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How to Protect Your Solar Panels from Weather

By: Eric Huesca, SEO Content Writer

February 16, 2023

Solar panels are an excellent investment for homes and businesses, providing clean and renewable energy. However, exposure to the elements can cause damage over time, reducing their efficiency and lifespan.

To protect your solar panels from harsh climates, it is vital to ensure that they are securely installed, regularly cleaned, and protected from extreme weather conditions such as hail, strong winds, and heavy snowfall.


Snowfall covering the solar panel field.

Additionally, it may be wise to consider photovoltaic protection strategies for your solar panels. You can also resort to other measures, like investing in a protective covering, such as a paneled canopy, to provide additional shelter and prevent damage from falling debris.

By taking simple steps such as these, you can keep your solar panels in top condition, maximizing their efficiency and ensuring longevity.

Durable Mounting System

Mitigating weather damage to solar panels requires taking essential steps to protect your solar panels from weather-related factors that can hamper the system’s performance and cause damage to it. Typically, solar panels can withstand high winds quite well. However, the exact speed of wind depends on the type of panel installed. 

A durable and reliable mounting system is essential to protecting your solar panels from weather-related damage in the long run. A well-designed mounting system will keep your panels securely in place, even in high winds or heavy rain. 

Types of Mounting Systems

When it comes to solar panel system installation, homeowners can choose from two types of solar mounting: roof mount and ground mount solar systems. 

●     Roof-mounted systems

Roof-mounted systems are the most common type of solar panel mounting system. A roof-mounted solar system is an effective way to harness the sun’s power through solar panels installed on your home’s garage, roof, or other buildings. 

However, it is essential to make sure that your roof mounting system is strong enough to withstand heavy winds and rain.

●     Ground-mounted systems

Ground-mounted systems are another option for solar panel mounting. They are typically more robust than roof-mounted systems.

If you opt for ground-mounted solar panel installation, you can attach the solar panels with either a standard mount or a pole-mounted system. Pole-mounted systems are a good option if you have a large open area and want to maximize your exposure to sunlight.

However, ground-mounted systems can be more expensive to install and are generally more susceptible to damage due to their exposure to natural elements. 

Clean and Maintain

Keeping your solar panels clean and well-maintained is a great way to protect them from weather-related damage. Regular maintenance and cleaning of the panels can help prevent weather-related damage by removing debris and ensuring that the panels are free of any damage or issues.

By monitoring the panels regularly, you can identify any issues or potential damage early on and take corrective measures before the damage becomes more significant.

Whether you have a residential or commercial solar panel system, this guide will help keep your panels in top condition for optimal performance. Follow these tips to safely and securely clean and maintain your solar panels and ensure maximum energy output:

  1. Safety first: Before cleaning your solar panels, make sure to follow safety precautions such as using protective gear, avoiding standing on the panels, and disconnecting power to the panels.
  2. Tools and materials: Gather a bucket of water, a soft cloth or sponge, a gentle soap solution, and a ladder or a telescopic pole with a soft brush attachment.
  3. Remove debris: Use a soft brush to remove debris like leaves and twigs from the surface of the panels.
  4. Clean the panels: Mix a gentle soap solution with water and use a soft cloth or sponge to clean the surface of the panels. Avoid using abrasive materials or chemicals.
  5. Rinse the panels: Use a bucket of clean water to rinse the panels and remove any soap residue.
  6. Check for damage: Inspect the panels for any damage, cracks, or other issues and report them to a professional for repair.
  7. Prevent further damage: A protective cover, such as a UV-resistant film or a clear coating, can preventsolar panel weather deterioration. This can help protect your solar panels from environmental factors such as extreme temperatures and rainfall.
  8. Schedule regular cleaning and maintenance: Regular cleaning and maintenance of your solar panels will ensure they continue to perform optimally and extend their lifespan. Schedule a cleaning and maintenance appointment with a professional once a year.

Protective Coating

Solar power is the fastest-growing source of new energy in the world, and this increase is predicted to continue. This push for solar energy is primarily fueled by technological advancements, falling costs, and a movement toward eco-friendly energy sources.

Solar panels require a lot of investment and produce a lot of energy, so it’s crucial to ensure they operate well and require the least maintenance.  Amidst all this, if you choose to invest in solar panels, then solar panel coating can play a vital role in protecting your solar panels from the weather.

Protective coatings effectively weatherproof your solar panels and protect them from weather-related factors that can cause damage and hamper their performance. In addition, a protective coating for your solar panels can also boost their efficiency and minimize the need for maintenance.

Types of Protective Coating

There are various types of coatings available, each with its own benefits. Here are the different types of protective coatings available that can aid you in discovering the ideal solution for your solar panel system, making a well-informed decision, and ensuring your panels keep functioning at their optimum level.

1.    Anti-reflective 

An anti-reflective layer solar panel coating can be an excellent option for improving energy efficiency. These solar panel coatings increase the quantity of light that passes through the panel’s surface, thus boosting efficiency. 

2.    Hydrophobic

A hydrophobic solar panel coating is especially beneficial in wet regions as it enables water to flow more easily from the surface of the panels, naturally minimizing the adverse effects of extreme weather.

Due to the hydrophobic coating’s inherent ability to keep itself clean, little maintenance is necessary to maintain its effectiveness.

3.    Self-cleaning 

The most significant advantage of self-cleaning coatings is preventing damage from bird droppings, falling debris, and other pollutants from sticking to them. All it takes is some rain to wash the grime and dirt away.

This ultimately minimizes the need for regular cleaning and maintenance. It also renders mold formation and makes the coating resistant to dust. 

Suffice to say, you must ensure the protective coating you choose for your solar panels is strong and resistant to extreme weather conditions. 

The protective coating can also help prevent weather-related deterioration of the panels, such as cracking, fading, and discoloration. As a result, it can significantly impact the efficiency and longevity of the solar system and helps in maximizing Solar Panel Longevity through Weatherproofing.

Proper Water Drainage

Proper water drainage is essential for preventing water damage and ensuring the optimal performance of your solar system. The type of roof you have plays a significant role.

When it comes to proper water drainage, it is equally important to understand and differentiate between the different types of roofs, so you can opt for the most suitable drainage system that will keep your panels functioning safely and efficiently.

Here are the 3 common types of roofs: flat, gable, and hip.

  1. Flat Roof:A flat roof has a shallow pitch and is practically horizontally level. Unfortunately, a slight incline is crucial to help with water drainage off the roof, which is why perfectly flat roofs are particularly undesirable as far as water drainage is concerned. 
  2. Gable Roof:A gable roof features two slanting sides that meet at the top to develop a ridge. The slopes form triangular extensions on both ends, known as gables. The sloping design of a gable roof provides a clear path for water to drain off the roof.
  3. Hip Roof:A hip roof has four triangular sides, with two slightly longer sides. Together, they meet at the ridge of the roof. The slope on a hip roof allows for excellent water drainage. It reduces the risk of water accumulation on the roof.

So, a roof with a slope is essential to ensure proper water drainage. While each type of roof has unique features, a gable roof or hip roof would be the best options for proper water drainage. 

Besides this, here are some additional tips to effectively manage water buildup. 

  1. Maintain proper slope: Ensure the panels are installed with a slight slope, allowing water to run off easily. This can also help prevent water from pooling around the panels.
  2. Install proper drainage channels: Install drainage channels around the base of the panels to prevent water from pooling around the panels. This can help prevent water damage to the panels and the underlying electrical components.
  3. Clean gutters and downspouts: Regularly clean your gutters and downspouts to prevent clogs and ensure proper water drainage.
  4. Regular inspection: Regularly inspect your panels and the surrounding area for any water damage or pooling signs. If you notice any issues, it’s best to take corrective action before it gets too late. 

Solar Panel Warmer

If you reside in an area that experiences cold weather, a solar panel warmer can effectively protect your panels from damage.

Solar panel warmers use a heating element to keep the panels warm, even when the outside temperature is below freezing. It can considerably help improve energy efficiency in low temperatures, enhancing solar panel resilience to weather.

Advantages of Solar Panel Warmers

The advantages of using a solar panel warmer include:

●     Increased efficiency

A solar panel warmer can help to prevent damage caused by ice and snow by preventing the panels from becoming too cold. The efficiency of your panels can also be increased by reducing the amount of moisture that accumulates on the panels. Ultimately, this helps provide maximum output, leading to higher energy production.

●     Improved performance in cold weather

Solar panels are often less efficient in cold weather, but a solar panel warmer can help mitigate this issue and ensure that the panels continue to perform at optimal levels, even in freezing temperatures.

●     Reduced snow and ice buildup

Snow and ice buildup can impact the performance of solar panels, but a solar panel warmer can help melt the snow and ice, reducing the impact of this issue.

●     Prolonged lifespan

A solar panel warmer can help extend the panels’ lifespan, providing a long-term benefit to the solar system.

●     Cost-effective solution

A solar panel warmer can be a cost-effective solution for improving the performance and efficiency of solar panels in cold weather, especially when compared to the cost of replacing damaged or inefficient panels.

Wrapping Up

Protecting your solar panels from weather-related damage is essential to ensuring that they continue to function optimally and provide you with clean, sustainable, renewable energy.

By installing a durable mounting system, cleaning and maintaining your panels, applying a protective coating, ensuring proper water drainage, and using a solar panel warmer if necessary, you can help keep your panels in good condition and protect them from damage.

If you are thinking of investing in solar panels, let Solgen Powers be the one to best match your needs and help you transition smoothly to clean and sustainable energy. 

Contact us today or Click here to learn if you qualify for the $0 Down Solar Program at Solgen Powers and sign up in just minutes. 

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