During the winter months, snow will temporarily limit the efficiency of your solar panels, but this is a transient problem that will correct itself within a few weeks. Fortunately, the panels are resistant to snow accumulation due to their inherent nature.
Another critical factor to remember is the use of snow guards on your panels.
Before you experience a decline in the output of your solar panels, you will notice a drop in efficiency caused by the cover that shelters you from snow. If the roof faces south or east, or if your panels are fixed on the ground, the roof will receive less light than the ground.
There is an explanation that the solar panels would be mounted at an angle. In fact, it is recommended instead of leveling it with your roof or flat on the ground.
Solar Panels at an Angle
Tilting the panels not only helps capture a bit more sun as they face south, but it may also prevent snow that may eventually accumulate. Generally, snow will slip off the panels when it falls.
Although snow may adhere because of moisture and weight, it will typically sheet off once it gets too heavy for the surface. Even in the worst-case scenario, you might sweep snow off of your panels. However, you’ll need a brush that is smooth enough to remove snow from the surface without scraping the panels’ skin.
Snow will only become a significant issue if it is heavy enough to overtake the solar panel and can’t be brushed off. Even then, the particles will melt quicker than the snow on the rest of the planet since the radiation from the solar panel’s lighting, including light that passes through the snow, will assist in melting it.
When solar panels are exposed, they perform best when there is still snow on the ground cover. This is because the snow has reflective properties that may enhance what your solar panels can absorb.
In fact, snow on the field is among the best solar light reflectors available. That is why snowy days seem brighter than summertime. That said, your solar panels harness all of the additional reflecting light to generate extra energy.
Another thing to look forward to is when the snow melts from your array; it acts as a natural cleaner. Dust and dirt will accumulate on the surface of panels in drier regions of the United States. This buildup may have an adverse effect on the performance of a solar array, resulting in decreased yield.
Solar array owners in these areas are often required to have their arrays cleaned in order to maintain their efficiency.
Even though the summer months equate to more sunlight exposure, which also means more generated energy than during winter, your solar panels generally perform better in colder weather.
We can conclude this since lower temperatures increase electrical conductivity while heat decreases it. Thus, the decrease in energy output during these seasons doesn’t appear as significant as you believe.
To conclude, we strongly advise you not to clean snow from your solar panels. The risk of self-injury or panel loss should no longer justify the negligible benefit. Your solar panel array is expected to be free from snow in a few days, and any production shortfall will almost certainly be compensated for during those long summer days. So overall, there isn’t much of a disadvantage for you to worry about.