Solar Farm Maintenance and Cleaning

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Solar panels work by allowing light into the solar cells. The more light that hits a panel, the more power it will generate. Due to the upwards angle of solar panels, they are more prone to bird droppings and a build-up of general dust and dirt that does not wash off with just rain. This reduces the amount of light hitting the panel and reduces its output.

As the projected energy figures claimed by solar panel manufacturers and installers are based on the optimum performance of clean solar panels, this build-up of dirt can adversely affect the panel’s ability to meet those projections. So it is important to clean solar panels in order to protect and maintain your investment. While solar panel cleaning in the UK is relatively new, in other parts of the world solar panel cleaning has been around for a long time. Early adopters of the technology soon realised that if their solar panels were not cleaned regularly, they would not run at their optimum performance.

DSH Cables offers a comprehensive solar panel cleaning service that will get rid of any dust, dirt and grime that has accumulated on your solar panels. Our thorough cleaning services will improve the efficiency of your solar farm, and help you get the most out of your solar energy.

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Can Clean Solar Panels Improve Efficiency?

We have for years now, been monitoring the increases in efficiency that solar panel cleaning can bring. We frequently see sizeable increases in solar efficiency on agricultural sites, of up to 30%. O&M departments of companies that we have cleaned solar panels for having also reported similar increases in efficiency from solar panel cleaning.
On industrial and commercial sites, we have seen increases of up to 55% and on residential arrays of up to 23%. Our own findings are confirmed by the World Academy of Science, Engineering & Technology, who say "a drop in the efficiency of a solar PV panel is not desired. In practice, dust must be removed from the surface of solar PV panels in order to ensure highest performance."

Solar Energy Power Association notes that dirty solar panels can lose 20% of their energy output. The National Renewable Energy Laboratory puts that figure even higher, at 25%. Recent university research has shown that a dirty solar panel can lose 50% of its efficiency compared to a clean solar panel.

Why Rainwater Will Not Clean Your Solar Panels

A good way to illustrate why rainwater will not clean solar panels is by looking at your car windscreen. If you didn't clean your windscreen for 6 months, how much visibility would you lose? If left, the grime on your windscreen would accumulate and eventually 'green' over. Even if the car is rained on, the rain contains airborne dust particles that settle and attach to the surface after the rainwater evaporates. When we use our windscreen wipers, we clean the centre of the screen, but where the wipers do not reach, there is a film of dirt.

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