A Comprehensive Guide to Installing and Maintaining Solar Panels

Solar Panels A Comprehensive Guide to Installing and Maintaining Solar Systems

Solar panels offer an affordable, dependable, and environmentally friendly way to power your home. However, they may require some technical skill to install, and some homeowners may not know how to properly maintain their system.

To help you properly maintain your solar panels, we’ve compiled this comprehensive guide. With this information, you can rest assured that your system will operate optimally for years to come.


Installing a solar system can vary in cost depending on its size and how much energy you consume. On average, according to Clean Solar Energy (CSE), installing a 5-kW system ranges in price between $15,000 to $255,000 per system.

The amount of energy a system produces is determined by several factors, including your roof type, house orientation and sun exposure in your area. To calculate their efficiency before installation, it’s wise to use tools like SolarReviews’ calculator.

Recently, the cost of solar panels has dropped drastically due to technological advances driven by Chinese producers who dominate the industry. Unfortunately, new regulations out of Beijing are curtailing subsidies for this sector of renewable energy production, raising doubts as to whether those manufacturers will stay in business.

Energy Efficiency

Solar panel energy efficiency is measured by the percentage of sunlight converted to electricity. This number can vary based on several factors, including the type of cells used in the panel, its electrical configurations and surrounding elements.

At present, solar panel efficiency ranges from 15 to 20%. High-efficiency panels may reach as high as 23 percent.

A higher efficiency rating means more power production, so it’s essential to find a solar system with the highest possible efficiency rating.

One way to maximize your solar efficiency is by orienting your panels to track the sun. Although this may be an expensive process, the extra savings over time will be worth it when taken into account.

Another way to boost solar panel efficiency is by clearing away trees that block sunlight from reaching your panels. You could also utilize a battery system for storage of energy when your solar system isn’t producing enough power for household needs.


Solar panels are built to last, resistant to all sorts of weather conditions for an extended period. However, there may be some degradation during their service life.

According to a 2012 study by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, solar panels lose on average 0.8% of their power output annually. However, this rate can vary depending on which brand you select and how well you maintain your panels.

To maximize their longevity, it is important to protect them from external elements and perform regular maintenance. This includes keeping them free of debris, snow accumulation and other environmental hazards.


The good news is that solar systems typically need minimal upkeep to run smoothly. However, there are still a number of elements which could negatively impact its performance.

Faulty equipment, acts of nature and even just plain bad luck can negatively affect a solar system’s power output. It is for this reason that routine maintenance is so important.

Thankfully, solar panels are built to withstand most common types of damage. Most come with warranties from their manufacturer that guarantee they will perform at their specified level for a certain number of years.

Warranties typically last 10-20 years, though some extend up to 25. They also cover any unexpected damage due to storms or other external factors beyond your control, helping you save on unnecessary maintenance costs.