The falling cost and rising efficiency of photovoltaic solar panels has seen more and more people turn to this type of power for their homes and businesses. While going solar may seem the right thing to do for both your conscience and your wallet, the amount of money you’ll save is all about the return energy yield. With this in mind, just how do you go about getting the most from your panels in order to ensure you get the biggest bang for your buck? Let’s take a closer look…
Too hot for solar? Surely not!
You’d be forgiven for thinking that solar panels work best in areas of endless sun and scorching hot temperatures. In fact extreme temperatures can be problematic for panels. So much so in fact that they can lose as much as 30% of their output on days when the temperature soars. So what can you do?
If you’ve placed your panels directly onto a roof or tiled area that reflects the heat then it could be causing damage to the module. Instead you might want to think about installing a groundsheet with heat conducting properties. As well as protecting the unit from moisture it will ensure protection from extreme weather.
Keep it clean, keep it functioning
Aside from weather conditions, another way that solar panels lose power is when they become dirty. The effects of soiling can vary from location to location, but energy losses of over 10% are commonplace on badly soiled panels. Dust, dirt, loose foliage, and bird droppings can all cause a depletion in power, so it pays to carry out regular maintenance and cleaning. Typically this should be done once every two or three months, but more often in harsh environments. If this is something you can’t do yourself, then there are plenty of companies available who do exactly that. While it might cost you a few dollars, it’s all part of the running costs.
Obviously solar panels need some degree of sunlight in order to function to their full ability. Firstly they should always be placed in an area where the panels will see the most sunlight. Usually mounted on a roof or hill with a clear view. While this sounds pretty straight forward, people can forget that the landscape can change. Trees and bushes can grow causing a permanent sunlight blockage, so ensure that all foliage is kept trimmed back.
If you need any advice about solar panels or would like help designing a solar installation or installing and maintaining them. Give Static Electrics a call. For a free no-obligation quote contact us today on 07 5445 8305.