What Happens to Solar Panels When it Snows?

What Happens to Solar Panels When it Snows?

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You might be wondering how solar panels hold up in snow. They do an amazing job (I think) at warming up and letting that snow slide right off. One thing I didn’t really expect was how shocking the avalanches are! #DIYsolar #solar #solarpanels

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MitchOfCanada says:

yup install a gazebo entrance diverter that is 4 feet out from the door across sidewalk that kicks snow to let and right of house. Also insurance can be void if you dont install proper mitigation for the avalaches that can happen or the ice build up that can fall etc.
Maybe just install 1 line of heat trace on the bottom frame of the panels near the edge and it will allow the snow to cascade more easily.

Guust says:

Another benefit of snow on your panels, is the cleaning effect. When the snow slides off, it cleans the panels!

Anthony Dyer says:

I've got a much longer telescopic pole for clearing snow. It's called the Docapole, you can find it on Amazon. My is 7 metres, but they also have a 9 metre option. Ladders aren't necessary. They're also useful for camera angles if you don't own a drone!

So in Scotland, my experience was similar to yours, but I made the effort to clear snow each morning. As you say it's not worth it in terms of time/benefit, but if you're just interested in maximising generation for its own sake then it's worth it. Other neighbours with solar panels had snow slumping off the panels, but only partially so. This results in partial shading and that in itself can really hurt output.

Here's my video.

Bujaka Bujaka says:

You can short the circuit or conduct the power back in the panels so they heat up and are snow free( low Power!!) . There are some devices already on the market for this scenario.

Iraj Matthee says:

I live in South Africa where snow is almost none existant. But what experts found is that the color of your roof for the types of climate you live in helps a lot. They say that in colder snowy conditions ensure the roof is a dark colour (ideally black) to absorb heat because most homes won't fill their roof with panels. Yet the build up of snow could still be there sitting on the roof causing a potential collapse. Back in South Africa we are encouraged to go for metal roofing systems which is smoother and to have it painted a lighter colour (ideally white) to reflect the heat and allow the solar panels to do the rest.

Anthony Coleman says:

His roof is gonna last forever…… Or at least half of it.

Greg Scott says:

Yeah…I live in a 3 story twin with attic in West Philadelphia. I have 18 panels…the most I could fit…on the flat portion of my roof. When I say flat, it has a 7 deg slope. It's enough.
I have the Enphase app as well and I can watch the snow melt from the energy production on each panel. First one, then another as the snow slides off.
Hey it's four flights up to the roof…the panels are black, give it a few hours, the sun will melt the snow. (Gotta love that Sun..:-))

Hubert -Williams says:

Hi, I live in NY .. I had solar panels installed on my house in 2014 by a company that is now called SunRun..I enjoy the savings but I have this equipment rental fee..for the next 20plus yrs.. when I invested in solar it was a a time when the whole concept was getting off the ground here in the north east.. ok, so I signed a contract that bound me for the duration but now after hearing you say you installed your panels yourself makes me wonder if I did the right thing when I did… bottom line I am capable of the engineering part of installing solar panels .. I just wish I had that opportunity then… SunRun has a horrible consumer service dept.. During the covid crisis I was late on a few payments, I was threaten and harassed by SunRun for $2.01..Wow..!!

David W. Smith says:

Sorry, but the temperature of the panels in open winter sun doesn't correlate with the panel temperature when covered by snow. So, your FLIR video didn't communicate what you were saying at the time. It's clear there is a slight warming and snow slides off, but not because the panels are at 95degF…

Per Olof Johansson says:

You need to have sun if no sun no energy so on winter the power of sun is not enough if you are much futher north . Pennsylvania is more or less Rome in Italy. And thats not so far north.

William Glaser says:

For roof mount and grid tied, I doubt that its worth cleaning them off. Now on the other hand when you have ground mount panels that are at a further angle I am sure as soon as the sun comes up with in an hour those panels would be cleaned off. If not a simple panel rake would work pretty quick.
Depending on your area and how you designed your array a simple steps and catwalk would be enough to get on up to push said snow off. Also to clean the dirt off during long dry spells. Though research has shown that you only gain a few percentage from cleaner panels. Research has also shown that cooling your panels during the hottest part of the day can increase you yield for those 1 to 3 hours. So far I have not seen anyone who has a set up running to show this.
In the end if you are off grid, clean them panels or devise some sort of system to help you do it very fast.
As in your case a set of stairs and a catwalk on said roof would be ideal yet in the end the cost would out weigh your benefit. Though someone with 50kw array ground mount system that is off grid this would be very ideal.

tr1bes says:

How about hail? I don't care about snow and rain.



Pia says:

The soft rope trick might work. But, lazy is good. The solar panels seem to be able to melt and slide it off before it gets really thick and dangerous or refreezes into something more icey and dangerous.

MagentaRV says:

First thing, I'd certainly get a doghouse or guard over that doorway – I'd never want anyone to get clobbered by falling ice and snow there. Second, I'd probably make sure the panels extend to or slightly past the bottom of the roof-line and possibly even, given enough clearance, out over the walkway so I don't have to do any shoveling.

RegularPit says:

I'd make a big solar cleaning system but because we have burning hot days in summer and when pollen starts to get to the point of layering a car. It also gets dusty on occasion but here the winter is just cloudy and rainy all the time so we'd have a lot of issues with low production but we have a shed and barn that we use rarely so thats extra roof space and solar potential.

MagicBanana says:

fantastic video!!! Definitely helped ease some of my worries about solar during the winter!!!

Mumzieof5 says:

They get snow on them?

quantumphaser says:

Grumpy Old Men 😂🤣😂🤣😂🤣😁🤣

Amanda C says:

How difficult would it be to estimate how to produce the most power per SF based on solar components you're aware of on the market now?

my channel says:

Thanks for the videos, it's pretty interesting and helpful, even if I'm living in Ukraine 🙂
We also have "green tariffication" for the last 6 years, this program helps to get involved a lot of people to build solar stations, in our location most used is 10-30KW per station per person (per person because there is restrictions in law) from the last news of 2020 we have about 30K registered solar stations (in whole country) connected by this "tariff" (this tariff helps to receive more money that you pay by the bill, literally it costs to sell as much as price that sell our country electricity to EU)
So i believe it's not bad for the country that have average month salary about $400.
Also can share that "in-network" solar station for 30KW will cost in our country about $20K with installation and period to get in profit depends on region but about 4-5 years.

Goo World says:

Excellent video. What about critters living under the solar panels and/or chewing on the wiring?

sidd0123 says:

You can never go wrong with Brandon Sanderson. Highly recommend the Stormlight Archive when you get a chance.

Eddie Ohio says:

What about hail will it break your solar panels?

EastAngliaUK says:

warm water from hosepipe wash off?

Street Freaks Racing Videos says:

I’m building my solar as I can afford it, slowly in other words. I have a 24v Lifepo4 battery, inverter and just 2 solar panels. The inefficiencies use the power of one of the panels pretty much, but still, it’s a useful system. We have many power system outages here, sometimes 20 times per day the power goes out for just 1 or 2 seconds, so currently I run my network closet from my solar and most of the time it will run things although sometimes I have to plug in due to lack of sun. I’m in south central pa, Greencastle area, what part of Pa are you in?

Jens Erling Bråten says:

I live in Norway. In the winter it often snows 1.5m with temperatures at -5 to -35 for a couple of months. So I need to clear the snow of my solar panels.

I use a industrial air compressor mounted on my tractor to blow off the snow on the panels. Quick and easy 🙂

fgsjr2015 says:

It may no longer be prudent to have every structure’s entire electricity supply relying on external power lines that are susceptible to being crippled by unforeseen events, including storms of unprecedented magnitude. There also are coronal mass ejections to consider, however rare, in which power grids are vulnerable to potentially extensive damage and long-lasting power outages.

I could really appreciate the liberating effect of having my own independently accessed solar-cell power supply (clear skies permitting, of course), especially considering my/our dangerous reliance on electricity. And it will not require huge land-flooding and potentially collapsing water dams, nor constructing towering wind turbine farms.

Each building having its own solar-cell-panel power storage system — at least as an emergency/backup source of power — makes sense (except, of course, to the various big energy corporation CEOs whose concern is only dollars and cents).

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