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How NOT to clean PV modules

Here is a video I found on the internet, produced by American Apparel. I figured I would share it as an example how NOT to clean PV panels.

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Photo of the Week - Wire Management

At this site, the intermodule wiring is zip-tied to the rails but the string homeruns are laying loose on the roof, which is poor workmanship. Over time the rough shingles will wear away on the insulation compromising its integrity and putting...

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Mounting Central Inverters on the Roof

Many roofs are designed to support thousands of pounds of HVAC units and large air handlers, so the additional weight of an inverter is feasible in many cases.

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Photo of the Week: Keep drains clean

A roof drain clogged causing the water to rise in the surrounding area. This installation has poor wire management, as shown by a connector sitting loose on a ballast block. Once the water rose and got in the connector, it began to short out...

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Aluminum Conductors

Be careful with Aluminum Conductors

The cost savings of Aluminum conductors is too good to ignore.  Both the engineer and the electrician must respect the differences between copper and the less forgiving aluminum. However, if designed and...

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Using the Full Ampacity You Paid For

When deciding what size and quantity of combiner boxes to use, always remember to use the full capacity of what you are buying.

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Photo of the Week: Keep the site clean

On our first operation and maintenance trip to this site, we discovered an old broken module stashed under a HVAC unit. This module was not secured, and would surely have become airborne during a hurricane or tropical storm. This module could...

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Reduce Your Combiner Box Expense by 25%

Value Engineering Combiner Boxes

You can save up to 25% on combiner boxes and DC disconnects switches if they are properly designed.  It is well known that you size equipment for 1.56x of the short circuit current.  However, with certain solar...

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Correct DC Disconnect Labels

Over the years, we have seen just about every combination of equations and numbers used to calculate the NEC required values on a DC disconnect switch.  NEC requires these values to be calculated and shown on the DC disconnect switch, but it...

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Photo of the Week: Maintain Vegetation

Two things went wrong here. First, the vegetation was not maintained, allowing it to grow tall enough to shade the modules and cover the modules in lots of pollen. The second mistake is improper seeding. If the site has proper low-growing ground...

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Photo of the Week: Improper Raceway

This installer gets full points for creativity, but fails miserably for inappropriate construction means and methods. These cables are not protected from physical damage, and they are not outdoor rated so the UV rays will deteriorate the cables...

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Photo of the Week: Corrosion

NEMA 3R and 4 inverters and outdoor cabinets may be rated for outdoor use, but any scratches in the paint will expose the metal to rusting. Once the rust gets a foothold, it will quickly spread. In this case, the corrosion should be sanded,...

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Photo of the Week: PVC Conduits

PVC conduits are acceptable when used properly (lots of expansion joints). Metallic conduits (EMC, IMC, RGS) are more expensive, but should be in areas subject to physical contact with other items (such as riser up walls, in electrical rooms,...

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Now is the Time of Year For Solar Maintenance

Solar arrays are valuable revenue generating assets that require a certain amount of maintenance.  How much exactly depends on what type of installation we are talking about (ground mount vs. roof mount), the size of the installation (obviously...

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