Tricks and Tips for Solar Panel Maintenance & Cleaning

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Last Updated on March 20, 2024 by admin

Solar Panel Maintenance Key to the Best Solar System Performance

Solar panels produce power for decades, with some maintenance they’ll continue to operate at peak performance increasing the return on your solar investment. With a little care solar panels will produce electricity for you—for decades! Here’s all you need to know about solar panel maintenance and maintenance packages to ensure that your panels will produce as much power as possible for as long as possible.

Solar Panel maintainance

Today we will discuss the benefits of solar panel maintenance and the best practices to follow. Whether you are planning on installing solar or have already installed solar panels, this will provide you with useful information about how to keep your solar system shining.

What is solar maintenance?

Solar maintenance ensures a solar array is performing at its peak capabilities by maintaining the solar panels and other parts of a solar array. A system owner can do some maintenance or may have a solar services company like SolarSME provide professional maintenance services that ensure your solar panels work well. The services maximize power output, address any shortcomings of the system and help make sure the panels, inverter and other parts of the system last. Here is a breakdown of what solar panel maintenance entails:

A. Cleaning and inspection:

Cleaning solar panels is the first step to help improve your system’s performance. They should be free of any dust, sand or debris (like bird poop, for instance), which can usually be washed or rinsed off easily. Keeping the panels clean allows the photovoltaic cells to convert as much light as possible into electricity. After cleansing, a solar technician should inspect each panel for any signs of physical damage or malfunction.

B. Performance optimization:

Optimizing the performance of solar panels primarily involves ensuring that all system components are functioning correctly. This includes a thorough inspection of electrical connections, wiring, and the structural integrity of the racking. Additionally, it requires finding and fixing problems with your panels including cracks, loose connections, or malfunctions. It also requires looking at related system parts, like inverters, charge controllers and energy storage systems to make sure they’re operating properly. It helps identify problems before they become bigger problems that reduce your solar system’s performance.

Why is solar panel maintenance important?

It improves solar panel performance and extends its lifespan. Maintaining your solar panels will help ensure the warranties remain valid.

Why is solar panel maintainance important

How often should I maintain my solar panels?

Performing regular maintenance on your solar panels is crucial for their optimal performance. For the best performance, you should check your panels four times a year to ensure they are functioning efficiently. By doing so, you can identify any potential issues early on and take prompt action to resolve them. Additionally, it is important to inspect the wires and connections of your solar panels to ensure they are in proper working condition.

How do I know when my solar panels need maintenance?

The easiest way to determine when your solar panels need maintenance is to check their power output against their expected output and previous years’ outputs for each month. You can usually check the performance of your solar panels through your inverter, a web portal your solar installer connected to your system or an app that connects to your system. These tools help show you how much electricity your panels generate and how much you use. You can then compare these numbers to the expected output of your panels, based on system location, orientation, and anticipated weather.

If energy production is significantly below the previous year’s output for the same period or even the previous month’s output, it’s a good sign they might need maintenance. However, weather impacts your solar system’s output. If a lot of significant storms or cloudy days happened in a recent period it will reduce your system’s output.

A large drop in manufacturing beyond those conditions may show that your system isn’t working. A few causes of solar system production drops include:

  • Cracked or broken glass on solar panels

  • Unfastened or exposed wires

  • Defective inverters or meters

  • Shading or obstruction from trees, homes, or particles covering your panels.

Regular solar panel maintenance helps address those issues before they can cause more damage. This includes cleaning, inspecting, and repairing or replacing damaged panels. You can attempt this on your own, or you can hire a professional solar provider to do the maintenance, like SolarSME.

What DIY tips do I need to know to maintain my solar panels?

  • Use lukewarm water and a bit of mild detergent, like dish soap, to clean your panels with a soft brush. Then rinse them off.

  • Don’t use abrasive materials or industrial cleaners that could harm the panels.

  • Check panels and wires for any signs of harm, or malfunction. If you find any damage, contact a solar expert to assess and fix the damage.

  • If you can’t wait for the snow to melt for your solar array to work, use a gentle brush or rubber windshield scraper to remove it.

  • Check your solar system’s performance and energy output with a solar performance tool or app. This helps you understand how well your system is working and how much electricity it is producing.

  • Screen your system’s performance and energy output. If you notice a big or sudden drop in production, check your panels for dust, particles, or shading. It’s the most likely culprit and easiest to fix.

  • Do not use metal equipment on the transparent surface of solar panels like scrapers, brushes, tools or hot water, all of which could crack or scratch the panels.

What happens if I neglect my solar panels?

Neglecting solar system maintenance can reduce production, increase the chance of system malfunctions and shorten its lifespan. It could also void warranties or production guarantees from the producer or installer.

How much does professional solar panel maintenance cost?

Solar panel maintenance costs vary depending on your system’s location, size, type of installation, and its overall condition. According to some online sources, the average annual cost of solar panel maintenance ranges between $450 and $780, or approximately $20 per panel per year. These services include cleaning, inspection, some repairs (others may cost you more), monitoring, and any system updates or upgrades. These services help the solar system work well and last long. Services offered may vary between different solar service providers.

Maintenance Cost

Are solar panel maintenance services worth the investment?

Yes, solar panel maintenance services are worth the investment. They help you avoid major issues, extend the lifespan of your system, and maximize your energy savings and return on investment.

How do I choose a reliable solar maintenance provider?

Here are a few tips to help you find a dedicated professional solar services company that will deliver you top-quality solar services:

Check their credentials: Look for licenses and certifications on the solar company’s site. Check their site to learn more about their coverage packages. Also check their track record, popularity, and customer satisfaction via reviews.

Ask for references and testimonials: Look for other customers who used the solar company’s services and see how happy they were. Ask the solar services provider if they can put you in touch with some of their previous or current customers to ask them about their experience.

Compare the price and benefits: Ask different carriers for a free quote or estimate on solar maintenance services. Evaluate each based on the cost, services offered, and any performance guarantees they offer.

choose a reliable solar provider

Pick a local and professional provider: After doing the research, choose a company that meets your needs and is based in your area. They’ll know the local rules, weather, and will cater to your system’s needs. They should be able to give you fast and reliable service.


Solar panel maintenance is vital. It keeps your system running well and makes its lifespan longer. Cleaning, inspection, and preventive measures are key components of solar panel services. Neglecting maintenance can result in decreased power production and can void warranties.

Ready to switch to solar and enjoy the benefits of clean, reliable, and affordable energy? SolarSME is here to help you with every step of the process, from design and installation to maintenance and financing.

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