Winter Maintenance Tips for Solar Panels

Transform Energy

The debate is over. Solar energy is cheaper compared to the coal that has powered our businesses.

That said, solar requires a bit more love and attention. Solar panels accumulate dust and grime over the course of years that can halve their efficiency. Left without proper maintenance, a solar system will underperform - and eventually require costly repairs.

Solar panel maintenance won't just make your system last longer, it will ensure you're getting the most out of it. So in this guide, we look at tips for solar maintenance plans in the winter months.

Remove All Snow and Ice

Snow is a bunch of packed-together ice crystals, so one might assume that light can pass through them. It can't. Snow and ice both effectively block off your photovoltaic cells, bringing their solar energy production to near zero.

Remove any and all snow or ice buildup, preferably right after a fresh fall when it's loose. Do so with great care, employing a car scraper or long-handled broom. You'll have to be very gentle on the delicate glass covering since solar panels are prone to degradation by mechanical stress.

Ideally, hire a company to handle solar winter maintenance such as removing snow or ice. When things are slippery and cold, accidents can happen. Play it safe and let professionals do the work.

Adjust the Panels

During the winter months, the sun hits your side of the globe at a lower angle. Earth's seasons are the result of the globe's tilt on its journey around the sun. Less sunlight means less solar panel performance and energy.

Days are shorter, and direct sunlight is less frequent. It may be time to adjust the panels to the new angle of the sun for more optimal production. Setting it to about 15° - or lower than it already is - should do the trick.

Admittedly, this is a job for an expert since the best you can do is guess. Hire solar panel maintenance to make these adjustments.

Insulate Batteries

If you have a battery backup system, it's important to insulate the cells during the colder months. Batteries are like Goldilocks: they don't like when things are too hot or too cold.

Cold slows the chemical process of batteries, causing them to discharge faster and shortening their lifespan. In freezing temperatures, condensation may begin to form inside the battery, causing corrosion. A winter without insulation could hamstring your costly battery system.

Again, this is a job that's best for an expert. They can find the proper insulation that your batteries need.

It may also be best to relocate them to keep them at operating temperatures. In the meantime, your solar maintenance company can also tackle any electrical inspections that need doing.

Get Commercial Maintenance Plans With Transform Energy

Commercial maintenance plans for your solar system are vital when the winter months roll into town. Solar panel issues arise when snow and ice cover them, or when their angle is incorrect. Additional steps such as insulating the batteries can keep the system in good functioning order for longer.

Transform Energy can build you a solar system from scratch, and then maintain it throughout its lifespan. Use our form here and tell us what services you need.

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