How To Remove Snow From Solar Panels?

Snow is the beautiful thing that inspired us to feet the natural white color. In winter, there are several things to celebrate with snow.

You might notice that snow stops solar panels from functioning because it creates shade. The solar panel’s surface is covered with snow and stops power generation due to a lack of sunlight during the snowfall.

Snow will stop the sun from reaching the solar cells. As a result, the panel will not produce any electricity. So, you should keep the panel’s surface clean. It isn’t easy to do in winter, but several ways to get around it.

This piece presents how snow affects the solar panel and the most effective ways to shovel snow from a solar panel.

ThePhoenixsun Video Series
ThePhoenixsun Video Series

What Happens If There is Snow on Solar Panels?

What Happens If There is Snow on Solar Panels?
What Happens If There is Snow on Solar Panels?

Snow is a part of nature, and it doesn’t have any significant issues without freezing and cold temperatures on solar panels.

A solar panel produces energy from the sun, and it can not do anything without sunlight. Many things can happen after a snowfall but nothing dangerous. The only thing you can consider is the productivity of the solar panel. Let’s see why?

Reduce or Stop Productivity

As we described, solar panels can not produce energy without sunlight. When snow covers the solar panel’s surface, it will be disconnected from sunlight. So, solar cells lose their energy source.

It only happens due to the extreme snowfalls and when the panel is covered with ice. In normal situations, snow will melt quickly from the panel and allow it to collect energy from the sun.

You don’t need to worry about other problems except for productivity. Solar panels are made with high-quality materials that can perform in any weather condition. Snow can only reduce power production due to the lack of sunlight.

Can Snow Damage Solar Panels?

Can Snow Damage Solar Panels?
Can Snow Damage Solar Panels?

No, snow can not damage the solar panel. Snow is not a sticky object that can be attached h the solar panel for a long time.

We all know that snow will melt soon after reducing the temperature. But, if you are living in the northern part of the world, where excessive snowfall is available almost half of the year, you can run a regular cleaning in winter.

The solar panel’s surface contains a thin coating of high-quality tempered glass that is durable enough to perform in any weather condition, including snowfall.

Besides, the aluminum frame and waterproof wiring protect the frame and cable from snow and water.

Snow cannot damage the panel if you have installed the solar panel in the right pitch, focus, and slope. The slope of the panel automatically cleans the solar panel after melting the snow.

So, you don’t have to worry about the longevity of the solar panel due to snow and ice. The tempered glass will help you remove and protect the cells from cold bites.

Is It Dumped When Removing Snow from Solar Panels?

It is completely safe, and you can easily remove the snow from solar panels. But, you have to maintain a standard cleaning method that is suitable for solar panels. It will save you time and help you to complete the task efficiently.

Cleaning snow from the surface is not difficult but tricky. It is almost the same as removing snow from other surfaces.

First, you have to melt the ice and divide the snow for easy cleaning and removal.

You can use some special tools for removing snow from the panel.

You have to do the job carefully and not hit the solar panel with cleaning tools. You might hire a professional solar panel cleaning agency or individual.

You don’t need chemicals or detergent to do this. So, there is no risk of destruction while removing snow from the solar panel.

6 Tips Remove Snow From Solar Panels

How To Remove Snow From Solar Panels
How To Remove Snow From Solar Panels?

You can remove snow from solar panels by yourself or hire a professional. It depends on the place and number of solar panels. 

If you have a few solar panels located on an open roof or convenient place, you can do it yourself.

On the contrary, it is better to hire a professional if you have a large solar setup with several panels. It will be challenging to remove snow from a large area or roof without a professional snow removal expert. It will save you time and help you to clear snow quickly.

Here we present the most efficient ideas for removing snow from solar panels with their brief introduction, advantages, and disadvantages.

Automatic Change Panels’ Angel

Automatic Change Panels’ Angel
Automatic Change Panels’ Angel

It is an advanced option to protect snow and keep the panel efficient during winter. This system is in the primary stage, but you can use it for residential solar systems.

A device will be installed with a solar panel that understands the temperature and sunlight’s focus with the help of a sensor.

Your solar panels will be installed in a way so that they can move by the angle-changing device.

When there is rain or snow, the panel’s angle will automatically change. It will help solar panels to stop storing snow on the surface. Due to the wide-angle and slope, snow will remove naturally.

Pros

  • The advantage of this system is that you don’t need to remove snow manually.
  • It will help the panel to continue power production.

Cons

  • It is expensive and difficult to install.

Hose It

Camco Flow-Through Wash Brush with Push Button Telescoping Handle - Connect to Standard Water Hose to Clean Your Vehicle | Great for RV, Truck Boat and Car Washing - (41960)
  • Telescoping handle adjusts from 47 inch up to 74 inch long
  • Versatile brush features an 10 inch wide wash head
  • Flow-through handle includes built-in on/off switch for water

Spraying snow from the solar panel is an effective way. The pressurized hose will help you to remove snow easily. It is the most convenient way to melt snow.

You can use this method for extremely cold temperatures. Otherwise, the usual cleaning methods are suitable for snow removal.

Pros

  • It will remove snow quickly and turn it into water.
  • The process is cost-effective, and you can do it by yourself. 

Cons

  • Your goal is to wash the snow and not to melt ice. So, this method will take more time and turn the snow into water. It will be difficult to wash the weather again. So, you need to do the same work twice.

Sweep It

You have explored two methods already, and there is another option for removing snow from solar panels. You sweep the snow from the surface. 

This method is suitable for tiny solar systems that use very small-sized solar panels. Most of the solar panels have been installed at a significant slope and angle. It will not be easy to sweep snow from a large solar system. 

Using hard tools for sweeping snow from the solar panel’s surface will be dangerous. Again we recommend doing it for single, portable solar panels. 

Pros

  • It is a faster method than other options. It will enable you to clean the surface directly. 

Cons

  • It is not recommended due always because of the risk.
  • This process needs some tools that can damage the surface of the solar panel. So, do it carefully.

Wait for Snow to Melt on Its Own

You can wait until the snow melts naturally. It is only possible when you have a grid-tied solar system. In winter, snow will take more time to melt naturally, and you can not get energy from the snow-covered solar panel.

Besides, some areas have extremely low temperatures, and it is almost impossible to melt the snow naturally for seven or more days. So, you need an energy backup system for this period.

Pros

  • It doesn’t require any tool or professional person. This method is completely free of cost, and you have to wait for nature. 
  • No risk of damaging and breaking solar panels. 

Cons

  • It will stop energy production for several days.
  • The lengthy process might destroy the other parts of a solar system.

Should You Heat Solar Panels to Remove Snow?

Do you want your solar system in the name of snow removal? It is the most dangerous way to remove snow from the solar panel’s surface.

Solar panels are made with PVC materials and silicon that are highly flammable and can blast with heat. 

You can not remove the snow without high heat. It is dangerous because of its long-time burning and flammable materials. 

Pros

  • We don’t recommend this method and think it is unsuitable for removing snow from solar panels. 

Cons

  • The heat will destroy the solar panel and reduce productivity.
  • In most dangerous cases, materials of the panel melt due to extreme temperature.

Wrapping Up

Finally, you have all the information about snow and solar panel matters. You can now easily identify the problem and solve it.

It will be better to select a method depending on the solar panel’s size, position, and roof condition or design.

In this way, you will get the most effective and convenient way for snow cleaning. Don’t try any risky and unprofessional materials or methods. Use proven and recommended methods that are safe and secure.