Help Your DIY Solar Panel System Have a Long, Productive Life Posted on 18 May 10:04
Once your DIY solar panel system is installed, you can take a few simple steps to make sure that it works at maximum efficiency for its expected life span.
And with the right care, you could prolong your photovoltaic system’s life, potentially getting it to function for years beyond manufacturer expectations.
Keep Your DIY Solar Panel System Clean and Clear
Just like anything that stays outside all the time, a DIY solar energy system is continually exposed to the elements. This means that grime and debris can build up, particularly when there is little rainfall to clear it away.
Your solar panels’ performance can be affected by bird droppings, fallen leaves, dirt or anything else that sticks to them. You can use a garden hose to spray your panels from the ground on occasion. However, we don’t typically recommend that you do this, nor is it necessary if you keep the area above the roof clear.
Big, bushy trees may add beauty to your yard, but their growth can affect your system’s energy output. Trees drop leaves and branches, and encourage birds to perch above your PV panels. And you know what happens next.
Periodically trim back any trees or vegetation so that it doesn’t overhang your solar panels.
This is important not just to minimize debris, but also to prevent shading. If shade covers a panel, it can stop producing energy. And if you have a string inverter, the entire array can be affected.
Inspect and Monitor Your DIY Solar Energy System
Can you safely access your system to perform a visual inspection of the modules and components?
If so, you can periodically examine your solar array for damage or deterioration. Otherwise, you can perform a visual inspection from the ground using binoculars. Check the photovoltaic panels for cracks, discoloration or burn marks. Also take a look at the wiring and cables, looking for loose connections.
If you find any defects, we recommend that you contact a local, experienced professional for repairs.
As an added measure — or if you cannot examine the DIY solar energy system — you can install a monitoring system.
This involves wiring in a small device, so you may need to hire a professional for installation. A monitoring system helps you keep an eye on the photovoltaic panels and inverter, and tracks your energy output and usage. Some models will notify you if an issue is detected, and most are accessible via the internet or a mobile app.
Schedule a Professional DIY Solar Panel System Inspection
One of the best ways to ensure a long life for your photovoltaic system is to schedule an annual professional inspection.
A solar expert can thoroughly examine every component to identify potential issues and fix them before they grow into larger problems. A qualified technician can make sure that your system is running well and that its energy output is maximized.
The cost for an annual inspection is minimal, and since it will keep your DIY solar panel system running at maximum capacity all year long, you’re likely to recover the cost in energy savings alone!
Solar GOODs provides a full range of services for do-it-yourselfers and handy homeowners who want to take advantage of the savings and energy independence that photovoltaic systems can provide.
Visit our online superstore today to learn more about ordering, installing and maintaining your own DIY solar panel system.