Taking care of solar panels in cold weather

solar panels snow.jpg

If you’re looking to add solar panels to your RV, there are some important facts you need to know about solar panels and cold weather. While the cold isn’t harmful to your solar panels, it can impact the way that they function. Read about some of the frequently asked questions about solar performance in the winter months.

Cold Weather

It’s important to know that when the weather turns cold, it can affect your battery storage capacity for your solar panels. If you keep your batteries fully charged, and you use them on a frequent or daily basis, they won’t freeze very easily. Temperatures would have to drop significantly, to negative 70 degrees or more, before you could be worried about that. It is important to note that if batteries aren’t fully charged they can freeze much faster, around 10 degrees F. Ask your solar provider what they recommend during the cold winter months.

Snowy Weather

When AM Solar installs solar panels on an RV they’re sure to install them so that they can collect the most sunlight possible. Typically in the winter snow won’t stick to solar panels, because they’re really smooth and snow mostly slides right off. If you’re able to store your solar powered RV so that the panels are facing the sun you’ll see the best results. If the panels are facing the sun, whatever snow sticks should melt.

If you do find that snow is sticking to your solar panels, you need to be careful about removing it. Try to gently remove most of the snow from your panels and RV roof. Try to always have a broom or brush on hand, so that you can clear fresh snow off. The longer snow sits, the more likely it is to freeze and stick to your panels. The longer you leave snow on your panels, the longer they’ll go without collecting energy.

You also want to be sure to prevent any damage to your solar panels. Just like water melts into cracks on the sidewalk, it can melt into any cracks in your solar panels, and expand the cracks when it freezes. This is one of the main reasons why it’s important to keep snow off of your solar panels.

Cloudy Weather

Don’t worry if you experience more cloudy weather in the winter. Even if it’s cloudy, your panels are still collecting energy. If there’s any light, your panels are collecting it and converting it in to energy. Remember that solar panels don’t react to heat, they react to light, so as long as there is light, they’ll be collecting energy.