Sometimes you gotta hose off your panels.

A fact I frequently forget.

I happened to be working behind the Lair this morning when the sun glancing off the solar panels on the ground mount showed me that the dust had actually gotten quite thick on the glass due to their owner being a lazy absentminded old coot. Happily…


…the solution was readily at hand.


Not complicated – Just hose them off. You’d actually find that a little easier than I do due to one issue – not really a problem…


My water pressure is provided entirely by gravity. No water pump, no pressure tank, no expensive complicated failure points. Also not a whole hell of a lot in the way of water pressure – the highest it’s ever registered on the kitchen sink’s big goofy pressure gauge is 19 psi and that’s rare. It’s enough, and I love the system’s simplicity. I was happy to take advantage of that very convenient hill: According to a handheld GPS gadget I borrowed one time the water tank is 50 feet above ground level at the Lair. That low pressure (and the extremely hard well water) is, for complicated reasons, why I can’t have hot running water but I’m used to that. Ought to be, I moved in late 2011 and have been getting along without it for five years longer than that.

But – getting back to the point briefly – I do have enough for a hose nozzle to wash dust off a solar panel. Now, before it gets cold and I put the hose in storage…


…I need to set up the ladder and do the same thing to the roof panels, which are probably at least as dusty.

Hey, I’ve been putting off wood cutting while my shoulder heals, but today I got a great windfall…


The local food market is finally replacing all its old perennially-broken coolers, and outside the door was a big pile of pallets marked “free.” I got five smallish ones, which is all that would fit in D&L’s truck bed between the toolbox and the water. And I found to my happy surprise that I had no trouble moving them, which means it’s time to get off my ass and start doing something about my mostly-empty woodshed.

About Joel

You shouldn't ask these questions of a paranoid recluse, you know.
This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

7 Responses to Sometimes you gotta hose off your panels.

  1. Robert says:

    A pile of free pallets is always a welcome sight.

  2. doubletrouble says:

    Well THAT’S a new euphemism to me, but ok.
    Wink, wink, nod nod, say no more, say no more.

  3. Joel says:

    Annnd another possibly useful euphemism sails over Uncle Joel’s head…

  4. Edward says:

    Might be useful to add a decent tie-down or two to the kit – if D&L are agreeable, there’s probably room on a folded-down tailgate for several more pallets.

    What’s that black perforated thing sticking out of the ground between the pallet stacks? It looks like some sort of vent for something underground.

    And, RE: solar panels – dust is pretty much a constant in the desert – it always was the times I’ve had to visit such places – so with the hose drained and stored over winter, how do you clean the panels? A good rain would do it, but how common is that in your location during winter?

  5. Robert says:

    Now, gentlemen/ladies, please! There are children present. Or at least some of us who are childlike in mentality.
    To continue doubletrouble’s Monty Python theme: Know what I mean, know what I mean?

  6. Anonymous says:

    Pity you didn’t have a cordless circular or reciprocating saw with you when you found the pallets. Could’ve broken them down on-site and gotten more wood.

    — Jabrwok

  7. Zendo Deb says:

    A pump sprayer – of the type used for weed killer – can be a convenient way to have pressure water were you don’t have it…

To the stake with the heretic!