How To Keep Your Solar Running Efficiently This Winter
Winter is a particularly challenging time for solar panels in Australia, as shorter days and more frequent clouds can lead to lower efficiency. Not only that, but it’s also that time of the year where we generally require more electricity to fulfill some basic needs like heating and lighting.
It’s true that a lot of this may be out of our control, but this doesn’t mean we can’t take certain steps to help offset the higher energy costs expected in the next few months.
In this week’s blog post we will be going over a few things you can do to keep your solar system running strong all winter long.
Tilt Your Solar Panels
Depending on how your panels are currently positioned on your roof and whether or not you already have a tilt-frame (or would like to install one), tilting your panels can be a great way to maximise their output during winter.
In general, the panel should be installed at an angle that is perpendicular to the sun's rays. However, in some cases it may be more efficient to tilt the panel. For example, here in Australia during the winter season, the sun is positioned lower in the sky. Therefore, tilting the panel towards the sun can maximise efficiency by capturing more sunlight during the day.
The angle of tilt also needs to be adjusted throughout the year, as the sun's position changes with the seasons. By tilting your solar panel at the correct angle, you can improve its efficiency and generate more electricity for your home or business.
Make Sure Your Panels Are Clean
Contrary to popular belief, solar panels can work perfectly fine in winter and the natural rainfall may also help get rid of any built up grime. However, panels generally produce the least amount of electricity at this time of the year, which is why it may be worth considering getting your panels cleaned so that they can absorb as much sunlight as possible. This is especially important if your panels are not tilted, as there’s a much higher chance of grime-build up on a panel which can drastically lower its level of efficiency.
Reduce Your Electricity Usage
With winter comes higher electricity bills as we try to keep our homes warm and comfortable. However there are a few simple things we can do to reduce our electricity consumption and save money without having to sacrifice comfort.
One way to reduce electricity consumption is to make sure our homes are energy efficient. This means ensuring that our windows and doors are well insulated, and that we're not losing heat through gaps or drafty areas. This will help to keep heat from escaping and will make it easier to maintain a comfortable temperature without using as much energy.
Lastly, traditional heaters can be expensive and inefficient. A better option would be to invest in an energy-efficient reverse cycle air-conditioner. Not only will this provide efficient heating in the winter, but it can also be used for cooling in the summer. As a result, it is a versatile and cost-effective choice for many homeowners looking to reduce their energy usage during winter.
Monitor your solar energy system
In order to get the most out of your solar panels, it's important to monitor their performance on a regular basis. By keeping an eye on things like panel output and efficiency, you can make sure that your solar system is running as efficiently as possible during the colder months when we consume the most electricity. There are a number of different ways to monitor your solar system, but one of the simplest is to use a solar analytics platform like the Solar Analytics units, which we at ASD usually retrofit with our customers’ inverters.
Just because solar panels work best during summer, doesn't mean they shouldn’t be performing during winter. However, in the event that something doesn’t look right, being able to monitor your solar in real-time makes it super easy to spot any issues right away.
If you would like to learn more about how you can optimise your solar system or would like to book a Solar Health Check to make sure you’re getting the most out of your solar this winter, get in touch with us today by submitting an enquiry here or simply call our team directly at 1800 765 237.
Our qualified and experienced solar experts will assist you in ensuring that your solar system will be able to provide you with sufficient energy for many years to come, no matter the weather.