How to Clean Solar Panels

Do you wish to learn how to clean your solar panels? South Africans have been grappling with power outages over the past few years. The situation will probably remain the same well into the future. That has driven a lot of people to turn to solar to power their homes and offices. To set up your system, you need to have solar panels, an inverter and batteries, among other components. You are here because your panels have grown dirty and you wish to clean them.

How to remove dirt from solar panels

The following is how to clean your solar panel;

  1. If your solar panels are on the roof, you will need to ensure that you are getting up there safely. Don’t take it for granted that the roof tiles will be able to take your weight. Also use a ladder to get access to the roof. For safety reasons, you need to have a harness while on the roof.
  2. The roof of your home or office can get extremely hot, particularly on sunny days. You should only climb up there when it is cooler. Perhaps you can plan cleaning your panels for the late afternoon or early morning hours.
  3. Gather the materials that you need before going onto the roof. You don’t want to make too many trips up and down the ladder as that increases your chances of injury.
  4. You should clean your panels using a soft cloth and water. Don’t use strong detergents. There are some solar panel cleaning solutions that can be found out there. You can also use gentle soap to clean the panel.
  5. Another thing that you need to have is a squeegee. That’s great for drying the panels after cleaning. A squeegee is also important for ensuring that the panels do not get stains after cleaning.
  6. You should have running water when cleaning your panels. Connect a hosepipe to your tap and take it up onto the roof. Having running water ensures maximum cleanliness for your panels.

Call professionals if you are not sure about your safety while on the roof

That’s how to clean your solar panels. You can do it using water, a soft soap or a dedicated cleaning solution, and a squeegee for drying the panels.

One thing that we need to state is that should you be unsure what you are doing, it’s way better to hire professionals to clean your panels on your behalf.

It won’t cost you much. What you don’t want to have happen is for you to fall off the roof while in the process of cleaning the panels.

If you don’t have a ladder, then get professionals to do the cleaning for you. That’s because the roof can be a dangerous place. If you slip and fall, you could very well lose your life.

Sources of dirt for solar panels

How do solar panels get dirty in the first place. There are a couple of potential sources of dirt for solar panels.

First, there is dust. If your panel is angled in the right way, this dust will usually be washed away in rain. However, there are places out there that get scant rain.

Australia is one such place. There are parts that can go a long time without rain. In that case, dust will build up to such a level that it will need to be cleaned.

If your panels are near trees, leaves can also become another contaminant for your solar panels. And if the trees house birds, bird droppings could very well end up on your panels.

Is rain enough to clean solar panels?

Solar panels are exposed to the rain, so is that enough to clean them? That’s something that a lot of people have been asking. The answer is, in most instances, rain is enough to clean solar panels.

For most people, solar panels on the roof never need to be cleaned. However, there are times when you may need to click up there to clean your panels.

Perhaps you live in a particularly dusty environment that gets little rain. In that case, it may be necessary to clean your panels every now and again.

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Why clean solar panels?

Solar panels are placed outside where they will have access to the sun. That exposes them to dust, debris and other materials. All this can leave them dirty.

It’s important to clean your panel if you wish to have it retain it’s efficiency. Anything that blocks the panel reduces the amount of power that it is able to produce.


In this article, we showed you how to clean solar panels. We noted that a lot of South Africans have been moving to solar as a hedge against the ongoing Eskom blackouts.

As far as cleaning your panels is concerned, you don’t usually need to do it because the panels are cleaned by the rain. However, there are some environments where it becomes necessary to clean the panels. These are places where rain is scant rain.

When cleaning your panels, the first thing to consider is your safety, particularly if the panels on your roof. It’s probably better to get someone to help you while you are carrying out your work up there.

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