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The Best Ways to Clean Your Solar Panel

The Best Ways to Clean Your Solar Panel

Solar panels are a great way to save money on your electric bill, but you might not be getting the most out of them if they're not clean. So, keep your panels in good condition and avoid dirt buildup with these tips for cleaning them.

Solar panels are a great way to save money on your electric bill. But if you don't keep them clean, they can be less efficient and produce more electricity than you need. So how do you know when it's time to clean your solar panel? Some signs indicate dirt buildup is affecting the performance of your system:

  • A voltage reading higher than what's expected from a fully charged battery.
  • An increase in power consumption over time
  • The appearance of algae or moss on the surface of the panel and ground below it (indicating either high humidity or excessive moisture)
  • A decrease in output as well as changes to coloration (indicative of corrosion)

 

Why Clean Your Solar Panels?

Dirty solar panels can reduce the amount of electricity they produce, which means you'll have to pay more for your energy. Plus, a clean solar panel is easier to manage! Follow these simple steps to keep your discussions in excellent condition.

 

Best Ways to Clean Your Solar Panels

  •  Always use soft cloths when cleaning the surface of the solar panel. Any abrasive pad can damage the surface of your solar panel.
  • To remove stubborn dirt buildup from your solar panels, spray a diluted soap solution or isopropyl rubbing alcohol over the boards and wipe with a soft cloth. Do not use glass cleaner on your solar panels! Glass cleaners are made for glass surfaces and will leave water streaks on your solar panels.
  • To dry the panels after cleaning, wipe only in one direction with a clean cloth to avoid streaking. Avoid using squeegees or paper towels as they can also leave streaks on your solar panel surface.
  • Dirt and debris from outside can get stuck in the joints of your solar panels, so it's essential to clean them out regularly. For quick, easy cleaning, use compressed air to blow out dirt and debris from the joints.

 

How to Clean the Panels

Windex

Mix one part water and one part Windex in a spray bottle and use this mixture to clean your solar panels (and windows). It's best to do this on a cloudy day as the mix will be less effective if used when it's sunny out. This cleaning solution is best for dirt buildup since you can use just a spray of it to get the dirt off, unlike other cleaning solutions, which you'll need a cloth for.

 

Vinegar

If you're looking for something more natural and eco-friendlier, try vinegar instead. Mix one part white vinegar with two parts water in a spray bottle, then use it on your solar panels like you would with the Windex above. If you want to use vinegar by itself rather than a solution, make sure it's white vinegar and not apple cider vinegar.

 

Baking Soda

Mix a half cup of baking soda into your water for cleaning solar panels, then use this mixture to clean them. The baking soda will act abrasive, and you can use a soft cloth to wipe away the dirt. Be sure to rinse your panels off after this.

 

Water with Mild Soap

If your solar panels are just dirty rather than full of grime, then mix two tablespoons of mild liquid soap into one gallon of water and use that for cleaning them. It would help if you used a soft cloth with this mixture.

 

Commercial Chemical Cleaners

There are many commercial solar panel cleaner chemicals you can buy, but it's best to make sure they're practical and safe for the environment before doing so. Be sure to read the labels on any commercial products you use and find an environmentally friendly one if possible.

 

Filtered Water

The best cleaning solution of all is free: filtered water. If your solar panels are just dirty and not muddy or grimy, you can spray them with filtered water to clean them off. This works well even if it's sunny out since the water will evaporate quickly.

 

Solar Panel Wipes

Another cleaning method that some people use is solar panel wipes. These are soft cloths you can wipe your panels down with, but they're not as effective on their own as the methods above unless your panels are just dirty and not covered in grime.

 

Hose Off the Dirt

If you have a hose available to you, that can also be an excellent way to clean your solar panels. Again, this method won't work well if the panels are covered in grime or mud, but it's effective for cleaning off dirt and getting the panels back to their original color.

 

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