Clean Under Solar Panels On a Caravan Roof (Important!)

There are many excellent reasons why you need to maintain your solar panel over time and the first is to increase longevity and functionality.

They need to be serviced and maintained for maximum efficiency!

Your solar panels can’t just function without a problem without regular inspection and maintenance. This means cleaning underneath them which is often lost on people.

The consequences can be that you’ll have to buy a new unit if things get severe enough. Solar panels are meant to be outside of course, and that means they have to endure the elements.

Here are some of the key points we’ll go over today;

  • Why you should clean your solar panels
  • Strategies for cleaning on caravan roof
  • What materials you should use
  • Is it really necessary?
  • the value of consistency with upkeep
Clean Solar Panel Caravan Roof

Why you should clean your solar panels

Over time, your solar panels are exposed to the elements and this includes anything that falls from the sky including rain, snow, and even dust from the wind.

This can drastically alter the effectiveness of your unit and if you want the most out of it then consider cleaning them regularly.

It will save you money and stress to effectively refresh them with the right cleaning methods.

One of the most common problems is that the build-up of dirt and grime can start to affect how well they function on a daily basis.

You need there to be an even and consistent power source and the unit should never be left to fend for itself. It requires careful attention and cleaning to get the best results!

Strategies for cleaning on a caravan roof

There are two main methods to consider when cleaning your solar panels on a caravan roof. The first is to handle it yourself, and the second is to hire a qualified professional who has experience in the industry.

The latter involves less work and ensures that the job is done correctly.

If you decide to undertake the task yourself then you should be aware of certain factors. Generally speaking, you have all the equipment needed in your home to conduct a thorough and efficient cleaning.

You will need to gauge if they need cleaning and this can be done through the system itself in some cases. Some systems will let you know when the functionality has dropped and from there you can promptly clean the underside.

See also: RV Solar Panel Mounting Ideas (Best Solutions)

What materials to use?

When cleaning under a solar panel, the materials implemented are actually very accessible and simplistic. Still, you want to be fully engaged and mindful during the process.

Make sure you have a functioning hose and some good soap along with towels to get all the debris and help make the job easier.

Fill up a bucket with some warm water and make sure to mix the soap in thoroughly.

Here you can choose what is best to clean with and most choose a high-grade sponge that can be rinsed in the bucket effectively throughout the cleaning process.

Make sure that the sponge is non-abrasive or you might have issues. Never hose them down with high pressure because this can be a tempting method that might seem easier.

It will only damage your unit and cause more trouble than it’s worth.

The importance of cleaning your solar panels

There are many different reasons why your solar panel might not be functioning properly and it is either because of cleanliness issues, old age, or perhaps a mechanical malfunction.

The real concern is regarding the frequency of washing underneath your solar panel and this should be held to a certain standard.

You can probably get away with not washing it for a while, but the right thing to do is schedule a specific time devoted to cleaning them and testing the functionality.

Overall, it is highly necessary to keep them clean over time or you might have to purchase a new unit.

One of the main purposes of solar panels is to help save on the energy bill and it’s much less expensive to clean them yourself.

The true value of the consistency of upkeep

There is usually dust on the underside of a solar panel, but there might be tougher challenges to contend with like dead insects or bird droppings.

These might require a more powerful cleaning solution so you aren’t scrubbing for hours. It’s highly recommended that you purchase something that won’t hard the system and helps to get rid of these hardened challenges.

There is great value in continually cleaning your own solar panels because it will result in a much healthier system that will benefit you longer.

Water is your best friend and works the best in most cases. Consistency means nothing if you’re not doing it right and it’s always important to use a bristle-free brush. Some just use plain water and there’s nothing wrong with that.

What Soap Can I use to clean my Solar Panels?

You should never just use any old soap to clean your solar panels because there are more viable options.

These have been specifically crafted for the job and are for cleaning delicate devices like solar panels while preserving the integrity of your caravan.

One very important factor of any given soap is the PH range.

This is something that would elude many, but the PH of your soap matters because if it’s too acidic it will start to eat away at the aluminum frame of any given panel.

One soap that is worth considering on the market today is the Heliotext automatic solar panel cleaning solution.

This is a safe selection that will keep them clean and healthy for the long term!

How do you clean a flexible Solar Panel?

Flexible solar panels should be cleaned with attention to detail and a gentle approach so you don’t damage the vehicle or the important components of the panel.

Start with lukewarm water and begin gently removing the dirt and debris from the outside of the panel.

Make sure to cover the entire surface area including the base and your caravan solar panels will be running more efficiently.

How often should you clean your solar panels?

This is a question that depends on the circumstance and if you’re out on the dusty and dirty road then you will probably want to wipe down the solar panels every few days/weeks.

However, if you’re not in a normal environment then you should be conducting regular inspections to gauge what time is best to clean them.

Many Caravan owners will not worry about it because they believe the rainfall is enough, but it’s recommended that you do a thorough cleaning every six months or so.

The main variable is the location here and you should pay attention to the weather to determine the appropriate action. Indeed, rain does wash away a good amount of debris, but not everything.

Is Vinegar a good cleaning solution?

Vinegar can be an effective natural cleaning solution if you don’t know where else to turn. It can also be used in conjunction with a recipe for your home mixture.

It definitely works well to clear much of the dust and grime from the back of any solar panels.

Because of the strong smell, many opt to just use soap or plain water, but vinegar will help if you haven’t cleaned it in a while and the dirt is thicker. It will break it down and make the job much easier.

Does Cleaning under your solar Panels make a difference?

If you live in a very dry climate then you will need to clean more often and that’s a fact. Cleaning your solar panels on a monthly basis will make a big difference in efficiency and appearance.

It has been shown to increase the life of your unit by putting less stress on it. One of the best ways to cement it into your routine is to simply clean them at the same time you decide to clean your caravan and it should fit seamlessly into your routine!

You’ll be surprised at the benefits of solar panel cleaning

You will be utterly floored at how solar panel cleaning can help increase the overall continuity and efficiency of any solar panel system.

It’s important to regularly and thoroughly address the common wear and tear of the outdoors. From there, you can effectively have peace of mind throughout the year knowing you saved a lot.

Hiring a professional will give you all the same benefits but for a much steeper price. You will gain a sense of satisfaction knowing that the job is done and your panels are sparkling with perfection!

The facts show that when you don’t clean your solar panel it will reduce the power by around 5%. Rain will definitely help with the buildup, but you still want to make sure with a continual diagnosis of them.

Should you clean your solar power unit?

This is a subject of debate among owners of solar power units, but the general consensus is that you should definitely clean them on a regular basis.

This is especially true during seasons like the fall where leaves can play a huge role in reducing the functionality of your unit.

Definitely survey the area and see if there is any debris hindering them. You might have other surprises too like small dead animals to deal with which can also be a contributing factor.

In essence, you should cement the cleaning of your solar panel into your yearly routine!

What are the long-term benefits of cleaning under a solar panel?

There is a certain sense of peace you’ll get from regularly cleaning them and the first source comes from the amount of money you save on professional services.

Secondly, you will know for sure that your system is functioning right for years to come without any build-up in the back of your mind.

You won’t have to worry about purchasing multiple solar panel units within a short period of time because everything will be properly cleaned and inspected.

Paying attention to your electric bill will help you realize the true subtle savings you get by cleaning them religiously.

Will this cleaning process save me money?

You will save some money by cleaning under your solar panels but it won’t be a remarkable amount. If anything, you should simply care about the overall integrity of your system so it’s working properly.

There are other problems besides dirt that can reduce the efficiency of any panels, and you might discover them while conducting your routine cleaning inspection.

It helps you to stay more alert during the process and you can tackle challenges before they get bigger.

Is Solar power hard to manage?

Overall, Solar power is not that hard to deal with and many choose to not clean under their solar panels.

You should actively be managing your system and with the modern options these days it won’t be hard at all.

In fact, most of them are designed for easy cleaning and have excellent durability during the process.

You want to make sure your solar panels are actively cleaned with the right materials, but that doesn’t mean breaking your back every week. Strive for at least once a month and that should be sufficient!


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Elliot has 20+ years of experience in renewable technology, from conservation to efficient living. His passion is to help others achieve independent off-grid living.

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