Will Solar Panels Still Be Effective in Shady or Bad Weather Conditions?

As a proud business owner, you will be in love with the word’s efficiency, cost-effectiveness and carbon footprint reduction. They are three words that provide peace of mind in different areas, yet they can all be provided by switching your business to the use of renewable energy via commercial solar. No doubt you’ve been considering mother nature could be an issue, which may have lead you to wonder ‘do solar panels work in bad weather’?

It’s a business owner dream to tick all the boxes to get their company saving money and emissions via the use of natural sunlight, but as some jump at the growing technologies, there are always some that remain hesitant due to the thoughts that the ever see-sawing weather patterns of the UK will put a dampener on the benefits.

Sometimes it is down to not understanding how solar panels work, whilst other times it is due to misunderstandings about how weather plays against successful green energy transformation.


The UK certainly has something for everyone when it comes to the weather. Naturally, when it comes to commercial solar panels, it is not something that could have been overlooked. Rooftop solar panels are bound to be exposed to every kind of inclement weather the country can throw at it.

Number one in the UK is the constant barrage of rain that we are used to. On rainy and cloudy days, commercial solar panels can produce anywhere between 10-25% of optimal capacity, although this will depend on how dark and heavy that rain and cloud is. What is a positive when it comes to rainfall is that it is great in keeping your panels clean from dirt and dust.

Wind, Thunder and Lightning

Businesses that operate in higher land areas will no doubt have extra consideration when it comes to storms. High winds, lightning strikes and harsher rainfall is undoubtedly a prime concern for many businesses, however, that does not mean that solar will be a bad investment.

Manufacturers and installers of solar have provided reassurance through every kind of high weather threat that solar panels would not experience damage to panels or the roof below. Properly installed panels can withstand winds that reach up to 140mph, and whilst they are electrical devices, extra protective measures can be taken by way of a lightning protection system as an upgrade.

Snow and Hail

During the winter and sometimes as late as March the UK can experience heavy snowfalls and related icy weather. This has led to some business owners thinking that counties with regular heavy snow will not gain benefit from commercial solar during this period.

In truth, snow is not a major problem when it comes to solar. Whilst it can block full efficiency from blocking solar rays, it will have the benefit of melting off quicker due to being directed to the sun. The concern when it comes to hailstone doing damage to panels is also unfounded.

Solar panels are manufactured against a multitude of mechanical stress tests, with hail being only one of the considerations. Panels are tested against people stepping on them and high fluctuations in heat and cold temperatures and ultraviolet radiation to successfully do their job.


Of course, solar panels require the sun’s rays to work in generating electricity, but the sun does not have to be glaring to provide power. Whilst it does work best in full sun, sun from cloudy weather or indirect sunlight will still provide functionality.

The amount of power will be decreased of course, but even if only one panel is obscured by a tree or other object, the other panels will still operate as normal. There is also the potential to forgo a rooftop solar system and have the panels bespoke placed on the side of a building or at ground level. Manufacturers and installers have seen every kind of problem when transforming a business to renewable energy, so if in doubt just ask the experts.

Contact the team at Positive Energy Solutions today to talk about your transformation and to find the answer to ‘do solar panels work in bad weather’.

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