Washing Solar Panels in San Diego – Not Worth the Effort?
Lower monthly electricity bills and a smaller carbon footprint.  These are the 2 primary reasons why San Diego residents continue to embrace solar panel technology.

And it’s not hard to see why.

Rising utility prices make the economics of solar increasingly difficult to ignore.  And with global warming becoming more serious, homeowners from Chula Vista to La Jolla are taking proactive steps to protect the environment for future generations.

But one of the most overlooked benefits of installing solar panels is maintenance.  With zero moving parts and warranties that last 25 years or longer, solar panels are incredibly durable.  Breakages are rare.  And the upkeep is minimal.

How minimal?

Well, according to a recent study by the University of California – San Diego, washing dust off your solar panels is not worth the effort.

In fact, today’s solar panels can go nearly 150 days with no rain or water and still deliver 93% of their original efficiency.  Cleaning off the accumulated dust only increases power generation by an extra $20 – far less than the time and money San Diego residents usually invest in annual solar panel cleaning.

Perhaps it’s time to rethink some of the value-added services we offer at Sunline Energy.  Post-installation cleaning represents such a tiny fraction of our core business.  And with this recent study from UC San Diego, our maintenance team will probably have even more free time on its hands.

It’s pretty amazing when you think about it.

Many solar fence-sitters hold off on installing panels because they feel the technology is unreliable and requires too much work.  But over the next 25 to 40 years, you’ll probably receive more SDG&E technicians at your home than solar energy technicians.

Not only is solar cheaper and more environmentally friendly than grid electricity, but it’s also less hassle.

Should San Diego Solar Panels Never Be Cleaned?

So do these new findings mean that you never have to clean your solar panels?  Is your installation truly set it and forget it for the next 25+ years?

Not necessarily.

The UC San Diego solar panel study only talks about “general” dirt and dust.  Bird droppings, heavy grime, and mud – these actually do significantly affect solar panel performance.  So it’s not fair to say that upkeep is non-existent.  But it’s pretty low.  Low enough that maintenance (or the lack thereof) could convince many solar fence-sitters to take the plunge.

If you live in the greater San Diego area and would like to learn more about your solar options, contact us today for a free, no obligation quote.

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