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Do Solar Panels Work During The Winter In Massachusetts?

Do Solar Panels Work During The Winter In Massachusetts?

November 8, 2021

One of the most frequent questions that we are asked is if solar panels work properly during the winter months. In New England, especially in Massachusetts, this is, of course, a valid question, as our winters tend to be long, dark, and cold.

Which isn’t quite what you think of when you envision an energy source that produces electricity from the sun.

But, you may be surprised to find out that solar panels actually function quite well during the winter months, especially when the proper care is taken throughout the season. 

As the winter season creeps upon us, today, lets explore how solar panels work during the winter, and what actions you can take to ensure the highest productivity possible.

What happens to my solar panels when it snows?

Do solar panels work in cold temperatures?

First, let’s explore whether or not solar panels function as well in the cold as they do during the warmer months of spring, summer, and the beginnings of fall.

We are happy to report that yes, solar panels do indeed work productively in cold weather. In fact, you may be surprised to find out that solar panels have actually been proven to work more efficiently in the cold than in the heat. 

Additionally, situations, where panels have been exposed to excessively hot temperatures, have actually shown a drop in panel efficiency. Another reason why Massachusetts is a great place to own solar panels. 

Remember, home solar panels require the sun’s rays to work, not its heat.

Okay, but what if it snows? Like, a lot?

You may be concerned about snow accumulation blocking the sunlight from getting through to your solar panels and the solar cells within.

Fortunately, today’s solar panels are specifically designed for all types of weather, even the harsh winter weather in Massachusetts. And, after getting to know the roof of your house, your solar installer will ensure that your panels are set at an angle that allows the snow to slide off easily.

Additionally, if snow does accumulate due to excessively heavy snowfall, solar panel specialists can be called in to remove the snow safely without harming your system or your home. 

While you may be tempted to achieve this task yourself, we highly recommend calling your local solar panel specialist to ensure safe, lasting, and cost-effective snow removal.

Solar battery storage for the darker days of winter

Unfortunately, the shorter days can affect the amount of energy that your panels receive. 

As we have explored, less sunlight = less solar energy. This is an unfortunate reality for solar panel owners in the winter, however, there is a solution.

The addition of solar battery storage as an add-on component to your home solar system allows you to tap into stored solar power even after the sun sets. Excess energy produced by your panels during daylight can be stored within these batteries.

This enables you to run your home off of clean solar energy even during the darkest hours of the night, and you can also tap into battery storage in the event that a snow/ice storm knocks out your power.