How Much Does It Cost To Clean Solar Panels in Chicago?

A man is mopping rooftop solar panels

Solar panels are turning Chicago into a greener, more energy-efficient metropolis. Homeowners are raving about the benefits of solar power, from lowering energy bills to reducing environmental impact.

But just like you clean your windows regularly to enjoy a clear view, solar panels also need maintenance. Dust, dirt, or bird droppings eventually build up on your solar panels, reducing their ability to convert sunlight into electricity.


Read on to learn about the solar panel cleaning service cost in Chicago, what factors affect the price, and how you can save on it.

What Affects Solar Panel Cleaning Service Costs in Chicago

While some cleaning companies charge an hourly rate and others charge a flat rate, the ultimate cost of solar panel cleaning services depends on factors such as panel size, availability, how dirty the panels are, and some more.

Size and Number of Panels Larger panels require additional cleaning methods or equipment, making the process more expensive.
Availability If your solar panels are easily accessible from the ground or installed on a low roof, the cleaning process will be easier and cheaper. However, the cleaning cost will grow if your panels are hard to reach or require additional safety measures.
Dirtiness Cleaning dust, bird droppings, dirt, and pollen is usually cheaper than cleaning loose debris (small branches, wet leaves), moss, and lichens. Heavily soiled panels require additional cleaning agents, unique solutions, and incentive cleaning methods like stiff brushes or high-pressure water jets.
Cleaning Frequency The recommended cleaning frequency for solar panels in Chicago is usually between one and four times per year, depending on the overall level of environmental pollution. More frequent cleanings will cost more overall, although some companies offer yearly discounts for multiple cleaning appointments.
Cleaning Brand Companies with proven work experience and qualified specialists charge slightly more than less-known companies. However, they also guarantee better and safer cleaning, potentially saving you money on future maintenance and repairs.

Average Cost Solar Panel Cleaning Costs in Chicago

Size of a solar panel system Solar cleaning cost
Small system (10 to 15 panels) $150
Medium system (16 to 25 panels) $200 to $250
Large system (26+ panels) $250+

Here‘s how the cost of solar panel cleaning depends on the pollution level:

Low Pollution: $3 per piece Solar panels with minor contamination, such as dust or bird droppings, require minimal cleaning effort and are thus cheaper to clean.
Medium Pollution: $7 per piece Dirt, moss, or fungi are harder to clean, require using a cleaning solution, and are thus more expensive
High Pollution: $20 per piece Heavily contaminated panels – grease, soot, and rust – are the hardest and most expensive to clean.

How To Save on Cleaning Solar Panels

Cleaning solar panels regularly is necessary to keep them working optimally and producing maximum power, but it may also seem like an extra burden on the budget.

Fortunately, there are several ways to save money on cleaning solar panels:

Cleaning Service Research Get estimates from several solar panel cleaning companies in Chicago. In addition to the solar panel cleaning service cost, consider the service conditions and discounts. Usually, the more panels you clean, the lower the solar panel cleaning cost per panel.
DIY Cleaning It’s much cheaper to clean solar panels yourself than to hire professionals. However, self-cleaning is recommended only for small systems where the panels are easily accessible.

Before you start, read the manufacturer’s instructions and take safety measures. Make sure you’re using the right brushes and chemicals that cannot damage the panels.

Extra Services With additional services offered by some companies, you will get comprehensive care for your solar panels for less. The list of such services includes:

  • Checking the performance of panels. Early detection of minor problems can prevent more serious breakdowns.
  • Cleaning gutters. Gutters not clogged with dirt or leaves will protect the roof and solar panels from damage.
  • Roof sealing. High humidity caused by leaks can lead to mold and mildew growth, which can negatively affect health and indoor air quality.

How To Prevent Solar Panels from Contamination

Specific safety measures can reduce the frequency of regular cleanings, saving you tons of money over the years.

Here is what you can do to keep your solar panels clean: 

  • Trim trees and bushes to prevent leaves and branches from falling onto the panel
  • Install protective shields against dirt and dust and protect against birds
  • Clean gutters from garbage accumulations that are not washed away by rain
  • Avoid cleaning the panels in hot weather; otherwise, the water that dries will leave stains

Although cleaning solar panels involves additional costs, it is important to weigh these costs against the long-term benefits of increased energy production and an extended panel lifespan.

Cleaning solar panels with a rug

Get Your Solar Quote Online To Save on Solar Panel Services

Now that you know the average solar panel cleaning service cost in Chicago – around $200 – it might be worth getting quotes from several relevant cleaning companies so you can choose the best one.

Get your online solar quote in just a few minutes to get back up to 25% of your solar power.

Frequently Asked Questions

How much does it cost to clean my solar panels in Chicago?

Solar panel cleaning service price in Chicago depends on system size, pollution level, and experience with solar maintenance companies. On average, expect to pay $150 for cleaning 10–15 panels and $250 for more.

Do cleaning services typically include maintenance checks or repairs along with cleaning?

No, solar panel cleaning services in Chicago typically do not include health checks or repairs. Although some companies may offer these services as extras, cleaning is usually a separate service.

Are there any warranties or guarantees provided by cleaning companies in case of damage to solar panels during cleaning?

The warranty from the panel manufacturer typically does not cover damage during cleaning. The responsibility lies with the solar maintenance company. Therefore, it is important that it is certified, has a good reputation, and has liability insurance.