How to Maintain Solar PV Systems in Australia
Renewable energy resources are gaining popularity in Australia very rapidly – with several domestic and commercial consumers switching to solar photovoltaic (PV) systems to reduce their carbon footprint and save on energy bills. Like any other equipment, solar PV systems require periodic maintenance to keep them functioning efficiently. Here are some aftercare tips for maintaining solar PV systems in Australia.
Why do you need to maintain solar PV systems?
Over time debris and dust build up on solar panel surfaces and eventually compromise their performance. Thus, for efficient solar power, regular servicing is mandatory. Also, fire risks are one of the critical reasons for regular solar panel maintenance. In previous years, incidents of solar panel fire have increased five times. Most of these cases are due to lack of upkeep or faulty panel installations. Therefore, as safety measures, the Department of Fire and Rescue, Australia recommends regular solar panel checkups to avoid such incidents. And, periodic solar panel management ensures efficient and safe solar PV systems for everyone.
How Often Do Solar PV Systems Need Service?
Solar photovoltaic systems require maintenance once a year at least. This maintenance includes a comprehensive cleaning of the panels, checking up connections, monitoring energy output, wiring inspection, and checking the mounting system.
In addition to annual maintenance, it is significant to perform regular visual inspections of the system, such as checking for any physical damage or signs of wear and tear and monitoring the energy production to identify any sudden changes or drops in power output. In case of any issue, immediately consult professional solar service providers to prevent further damage.
Tips for Solar Panels Cleaning
- Clean Solar Panels Periodically: Dust, grime, bird droppings, and other debris can accumulate on solar panels, reducing their performance and efficiency. After extreme wind storms, it is good to go for a panel cleaning service. For superficial cleaning, solar consumers can use a soft cloth, warm water, and mild soap to clean panels. Strictly avoid using abrasive materials that may scratch the surface of the panels. However, it is better to opt for professional experts for cleaning.
- Inspect Inverters Regularly: The inverter is a crucial component of every solar PV system as it converts the direct current (DC) electricity generated by the panels into alternating current (AC) electricity for domestic or business Thus, periodic inverter inspections ensure proper functioning, and it is good to consult professional solar retailers to avoid any inconvenience.
- Monitor Energy Output: Tracking solar PV system energy output ensures a clean and stable power supply in the longer run. If users notice a sudden drop in energy production, it may indicate a problem with solar panels or inverter connections.
- Inspect Wiring and Connections: Proper panel wiring and tight connections of inverters and batteries are the most significant aspect of the efficient performance of solar PV systems. Thus, inspect the wiring to prevent any loose connections or other signs of wear and tear. If wiring or attachments are lax, users should consult professional solar technicians and experts for restoration services.
- Check the Mounting System: Solar panel module racking is essential for the high performance of panels. So, check whether the mounting system is secure and well placed because unstable mounting systems cause panels to veer and ultimately reduce efficiency.
- Opt for Annual Solar Panel Inspections: Annual checkups can help identify and prevent potential problems before they become non-repairable. It is good to go for professional solar panel inspection services. Expert services will include a complete inspection of panels, inverter, wiring, and mounting system.
Don’t DO These!
When it comes to solar PV system maintenance and cleaning, expert technicians always advise solar consumers to go for professional services. Here are a few reasons why you should not do it yourself:
Security: Self-cleaning panels could be dangerous because solar panels are installed on rooftops, and their cleaning requires training, tools, and equipment. However, untrained individuals lack this expertise. So, it is better to opt for professionally trained workers.
Effectiveness: Professional cleaners have the necessary tools and expertise to clean solar panels thoroughly and effectively, ensuring maximum energy output.
Warranty: Cleaning by untrained individuals can cause some solar panel manufacturers to void the warranty. So, professional service is essential to ensure valid panel warranties.
In Australia, maintaining solar panels is essential to ensure long-term performance and maximize energy output. Regular cleaning, inspection, and monitoring of the panels can help to keep them in good condition. Professional cleaning services and regular inspections guarantee the optimal functioning of solar PV systems. Also, it is essential to follow the manufacturer’s guidelines and secure proper installation for the longevity of solar panels in Australia.
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