To keep your solar panels generating efficiently we recommend an annual service to ensure your system is kept in full working order and any fault or drop in a generation is identified and resolved. With average rainfall most panels are self-cleaning, but depending on local weather conditions, bird activity and overhanging trees your panels may also require an occasional clean. It’s unlikely that this will be an annual requirement, but a yearly check will ensure that you do not lose generation due to dirty panels.
Geo Green Solar Panel Maintenance & Servicing Plans
Full PV health check
Fault investigation and maintenance call-out
Costs can vary depending on location.
To enquire please let us know the following information about your solar panels:
- The type of inverter
- Number of panels
- Size of the system
What’s included in a service?
Visual inspection of the system (all electrical hardware and cabling) and check for any insurable damage
Visual Inspection of panels using a drone to determine condition of panels (dirt and damage)
Complete electrical testing of the solar panels and strings (DC electrical installation test and inspection)
Complete electrical testing of the inverters, isolators, and protective devices (AC electrical installation test and inspection)
Advice on whether your solar panels need cleaning and a quotation if required
Service report detailing system status and any possible remedial works
Plant a Tree with Geo Green Power
Did you know you can support reforestation efforts with Geo Green Power? We’ll plant one tree for every quote we produce! Simply request a free quote and we’ll take care of the rest.
Commercial Solar Panel Maintenance & Servicing
If your business has solar panels installed, you will want to consider an annual solar panel service to ensure you are producing energy with maximum efficiency. Faulty or dirty solar panels can reduce the generation of energy, so it’s important to get regular maintenance checks on your solar panels. Geo Green Power offers specialist maintenance and servicing for small businesses and large-scale commercial solar panel systems. Take a look at the commercial sectors our expert team covers.
Domestic Solar Panel Maintenance & Servicing
Does your property have solar panels installed? It’s important that your solar panels are working correctly and at maximum efficiency, therefore we’d recommend an annual solar power system maintenance check with our specialist team. The build-up of dirt or a system fault may be causing your solar panels to reduce energy generation without you realising it. At Geo Green Power we are experts in solar panel maintenance and servicing for homes around the UK.
Tips for checking your panels are in good condition:
• Generation reading: A very easy way of assessing the condition of your panels is from the generation meter reading. If it is similar to the estimation in your handbook, then everything is working fine.
• Check the panels: If accessible, then a simple glance at your panels can tell you if there is any surface debris like moss or lichen build-up. If the panels aren’t clean, then this can reduce the power output.
We often get asked ‘What could go wrong with solar panels?’
Solar panels are very reliable, with few moving parts, so the answer to this question is not a lot. However, there are occasions when solar PV systems need maintenance and we always recommend an annual service to make sure that any issues are identified early and resolved so your energy generation isn’t impacted.
Problems that may occur without regular checks are:
- Birds nesting under the panels
- Dirt build-up on the panels reducing their efficiency
- Solar panel system turning off when it is very cloudy or begins to rain
- Inverter displaying a fault code
- Solar panels cracked or damaged
- Solar monitoring or metering not working properly
- Solar PV system cables being gnawed by wildlife
These issues are rare, but can create problems if not found and resolved early. If your system hasn’t been serviced in the last two years we recommend that you arrange for an engineer to visit.
One of the best ways to ensure that your solar PV system doesn’t experience faults and issues is to choose a reliable installer for your project and check that quality products are specified. Before you sign your agreement, always check that workmanship, panels and inverters are covered by warranties and understand whether your chosen provider will install your system themselves or use contractors.
Issues with solar panels and what to do
If your solar PV system is not generating or showing a red light, you should try resetting the inverter by turning the AC and DC isolators off, waiting 5 minutes, and turning them back on. Check your Operations and Maintenance Manual to ensure you are able to do this safely. If this does not work, you can check that your inverter still has a grid supply and that no MCB or breakers have tripped out, resetting these should resolve this type of fault.
If your solar PV system is still not generating, you may need an engineer to investigate. Usually, inverters will display a fault code indicating what the issue is. If you are contacting us regarding a fault, please provide the make, model and serial number of the inverter along with the fault indicated and we will be able to diagnose this for you.
If you suspect that panels are broken, or cables are damaged then you should report the fault as soon as possible to ensure an engineer can resolve the issue quickly and safely.
Common solar faults:
- Underperformance: This may be due to the condition of your panels or cable misalignment.
- Inverter faults: These are usually easily rectified with a simple reset, following the manual.
The great part about solar is that there are very rarely any problems – but after roughly 15 years you can expect to replace the inverter as these don’t have a fantastic shelf life (like the solar panels do).
Got a question?
Rob Jennison, Service and Maintenance Manager oversees all of our solar maintenance and servicing schedules and options. Get in touch today to organise your service.
Solar Panel Maintenance FAQS
Are my solar panels generating as much energy as possible?
One easy way you can check if your panels are performing at their best is to check the estimated annual generation figure, which you can find in your MCS certificate. If this number isn’t accurate to the figure on your generation meter, then this can be a sign that there may be an issue with your system.
Checking your generation figure every quarter is a great habit to get into – especially when you’re approaching the warmer months, as you’ll want your panels working at full capacity and taking advantage of the summer sun!
What is the lifespan on solar panels and inverters?
Most solar panels come with a minimum 20-year warranty – so they’re truly future-proof! If there’s an issue, it’s more likely to be your inverter or power supply.
The lifespan of inverters, unfortunately, isn’t as long as that of the panels. Before you report a fault, it’s worth checking a few things:
- Is there enough ventilation? Inverters can overheat if not provided with space to breathe. Making sure they’re not boxed in or near heat sources (radiators etc) is really important to ensure the longevity of your inverter.
- Is the inverter clean and free of dust? Regularly cleaning your inverter can extend its lifespan, as dust can easily clog up the vents and cause overheating.
Is there a problem with my inverter?
Depending on how good the manufacturer is, inverters typically have a life span between 10-15 years. Fault codes on inverters vary depending on the manufacturer. Some common codes to look out for include:
- Error 509 = No energy is being fed back to the grid. The common cause of this error is dirt or debris on your panels.
- Error 314 = This is a calibration timeout; which should rectify itself when the inverter repeats its start-up routine.
- Green Flashing Light = A connection issue. Once the conditions for the feed-in operation are met, the inverter will start the feed-in operation. Make sure the power supply is secure and connected to the PV system.
What can cause solar panels to stop working?
It is very unlikely that your actual panels will stop working as there are no moving parts, a fault with your system is much more likely to be an error with your inverter. Panels do however stop working if they are damaged from falling objects, if they or the cabling is moved and becomes loose or if they become excessively dirty. All of these issues can be identified during service.
Can you replace just one solar panel?
Yes. In fact, solar panel systems are designed so that you can replace panels easily if it was ever needed.
How much does it cost to replace a broken solar panel?
This will depend on how easy it is for us to reach and replace a specific panel. Costs would vary from £350 + VAT for the panel and work involved.
How do I clean my solar panels?
In most cases, local rainfall and the angle of installation means that solar panels are self-cleaning. However, dust, bird droppings, tree sap, lichen and other dirt can build up so from time to time it is worth cleaning them manually. A spray with a garden hose is often enough to remove surface dirt, or most window cleaning companies will have a reach-and-wash system that can be used to get the panels thoroughly clean in next to no time. We do recommend an annual service of your solar PV system and as part of this, our team can inspect your panels and assess whether they need cleaning.
When are my panels most efficient?
Solar panels will be most efficient when the sun is hitting them directly, which is around midday. Light intensity is the most important factor when considering efficiency – when the sun is lower in the sky, light won’t be as intense and this will reduce the output of your panels. Seasonal changes can also affect the efficiency of your panels, as during the summer, the sun shines for longer than in winter.
From around May to September, your solar PV system will produce more energy than October to April as the days are shorter. However, remember that solar panels don’t need direct sunlight to function. Even on cloudy days, your solar panels will still absorb light and continue to work effectively. Whatever the weather, you can benefit from energy production year-round – it will simply be more effective on sunnier days, and at times when the sun is highest in the sky.
How do I prevent birds from nesting under my solar panels?
Birds can be tempted to nest under solar panels, particularly pigeons who tend to build their nests in awkward places. The area under a solar panel is shaded and offers protection from wind and rain, so it’s no surprise that this can be an issue. There are ways you can prevent it from happening. When we install your solar PV system, we can pigeon-proof your panels – simply ask us about this when you book in a consultation, and we can add it to your order. While we can’t retro-fit pigeon-proofing, we do have a useful guide on how to handle pigeons nesting under your solar panels.
Can leaves, moss and debris gather under or on the panels?
It’s not common for leaves or other plant materials to be a problem, as the panels sit quite close to the roof tiles. However, if leaves were to gather under the panels, they could be dealt with as part of a maintenance visit by a member of our team. Likewise, moss doesn’t typically form on solar panels, but if you have noticed it developing, you can discuss it with whoever is cleaning your solar panels so that they know to take extra care to remove it.
Get in Touch Today
Our Nottinghamshire base means our teams are well-placed to service and maintain systems throughout the UK. We regularly service systems in Nottinghamshire, Leicestershire, and Derbyshire. For further information and advice regarding our heat pump servicing and maintenance services, fill in our online enquiry form today.