Common Mistakes to Avoid When Cleaning Solar Panels

Common Mistakes to Avoid When Cleaning Solar Panels
Before and after cleaning

At Eco Shine Solar, we understand that maintaining your solar panels is key to ensuring they continue to operate efficiently, saving you money on your energy bill and helping protect the environment. However, there are common mistakes that people often make when cleaning their panels that can lead to reduced efficiency or even damage. Here, we share our expertise on what to avoid and how to correctly care for your solar panels, keeping them in top condition.


Cleaning your solar panels isn’t just about keeping them looking good. It’s vital for maintaining their efficiency and longevity. But it’s not always as simple as it seems. Certain common errors can hinder your panels’ performance or even cause irreversible damage. Let’s dive into the common mistakes you should steer clear of and provide you with the best practices for solar panel maintenance.

Mistake #1: Using Harsh Chemicals

Never resort to abrasive chemicals to clean your solar panels. Such substances can corrode the protective coatings and lead to permanent damage. At Eco Shine Solar, we advocate for the use of eco-friendly cleaning solutions that gently cleanse the panels without harming them or the environment.

Mistake #2: Relying on Rain to Clean Your Solar Panels

A common misconception is that the natural rainfall is sufficient to keep solar panels clean and functioning optimally. While it’s true that rain can help wash away some surface dirt and debris, it is not enough to ensure the deep clean necessary for maximum solar panel efficiency.

Rainwater can remove loose dirt but often leaves behind a residue, especially when it comes to stickier substances like bird droppings or tree sap. These residues can create a film on the panels that significantly reduces their efficiency. In fact, relying solely on rain can lead to the accumulation of grime that becomes harder to remove over time, necessitating more aggressive cleaning methods which could potentially harm the panel’s surface.

Mistake #3: Not Following Safety Protocols

Ignoring safety protocols during solar panel cleaning can lead to accidents, injuries, or even fatalities, especially when dealing with installations in hard-to-reach areas or at significant heights. Safety is not just a personal concern but also a legal and financial one, as accidents can lead to costly medical bills, legal issues, and insurance complications.

The right equipment is crucial for safe solar panel cleaning. This includes using ladders, harnesses, and scaffolding correctly and ensuring they are in good condition. Even for ground-mounted panels, appropriate footwear and gloves can prevent slips and cuts. It’s not just about the equipment you wear or use; it’s also about how you use it. Ensuring that all equipment is used correctly and safely, in accordance with manufacturer guidelines, can be the difference between a job well done and a dangerous accident.

If you’re not comfortable with heights, lack the necessary equipment, or are unsure about the correct cleaning techniques, it’s time to call in the professionals. Not only can they ensure the job is done safely, but they can also do it more effectively, thanks to their specialised tools and experience.

Mistake #4: Ignoring Manufacturer’s Cleaning Instructions

Solar panel manufacturers provide specific cleaning and maintenance instructions to ensure the longevity and efficiency of their products. These guidelines are based on thorough testing and are designed to ensure that the panels perform optimally over their expected lifespan. Ignoring these instructions can lead to practices that may not only diminish the panel’s performance but also potentially void the warranty.

Warranties on solar panels typically cover defects in manufacturing and materials and sometimes performance to a certain extent. However, these warranties often have stipulations that require the owner to maintain and care for the panels according to the manufacturer’s guidelines. Non-compliance with these instructions can void the warranty, leaving the owner without recourse in the event of a defect or premature degradation in performance.

Mistake #5: Using High-Pressure Water on Solar Panels

Using high-pressure hoses to clean solar panels is a big mistake that can lead to costly damage. The force of high-pressure water can be too intense for the delicate components of solar panels, such as the photovoltaic cells and the protective glass covering. This intense pressure can cause micro-cracks in the cells, degrade seals and gaskets, and even dislodge wiring, all of which compromise the panel’s integrity and functionality.

Moreover, high-pressure water can force dirt and debris into the crevices of the panel frames and junction boxes, potentially causing water ingress and electrical faults. Such damage might not be immediately apparent but can significantly shorten the panel’s lifespan and decrease its efficiency over time.

At Eco Shine Solar, our cleaning methodology is designed to safeguard the solar panels while ensuring they are professionally cleaned. We use low-pressure, purified water, which effectively removes dirt, dust, and bird droppings without jeopardising the panels’ structural and operational integrity.

Mistake #6: Neglecting Regular Inspections and Cleanings

Maintaining solar panels through regular inspections and cleanings is crucial for their efficiency and longevity. Over time, panels are subjected to environmental conditions that can lead to the accumulation of dirt, dust, bird droppings, and other debris. This buildup can obstruct sunlight from reaching the photovoltaic cells, significantly reducing the panels’ energy output.

At Eco Shine Solar, we understand that each location has its unique environmental challenges, which is why we offer customized cleaning schedules tailored to the specific needs of your site. Our scheduled cleaning services are designed to ensure that your panels are always operating at their peak efficiency.

By establishing a regular maintenance schedule, we can monitor the condition of your panels and address any dirt or debris accumulation promptly. This proactive approach not only enhances the performance of your solar panels but also extends their lifespan, providing you with a reliable and efficient energy source for years to come.


Properly maintaining your solar panels ensures they continue to provide maximum energy output and last longer. Avoiding these common cleaning mistakes will help protect your investment and the environment. For professional cleaning and maintenance, trust Eco Shine Solar to provide the expert care your solar panels need.

Don’t let common cleaning mistakes compromise your solar panels’ efficiency and lifespan. Contact Eco Shine Solar today to schedule a professional cleaning service. Our expert team uses eco-friendly practices and state-of-the-art equipment to keep your solar investment performing at its best. Visit our website or call us to learn more about our services and how we can help you maximise your solar panels’ potential.