How to Keep Clean Snow on Solar Panels in Winter
Even though solar panels are wonderful energy-producing machines, they can’t withstand a heavy coating of snow and ice for too long. The elements will inevitably take their toll on your system and reduce its effectiveness the longer that you leave it exposed to the elements.
So, how can you clean snow on solar panels in winter so that they remain as effective as possible? Unless you have the budget and resources to have an off-grid solar setup that won’t be affected by snowfall and frost, you are unlikely to be able to remove all ice and snow from your solar panels at any point during the year.
However, there are some steps that you can take in order to minimize ice formation and reduce the effects of snow as much as possible. Here is everything you need to know about keeping your solar panels clean in the winter:
Rotate Panels to Avoid Snow on Solar Panels
It might sound ridiculous, but rotating your solar panels through the winter months can have a significant impact on their lifespan and performance. When ice and snow on solar panels have built up on, it can create considerable extra weight. As a result, the panels might break or detach themselves from the roof, risking damage and even injury to those below the panels. You can reduce the chance of this happening by ensuring your panels don’t become too heavy.
The easiest way to do this is to rotate the panels every couple of days. Even if you don’t manage to remove all of the ice and snow on solar panels, rotating them will significantly reduce the risk of damage. And, if you are lucky enough to have an electric roof with a built-in motor, rotating your solar panels can be as simple as tapping a button.
Use Deicing Spray
You’ll notice that we’ve already mentioned the importance of keeping snow and ice from building up on your panels. Now, while this is important to keep in mind during the colder months, it is important to remember that you can’t leave your panels exposed to the elements all year round. After all, if it is summertime, your panels are unlikely to have any ice or snow covering them.
To combat this problem, you might want to invest in a deicing spray. These sprays can be applied to your panels in between winter months to prevent ice from forming. They can also help to prevent snow on solar panels from sticking to the roof of your house, which can be a major headache during the winter months. Deicing sprays are generally quite inexpensive, making them a cost-effective way to keep your solar panels clean in the winter.
Break the Ice With Water
While deicing sprays can help to prevent ice or snow on solar panels, they can’t remove the ice that has already been created. And, although you can use water to melt away the ice once it is there, it is important to remember that you can’t keep using this water or else you are at risk of rusting your panels.
If you’re in a particularly cold climate, it is a good idea to keep a water hose nearby. This way, you can break away any ice that has built up on your panels and then direct the water away from your solar panels to prevent rusting.
Utilize Brushing and Scrubbing
If you’ve already removed any existing ice from your panels, you can minimize the risk of new ice forming by regularly brushing and scrubbing your solar panels. This can be done as often as you like, but it may be beneficial to do it on a bi-weekly basis. Brushing and scrubbing your panels can help to prevent snow on solar panels from causing damage to your solar panels.
It can also prevent your panels from becoming too heavy and may even be able to prevent your panels from becoming too slippery. This way, your panels will remain in place throughout the winter months. If you want to be extra careful, you can use a brush with synthetic bristles, as natural fibers can easily break away in cold weather and could end up damaging your panels.
Solar Panel Snow Removal
During the winter months, you will find that it is extremely difficult to remove snow on solar panels without risking damage. This is because snow is heavy, slippery, and can be difficult to grip. As a result, it is best to wait for snow to melt before removing it from your solar panels.
If you have limited room for solar panels, you may want to consider removing snow from only a few panels. This way, you can ensure that other panels are exposed to the sun and are able to generate electricity. As long as you are careful, you should be able to remove the snow on solar panels without damaging them.
Solar Panel Snow Rake
If you want to remove snow on solar panels without risking damage, you can do so with the help of a solar panel snow rake. These rakes are specially designed to remove snow from solar panels without causing any unnecessary damage. They can be used on almost any type of roof, too. Solar panel snow rakes are particularly beneficial for multi-roof households.
If you know that your neighbors also have solar panels, you can use the solar panel snow rake to remove the snow from your own panels and the ones on your neighbors’ roofs. This way, you can reduce the amount of electricity that you use and help to reduce your carbon footprint.
Solar Panel Snow Guards
Solar panel snow guards are a great solution for those who want to keep their solar panels clean in the winter without having to manually remove snow from them.
Installing solar panels snow guards will save your money, energy and your headache too. Snow guards installation is simply an extra step.Its a best option for those area where snow falls and accumulates to several inches.
Keeping your solar panels clean is an essential part of owning a solar energy system. If you don’t clear ice and snow on solar panels regularly, they can become extremely heavy and could even fall off the roof. This will reduce their effectiveness and could even cause damage to your roof.
Luckily, there are plenty of ways that you can keep your solar panels clean in the winter. From rotating your panels to using special cleaning sprays, there are plenty of easy and inexpensive ways that you can keep your panels in good condition.