Solar Operations and Maintenance: What Does it Entail?10/3/2022
When you neglect solar care, your solar panels become stranded assets, leading to poor operational performance and wasted energy. If you're looking to reach your full potential, solar operations and maintenance (O&M) services can help improve the longevity of your solar panels. Continue reading to discover:
- What "solar operations and maintenance" means
- Advantages of periodic O&M
- What to look for in a solar O&M provider
- Where to find a trusted solar provider
What Does O&M Mean?
Broadly speaking, solar operations and maintenance is a set of activities that deal with the tasks and labor required to make your solar systems run efficiently. There are several aspects to solar O&M:
Preventative maintenance is the routine inspection and servicing of your solar equipment, which can help avoid breakdowns and energy losses over time.
Corrective maintenance is the repairs made after a system breaks down—the timeliness of this service is critical to reducing unplanned downtime
Condition-based maintenance uses real-time data and artificial intelligence to predict potential issues. This helps you prioritize your activities and resources, which creates a more efficient overall operation.
The Advantages of Commercial Solar O&M
By investing in a solar operations and maintenance plan, you can take advantage of several benefits, including:
During site visits, your provider will come out and physically inspect your solar system. From there, they'll be able to proactively diagnose any problems with your unit and take action to maintain efficient electricity production.
Solar farms in California are all too familiar with the nuisances that pests can bring. Birds and rodents are known to nest in and around solar arrays, potentially causing electrical damage to the system. As a result, any credible O&M company should include pest control in their plan to counteract solar problems.
In California, our climate is notorious for the high levels of particulates and dust floating around in the air. This can take a severe toll on your system, so another one of the benefits of O&M services is regular cleaning. If you notice your system is underproducing electricity, it can often be traced back to dust dirtying your solar panels.
Electrical systems connect your solar system to the power grid and need proper maintenance to run efficiently. Your solar operations and maintenance package should cover proactive checks on all of your wiring and electrical systems. This helps monitor the supply of electricity and identify potential complications.
Solar Inverter Maintenance
Solar inverters have a shorter lifespan than solar panels themselves and need to be closely monitored for performance decline. A high-quality solar O&M provider will pay extra attention to your solar inverters, ensuring your panels continue converting direct currents into usable electricity.
Highly Trained Crews
In order to complete quality maintenance projects, you need a specialist with experience navigating the nuances behind solar systems. When narrowing down your solar operations and maintenance packages, be sure to partner with a provider with reputable repair crews.
Looking to determine the status of your solar system? Schedule a free system assessment with the experts. Schedule Your Free Assessment
What to Look For in a Solar O&M Provider
If you're considering developing a relationship with an O&M provider, there are a variety of factors to evaluate in potential partners. Outsourcing solar operations and maintenance is more than just technology and techniques—it's about partnering with someone who has an intuitive perspective of best practices, quality assessment plans, and maintenance checklists. Effective O&M solutions do more than simply provide preventive maintenance, as they also include the following services:
- Monitoring and data analysis
- Monthly or quarterly reports (showing how you are tracking to targets)
- Cleaning modules
- Infrared scanning & thermal imaging
- Weed and vegetation growth services
- Inverter maintenance (cleaning & required checks)
- Ground fault detection
- Error code clearing
- Equipment change out
- Warranty repair
- General services
- String consolidation for damaged panels (removing unproductive panels out of your system)
Essentially, your provider should fully monitor and analyze the performance of your system while working to ensure it runs efficiently.
How to Find a Commercial Solar O&M Company
If you're interested in working with an outside O&M partner, there are a few ways these relationships can be structured. An O&M provider can be a subcontractor to a solar contracting company, receive referrals from the contractor, or be a direct employee of your solar provider. Given the inherent financial challenges of solar systems, it's essential to find an approach to O&M that best suits the unique needs of your company—with a focus on what makes the most financial sense. One of the most crucial factors in ensuring the successful operation of a solar system over the long term is a contractor's ability to deliver excellence in both design and installation. Find a partner with a reputation for delivering high-quality service and experience that can vouch for their ability to complete a successful project.
Pacifico Power: Your Top Choice for Solar Farm Operations and Maintenance
If you're searching for a trusted provider to handle your solar operations and maintenance, you're in the right spot. At Pacifico Power, we take pride in delivering high-quality solar solutions to both commercial and industrial businesses throughout California. This summer, heat waves took a toll on solar systems across the state. If you want to keep your panels in good shape, schedule preventative maintenance with Pacifico. We'll bring your stranded solar panels back to life, ensuring they serve you well. Additionally, if your stranded assets are past the point of repair, we'll buy them off you—putting cash back in your pocket. Our attention to detail, years of experience, and qualified staff ensure your solar panels function efficiently throughout the year. Reach out to our expert team and discover the Pacifico difference.