Robert Marquez, owner of R King Eco-Bin Cleaning, cleans solar panels on the rooftop of a home in Corrales on Monday, Oct. 4, 2021. His establishment, which launched in mid-March, also incorporated solar panel cleaning services.
(Matt Hollinshead/Observer)

R King Eco-Bin Cleaning owner Robert Marquez was mindful of a couple key factors in deciding to incorporate solar panel cleaning.

First, New Mexico’s shift in recent years toward utilizing solar energy. Second, Daylight Saving Time ends Nov. 7, and with it, fewer hours of sunlight during the winter months.

Marquez said the cleaning equipment he uses for solar panels includes water that’s free of impurities. He said hose or faucet water in the Albuquerque metro area has around 240 parts per million in the calculated number of impurities, and the commercial grade equipment he uses extracts those impurities to get the water down to zero parts per million.

He said getting rid of those specks of grime or dirt left behind on solar panels will help allow sunlight to come through the panels’ solar sails and therefore help increase productivity. He also said it’ll serve as good maintenance to make the solar panels more durable.

“Think of it as hard water turning into soft water, and that’s what you need to use to clean the solar panels. Using regular hose water will leave stain spots on the solar panel that also leave a film on there as well,” he said. “The more shiny and slick-free it is, the better production you can get from the solar panels.”

Marquez said the decreased daylight hours in turn decreases the overall efficiency of solar panels, making even more important to stay on top of keeping those panels clean.

“You’re investing money into solar obviously for a reason, to reduce your electricity bill. Getting routine maintenance (cleaning) will definitely keep the productivity the same as it was when you first got the solar panels,” he said.

Marquez said he recommends residential solar panel cleanings every six months and quarterly commercial solar panel cleanings.

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