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Solar Panels Common Issues

Putting up solar panels and finding out that they donít work can be a frustrating experience. In this article Iíll tell you about some possible problems that you might encounter when you have solar panels.

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Since theyíre usually quite reliable, finding out that your solar panel broke can be quite a surprise. It can happen however, especially because of bad weather, fluctuations in temperature, static electricity or lighting. Fixing a solar panel means you need to know a few things first.

If the solar panel is wired either in parallel or in series/parallel, you have the possibility to test an individual panel, if you cover a minimum of four cells on the panel. Doing this should decrease the output by at least half. If it doesnít drop the output, then the panel has problems, either because itself, or the other panels which are wired together with him.

In some case, the systemís voltage will decrease just as the day gets into its hottest phase. Thatís because a regular photovoltaic module works best when there are 25 degrees Celsius outside. When itís too hot, the voltage can drop below 12 volts. It can also happen because of controller losses, bad wires, weak connections or a photovoltaic module that is weak.

Putting water on the array can help you troubleshoot this problem, as it will cool it down and give you a chance to see how the system reacts. If the voltage is OK when you cool it down, then look at the open voltage, after you disconnect the panel. If itís still lower than 18 volts, test each module individually.

The metal connections can be affected by oxidation, temperature cycling or corrosion. The metal can sometimes warp, the screw can become loose or you can have some electrical resistance. In the end you get connections that are overheated.

Another option is that the insulation burned, due to an electric arc, which can also melt the metal. You have the option to replace all metal parts that are oxidized or corroded, to repair this problem. If you want to bypass terminals that are burned, wire it to the metal strip directly.

In most cases, you will find a bypass diode inside the junction box of the PV modules. This diode will prevent any cell from overheating, when they have shade on them for longer periods of time. In some cases, a diode can short out because of lighting. In such a case, the voltage of the module can decrease.

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