How to Clean a Cloudy Plastic Solar Cell

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Cleaning solar panels is easy.
Cleaning solar panels is easy. (Image: Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images)

Solar panels are exposed to mother nature 24 hours a day and they can get dirty very quickly from rain, dust, pollen, chimney ashes and various other environmental debris. When solar panels become cloudy or dirty, they can become less efficient and in some cases decrease power consumption by 30 percent. Cleaning a cloudy solar panel system is as easy as cleaning a glass window; they should be cleaned once every six months to ensure proper solar absorption.

Things You'll Need

  • Plastic Bucket
  • Red or white vinegar
  • Dishwasher soap

Put 5 cups of water, 2 tbsp. of dishwasher soap and 1 tbsp. of vinegar in a plastic bucket. Mix the solution in the bucket with a spoon.

Use terry-cloth towel to dust off all of the dirt. Wipe the entire plastic solar panel down in a circular motion. This should get a majority of the surface dust off of the solar panel.

Dip a clean towel in the cleaning solution and clean again. The vinegar dishwashing solution will break down all of the remaining dirt on the plastic solar panel. Rinse the towel and dip again in the cleaning solution for a final cleaning.

Dry with another terry towel to remove any left over dirt or residue.

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