Why My Solar Panels Have Lost Efficiency? –Reasons Behind It!

solar panels

Solar panels are very efficient at creating electrical energy however because for a variety of reasons it is possible that they lose efficiency over time. If you’ve noticed the solar panels you have installed are not producing electricity in the way that they did within the first few years, they definitely have lost some effectiveness. The electrical energy that reaches your appliance passes through a variety of phases, the final result is sunlight at the beginning.

There are specific conversion phases within the solar panel’s system which result in the generation of electrical energy that is suitable for appliances. The majority of the loss is caused by the various conversion stages. It could be caused by the conversion of photovoltaic sunlight into an electric field. It can also occur in that DC into AC conversion that occurs in the solar converter. We will go over some of the reasons that are most prominent in affecting the efficiency of solar photovoltaic systems.

Top Causes of Loss in Solar System Efficiency

Solar panel technologies that will be in 2021 are advanced enough to be able to handle all energy demands by themselves. However, due to these reasons, they may experience a decline in inefficiency. There are a variety of reasons for this;

  • Dirt
  • Module Nameplate Rating Loss
  • Shading
  • Light-Induced Degradation
  • Charging the Battery Incorrectly
  • Mixing a Different Kind of Batteries
  • Not Keeping the Batteries in Suitable Temperature
  • Using Wrong Batteries
  • During DC to AC Conversion (Solar Inverters)
  • In Wires During Transfer
  • Mismatch Loss
  • Temperature
  • System’s Age
  • Due to the Position

During Photovoltaic Conversion (Solar Plates)

The words written on solar panels on their conversion efficiency could make you interested in purchasing panels. For example, monocrystalline plates with 15 percent up to 18% efficiency will suffice for energy demands, but bringing down the efficiency ratio of 1-2 percent could impact your household use.

Conversion Phenomenon Loss

Let’s say that, until midday, a solar array of 1 m2 gets sunlight energy of 1,000 watts, however, the effectiveness for the solar panel will be 15%. It converts 150 watts into electrical DC energy. The remaining 85 watts are reflected or are lost as heat. The loss of energy during conversion impacts the percentage of total usable energy, in the relevant senses. The further reduction in the conversion ratio impacts similarly. This decline could result from many causes;


The buildup of dirt on even the best solar plates in Pakistan creates obstruction in the process of dispersing solar light, which results in an inefficient ratio of conversion of energy. The failure to clean the solar plates on time can cause grime and dust build-up on the plates. Unclean solar panels can result in a decline over time of as high as 0.25 percent.

Module Nameplate Rating Loss

The nameplate rating of the module is determined based on the standards for testing which include 1000 W/m2 at 25oC. When the panels are placed in an environment that is climatic the efficiency can decrease due to weather, temperature, wind and dirt, and other factors that affect exposure. The solar panel makers at present consider factors that affect solar panel efficiency in a real-world environment, while also giving a specific efficiency rating.

However, older solar panels equipped with nameplate ratings that conform to Standard Test Condition might have to contend with a loss of efficiency. This is due to not binning the modules in 5W-10W increments. If you find an efficiency label of “250W +or minus 2.5W” If so be aware that it will lose efficiency by 1.1% (2.5/250) in all cases.


When setting up this solar system one should be aware of shades that could be present at any point in the daylight. Because of various reasons, for instance;

  • There’s been some construction happening in your area.
  • The trees that surround your plate have grown into branches, which are shaded by them.
  • Placing plates near each other has resulted in self-shading.
  • The orientation of panels has changed recently.

Examine whether there is any construction happening in your area. This may impact the solar energy conversion However, at a certain moment, make sure you check if the trees are shading your plates. If there are trees surrounding your plates, be sure to trim them in time to prevent shading any time during the day. If you are looking for solar solutions you can seek experts such as Inspect Energy. We at inspect energy connect our clients with the top solar companies in Pakistan which provide the best services related to the solar system.

Light-Induced Degradation

The degradation caused by light causes the efficiency decrease of the solar panel system. This process is generally the same meaning as the cost of a new car once you take it off the dealership, similar to how solar panels lose their efficiency in the initial hours of operation. This happens due to a process known as light-induced degradation (LID).

What is Light-Induced Degradation and how does it affect the efficiency of solar panels?

In the initial phase of solar panel systems, when they have first operated the boron coating on the solar panels begins to oxidize and this oxidized boron layer is partially clouded by the panels. This causes a reduction of efficiency between 1 and 3 percent. The good thing is that it doesn’t go beyond this level and modern technology has overcome this issue to a greater degree. For more information on the effects of light-induced degradation on the performance of solar plates.

During the Chemical Conversion (Batteries)

The electricity is generated by the solar panels, like DC, and is now traveling eventually in two directions: one to be consumed as well as the other that is to go into batteries. In the daytime, generally, there is no dependency on the batteries. However, during the evening or in cloudy conditions where there is no solar energy, its production is dependent on solar battery effectiveness.

  • When the solar panel is losing efficiency for any reason (orientation or time, wear out, etc. ) and the overall effectiveness of your solar panel system is affected.
  • If a solar cell is rated at 88%. Then it will only produce 82% of the chemical energy that it stores in DC energy.

There could be a myriad of causes that may ultimately impact the performance of solar batteries. They are:

Charging the Battery Incorrectly

In the event that the inverter has been generating amps that are excessive to the battery it will rapidly charge the battery which would satisfy the user or charge controller with the battery in charge, but ultimately there isn’t enough battery power to allow it to recharge.

Mixing a Different Kind of Batteries

Differences between the voltages of the solar batteries can cause the same early charging discrepancy–ultimately, causing the battery to lose efficiency. To avoid this, you should install suitable battery packs that are compatible with the guidance of solar experts.

Not Keeping the Batteries in Suitable Temperature

Unlike the solar panels, the solar batteries are likewise affected by high temperatures–keeping them at a temperature above 95degF will cause internal discharge ultimately resulting in battery drain.

Using Wrong Batteries

In the case of an off-grid solar panel in the event of a blackout, then the power required for the initialization of the system comes from the batteries. Utilizing a deep cycle battery to start up could cause damage to the system since they’re not designed for explosive explosions.


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