If you are considering having solar panels installed or already living in a residence powered by solar energy, or have existing panels in place, regular system maintenance should be conducted to ensure your system operates as effectively and safely as possible while offering cost savings over time.

Solar panels are an incredible investment that is cost-effective, environmentally friendly, and can power your home for decades.

These factors have led to more people harvesting the power of the Australian sun through solar for their homes, with 21 percent of Australian homes using rooftop PV solar power systems as of March 2019. A report suggests this trend will only continue, noting, “The Solar Power market in Australia is expected to experience compound annual compound annual growth of 19.56 percent between 2020-2025”.

If you’re considering installing solar panels into your dwelling or already live somewhere that uses them or is powered by them, it is wise to undertake regular system maintenance to ensure it runs as effectively and safely as possible while providing maximum cost savings. We have previously shared facts and dispelled myths regarding solar power; here we share answers to common queries we receive concerning how best to make use of your system.

Do Solar Panels Require Regular Maintenance? 

Properly installed solar panels usually do not require extensive maintenance for them to continue providing power and functioning safely. We advise having your system inspected every 12-18 months by an expert for maintenance inspection purposes, which should ensure they continue doing their job through its 25-30 year lifespan.

An inspection typically entails having your solar system serviced by a licensed electrician to clean its panels, identify obstructions in its path and test all connections and switches – all to make sure your solar system runs at optimal performance.

Note that solar panels may sometimes malfunction without giving any direct indication, leading to an unpleasant surprise when your power bill arrives.

What Are Some Potential Maintenance and Safety Issues to Be Aware Of?

When performing solar system maintenance, these are among the key concerns we encounter that affect the performance or safety of panels:

  • Faulty solar meter
  • Solar panel positioning (too much shade or in an awkward position)
  • Dirt, dust & debris
  • Fractures in solar panels
  • Vermin damage from possums, birds or rats.

At the outset, having your solar system professionally installed by professionals should help to ensure that panels are situated accurately, as well as identify areas at risk from leaf coverage. We can advise on trees which should be regularly pruned for optimal sunlight levels as well as obstructions which might prevent the full reach of sun’s rays reaching all corners.

Animals such as birds, possums and rats may build nests beneath solar panels themselves and settle there, chewing through cords while leaving behind bodily deposits in their wake.

Over time, solar panels may experience an accumulation of debris on their own panels that hinders their ability to absorb sunlight efficiently. This accumulation may be further compounded by weather conditions like storms, which result in leaves clinging onto them; dirty panels will significantly decrease the efficiency of your system.

Panels may also become vulnerable to corrosion and insulation deterioration, leading to malfunctions.

These issues are more likely to surface if an installation is poorly executed – an alarmingly prevalent phenomenon in Australia. A national audit by the Renewable Energy Target discovered that between 21-26% of rooftop units inspected since 2011 contained defective wiring or panels that were unsafe.

Therefore, if you believe your solar panel may have been installed by an untrustworthy installer or are moving into an apartment which already features one installed system, it may be worthwhile arranging an inspection to make sure everything is safe.

Final Thoughts

Are You Planning Solar System Maintenance Services? When booking solar system service maintenance, it is wise to seek expert assistance in order to maximize cost savings while creating a safe electric environment.

At Streamline Energy, our electricians specialize in solar photovoltaic system design installation and maintenance services, offering detailed inspections to identify any ways that your solar PV system could become more cost-efficient while improving its performance.

Contact us now to see how we can assist with the maintenance of your solar system.

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