Solar Panels & Roof Protection
Other than the obvious purpose of harnessing the suns energy to create renewable electricity, solar panels also serve to protect your roof. Solar panels form a protective barrier between your roof and the outside elements. Having solar panels on your roof can help protect It from mother natures wrath. Outdoor elements such as wind, rain, snow, and the occasional falling tree are prevented from directly hitting your roof and causing damage.
Solar panels also absorb direct sunlight that would otherwise fall directly on your roof. The gap between the panels and your roof forms an air pocket that also has a cooling effect on your roof. One study shows that installing solar panels can decrease a homes internal temperature by up to 5 degrees Fahrenheit.
Solar Stack eliminates the need for crawling into hotor coldattic spaces to install solar panels. And because theres no drilling, you have total peace of mind that roof leaks wont result from solar panel installation. Solar Stack has undergone rigorous testing by accredited facilities and earned the most stringent certifications from the state of Florida for use in High-Velocity Hurricane Zones, ensuring its durability.
Proper Installation Of Solar Panels Prevents Roof Damage
Although solar panels themselves are not harmful to your roof, improper installation can lead to damage. Since the solar panels will be on your roof for 30 to 35 years, its important to take measures that will prevent any roof damage. The three main things to take care of are:
Always Check Your Panels After Severe Weather Events
If there is a storm, tornado, or any other extreme weather event, there is a huge likelihood that you can have broken solar panels. This will impact greatly the effectiveness of the solar system. And the solar panels may have been shifted from their holes which can result in leaks. So what you need to do is to examine the situation, diagnose the problem, and get it fixed.
If you keep your eye out for any problems, you will be able to prevent any occurrences that are preventable and keep your solar panels working effectively without damaging your roof.
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Do Solar Panels Void Roof Warranty
Unless you and your contractor take the proper precautions, the installation of solar panels can void your roofs warranty. The majority of solar panel installation companies take extreme measures to preserve the integrity of the roof and keep the warranty intact.
Solar panel installers will often get permission from the roofing manufacturer or licensed contractor before starting the panel installation process. If any roofing problems are detected, the repairs will need to be completed prior to the solar panel installation. If solar panels are installed on a damaged roof or a roof that cant handle the extra weight of the panels, the roof warranty is likely to become void.
The most common rooftop solar panel installation process requires holes to be drilled into the roof in order to secure the panels to the rack. Licensed solar panel installers will properly install the panels and patch the holes to preserve the integrity and proper functioning of the roof. When the holes are improperly drilled and not properly filled, water can get into the roof and void the roof warranty.
What Holds The Snow Back
The truth is any rooftop obstruction can create an unintentional snow guard. Obstacles can include items such as:
These rooftop obstructions including your solar panels can act as an unpredictable snow retention system.
Snow may accumulate above and on the lower edge of PV modules.
To prevent a rooftop avalanche, you need a reliable system designed to hold the snow safely in place as it melts such as unitized snow guards or a snow fence.
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Why Is It Better To Replace Your Roof Before Installing Solar Panels
At this point, we have established that replacing a roof can be quite expensive. However, it is a better option. Its a one time expense which will save you in the future.
The insulation of your house depends on your roof. So, if you need to turn up the AC in the summers or increase the heat during the winters more often, then it means your roof isnt able to insulate properly.
Moreover, a new roof will raise the value of your home. Dont worry about spending too much money on it because if you choose to sell, the money will return to you.
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Your Electricity Costs Are Already Low
According to a survey by the Pew Research Center, 96% of homeowners have installed solar, or are considering doing so, to save money on utility bills.
This makes perfect sense. Many American households spend hundreds of dollars every month on their power bills and solar panels are often the most effective way to slash that amount. Financial modeling by SolarReviews shows 25-year bill savings in the amount of $62,803 for solar panels installed in San Francisco in 2021, for instance.
However, some homeowners dont spend very much on electricity. This could be because of one or more of the following factors:
- You have a small home
- You have a small household size
- Your home and appliances are energy efficient
- You enjoy low electric rates from your local utility
If thats you, and you pay $50 or less a month for electricity, then installing solar probably isnt worth the time and effort.
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What Are The Potential Problems With Solar Panels
It is ideal to rule out the problems with solar panels before you begin the installation process. The good news is that none of these potential problems is a dealbreaker. In this section of the article, well introduce you to the problems of solar panels.
With comprehensive planning, preparedness, and installers, solar panel installation can be hassle-free. Once you equip your roof with solar panels, it should be clean and debris-free for top-notch performance.
Without proper installation, the solar panels are more likely to damage your roof. If you leave gaps and holes in the roof, it could lead to leaks and drainage problems. Make sure your installer has proper training and required experience for installation.
Also, oversizing solar panels can create a burden on your roof. You should measure and analyze your roofs for the best performance from your solar panels. Hopefully, you now have all the information to equip your roof with solar panels confidently. Hopefully, now you have all the information to equip your roof with solar panels.
Solar Panels Dont Damage Your Roof When Installed Properly
Just like any home improvement project, using the right service provider is essential to a rooftop solar job. For most homeowners, installing solar panels will not result in roof damage as long as your solar installer is a licensed, qualified professional and your roof is in good condition. If you hear of roof damage occurring because of a solar installation, its likely because the roof was initially in poor condition.
The first step is making sure youre working with a reputable installation company. You can connect with high-quality solar installers is by registering your property on the EnergySage Solar Marketplace. We pre-vet all of our installer partners to ensure that only the best installation companies have the opportunity to provide quotes through our platform. If you are concerned about damage to your roof, you can question your installer of choice about their installation process and measures they take to prevent roof damage using the online messaging center or invite installers out for site visits so they can inspect the roof and answer your questions in person. Its also worth asking any company about their workmanship warranty, and whether or not it covers your roof on the off chance damage occurs.
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Does Solar Panel Warranty Cover Roof Damage
Warranties do not cover damage to the roof and they do not provide the same level of protection, so its important that you do your research on what can cause solar panels to be removed from a structure.
This will help you understand how much time you have before installing them in order for everything to go smoothly without any issues.
Solar panel warranty coverage for damage caused by weight is limited, so make sure your contractor understands this limitation when they do their work.
Whats The Likelihood Something Will Break
Pecan Street, a University of Texas-based energy research center, monitored solar systems on 255 homes with rooftop solar over four years and reported just two major failures during that time. In both cases, the inverter which converts solar power into electricity you can use was the culprit.
Indeed, the inverters the solar component most likely to need replacing.
Stellar Solar co-founder Michael Powers said inverters generally last 15 to 20 years and many companies warranties cover fixes for at least half of that timeframe. His company offers 25-year warranties for microinverters and 10-year warranties for more basic ones known as string inverters, though customers can buy longer warranties.
If your warrantys up when your inverter fails, youll likely pay a few thousand dollars for a new one, though Powers said costs have come down significantly in the last decade.
Another 54 homes in the Pecan Street survey had more minor issues that researchers said usually cost less than $25 in parts and less than an hour of labor.
Those fixes wont necessarily be on your dime, though.
If youre leasing the panels, your agreement might cover maintenance or product problems.
And warranties in California usually cover panel issues for at least 10 years and often promise those panels will produce at least 80 percent capacity after 25 years. Solar installers also often offer warranties that cover installation issues that may have negatively affected the panels.
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Do You Have The Right Insurance
Having the right insurance to cover both yourself and any damage to your home during installation is something you absolutely need to consider. Many problems can arise during the installation of your solar panels that you might not even think about until it happens. In addition, before the work can even begin many building codes, requirements for rebates, legal regulations and certifications require insurance. These rules and regulations vary by state, so it is important to contact the correct resources for your state before your project starts.
How Can Solar Panels Ruin Your Roof
If improperly installed, solar panels can cause some damage to your roof. But, when done properly, solar panels can protect your roof and increase the value of your home. With more people looking to go green nowadays, adding a solar system to your home can add an estimated $9,274 in valuation to your home according to a recent CNBC report.
The takeaway from this article should be that installing a solar system on your roof, if done correctly, will not only help keep your energy costs down but also provide protection for your roof and increase your homes value.
Installing your solar system with Solar Stacks Dont Rack It, Stack It system wont damage your roof or void your roofs warranty. In fact, Solar Stacks mounting method can make your roof last longer by shielding it from temperature extremes and sun damage.
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What If The Solar Panels Did Damage My Roof
Its important to do your research before you install solar panels on your home.
Make sure the company you hire is experienced in doing this type of work so they do not cause any damage or leave behind a mess when removing their systems at some point down the road.
If there are already cracks and other issues with your roof, its best to do a full inspection and do what needs to be done in order for you not to have any issues with your roofing material.
If you do find out that your solar panels do cause damage, it is possible to get the company who installed them to fix the issue under warranty or pay part of their cost if they do not cover this type of problem.
Installation Procedures On Rooftop Pv Systems
There are two main types of installation procedures on rooftops for PV systems.
The first and most common for commercial applications is the ballasted footing mount system. This applies for commercial buildings or even some households that have a flat roof. This is the most ideal combination between roof and ground-mounted systems, because the PV system is able to combine the advantages of ground-mounted systems with those of rooftop systems.
Basically, it consists of pre-cast concrete blocks or steel structures anchored to the roof that can be placed on any position and angle. Generally, these flat roofs are made of concrete, so the engineers can ensure that the roof withstands the weight of the solar panels and the ballasted mounting system. You can take a look at an innovative flat roof mounting system design here.
Ballasted mounting system with concrete blocks
The second option, most common for residential US households is the sloped rooftop mounting. This option can be divided into several installation procedures:
Rail-Less Mounting Systems: This system does not use any rails to attach the modules to the sloped roof. Instead, it directly uses screws and bolts to attach the solar panels to the tiles. This type of system is less frequent now because it involves more penetrations to your roof, installation times are slow, and it can damage a tile by lifting it up with the force of the wind.
Rail-less PV system
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No Concern Related To Voided Roofing Warranties
It is a good idea to have solar panels installed on a roof that is five years old or less. There are some installers that will not even consider installing solar panels on a roof that has been installed for over five years because, at some point , the roof will have to be replaced.
Most solar companies are working hard to handle the process in a professional manner that will help ensure the warranty is not voided.
Keep in mind, having a new roof installed is one of the costliest renovation jobs that a person may take on. Since the cost of a roof replacement may be over $9,000 for a 2500 square foot home, most people want to make sure that nothing is damaged or that poor work was done that has voided their warranty.
Even a seemingly small, misplaced hole or a tear in one of the shingles can let water get into the attic. Today, companies are working with customers and roofing industry professionals to ensure nothing is impacted or compromised during the installation process.
Solar Panels And Roof Damage
Many property owners worry about damaging their roof when installing a solar panel system. These installations will typically last around 30 to 35 years, so its important to make sure installing panels doesnt cause harm to your roof. Fortunately, roof damage as a result of a solar panel installation is extremely rare because installers take precautionary steps while installing panels to prevent leaks and other damage from occurring.
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Solar Panels Can Cause Damage If They’re Not Installed Properly
You can easily get in touch with a local solar installer who will be able to review your roof and determine if there are any potential issues.
The most common damage comes from snow and ice buildup, which can weigh down panels and potentially cause them to break off. You should ensure that your roof is well-insulated so this does not happen.
You can do this by planting shrubs or bushes around your panels to provide extra protection from heavy snowfall and strong winds, which may blow the solar panel out of position.
You should also consider installing solar panels on an angle or tilt them downwards slightly so that they dont come in direct contact with your roof tiles , and this will also help protect them from the elements.
Another potential issue is that your tiles may not be suitable for solar panels. Although most tiles are fine, some types are susceptible to impact from strong winds so youll need to ensure that your roof can handle the extra weight of your solar panels and can cope with the extra pressure which theyll exert on your roof.
If youre in any doubt, speak to a local installer who will be able to assess your property and advise you accordingly.
The main thing to remember is that installing solar panels should not cause damage if everything is installed properly. You can easily get in touch with a local installer who will be able to provide you with advice for your specific property.