workers cleaning solar panels on a rooftop

How to Clean Solar Panels Effectively in Ontario

The solar industry’s growth in Ontario over the past decade has been impressive. Many residents use solar panels as a sustainable energy source to harness the province’s abundant sunshine. However, efficient solar panels require regular maintenance, which includes cleaning. If you’ve been wondering how to clean solar panels to maintain efficiency, this article will guide you. Let’s get started.

Safety Precautions for Solar Panel Cleaning

professional solar panels cleaners at work

Before embarking on the task of cleaning solar panels, it is essential to take a few safety precautions. Many solar panels installation happens on roofs, and thus cleaning them might involve climbing to heights. Again, it is advisable to use a safety harness to prevent accidents.

Consider hiring professional PV panel cleaners if you’re uncomfortable with heights or your setup needs to be simplified.

Besides, experts in the solar industry have the right tools and knowledge to clean PV panels safely and efficiently.

Step-By-Step Guide on How to Clean Solar Panels

Cleaning your solar panels might seem daunting, but one can break it down into manageable steps. Here is a more detailed step-by-step guide on effectively cleaning solar panels.

Gather the Necessary Tools

First and foremost, you will need the correct tools to clean your solar panels efficiently. These include:

  • A garden hose helps rinse your PV panels before and after cleaning. Ensure it has a suitable nozzle to spray a gentle stream of water to avoid damaging the panels.
  • A soft brush with a long handle will help scrub the panels. A brush with a wiper attachment is preferable for efficient cleaning. In addition, if the brush is automated, ensure you have the necessary rechargeable batteries.
  • Mild detergent or a cleaning agent: A cleaning agent designed for PV panels is best. If this is not available, a mild detergent will work as well. Avoid abrasive substances that can scratch and damage the solar panels.

Cleaning Process

Initial Rinse

Start by rinsing your solar panels with water from your garden hose. This initial rinse will remove loose dirt and dust build-up, making scrubbing more accessible and practical. Aim for a gentle stream of water to avoid any potential damage.

Apply the Cleaning Agent

After the initial rinse, it’s time to apply your cleaning agent. Dilute your mild detergent or PV panel cleaner according to the instructions on the product. Dip your soft brush into the solution and gently begin scrubbing the surface of the PV panels. Work systematically, starting from the top and moving down, so the dirty water doesn’t spill over the already cleaned areas.

Scrub the Panels

Use your long-handled brush to scrub the panels gently. Also, pay special attention to any spots with stubborn grime or bird droppings. However, remember that applying too much pressure or using a hard-bristled brush can cause scratches, so always err on the side of caution.

Final Rinse

Once you’ve scrubbed the panels, rinse them again using the garden hose. Make sure to rinse thoroughly to remove all the cleaning solutions. If any solution remains, it can leave a film on the PV panels, reducing their effectiveness.

Inspect the Panels

After rinsing, inspect your solar panels for any remaining dirt or residue. If you notice stubborn spots, repeat the cleaning steps on those areas.

Regular Cleaning

Cleaning your solar panels is a task that takes time to complete. Depending on Ontario’s environment and weather conditions, you may need to clean your panels multiple times a year. Monitor your solar panel output to determine the optimal cleaning frequency. Remember, clean solar panels are efficient, so that regular maintenance will ensure the longevity and effectiveness of your investment.

By following this detailed guide on how to clean solar panels, you can help ensure your solar panels operate at maximum panel efficiency, providing your home with clean, sustainable energy for years to come.

The Role of Professional Cleaners

While many homeowners opt to take the DIY approach to clean solar panels, there’s undeniable value in hiring professional panel cleaners. They play a significant role in maintaining the efficiency of your solar panel system. Here’s a detailed look at how skilled workers can enhance the solar panel cleaning process.

Expertise in Solar Panel Cleaning

Professionals have the right tools and specialized knowledge for cleaning solar panels. They understand the intricacies of solar panel systems, from the delicate nature of the panels to the best cleaning agents that won’t cause damage. Their expertise ensures the cleaning process takes place safely, thoroughly, and without causing any potential harm to your solar panel investment.

Safety Measures

Often, solar panels installed on rooftops pose a challenge for cleaning due to their height and positioning. Undertaking such a task may expose an untrained person to the risk of falls or other accidents.

Professional service providers, however, are trained to work in such conditions. They have the proper safety equipment, such as harnesses and ladders, and the know-how to navigate the risks associated with heights and sloped surfaces.

Thorough Cleaning

Professionals have the skills and tools to clean panels effectively, even in hard-to-reach areas. Besides, they can easily remove stubborn dirt, grime, and even bird droppings that can significantly reduce the panels’ efficiency.

Remember, solar panels that attract birds often have more droppings, which can be hard to clean. Professionals’ training helps them handle such challenges, thoroughly cleaning their panels.

Saves Time

Cleaning solar panels, particularly for larger installations, can be time-consuming. Outsourcing the task to a professional service saves you this time.

It lets you focus on other essential tasks while ensuring your panels are pristine.

Regular Maintenance Schedule

Professional cleaners often offer service packages that include regular cleaning schedules. Furthermore, they monitor your solar panel system and perform cleaning and maintenance tasks at appropriate intervals.

This way, you do not have to keep track of when to clean panels next, and your solar panel system always operates optimally.

Post-Cleaning Check

In addition to cleaning, professionals often perform a post-cleaning check to ensure everything is working as it should. They can identify any potential issues with the panels or the overall system, providing you notice the minor problems early before they become significant.

Professional panel cleaners, with their expertise and dedicated service, can help ensure that your solar panel system continues to operate efficiently.

They are a significant component of the solar panel cleaning process, and any homeowner seeking to maintain the efficiency and lifespan of their solar panels should consider that.


Solar panel maintenance, especially cleaning, is crucial in ensuring that your panels remain efficient in converting sunlight into energy. Now that you understand how to clean solar panels, the task should no longer be daunting.

Remember, the process involves safety precautions, and sometimes, seeking the help of professionals could be the best approach to keep your panels clean and operating at maximum efficiency.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Is the Best Thing to Clean Solar Panels With?

The best thing to clean solar panels with is a soft brush or a sponge and a mild, non-abrasive soap or detergent mixed with water.

You can also use a hose with a suitable nozzle to rinse the panels before and after cleaning. However, avoid high-pressure water as it can damage the panels.

Can I Use Dawn Dish Soap to Clean My Solar Panels?

You can use Dawn dish soap or any mild, non-abrasive soap to clean your solar panels. However, ensure you thoroughly rinse the panels after cleaning to remove any soap residue, which can leave a film on the solar panels that reduce their effectiveness.

Can You Hose Down Solar Panels?

Yes, you can use a garden hose to rinse your solar panels. Again, a gentle rinse with a hose is a great way to remove loose dirt and debris.

However, avoid using high-pressure water or a power washer, as these can potentially damage the solar panels.





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