Solar panels

Do you need to clean solar panels?

When you have solar panels on the roof, you naturally want to benefit from the optimum efficiency. Over the years, the panels are exposed to numerous conditions such as rain, wind, snow, sand, and moss. As soon as this is the case, the calls start flooding in. Everyone has the same question: should I clean my solar panels? We will tell you more and give you some tips & tricks to keep your solar panels clean.


When should you clean your solar panels?

In fact, solar panels need to be cleaned only when they are really dirty – which is hardly ever. A small layer of snow or sand on the panels might be annoying but is hardly cause for concern. The solar system will continue to function normally. Only in situations where the solar panels are really dirty (e.g. moss formation) do we recommend cleaning the panels. Do this only if you feel confident climbing up onto your roof.

Solar panels should not be cleaned using a scouring pad, high-pressure sprayer, or cleaning agents. A simple polishing cloth is enough to remove most deposits.


Dust on solar panels

Good to know: settled dust on solar panels has little impact on their effectiveness. Rainfall or melt water from ice or snow,can easily wash away the dust. Persistent dirt such as bird droppings on the panel or moss formation can cause a loss of efficiency that can amount to several percent. It is therefore well worth periodically checking your solar panels for the presence of stubborn dirt. However, dust is nothing to worry about.


Does cleaning your solar panels make a difference?

There are differing opinions on whether solar panels actually need cleaning. Every solar energy system experiences a small loss of efficiency over the years. In principle, the presence or absence of dirt on solar panels makes little difference. Would you still like to clean your solar panels? Then you should take into account the coating of the panel. What is the best way to clean solar panels?

✔ Avoid using a pressure washer, hard sponge, or cleaning agent
✔ Use lime-free or reverse osmosis water. Lime can cause deposits on the coating
✔ A rag or soft sponge with lukewarm lime-free water will do the job

Would you prefer to outsource solar panel cleaning? Then choose a trusted partner who can provide you with an honest assessment. In fact, cleaning solar panels is usually far from necessary.

The best time to clean solar panels
If you want to clean your solar panels, you should do so in spring and preferably before April. It’s from mid-March to mid-October that most power is generated by solar panels. During this period, you will want to have a system that gives optimum returns. It is also unwise to clean solar panels on a hot or extra sunny day because the panels will be generating power at full capacity and will therefore be hotter than normal. If you are using water to clean them, this can have a negative effect on the solar panels and the system as a whole.

Are you in doubt about the condition of your solar panels and would like some no-obligation advice on the best period to clean your solar panels? Our advisers are at your service.

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Four tips for cleaning your solar panels

✓ Use neutral detergents
Solar panels are relatively fragile, and you can quickly damage them. Avoid caustic products, scouring sponges, or high-pressure sprayers.

✓ Instead, use lukewarm water and a soft sponge or cloth
Lukewarm water makes it easier to rinse away all the dirt. And the softer the sponge or cloth, the less likely you are to damage your solar panels.

✓ Use a telescopic wiper if you don’t want to climb up on your roof
Do not risk acrobatic tricks. Simply connect your garden hose to the telescopic wiper to clean your solar panels.

✓ Clean your solar panels in spring
The best time to clean your solar panels is at the end of winter. In spring and summer, you want to get as much out of the installation as possible. So they should definitely be clean during this time. There are specialised companies that do nothing but clean solar panels. However, as an individual, you may end up paying a lot of money for this.


Knowledge base

While you are still here: have a look at our knowledge base. It's full of information concerning the benefits and possibilities of solar energy. And we do our bit. Here are some of the most interesting topics we already covered.
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How many solar panels do I need?
This is a common question people ask themselves when they are considering whether to purchase or rent solar panels. We recommend choosing the minimum number of solar panels based on your annual power demand.
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How much CO₂ emissions can be saved with solar panels?
Those who choose solar panels enjoy numerous benefits. Among other things, you will save on monthly energy costs, be independent from increasing energy prices, and create added value for your home.
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Difference between serial and parallel connection of solar modules?
“My roof is partly in the shade, but I would like solar panels. Is that possible?” This is a question we often hear during telephone consultations.