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Solutions for Keeping Solar Panels Clean and Bird-Free

Solar energy is a popular source of sustainable and renewable power. If you have solar panels on your property, you need to make sure that they last a long time with maximum efficiency. One of the important steps in ensuring this is cleaning the panels and keeping them free from bird droppings.

You need to have clean solar panels so that they can operate at peak efficiency

Some of the things that can build-up on the solar panel surface are dirt, dust, bird droppings and pollen. These substances can create a barrier on top of the panels and reduce their ability to absorb sunlight. Therefore, less electricity is converted from sunlight. In addition to creating an unpleasant mess on the panels, bird droppings can corrode the panel surface with time which will further reduce performance. You can select a company that offers solar bird proofing if your solar panels attract a lot of birds. Automated cleaning systems will make things easy for you and it is a hands-free solution as well. These can be water based cleaning systems or robotic cleaners. These systems have sensors that can detect build-up of dirt and they will automatically spray water or cleaning solution onto the panels. There will be gentle scrubbing and rinsing as well. This can be an expensive investment but you can ensure long term efficiency as a result of this. This is more suited for large scale solar installations.

Water sprinkler systems are great for preventing the build-up of dirt and dust

These will spray water onto the panels regularly which is great if you live in a dry or dusty environment. But you have to use purified or filtered water. Otherwise, there can be mineral deposits left on the surface of the panel which can reduce efficiency over time. There are self-cleaning coatings such as hydrophobic coatings that will create a surface which is water-repellent. Dirt and debris will not be able to adhere to the surface of the solar panels. Nanotechnology is used in these coatings to create a thin layer that repels water. Dirt can be easily washed away by hosing the panels from time to time. This will also be automatically done when there is rainfall. You will need to reapply self-cleaning coatings over time but there are a good low maintenance solution for clean solar panels.

Manual cleaning is a common method for cleaning the solar panels

And you can use a mild detergent, soft brush and squeegee for this. You can manually scrub away dirt and debris from the surface of the panel. This can take more effort and time. You will also need the right safety measures if the panels are located on the roof. This is why obtaining professional services can be convenient. For deterring birds, you can have physical barriers like mesh, spikes or wires attached to the edges of the solar panel arrays. Netting or screens are another option so that birds cannot land nearby. You need to make sure that these don’t cause shading which will reduce panel performance.  Some visual deterrents you can use are predator decoys and reflective tape. You can use ultrasonic devices as well. These will emit high frequency sound waves that humans cannot detect. But these can be quite irritating to birds and they will avoid areas where these devices are installed.

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