How do you tell when there is a crack in the functionality of your solar panel? Your solar PV might function at its peak for years but suddenly begins to wane in its output efficiency. If you are in doubt about the state of your solar PV, this article will clear all doubts as to whether or not your panels need a health check.
1. Take a Look up- check for dirt.
How about you lean back and take a proper look at your solar panels. Do they appear dull and dirty or shinny and clean? Do they have leaves or vines littered or them? If it is the season of rains, then the dirt shouldn’t be much of a concern as the regular rainfall can help clean the solar panels. However, a pile of leaves on your panels can reduce its output efficiency and cleanup is advised.
2. Check the Solar Charge Controller
First, ensure the intensity of the sunlight is at its peak during the day, then press the ‘Set’ button (short press, NOT long press) on the Charge Controller to ‘CHG’. The digit displayed on the screen is known as the Charging Current, which indicates the Current with which your solar panels are charging the batteries. In the picture shown above, for instance, the Charging Current is 20.9Amps. Please note that the charging current is never static, it should keep increasing or decreasing according to the intensity of the sunlight. If this isn’t the case, then, there is an indication that the solar panels are probably not supplying.
3. Solar panel tilting
Direct sunlight isn’t always needed to produce energy even though it is more effective that way. Therefore, the placement of your solar panels will greatly affect the efficiency of your Solar PV, i.e it could make it generate more or less power if the array is facing the wrong angle. It is advisable to check with your installer in order to be sure that your panels are getting the maximum exposure to sunlight.
4. Watch out for Shading.
The effect of an obstruction or interference preventing the rays of sunlight from effectively striking the surface of your panels is often referred to as Shading. This could be trees, neighboring buildings, or some other forms of structure casting shadows on the panels. When the panel is affected by shading, whether partially or fully, it significantly cuts down the output from your solar array. Do a check for shading on the power generation of your solar PV, it’s time to cut them off and get maximum output.
5. Check for Errors on your Inverter
Most Hybrid Inverters will display an indication light that will let you know when your Solar PV isn’t performing well. You can watch out for these warning lights during the day when your solar panels should be generating power. In the event of red or orange flashing error light, then there may be a need to call your Technician for help.
Need more help on solar PV related issue? Feel free to speak to a Kartel expert today.