Investing in solar is a strategic investment that pays off in dividends over the course of roughly 25 to 30 years. That’s a long period of time to be worrying about your system’s performance and maintenance. Solar arrays are often described as being relatively maintenance free. However, this is generally not the case. All solar arrays need to be cleaned regularly to prevent dirt from accumulating which can cause significant energy production losses. And even with consistent maintenance (or manual cleaning), your system’s energy production might still lag behind initial analyst estimates.
Cleaning your solar panels doesn’t have to be a source of frustration or a logistical headache! With an active cleaning solution (ACS) like RST NightWashTM, you can keep your panels clean all the time thereby maximizing your system production and eliminating tens of thousands of dollars in annual maintenance costs.
When planning a solar array, designers account for several losses – the most severe being “soiling” losses. (Soiling refers to the dirt and other particles that settle on the surface of your solar panels every day, preventing the sun’s rays from reaching the panels. The energy production lost as a result is known as the soiling rate.) Solar analysts often accept these losses as unavoidable and choose to oversize your system in order to ensure the production projections are attained despite these “inevitable” losses. Unfortunately, these figures can be grossly underestimated, resulting in your system producing far less energy than anticipated over the course of its lifespan.
For large PV system owners, this means that you’re either accepting these soiling losses, or scheduling regular maintenance. However, if the soiling rate is high enough, even regular manual cleanings don’t stand a chance to significantly improve production – and you’ll end up paying the price.
Not only do cleaning fees add up over time, but you also lose money from the reduced production of soiled panels between each cleaning. While you may be able to tolerate lower production due to soiling losses for a year or two, the reality is that you are missing out on this added revenue every single year for the entire lifetime of the system. That’s decades of lost profits.
Solar arrays should be maintenance free. Once your solar array has been installed, you should rarely need to think about or worry about the health of your system. Imagine buying a car without windshield wipers from a dealership. This would be extremely impractical. Just like the windshield of a car, every solar panel should be capable of self-cleaning at the click of a button.
Once installed, an ACS like RST NightWashTM helps you to realize the full production of your solar installation by allowing you to clean your panels as much as you want simply from the RST CleanTech App. An ACS is designed to combat soiling losses and give you true hands-off peace of mind. You can forgo scheduling a technician, paying for labor, and worrying about solar panel damage or human safety hazards. Keep people off your roof and away from high voltage equipment. Removing people from your property reduces your liability and the headache that comes with worrying about it.
Stop settling for an ineffective cleaning method that’s likely costing you much more than it’s worth. Reach out to learn more about RST CleanTech’s fully automated solar panel cleaning system that requires no labor after installation.