Solar panels are an excellent investment for Kamloops residents, offering a sustainable and cost-effective source of energy. While these panels are designed to be durable and long-lasting, regular maintenance can ensure they operate at peak efficiency. If you've had your solar panels professionally installed, you're already on the right track. However, to keep them in top shape without the risk of climbing onto the roof, consider the following maintenance tips:
Note that some of these tips might not be possible if you can't reach roof-mounted solar panels with a hose or soft brush. In that case, it's recommended that you hire a professional to clean or clear your panels as needed.
Start by keeping an eye on your solar system's performance. Most modern solar installations come with monitoring systems that allow you to track energy production in real-time. If you notice any significant drops in energy output, it might be an indication that there's an issue with one or more panels.
Ensure that the area around your solar panels, especially the ground, is free from debris, plants, or any objects that might cast a shadow. Shadows can significantly reduce the efficiency of your solar panels. Trim any trees or shrubs that grow tall enough to cast shadows on the panels.
In Kamloops, dust and pollen can accumulate on the surface of solar panels, reducing their efficiency. Every few months, on a cool and overcast day, use a garden hose to gently rinse off the panels. This will remove the majority of the surface dirt and debris. Remember, it's essential to avoid using high-pressure water as it can damage the panels.
For stubborn spots or bird droppings, use a long-handled soft brush or squeegee with a soap-free cleaner. This will allow you to clean the panels from the ground without scratching them.
Kamloops can experience snowfall in the winter months. While solar panels are designed to shed snow, sometimes a bit can accumulate, especially after a heavy snowfall. If you notice snow on your panels, you can use a roof rake with a soft rubber squeegee to gently remove it from the ground.
The inverter is the device that converts the direct current (DC) produced by your solar panels into alternating current (AC) for home use. Ensure the inverter's green light is on, indicating it's working correctly. If it's not, you might need a professional to check it out.
Solar panels perform best when they're cool. Ensure there's no debris or vegetation blocking the underside of the panels, allowing for proper airflow and cooling.
Birds, squirrels, or other small animals might find the space beneath solar panels a cozy spot to nest. Regularly inspect the area (from the ground, of course) to ensure no animals have taken up residence. If you notice consistent animal activity, consider installing critter guards.
Even if you're diligent about maintenance, it's a good idea to have your system inspected by professionals every few years. They can identify and address issues that might not be visible from the ground and ensure all components are functioning correctly.
Most solar panels come with a 20-25 year warranty, while inverters and other components might have shorter warranties. Familiarize yourself with these warranties and the procedures for making a claim. This way, if an issue arises, you'll be prepared.
Solar panels are a fantastic way for Kamloops residents to harness the power of the sun and reduce their energy bills. By following these maintenance tips, you can ensure your solar system remains efficient and serves you well for years to come. Remember, safety first - there's no need to climb onto the roof. With a bit of proactive care from the ground and occasional professional check-ups, your solar investment will continue to shine brightly.
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September 26th 2023