Prepare your home for winter with your solar panels. Here are six essential steps to follow for the colder months ahead. Cooler temperatures can keep your solar panels running at their most efficient as solar panels turn sunlight into electricity, absorbing the sun’s abundant light, not the sun’s heat.
Panel Inspection and Cleaning
An essential task before winter is to inspect your solar panels meticulously. Check for damage, loose connections, debris accumulation, or any other issue that might cause a problem. Proper cleaning improves efficiency and prevents shading that could affect energy production.
Adjust the Angle of your Solar Panels
As the sun sits lower in the sky during winter, the solar panels must be adjusted to an optimal solar angle – if they are not on fixed racks. Solar panels capture more sunlight when facing the sun directly. Frontline Home Solutions are experts in Solar Installations and Technology and can advise on the best angle for your solar panels.
Batteries for your solar panels must be in top condition. Batteries are not meant to work in very low temperatures. It is important to keep batteries at an appropriate temperature, as lead-acid batteries freeze at -20 °. Ensure it never goes below 0°. The solar generator’s battery must be fully charged as often as possible and well-insulated. Check the battery charge to have the necessary loads to heat the house. Flooded lead-acid batteries can get distilled water every two to four weeks as these batteries lose water during the recharge cycle. Connections and terminals need to be cleaned to avoid corrosion. Install a backup battery system in conjunction with the energy-generating solar panels. Regular battery maintenance, inspecting charge levels and for signs of decay, can maximize their lifespan and performance during winter.
Energy conservation is ideal at any time, particularly during the winter, as energy demand is at its greatest during the colder months. The less energy is utilized, the less dependent you will be on supplemental energy. Disconnect ghost loads such as electronic devices and appliances that consume power even when switched off. It is advisable to turn down the thermostat so as not to overheat the house. Layered clothing and throws around the home can make you comfortable while not extending unnecessary power.
- Use energy-efficient lightbulbs.
- Turn off unneeded lights and appliances.
- Use timers for lights and thermostats – and turn down the thermostats.
- Check your home’s insulation and, where necessary, seal leaks around windows and doors.
- Use solar-powered lamps outside on walkways.
Besides the solar panels, supporting equipment such as inverters and wiring should be checked and protected from cold weather. The inverter should be placed in a safe, well-ventilated area, and the battery’s water levels should be maintained. The battery terminals must be kept clean and rust-free. Insulation or heat trace can be used for exposed wires and enclosures to support optimal functionality.
Monitor Your System’s Performance
During the winter, monitor your system’s performance closely. Track energy production and detect any issues. If you notice a discrepancy from the previous output, contact solar experts to identify and check the problem.
Act wisely and maintain your solar panels with these easy steps for full functionality during winter. Maximize your electricity generation while monitoring your consumption at the same time. For more advice and guidelines, contact us to make the most of your solar system.