How to get rid of pigeons nesting under solar panels
If you have recently installed solar panels on your rooftop, you may be facing an unexpected issue of pigeons nesting under the panels. This is a common problem for homeowners with solar PV systems, as birds are drawn to these areas due to their warm surfaces and sheltered placement. However, pigeon nesting can cause serious problems, such as affecting the efficiency of your solar panels and even damaging them.
Why Are Pigeons Attracted to Solar Panels?
Solar panels attract pigeons for a few key reasons: the warmth of their surfaces, easy access, and protective shelter. The panels are often installed on rooftops, providing easy access for birds, while the warmth of the surface is inviting during cold days or nights. Additionally, the panels provide shelter from predators and other elements like the British weather, wind and rain.
What Kind of Problems Are Caused by Pigeons Nesting Under Solar Panels?
Unfortunately, when pigeons or birds decide to nest under your solar panels this can negatively affect their efficiency and even cause damage to the system. When installed correctly, the solar panels should remain clear of any debris, shading or objects to receive optimal sunlight, but nests and bird droppings can block some of this light and reduce the output. In turn, this means that your solar PV system won’t be able to generate as much energy as it was intended to.
On top of this, bird droppings can also damage the panels and corrode the wiring, leading to a costly repair. Here are just a few of the common issues pigeons can bring to your property.
- Noise Disruption: Pigeons are not silent occupants. The cooing, shuffling, and general noise associated with a pigeon nest can be a significant disturbance, particularly if the panels are located near bedrooms or quiet areas of the home.
- Fire Hazard: Nest materials, typically composed of twigs, leaves and other flammable substances, can pose a fire hazard, especially if located near electrical wiring.
- Aesthetic Concerns: Lastly, the unsightly appearance of nests and droppings can detract from the aesthetic appeal of your home and solar installation.
What Can Homeowners Do to Stop Pigeons Nesting Under Solar Panels?
Implementing preventative measures can help homeowners avoid the complications associated with any birds nesting under solar panels. In this section, we will explore various effective solutions to deter these birds, keeping your solar panels clean, efficient, and damage-free.
Bird Mesh and Bird Spikes
Bird mesh and spikes are cost-effective and easy-to-install solutions for deterring pigeons from nesting under the panels. Bird mesh, often made out of plastic or metal, can be fitted around the panels, creating a barrier that stops pigeons and other birds from reaching the space underneath. Similarly, bird spikes can be attached along the edges of the panels, providing a prickly surface which is uncomfortable and discourages pigeons from landing and nesting.
Solar Panel Skirts
Solar panel skirts, also known as solar skirts, are a great deterrent for pigeons. These are thin strips of material which are installed around the edges of your solar panels, completely blocking the under-panel area and preventing access for birds. They are made from durable materials and designed to withstand weather conditions, ensuring a long-lasting solution.
Maintaining a Clean Garden
Pigeons are drawn to areas with a readily available food source. By maintaining a clean garden and ensuring there are no leftover food scraps or seeds, you can discourage pigeons from nesting in your area. Regularly clearing away fallen fruit and keeping rubbish bins securely closed can also help in deterring pigeons.
Garden Decoy Predators
Introducing garden predators, such as false owls or hawks, can deter pigeons from nesting. This can be achieved by installing decoy predators, similar to a scarecrow, or inviting natural predators into your garden by providing suitable habitats.
Pest Control Services
If the problem of bird nesting becomes extensive, it may be necessary to engage a professional pest control service. They have the knowledge and experience to deal with the issue effectively and humanely, using methods such as trapping and relocating the birds.
Use of Ultrasonic Devices
Ultrasonic devices emit high-frequency sounds that are unpleasant to birds, effectively discouraging them from nesting under the solar panels. These devices are humane and do not harm the birds but only cause them to seek other places for nesting.
Installation of Reflective Objects
Reflective objects such as old CDs, aluminium foil, or specially designed bird deterrent tape are low-cost options to deter pigeons from nesting. The reflective surfaces disorient the birds and prevent them from approaching the panels.
Contacting a local solar company
When faced with a persistent issue of pigeons nesting under your solar panels, it’s advisable to reach out to a local solar company accredited by HIES for professional advice or the installation of pigeon-proofing solutions.Find an Installer