Solar panels and solar power are straight-up excellent. The panels shower your household with a sufficient amount of energy while also helping the environment. Solar panel installation will also help you to reduce your bills, get a return on your investment, and make adequate savings.
But despite being the greatest, solar panels have some performance issues that may affect your savings. Luckily, there is not much to worry about. The basic issues can be easily fixed, and for the major ones, a warranty is available.
This article will focus on the issues that affect even the best solar panels and methods to fix them. So, if your solar panel is causing issues, then keep on scrolling.
Detection of issues
Identifying the exact cause is the primary thing you should do when you notice that your solar panels are experiencing common productivity problems. The identification is important because your solar panels can suffer from a significant malfunction or a simple seasonal variation.
Until you identify the exact cause, it's challenging to analyse the precise reason for the low productivity. If your system is suffering from seasonal variation, then simply cleaning it will be enough. However, if it has a major issue, then it will require professional help.
Now you must be wondering how to detect problems in your solar Australia? Well, it's pretty easy. Install the applications used for monitoring solar panels and regularly check the output of your solar panels. If you see a drop, then you can figure out the common variations in productivity and easily solved issues, like,
- Cloudy weather
- Tripped circuit breakers
- Dust, pollen, dirt, leaves and other particles on the base of your solar panels
- Lower productivity during winter
- Disconnected wires
You must always keep in mind that solar panels lose their productivity over an extended period of time. So, if you notice a sudden drop in productivity, don't ignore it. The drop can refer to serious problems because the best solar panels lose around a capacity percentage of 0.5 every year. Therefore, if your solar panel produced 10,000 kWh in the first year after the solar panel installation, it will produce 0.5% less in the following year.
Apart from checking the capacity, you can also detect an issue in the panels by tracking your electricity bills. However, you have to be careful since there are many reasons for a high electricity bill amount. For example, your air conditioners or other cooling appliances can be one of the primary reasons that increase your bill as well if you live in a warm area.
You can opt for a dedicated monitoring system for your solar Australia since its measurements will not be affected by using other electronic appliances. Get monitoring systems that are compatible with various inverter brands. You can even get the modern inverters since they detect many errors on their own and even spot the exact reason making troubleshooting much easier.
The common problems that affect solar panel performance
Now let's talk in detail about the common issues that affect the performance of even the best solar panels. Various problems result in the low productivity of the panels. However, it would be best if you remembered that your panels would not generate the same wattage power as mentioned in their nameplate.
While determining their wattage, they are tested under laboratory conditions that are not attainable on rooftops. Your output will also affect your local ambient temperature, roof orientation, and regular sunshine. Despite these factors, some of the usual issues concerning low energy generation are:
Shade from new constructions and trees
It may happen that when your solar panel installation was done, there was no obstruction that blocked the sunlight to reach your panels. But later, due to new construction, your panels are blocked out from receiving sunlight. The growth of trees can also be one of the reasons for shading.
However, several governments provide solar easements. It is a legal protection given by the government that stops the people in your surrounding area from building structures that may block your panels from the sunlight.
Every solar system uses a considerable amount of wiring for its proper installation and connectivity. However, there are high chances of the wires getting disconnected and causing issues.
Dirt, dust, and pollen
Dirt, dust, and pollen can accumulate on the surface of your solar panels. This accumulation may result in sunlight blockage and thus decrease or affect the solar power output.
Monitoring system errors
If you are experiencing low energy output, then it could be the fault of your monitoring systems as well. Often, the solar panels are working perfectly; however, there's an issue with the monitoring system resulting in low output.
Due to the constant seasonal change, the productivity of solar also suffers. During summer, solar panels tend to produce more power; however, it is comparatively less during winter or monsoon.
Solar panels do work during cloudy weather, but productivity suffers.
Ways to address the problems and maximise the efficiency of solar panels
The basic problems of solar panels can be fixed by just cleaning them or checking them thoroughly. Issues caused by dust and dirt accumulation needs regular cleaning and checking only. However, some major issues need professional attention. They are a bit more challenging and may require a warranty claim.
If your solar panels are blocked from receiving sunlight due to large trees, then the trees must be trimmed shorter to solve the problem. It is the safest option since moving solar panels are extremely difficult.
You may damage the system component, which will result in a void warranty.
Blockage from sunlight due to newer construction is also a challenging situation. To avoid this kind of issue entirely, you must get your neighbours to sign a solar easement from before.
However, the signature must be out of their free will because otherwise, there will be no legal barrier on them from building new structures. So, before doing a solar panel installation, thoroughly research your neighbouring constructions and make sign the easement.
As mentioned above, if your solar panels are working appropriately but your monitoring system is showing zero production, contact your system provider.
Another problem where you should communicate with your PV system provider is when your electricity production is prevented due to some factors. Waiting for the electricity bill is not a wise choice since it might be shocking.
Electrical flaws or other significant malfunctions are rare if you install the best solar panels and work with the top professionals. But always remember that the occurrence of this is rare but not impossible. So, if a major breakdown occurs, there are certain things that you must keep in mind.
You will have no solar power output for a few days in the case of a breakdown. However, all the damaged components will get altered without any cost if you have a strong warranty.
You will have a warranty period of 10 to 12 years for a manufacturing defect. Although, in the case of power production, the warranty period is 25 to 30 years.
The inverters have a warranty period of 5 years, but it may get extended depending on your manufacturer.
If you have a battery along with your system, its warranty period is 10 years.
Typically, the company you installed your solar panels from will help you with the warranty claims and alter your components. But it will only happen if you are dealing with an expert. So, it is important to choose a well-known professional solar installer for your system installation. Solar Secure is a CEC Approved solar retailer, and we have a team of CEC Accredited solar installers.