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Ashton McGee Restoration Group - Roofing Company logo

(952) 426-3736

Get your quote

(952) 426-3736

get your free quote

Do Solar Panels Even Work in Winter?

Author: Rebekah Pierce

Of all the things to worry about when it comes to your solar panels, whether they’ll still work in the winter is probably at the bottom of the list. 

But, believe it or not, this is a question that people do ask! In this post, we’ll take a look at how solar panels work in cold weather and dispel some of the myths about them. 

So, if you’re curious about solar panels in winter, read on!

Do Solar Panels Work in the Cold?

You might think that solar panels wouldn’t work as well in the cold, but actually, the opposite is true. Cold weather can actually improve their performance. 

That’s because photovoltaic technology efficiently converts power better when it’s cold. So, even though there may be fewer daylight hours and more snow in winter, the colder temperatures can actually help solar panels work better. 

Of course, it’s important to make sure that the panels are properly installed and maintained so that they can work optimally in any weather conditions. 

But if you live in a colder climate, don’t let that discourage you from using solar panels! They can still be a great way to save energy and reduce your carbon footprint.

In the winter, shorter days mean that solar panels are not working at full efficiency. However, the amount of sunlight available in most regions is still enough to make it worth using solar panels. 

Additionally, cloudy days reduce the efficiency of solar panels, but the panels will still be exposed to enough sun throughout the year to make them worthwhile. Overall, solar panels are a good investment despite reduced efficiency in the winter.

Will Snow Hurt My Solar Panel Energy Production?

Although most people think that hot climates are the ideal environment for solar panels, that doesn’t mean a solar panel won’t be effective in a cold weather climate. In fact, there are many cold weather climates where solar panels are quite popular. 

Though one may think that snow would be detrimental to solar panel production, it can actually have a positive effect. Snow reflects additional energy onto the panels, which leads to increased production. 

However, it is important to make sure that the panels are not totally covered by snow for any extended period of time. 

After all, the total impact comes down to the amount of snow that’s on top of the panels – a light dusting won’t cause disruptions at all as the UV rays can penetrate through until a breeze clears the panels. 

Most panels can handle the weight of heavy snowfall but production will decline. 

Because of this, many panels are designed and installed at an angle to optimize for the intake of UV rays. This reduces snow build up as the snow usually slides off or can more easily be removed. 

Ultimately, although too much snow on solar panels can be detrimental, a little bit of snow can actually lead to increased production.

Should I Clear the Snow from the Solar Panels on My Roof?

One common question that homeowners with solar panels ask is whether they should clear the snow from their panels in the winter. The short answer is no, you should not try to remove the snow yourself. 

Not only could this damage your array, but most warranties do not cover this type of damage in the event that something goes wrong while you’re clearing the snow. 

Instead, it’s best to wait for the snow to melt on its own or hire a professional to do it for you. 

This may seem like a hassle, but it is simply not worth the risk of damaging your investment. Remember, most panels are built at an angle so the snow should slide right off. 

That said, some panels do have a large frame around the edge. This design has benefits, which we won’t get into in this post, but it can potentially lead to a larger accumulation of snow. 

In cold climates where heavy snowfall is common, it may be worth investing in frameless panels to minimize the risk of disruption.

What to Do to Remove Snow From Your Panels

When it comes to solar panels and snow, the general rule is that a little bit of snow can actually be good for panel production because it reflects additional light onto the panels. However, too much snow can block the UV rays that the panels need in order to generate power, so it’s important to strike a balance.

Most companies’ panels are designed to withstand some snow and heavy winter weather, so you don’t need to remove every flake that falls. 

However, if you live in an area with high snowfall or if your panels are damaged, it’s important to take steps to clear the snow from your roof. If you have a roof rake, clear the area beneath the panels so the snow can slide when it sheds. 

Don’t try to clear snow from the collectors, especially with a sharp metal roof rake. 

Be mindful of your safety and the quality of your panels –  and contact roof professionals like those at Ashton McGee Restoration Group.

With our help, you can ensure that your panels are functioning properly and that your roof and panels are safe from damage. We got this, y’all!

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