Best Practices for Operation and Maintenance of Photovoltaic and Energy Storage Systems; 3rd Edition

Research output: NRELTechnical Report


The goal of this guide is to reduce the cost and improve the effectiveness of operations and maintenance (O&M) for photovoltaic (PV) systems and combined PV and energy storage systems. Reported O&M costs vary widely based on the requirements of the system and the nature of the O&M contract, but a more standardized approach to planning and delivering O&M has the potential to both decrease costs and make those costs more predictable over time. This guide encourages adoption of best practices to reduce the cost of O&M and improve the performance of fielded systems, but it also enhances financing of new projects by making cost more predictable and mitigating performance risk. This guide also includes technical improvement opportunities in the design of systems and in specification of equipment because high-quality system deployment improves lifetime project performance and energy production while reducing, or at least optimizing, costs to deliver an O&M program. This guide provides recommendations that increase the effectiveness of O&M services; reduce O&M costs, improve solar asset transparency for investors and rating agencies; provide an industry framework for quality management; and reduce transaction costs.
Original languageAmerican English
Number of pages153
StatePublished - 2018

Bibliographical note

Replaces March 2015 version (NREL/SR-6A20-63235) and December 2016 version (NREL/TP-7A40-67553). This report was authored by the SunShot National Laboratory Multiyear Partnership (SuNLaMP) PV O&M Best Practices Working Group

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/TP-7A40-73822


  • corrective maintenance
  • failure standards
  • O&M services
  • preventive PV maintenance
  • PV cost model
  • PV operation and maintenance
  • PV reliability
  • PV soft costs
  • solar balance of system
  • solar DAT


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