Imagine never cleaning your car's windshield, do you think your view would be the same as the day you bought the car? Or imagine washing your car without touching it, using only hose water, and then waiting for it to air dry. The reality is, this is happening to Solar Panels across Las Vegas, Henderson, and Boulder City. In 2020, Las Vegas went 240 days without measurable rain, and in 2021, The total precipitation for the year was 1.86 inches, well below the norm of 4.18 inches. Even if it rained more often, the rain is filled with contaminants, it would only knock off the surface dirt and not the grime build-up that remains on the glass. Accumulation of dust can not only block rays from reaching the cells, but It can also increase heat to the solar panel which will make them less efficient since solar panels work better at cooler temperatures. So, if they are less efficient, that means your net metering is also, and you could eventually have to pay an electric bill.
If you live somewhere with a dry climate like a desert, and have lots of dirt and dust, Cleaning Solar Panels should be done at least every 6 months. It could even be monthly, depending on how severe dust pollution is in your area. Another benefit of cleaning your solar panels is that you can inspect each one for damage or soon-to-be damage like cracked glass, compromised seals, loose wires, and even bird nesting. Another item to check that most people forget about is the roof itself. Solar panels are attached to your roof with bolts, which means there are now holes in your roof. If properly installed they shouldn't leak but, that doesn't mean they don't. high winds can vibrate and stress roof attachments, it is a good idea to check for missing or loose bolts and any signs of water damage around or leakage through the bolts. When it does eventually rain, the dirt and grime can collect in the borders of the frame which could increase the possibilities of leakage currents and a reduction in performance. If any water gets in the panel, it could render it useless. Some warranties have a clause in the contract that they must be cleaned once or twice a year and must provide proof.
In this article, I have pointed out the problem with dirty solar panels and why it is important to clean and inspect them. Now I will discuss the two paths to the solution. One is filled with flaws and peril while the other is as easy as Sunday morning. The first path involves you getting your big shaky ladder and climbing up to the roof while trying to bring up equipment like a hose, towels, and a mop. You nervously reach and clean all around your solar panels trying not to fall off the roof or on the panels themselves. And if you made it and successfully "knocked" the dirt off, you still must deal with the fabulous hard water of the deserts that leave that white film on anything it touches. And when you're all done, you must bring yourself and everything else back down.
Or, you can sit in the comfort of your own home and have a professional do it. While you watch T.V. or just staring off into space, a solar panel cleaning professional will make sure your energy production stays optimal. Not only do they have all the equipment needed, but they have the right equipment. Water from the hose, in fact, water from the city in general is terrible. It is filled with contaminants that leave residue on anything it touches. Most solar panel cleaning professionals like Barron's Solar Wash Company in Henderson NV, use a 3-stage RO/DI filtration system that removes all the minerals and contaminates from the water, making it a dirt-attracting sponge as it passes through the system. The water is then fed through a pole with a non-scratching bristle brush at the end of it. After the washing process, it dries spotless, just like a car wash.
A professional also has the experience of climbing ladders, walking, and working on many different types of roofs with professional equipment. And if you are worried about damage to your solar panels while they are being cleaned or if the person happens to fall off the roof, a reputable solar panel cleaning company will have enough insurance to cover any accident. I hope this article brings some answers to the ones that were trying to figure out why their solar panels are not performing like they used to. And to the ones that are wondering if they should, "try to get up there." If you happen to be in Las Vegas, NV, or the surrounding areas, we at Barron's Solar Wash Company would love to help keep you safe and energy efficient. Barronssolarwashcompany.com