Solar panel maintenance and cleaning are vital. However, so many of us don’t really know how to do it properly. When it comes to solar panel maintenance and cleaning, there isn’t much you really need to do. Therefore, the cleaning side of things can be neglected. 
 
It can feel like the last thing on your to-do list and many people go years and years without giving their solar panels as much as a hose down. To help you clean your solar panels the right way, we’ve put together a quick how-to guide to solar panel maintenance and cleaning. Take a look for our hints and tips.
 

Check The Guidance

 
We know this sounds very boring and “by the book”, but with so many different kinds of solar solutions, it can be worth checking your manufacturer’s guidelines first. Generally, you can expect most of the guidelines to look the same, but on the off chance you have a unique model or make it’s worth checking the guidelines and following them to keep your panels in tip-top condition.
 

Brush Off Any Loose Debris

 
Solar panels are likely to gather dust and debris as time goes on, so before getting any water involved it’s a good idea to grab a brush and remove any loose dirt. This will allow you to get sparkling-clean solar panels when you hose them down.
 
Most solar panels sit high up and on an angle, which means they’re in a great location for catching all the dirt and muck that the environment has to offer. Get rid of this with a gentle brush.
 

Prepare For The Heat

 
It goes without saying that solar panels get hot! So before you start getting on your hands and knees to scrub the panel, remember that you’ll burn yourself if they haven’t had time to cool down. 
 
You might want to clean your solar panels in the morning or evening hours to avoid peak sunshine, and it’s also sensible to hose them down with cold water before getting too close. Hosing down your panels is also great for removing any excess dirt and might be enough to fully clean the solar panels if they aren’t really that dirty.
 

Fill A Bucket With Soap And Water 

 
It sounds quite amateurish, but that’s really all you need to make sure your solar panels stay clean. You can opt for a normal sponge/cloth or an extendable one so you don’t have to really touch the solar panels themselves. 
 
Whatever you do, make sure you opt for soft material and never metal. One word: scratches! 
 

Why is Solar Panel Maintenance and Cleaning So Important?

 
Generally, solar panel maintenance and cleaning doesn’t need to be undertaken that regularly. However, the more you do it, the more effective your solar panels will be. This is because solar panels rely on the sunlight radiating into solar cells and generating power.
 
The more light that hits those panels, the more energy you’ll receive. So it makes sense that cleaning your solar panels will help increase the amount of energy absorbed. Although most debris will probably wash off naturally in the rain, solar panels rest on an angle that means that they’re likely to pick up dust, bird droppings and leaves. This debris can block the light from being properly absorbed by the panel.
 
The difference will be minimal in the short-term. However, if your solar panels have been left unclean for years, you can notice a real difference in their efficiency once they’ve been cleaned.
 
Are you keen to learn more about how solar panels could save you money? Why not take a look at our article on how solar panels help you save money. You can also get in touch with UMA Solar for more information.