If you have a solar PV (electric) system and have just been through the deep freeze of many days back to back below 0F degrees — then you may be experiencing ‘solar snow anxiety’.
I define ‘solar snow anxiety’ as the unsettling concern that you need to remove the snow on your solar panels the minute the storm stops. The worry is that you will be missing some important kilowatt hours of energy once the sun comes back out.
Most of the time, a good sunshine after the snow will start the snow melting pretty quickly. As soon as a piece of the dark color solar panel gets a direct hit of sun, that will speed up the warming affect as well. A roof angle of 30 degrees or more will usually shed that snow within hours or maybe as long as a day or two. Snow will generally shed off a roof mounted array as fast or faster than a standing seam roof.
But when we get a good snow storm followed by a deep freeze (like a few weeks ago), it is too cold for the snow to start to melt, no matter how bright the sun. With more than just a few inches of snow on the solar panels, you will not get any solar energy production.
My advice is to start by taking a few slow deep breadths. Remind yourself that the lost production dollars for each day of a typical 6000W solar array in NH in the winter (with high electric prices) is probably $2.00-2.50. Compare that small loss to the hours you would spend trying to move that snow or, more importantly, the possible injury involved in reaching the snow from a ladder or from the roof.
If you still feel it is important to help the snow move along, please stay on the ground and use a roof rake made for solar panels so you don’t scratch the glass. Don’t hesitate to contact us if you want to know what we have at the store.