Solar Panels for Your Home

By Tyler Kirk | Commercial Window Cleaning
Updated on: 03/29/2022

When it comes to home maintenance, every homeowner is likely thinking about ways to maintain their exterior without spending a lot of money. For homeowners that have invested in a solar system, keeping them clean and free of anything that would impede them from producing energy is a top priority. Keep reading to learn more about cleaning solar panels as well as the details on how and who should do it.

Do They Need to be Cleaned?

There are some key questions to ask yourself when deciding on how to clean solar panels. The first question is simple: Do you actually need to? The answer may surprise you.

Solar panels weren’t designed to break down easily. As a matter of fact, a study conducted by The National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) and Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (OEERE) revealed that most solar panels can withstand up to 140 mph winds. Those same centers also found that panels typically weren’t damaged, even after hail—the size of ping pong balls no less—were fired at them at 70 mph.

How does that relate to whether or not your solar panels need to be cleaned? It means that solar panels will likely withstand typical conditions and the need to maintain and clean them has more to do with their efficiency. If a panel is obscured by shade or a heavy layer of debris, for example, that will impact its performance worse than a hail storm.

When considering whether or not it’s time to clean your solar panels, think about this:

Does It Rain A Lot Where You Live?

If you live in an area that gets a healthy amount of rainfall, you may be able to rely on Mother Nature to keep your solar panels clean year-round. However, it’s also important to consider what your solar panels may be attracting—for example, if they’re just getting dusty, rain can keep them clean. But, if your home is susceptible to pollen buildup, bird droppings, foliage, and hazy film from smoke or smog, your solar panels may need to be cleaned.

What Does Your Roof Look Like?

When considering whether or not your solar panels need to be cleaned, it’s best to consider your roof’s makeup. If your panels lay flat or between zero and five degrees, they are more likely to accumulate dust and debris than a home with a more angular roof. Many roofs in the United States are angular, but the convenience, price point, and aesthetics of flat or nearly flat roofs have become popular over the years. This can sometimes pose a problem with keeping solar panels clean. This alone may require the solar panels for your home to be cleaned more frequently.

Should You Hire A Professional or Do-It-Yourself?

For those who need to keep solar panels clean of debris, the debate of doing it yourself or having them professionally cleaned can be tough. Even one-story homes with a flat roof can pose a danger to homeowners who don’t have access to stairs and railings, so we typically recommend leaving this DIY chore to the professionals.

If Professionals Aren’t an Option

For those who aren’t able to hire professionals, there are some things to be aware of while you clean your solar panels. Keep reading for our tips on cleaning your own solar panels.

  • First and foremost, safety first. Make sure that your roof can support the added weight of your solar system as well as you and anyone helping. In addition to having someone else present, you’ll want to ensure that your shoes are appropriate and won’t slip on your roof material.
  • Use purified water and the right equipment. This prevents chemicals and build up from getting on your panels after they are washed. Using proper equipment will prevent damage to your solar panels as well, so be sure that you choose a brush that isn’t abrasive and will fit an extension pole.
  • Choose the right cleaner. As we mentioned above, solar panels are durable. But, they aren’t indestructible, and chemicals can sometimes be damaging. We recommend simple, mild soap or a solution of vinegar, mild soap and purified water to gently lift debris and dirt from your solar panels without causing damage.

Why Hire Us

We leverage the same process as we do during exterior window cleaning and use quality cleaners as well as our purified water system to clean solar panels. To loosen the dirt and debris, we use a soft bristle brush and follow that up with a purified water rinse to clean. This is the best method because we aren’t using high pressure or any harsh chemicals that could damage your panels.

Additionally, our staff are trained to safely climb and clean without putting themselves, or you or your property, in danger. We’re also fully insured and a professional home cleaning service who can ensure that the exterior of your home, from the top of the roof to the foundation, is pristine.

FAQ

A solar system is an expensive investment that typically has a great return. For business owners and homeowners, keeping solar panels clean and in good working order is a priority. We go over those in the article above, and have answered some of the most popular questions about cleaning your solar panels below!

What is the best thing to clean solar panels with?

When doing it yourself, it’s best to clean solar panels with a gentle solution of vinegar, mild soap, and purified water. Because these ingredients lack the abrasiveness of many harsher chemicals, it’s less likely that they will damage the surface or frame of a solar array.

Can I clean solar panels myself?

You can, but we typically don’t recommend it. Dangerous falls can happen from one-story homes just as easily as they can from higher roofs. It’s best to leave this task, and any task involving your roof, to professionals.

Does cleaning your solar panels make a difference?

This depends largely on where you are at. Areas that don’t experience a lot of falling debris or build-up likely won’t need solar panel cleaning. Areas with significant build-up, however, such as the warm, humid southeastern United States, may require cleaning to boost solar panel efficiency and energy output.

Can you use Windex on solar panels?

We don’t typically recommend it. Commercial over-the-counter cleaners have abrasive chemicals that may impact the surface integrity of different glasses. While solar panels are quite durable, we recommend avoiding cleaning solutions that have proven to damage glass in the past.

call-to-action
Let's Get Cleaning!
We can take care of your external cleaning needs. Get your FREE quote today.

Hear from Our Customers

They arrived on time and completed cleaning the gutters in a safe and thorough manner. We have hired for them to wash our driveway and to clean outside windows since. These people are sharp and worthy of your consideration. They are really good.

Vincent D.Mount Pleasant, SC

The guys were efficient, arrived early and were very professional. They cleaned the gutters, blew leaves off the roof, patio and driveway. A great job!!

Judy C.North Charleston, SC

They cleaned my windows inside and out and pressure washed some of our decks. Nate was very professional and responded to my request quickly. His crew did a great job and they were all polite and hard workers.

Allison B.Sullivan's Island, SC

This was an unbelievably good experience with this company. Nate Van Valkenburg and his crew were the ultimate professionals. Came on time. Took off their shoes when they came in the house.Did all the inside of the windows at one time, so I could go run errands. Washed part of garage even though that was not part of the deal. And they cleaned up after they were through. You could not ASK for a better experience, better service and nicer people.

Roger C.Charleston, SC

We could not be more thrilled with how beautiful our house now looks, and with how professional the team was.

Suzy F.Clemmons, NC

Fence had dirt, grime and mildew growth and my siding needed pressure washing including my screen patio area. Pete and the crew arrived on time and they did a superior job on my windows as well.

Amos P.Winston-Salem, NC

Great experience. I will use them again and have already recommended them to family who also used them for window cleaning and were thrilled. Great value and care of my belongings while servicing my home.

Jerry B.Kernersville, NC

Cleaned windows inside and out and pressure washed. Great work. Will call next year.

Maria M.Advance, NC

The quality was excellent. The owner and his team were very polite, professional and did an excellent job.

Alison D.Winston-Salem, NC

Wow - three young pros, who know what they are doing, work efficiently, make sure nothing else is touched and do a wonderful job in no time. They were punctual, willing to change the dates when it seemed like it was going to rain.

Bob B.Winnabow, NC

Great job! I'd use them again in a heartbeat!

Jessica B.Ocean Isle Beach, NC

Great. They showed up on time in both the fall and spring. There was no mess. I thought the gutter mess would be on my yard or deck, but that was not the case. Everything was very clean.

Marie J.Bolivia, NC

Went excellent. Power washed the house and drive. Extremely professional, excellent job.

Garret P.Leland, NC

The gentleman than owns the business is very responsive and professional. The workers showed up on time. They were easy to work with. Cleaned our windows and gutters. They were very agreeable and worked quickly and did an excellent job.

Greg H.Wilmington, NC

Excellent service. Personable workers. Prompt communication. Cleaned windows and washed our siding. Came out great. Would use again.

Lynette C.Southport, NC

Great, they arrived on time and were very courteous. They did the work quickly and effectively. The house looks great and there was no mess left behind. Great Experience!

Chris T.Raleigh, NC

The crew was right on time. Called ahead to advise us of their arrival time. Went right to work. Used ladders to clean windows which we liked. They did a very good job and we shall have them come back in the future.

Mary J.Raleigh, NC

Excellent Service. Everyone that I had contact with was courteous and professional. Highly recommend them.

Mary D.Raleigh, NC

Loved them. Prompt, good communication and professional. Asked them to replace some bulbs in my motion sensors. Cleaned all my gutters and I have a pretty big home. didn't try and charge me extra. Yes, I'd definitely recommend them.

Jane L.Raleigh, NC

It is a large house with a large number of windows. They were aces! I've never seen anything like them. The team was made up of 4 or 5 guys. They worked well together. It was excellent work! They were super professional. I will be using them again. It took them a day and a half to do the work.

Derek B.Cornelius, NC

Very pleased with the results. Even though they were running behind slightly, i received a call to let me know that morning. I had a rust stain they were able to remove which was a huge relief as it looked really bad. My gutters are very high and they I were able to reach them. I will plan on using them for other projects.

John P.Cornelius, NC

Cleaning window inside and outside and power washing window sills and gutter cleaning. They were nice and respectful of my plants. I will definitely have them back next year.

Patricia F.Mooresville, NC

Cleaned all gutters. Did a good job.

James L.Concord, NC

They were super-professional and did a great job, including pointing out a repair we need in one gutter. They also did our windows and will definitely use them again in the future as I was very impressed by their work.

Staci R.Denver, NC

Very professional. Provided written quote, showed up on time, he and his crew did the work the following day. No issues.

Vicky T.Summerfield, NC

My husband and I cannot say enough nice things about their diligent work ethic. The results of their labor have made us both very happy and we told everyone we know about him and his company. The crews commitment to our satisfaction made a great impression on us.

Heather K.Greensboro, NC

Very well. Used them previously for pressure washing the entire house, including deck areas. Very professional and hard working. Highly recommend Pete and his crew.

Jerry B.Oak Ridge, NC

Excellent. Took his time to ensure that the job was done right!

Chuck Y.Greensboro, NC

Very well, workers were polite and respectful. Did a great job.

Sean M.Durham, NC

Team did great. punctual answered email immediately. I bought a coupon deal and then added in additional windows. I have high peaks on my house and the team did a great job of getting all windows spotless!

Angela K.Hillsborough, NC

Had our house, deck and driveway powerwashed and our windows cleaned. Everything was great.

Tim B.Apex, NC

Windows inside and out and gutters...excellent job.

Ellen J.Chapel Hill, NC

I have used this company for several years to clean my gutters and do some power washing. They always do a good job and clean up after themselves.

Lynn K.Waxhaw, NC

Came promptly during scheduled appointment and cleaned gutters and replace security light bulbs. Very efficient. Recommend.

Ed C.Matthews, NC

They showed up on time and cleaned the windows as requested. They were very polite and nice young men.

Cathy S.Fort Mill, SC

Great service, very responsive. Washed off the mildew from our siding. Will use next year.

Patricia B.Belmont, NC

Labor Panes have cleaned our gutters and windows for years now. Their people are always courteous and professional. They arrived on time, cleaned the gutters removing all of the debris, and did their work quickly.

Tom C.Charlotte, NC

I highly recommend Tyler and his company Labor Panes (Now, The Go To Crew). He called and came out to give me an estimate the following day. Tyler and his workmen are extremely professional and pleasant to be around. Everything glistens! My chandeliers have never looked so good! I will definitely use them again....

Susan P.Charlotte, NC

They are the most professional window cleaners I’ve ever used. Everything was put back the same way it was before they started the job. Each crew that has been to my home takes so much pride in their work and they do such a great job. They are respectful, professional and overall just awesome....

Dana C.Charlotte, NC

Labor Panes cleaned our gutters. They did good work and were thorough. Very friendly and they communicated exactly what they would be doing. When there was a delay to the originally scheduled service, they were quick and fair with rescheduling.

Martha G.Charlotte, NC
Got Friends with Dirty Windows? We Can Help
Refer a friend, neighbor, or family member today.
Your Nearest Labor Panes Location

Please complete the form below and we'll be in touch asap to schedule your FREE Quote or Service.

Or you can contact us directly at the Location Phone Number Below!

YOUR INTERESTED IN:
SERVICE SELECTIONS: (CHECK ALL THAT APPLY)
Refer a Friend or Family Member

Please complete the form below and we’ll get in touch with your referral. Thank you!

I AM A: (CHECK ALL THAT APPLY)
best contact:
Franchise Information Request

Please complete the form below and we’ll get in touch asap. Thank you!

I AM A: (CHECK ALL THAT APPLY)
best contact:
LP Careers

Please complete the form below and we'll be in touch asap

Please attach your resume

I understand that if I'm employed, false statements on this application shall be considered sufficient grounds for dismissal. I agree that all persons and previous employers supplying information about me, for reference purposes, are released from liability. If a job opportunity is offered, I shall comply with all of Labor Panes policies and uniform requirements. I understand the selection of employees will be on the basis of occupational qualification, education and character without regard to age, sex, race or national origin.