solar panel cleaners can still be of help. If at some point in your cleaning you find yourself frustrated, stumped, overwhelmed, or lost a professional is only a phone call or an email away. The vast majority of these persons/firms will be happy to give you pointers and advice that will help make the job go smoother and help you get better results.