Why do I need to clean my Solar Panels?

The most efficient solar panels currently made convert only about 20% of the available light energy to electricity. For all the “magic” that occurs in a solar panel, it is simply covered by a window of glass approximately 3 mm. thick. When the glass gets dirty, it reduces the amount of light being converted to electricity.

It’s not just about keeping the windows on your Chevy clean; simply put dirty solar panels cost you money. Power loss from dirt and debris results in fractional daily power loss AND is cumulative. Each day the return is diminished and you lose money. If you have a 5 K.W. system for example and you are losing 20 % of your output due to dirt and debris buildup, you now have the functional equivalent of a 4 K.W. system even though you paid for a 5 K.W.

Therefore the dollars you paid per watt to buy your system really cost you more per watt than you thought.

Another concern is that solar panels need to be properly cleaned. According to engineers at a major manufacturer of solar panels, improperly cleaning a panel can result in dirt accumulating to the side. With buildup, this can create a situation where reverse polarity occurs. This destroys not only the output of this panel, but will drag down the output of other panels in the string.

Also troubling is that allowing dirt to build up without cleaning can create a reverse polarity and a “hotspot” which will kill the solar panel.

A solar panel does not produce electricity when reverse polarity occurs. It drags down other functioning solar panels in that same string, causing further loss.

Frequent cleaning allows your solar panel system to achieve its potential and gives you the electricity that you thought you were buying. Heliotex can assist you with automatic solar panel cleaning systems for systems of any size, or we have a manual cleaning service alternative available.