Posts tagged: solar array

A New Sweeper for the Solar Array

By , February 9, 2020

In the winter, one of the most important chores of the homestead is keeping the solar array free of snow (see Solar “Extraction” and Sweeps Season). To do that, I’ve relied for several years on an extendable pole, with a sponge on one side, and a squeegee on the other.

It has served us well. The squeegee has scraped off all but the hardest ice, which I remove (mostly) with a broken extendible car scraper. The sponge worked surprisingly well to shove snow off the glass.

This last winter, this tool developed problems; the extension portion rusted enough to stick, and often froze, needing to thaw in the shower between jobs. The screw-on head has steadily loosened to the point that I’ve needed to tighten it every 2-3 passes on the panels. When the squeegee began to break, risking scraping the panels with the metal frame, I mentioned to Michelle that we needed a new one.

Sweeping the solar array

Mark uses the old sweeper to clear the solar array last December (Photo: Michelle L. Zeiger).

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Assessing the Solar Array

By , March 6, 2019

As we gain about 5 minutes of daylight each day, and teeter on the edge of official drought conditions, we’re seeing a sharp increase in the amount of power generated by our solar array.

Almost every day we get strong sunshine directly on the panels. That has me assessing the array’s current status.

homestead solar array

The solar array basks in the spring sunshine. The wind generator goes unused (Photo: Mark A. Zeiger)

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