If you’re considering installing a solar panel system for your Albuquerque home, you may have the question: how long do solar panels last? The lifespan of your solar panel system is important, as it will determine how long you can enjoy being an energy producer before having to replace the panels.
Here, we’ll discuss solar panels’ life expectancy for those in Albuquerque and across the country. With a solar panel system that’s built to last, your home will be energy independent for many years to come.
Solar Panel Longevity
The answer to how long solar panels last is approximately 25 to 30 years. This is a significant amount of time for home and business owners. But, it’s also important to note that this time frame doesn’t denote how long solar panels will work before wearing out completely.
After 25 to 30 years, your solar panel system won’t be out of commission. In fact, the panels will likely continue to function for several more decades, so long as no major damages occur. But, the solar panel system’s efficiency in energy production will drop by a sizable degree after this time period.
Solar panels gradually become less effective at producing energy. This is referred to as solar panel degradation. Degradation rates are expressed as a percentage per year and can vary depending on the solar panel manufacturer. The average solar panel degradation rate is 0.5%, with rates ranging from 0.3% to 0.8%.
As an example, consider that your solar panels have a 0.5% degradation rate. After the first year of having your solar panels, they’ll operate at 99.5%. After the solar panel system’s 25-year lifespan, it would operate at 87.5%. From this example, you can see that solar panels don’t wear out completely over the course of their lifespan. The effectiveness of the panels simply diminishes.
While solar panel degradation is inevitable, you can slow it down by keeping your solar panels clean and enlisting the help of an expert solar panel company at the outset.
Protecting The Lifespan of Your Solar Panels
Solar panels are a large financial investment, making it important for you to protect their longevity. While solar panels require little maintenance and are built for durability, there are some tips that you can follow to make them last longer.
Be Mindful of Debris.
One of the key ways that you can prolong the life of your solar panels is to regularly clean debris off of the surface of the panels. Dust, dirt, leaves, and other outdoor debris can build up on the panels and compromise their ability to gather energy from the sun. Thankfully, cleaning the panels is usually quite easy. Just use a leaf blower or a garden hose to gently wash the surfaces. It’s best to perform this maintenance task in the morning, before the panels have warmed up from the sun. Cool water on hot solar panels may crack the tempered glass.
Similarly, maintaining the trees around your property can help protect your solar panels. In particular, pay attention to overhanging branches. Your solar panel installer will likely advise you to trim back large nearby trees to preserve your solar panel system.
Have Damage Repaired Promptly.
Solar panels are manufactured for resistance to snow, hail, and high winds. So, instances of damage to your panels are likely to be few and far between. However, in the case that your solar system does become damaged, make sure to have a professional repair them as quickly as possible. Solar panel damage such as cracks, broken glass, and poor connections can get worse when left unrepaired.
Choose a Reliable Solar Installer.
One of the best ways to secure a long lifespan for your solar panel system is to choose a great installer. A reliable solar panel installer will ensure that your solar system is set up for success. Given that solar panels require thoughtful design expert installation for maximum effectiveness, be sure to make the right choice as you select a solar company.