Do I need snow & critter guards for my solar panels?
Feb. 14, 2019
Just like your home, a solar energy system is an important investment that you wish to protect. Solar panels are designed to withstand even the harshest winter storms here in Massachusetts, but is there something more you can do to ensure your solar investment delivers as much free electricity as possible over the next few decades?
At Boston Solar, we often meet homeowners who are concerned about the effects that snow, ice, birds and squirrels can have on the integrity of their solar panels. To help protect your solar energy system, extend its lifespan, and keep your home safe, we recommend installing snow and critter guards.
Snow Guards Protect Against Roof Avalanches
As we’ve discussed previously in our blog, solar panels themselves do not need protection against snow and ice. They are strong enough to withstand even heavy snowstorms and are designed to allow snow to melt off naturally. But while solar panels may not require much in the way of maintenance during the winter, it is important to think about how snow accumulation on your roof can affect your safety.
If you have a heavily pitched roof, or if the conditions are just right, you might encounter “roof avalanches” after a heavy snowstorm. A roof avalanche is when a sudden mound of snow suddenly falls off the roof, posing a serious threat to your property and anyone who happens to be passing underneath.
To protect you and your property, we recommend installing Alpine SnowGuards over doorways, your deck or patio, and any delicate landscaping. These rooftop devices allow snow and ice to drop off in small amounts rather than large, heavy releases. What’s more is that they can be installed in tandem with your solar PV system.
Critter Guards Extend the Life of Your Solar PV System
It’s also important to think about how critters and pests can affect the lifespan of your solar PV system. Animals like squirrels and chipmunks, for example, may get underneath your solar panels and chew through wiring — which could lead to extensive repairs and power loss. Pigeons, on the other hand, may nest underneath and around the panels, leaving behind dirt and waste that can decrease solar panel efficiency.
Fortunately, you don’t have to call animal control every time you see a squirrel or bird on your roof in order to keep your system safe. For peace of mind pest mitigation for your solar PV system, we recommend installing SolaTrim critter guards. These strips of heavy-duty metal screen keep animals from getting underneath and between your panels, making your system squirrel- and pigeon-proof.
Achieve Peace of Mind with Your Solar Investment
At Boston Solar, we go the extra mile give you peace of mind, ensure your safety, and protect your solar investment. Whether you’ve already installed solar panels on your roof or are still planning on installing solar, our team can integrate snow and critter guards with your PV system to keep you and your property safe. In fact, if you choose to have our team install your system, we can build snow and critter guard installation into your proposal.
Want to protect your home and extend the lifespan of your solar investment? Learn more about snow and critter guards for your roof. Call 617-858-1645 or contact us to schedule a consultation!