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Critter Guard Solar Cost

Protecting your solar panels from critters is crucial to maintaining their efficiency and longevity. Critter guards serve as a protective barrier, preventing animals like birds and squirrels from causing damage or nesting under the panels. This article delves into the various aspects of critter guards, including their importance, cost factors, types, and installation options, to help you make an informed decision.

Key Takeaways

  • Critter guards are essential for protecting solar panels from damage caused by animals like birds and squirrels.
  • The cost of installing critter guards can vary widely, ranging from $500 to $2,000 depending on the type and size of the system.
  • Different types of critter guards are available, including mesh guards, bird spikes, and netting solutions, each with its own pros and cons.
  • DIY installation of critter guards can save money but may not offer the same level of protection as professional installation.
  • Regular maintenance and inspections are necessary to ensure that critter guards continue to provide effective protection over time.

Understanding Critter Guard for Solar Panels

Solar panels with critter guard under bright sunlight

What is Critter Guard?

A Solar Panel Critter Guard is a physical barrier designed to protect your solar panels from various pests and debris. These guards are typically made from durable materials like galvanized steel with a PVC coating, ensuring they withstand harsh weather conditions. By installing a critter guard, you can prevent animals such as squirrels and birds from nesting under your panels, which can cause significant damage over time.

Why Critter Guard is Important

The importance of critter guards for solar panels cannot be overstated. They help in protecting your investment by preventing pest infestations and ensuring the efficiency of your solar panels. Without a critter guard, animals can chew through wires, build nests, and leave droppings, all of which can lead to costly repairs and reduced efficiency. Protection for solar panels is crucial to maintain their longevity and performance.

Common Critters that Affect Solar Panels

Several critters can pose a threat to your solar panels, including:

  • Squirrels: Known for chewing through wires, which can lead to electrical issues.
  • Birds: Often nest under panels, causing blockages and leaving droppings that can corrode the surface.
  • Raccoons: Can cause physical damage by trying to access the area under the panels.

By installing a Pigeon Guard For Solar Panels or other types of critter guards, you can effectively mitigate these risks and ensure your solar panels remain in optimal condition.

Regular maintenance and inspections are essential to keep your critter guard effective and your solar panels functioning efficiently.

Cost Factors of Installing Critter Guard

When considering the installation of critter guards for your solar panels, several cost factors come into play. Understanding these can help you make an informed decision and potentially reduce overall expenses. Material costs, labor costs, and additional expenses are the primary components that will influence the total cost of your critter guard installation.

Comparing Different Types of Critter Guards

When it comes to protecting your solar panels, there are several types of critter guards to consider. Each type has its own advantages and disadvantages, making it essential to choose the one that best fits your needs. Understanding these options can help you make an informed decision.

DIY vs Professional Installation

Pros and Cons of DIY

Opting for a DIY installation of critter guards can be a cost-effective option. However, it comes with its own set of challenges. You would need to install this yourself with fasteners, which could lead to a risky or improper installation. Additionally, the time and effort required can be significant, especially if you lack experience.

Benefits of Professional Installation

Hiring a professional for the installation ensures that the job is done correctly and safely. A proficient, experienced crew can protect the average home system in about four hours. Moreover, professional installers often offer warranties that cover their work, providing peace of mind. While the upfront cost may be higher, the long-term benefits often outweigh the initial expense.

Cost Comparison

The cost of professional installation varies widely. Solar installers who include pest protection with the system and install it before leaving the worksite usually charge the least, with rates as low as $7 per linear foot. On the other hand, specialty crews who focus solely on pest mitigation may charge up to $15 per linear foot. Here’s a quick comparison:

Installation Type Cost per Linear Foot
DIY Variable, lower
Professional $7 – $15

While DIY installations might save you money upfront, the potential for improper installation and the lack of warranty can lead to higher costs in the long run.

Maintenance Costs of Critter Guards

Routine Inspections

Routine inspections are essential to ensure that your critter guard system remains effective. Regular checks can help identify any potential issues early, preventing more costly repairs down the line. It’s advisable to schedule inspections at least once a year, although more frequent checks may be necessary if your property is prone to wildlife activity.

Repair Costs

Over time, critter guards may suffer wear and tear, especially if they are frequently exposed to harsh weather conditions or persistent wildlife. Repair costs can vary widely depending on the extent of the damage and the type of critter guard installed. For instance, replacing a few damaged clips or sections of mesh is generally less expensive than repairing more extensive damage.

Replacement Costs

Eventually, parts of your critter guard system may need to be replaced entirely. The cost of replacement will depend on the type of guard and the size of your solar panel system. For example, replacing a section of galvanized steel mesh can be more costly than replacing a few solar panel clips. It’s important to factor in these potential costs when budgeting for your solar panel maintenance.

Regular maintenance not only extends the lifespan of your critter guard system but also ensures that your solar panels continue to operate efficiently. Neglecting maintenance can lead to more significant issues and higher costs in the long run.

Impact of Critter Guards on Solar Panel Efficiency

Preventing Physical Damage

Critter guards serve as a physical barrier that protects solar panels from various animals, such as birds, squirrels, and raccoons. These animals can cause significant damage by chewing through wires or nesting under the panels. By installing critter guards, you can prevent such damage and ensure the longevity of your solar panel system.

Reducing Cleaning Frequency

Bird droppings and debris can accumulate on solar panels, reducing their efficiency. Critter guards help minimize this issue by preventing birds from perching and nesting around the panels. This reduces the frequency of cleaning required to maintain optimal performance.

Long-term Efficiency Benefits

By protecting your solar panels from physical damage and reducing the need for frequent cleaning, critter guards contribute to the long-term efficiency of your solar energy system. This means you can enjoy a more consistent energy output and potentially lower maintenance costs over time.

Investing in critter guards is an essential step in safeguarding your solar panel mesh design and ensuring a more efficient and reliable clean energy system.

Case Studies: Critter Guard Installations

Residential Installations

In residential settings, Critter Guard installations have proven to be highly effective in protecting solar panels from various pests. Homeowners often face issues with birds, squirrels, and other small animals that can damage solar panels. By installing Critter Guards, these problems are significantly reduced, ensuring the longevity of the solar panel systems. For instance, a homeowner in a tree-dense area opted for a mesh guard solution, which successfully prevented critters from nesting under the panels, thereby maintaining the system’s efficiency and reducing maintenance costs.

Commercial Installations

Commercial installations of Critter Guards are equally important, especially for businesses with large solar arrays. Companies like Goldshot Exterminating have been instrumental in providing effective critter control solutions for commercial properties. A notable case involved a large warehouse that experienced frequent pigeon infestations. By employing a combination of bird spikes and netting solutions, the company was able to protect the solar panels and improve the overall efficiency of the energy system.

Lessons Learned

From these installations, several key lessons have emerged:

  1. Assessing the environment: Understanding the local wildlife and potential threats is crucial for selecting the appropriate Critter Guard solution.
  2. Professional installation: While DIY options are available, professional installation ensures that the guards are properly fitted and more effective in the long run.
  3. Regular maintenance: Routine inspections and maintenance are essential to ensure that the Critter Guards remain effective over time.

By implementing these strategies, both residential and commercial solar panel owners can significantly enhance the longevity and efficiency of their systems, making Critter Guards a worthwhile investment.

How to Choose the Right Critter Guard for Your Solar Panels

Selecting the appropriate critter guard for your solar panels is crucial to ensure their longevity and efficiency. Understanding your specific needs and consulting with experts can make this process smoother and more effective.

Environmental Benefits of Using Critter Guards

Protecting Wildlife

Critter guards serve as Natural Bird Deterrents, preventing birds and other small animals from nesting under solar panels. This not only protects the solar panels but also ensures that wildlife is not harmed by electrical components or trapped in confined spaces.

Reducing Waste

By preventing critters from damaging solar panels, critter guards help in reducing the need for frequent repairs and replacements. This leads to less waste generated from broken panels and other components, contributing to a more sustainable solar solution.

Sustainable Solar Solutions

Critter guards enhance the overall sustainability of solar energy systems. By protecting the panels from damage, they ensure that the system operates efficiently for a longer period, reducing the need for additional resources to replace or repair damaged parts. This makes solar energy a more viable and long-term solution for clean energy.

Installing critter guards is an essential investment for a clean energy system, especially in areas with a lot of local wildlife. It not only protects your investment but also contributes to environmental sustainability.

Frequently Asked Questions About Critter Guards

Common Concerns

What is a Critter Guard? A Critter Guard is a physical barrier designed to prevent animals from accessing the underside of solar panels. This barrier is essential for long-term protection against pests like squirrels and birds, which can cause significant damage to your solar system.

How long do Critter Guards last? Critter Guards are built to last for many years. However, their longevity can be influenced by installation techniques and local environmental factors. Typically, you may only need to replace them once during the lifespan of your solar panels, if at all.

Installation Queries

Will it really keep squirrels and birds out? When properly installed, Critter Guards are highly effective at keeping out common pests. However, they may not be as effective against raccoons due to their dexterous paws.

What are the costs involved? The cost of installing Critter Guards can vary based on material and labor. It’s a worthwhile investment to protect your solar panels from potential damage caused by critters.

Maintenance Tips

How often should I inspect my Critter Guards? Routine inspections are recommended at least once a year to ensure the guards are intact and functioning properly. This helps in early detection of any potential issues.

What should I do if my Critter Guard is damaged? If you notice any damage, it’s crucial to repair or replace the Critter Guard promptly to maintain its effectiveness in protecting your solar panels.

Regular maintenance and timely repairs of Critter Guards can significantly extend the lifespan of your solar panels and ensure optimal performance.

By addressing these common concerns, installation queries, and maintenance tips, you can make an informed decision about using Critter Guards for your solar panels.

Have questions about critter guards? Our FAQ section has all the answers you need to protect your solar panels from unwanted pests. Visit our website to learn more and explore our comprehensive solar solutions.


Investing in solar panels is a significant step towards sustainable energy and cost savings. However, protecting this investment from critters and environmental factors is crucial to ensure its longevity and efficiency. Critter guards offer an effective solution to prevent damage from birds, squirrels, and other small animals, which can otherwise lead to costly repairs and reduced energy output. By considering the installation of critter guards, either during the initial setup or as an add-on, homeowners can safeguard their solar panels and maximize their return on investment. With options ranging from DIY installations to professional services, there is a suitable solution for every budget. Ultimately, the relatively small cost of critter guards can save homeowners from substantial future expenses, making it a wise addition to any solar panel system.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a Critter Guard for solar panels?

A Critter Guard is a protective barrier installed around solar panels to prevent animals such as birds, squirrels, and other critters from nesting under or damaging the panels.

Why do I need a Critter Guard for my solar panels?

Critter Guards help protect your solar panels from damage caused by animals, which can lead to decreased efficiency and costly repairs. They also help reduce the frequency of cleaning by preventing debris buildup.

How much does it cost to install a Critter Guard?

The cost of installing a Critter Guard can range from $500 to $2,000, depending on the size of your solar panel system and the type of guard used.

Can I install a Critter Guard myself?

Yes, you can install a Critter Guard yourself if you have the necessary tools and skills. However, professional installation is recommended to ensure proper fitting and effectiveness.

How long do Critter Guards last?

Critter Guards can last for many years, often matching the lifespan of your solar panel system. Proper installation and maintenance can extend their longevity.

Do Critter Guards affect the efficiency of solar panels?

No, Critter Guards are designed to protect your solar panels without affecting their efficiency. In fact, they can help maintain efficiency by preventing physical damage and reducing the need for frequent cleaning.

What types of Critter Guards are available?

Common types of Critter Guards include mesh guards, bird spikes, and netting solutions. Each type has its own advantages and is suitable for different situations.

Are Critter Guards environmentally friendly?

Yes, Critter Guards are environmentally friendly as they help protect wildlife by preventing animals from nesting in dangerous areas. They also contribute to the sustainability of your solar energy system by reducing waste and the need for repairs.

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