As the depths of winter settle in, many solar homeowners might be asking a similar question: How do I deal with snow on my solar panels?
Fist and foremost: CAUTION
Overall, we really recommend mother nature melt the snow naturally. Here in Central Illinois, snowfall is generally moderate, and a few day’s snowfall will clear soon after most snow storms.
The next thing to consider is your loss of electricity production. When solar panels are covered in snow, your solar production will stop or be very low at best. Keep in mind it is winter, and with low sun angle and short days, power production is lower than other times of year. Second, when solar panels are under snow, it is often cloudy and gray. Even with a clean solar array, power production will be low on a cloudy, gray day.
The bottom line: Your safety is not worth the risk of losing a few days of electricity savings.
Other factors to keep in mind: Slick conditions, height off the ground, falling piles of snow, and overexertion must all be kept in mind.
- Slick Conditions: Ice is an ever-present factor in winter. Be mindful of icy conditions that could cause slips and falls and lead to injury.
- Height off the ground: It is not advised to get on a roof to clean a solar panel system, given the potential for falls. Similarly, using a ladder can also be dangerous, given the potential for slips and falls.
- Falling Piles of Snow: When cleaning solar panels, especially roof-mounted solar panels, care must be given to avoid getting trapped under or injured by falling piles of snow or ice. Always give yourself adequate distance between you and the path of falling snow.
- Overexertion: Moving around and working in cold, snowy, wet, and icy conditions can take a lot of energy and stamina. Therefore, it is important to be mindful of your physical capabilities and any health conditions that might limit your ability to work in winter conditions.
Of course, if you feel the conditions are not safe for you to clean your solar panels, you can always wait for the snow to melt or slip off the solar panels, or you can call a professional service to clean the snow off your solar panels.
If you have any other questions about solar energy, contact Tick Tock Energy here!