Maximise your PV solar panels.
This problem is more of an issue with photovoltaic (PV) solar panels rather than the solar heating panels or evacuated tubes that use indirect passive heating in their daily operation.
PV solar panels require direct sunlight to work efficiently and thus why they're installed in a southerly facing position, so making sure they don't build up a film of dirt over time is essential to squeeze the maximum out of your feed-in tariff reward.
Many homeowners were sold the technology on the basis that they were "self-cleaning". Glass coated with a microscopically thin layer of titanium dioxide. When ultraviolet light falls on the glass, the coating reacts with organic matter in the dirt, breaking it down.
However, you'll know with keeping your car windscreen clean that atmospheric dirt and dust will build up over time on any surface exposed to year-on-year weathering.
Annually, this can amount to many microns that can reduce the efficiency, albeit not to any significant degree. However, over the lifetime of the panels or tariff scheme, this can amount to a considerable level of performance and thus financial reward, depending on the amount of dirt accumulated.
This reason is why, we recommend cleaning your PV solar panels once a year, not only to provide ultimate performance but to keep them in generally good condition to extend maximum performance.
Going back to the cleaned car analogy, you'll know that cars that are not looked after, quickly lose their shine and so the aesthetic aspect towards cleaning your solar panels may be vital for you too.
With over a decade of experience in the solar industry, I can recommend cleaning your personal or 'rent-a-roof' panels to keep their longevity and lifetime performance to its maximum level. Long after the feed-in tariff lifespan of twenty or twenty-five years (depending on which tariff rate you or your rent-a-roof company signed up too), it's not commonly known that photovoltaics can perform up to forty years if looked after properly.
I know with my window cleaner experience that it's important to keep your white UPVC plastic clean to prevent any dirt becoming ingrained into the plastic as a result of variable extremes of sunlight and temperature exposure.
Our window cleaners do as a matter, of course, to keep windows looking newer for longer than would usually be without cleaning. This principle should be adopted for solar panels too.
If you would like to know more about solar panels and the importance of keeping them clean, then please don't hesitate to contact to discuss further.
For anyone reading this without this technology; welcome to the solar century.
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