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HOW TO PREVENT SQUIRRELS FROM HARMING YOUR SOLAR PANELS

Date: Jul 04 2017
Squirrels From-harming-your-solar-panels

When you think about protecting your solar panels, what do you intend to protect the equipment from? EMP, birds, hail, wind – these are some of the common elements responsible for damaging your solar array. However, there is one threat which most people rarely notice until it’s too late, one that is so unassuming and unlikely that you never even consider it. What is this hidden threat? Squirrels. Yes, squirrels – those cute, furry creatures that scamper around in your backyard. Seemingly harmless, squirrels are responsible for an astounding number of electrical issues every year. In fact, the Washington Post holds squirrels as the main culprit for nine to 21 percent of unplanned outages each year. What’s to prevent them from harming your solar panels as well? Below we discuss some of the most effective methods to shield your solar equipment from squirrel attacks:

Protection for Your Solar Panels

Squirrels prefer to nest in human dwellings. They are drawn to warm dark spaces for shelter, and the gap underneath the solar panel presents a good option. Thus, to put an end to the squirrel menace, you must block this gap.

What You Need to Do

  • Cover the whole solar panel structure with netting. Make sure the netting is made of a strong Otherwise, the creature might chew through flimsy nets.
  • Install steel mesh around the panels to deter squirrels from gaining access to the equipment. This is a tiresome process but a necessary one. Any hardware store sells steel mesh, and a quarter inch of the material will suffice. Cut the steel mesh into long strips but make sure the width is big enough to cover up any gaps present under the solar panels. Once you’re done, either screw the material into place or caulk it.

Trapping the Squirrel

If you are unable to follow the protective steps mentioned above, you can always trap the animals. Once you have caught the squirrel, you should remove it from the premises. However, this is just a temporary solution, and there is no guarantee that new squirrels won’t find their way to your solar installation.

Blocking Off Access

If you have a rooftop solar panel, squirrels might use the trees adjoining your building to reach the solar panels. This is why you need to trim the surrounding tree branches properly. Once the rodents are cut off from any access to the panels, they will stop scurrying in and around the vicinity.

Solar panels are tough, but they cannot withstand squirrels chewing the wires. So, when you know that your area has a large squirrel population, taking extra precautions early on will prevent you from having to pay huge repair bills later. If you wish to know more about solar panels, get in touch with us today.

License No CVC56780

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