Switching to Solar? How Panels Can Affect Your Roofing

Solar panels are becoming more and more popular for commercial facilities. Not only are they a great way to reduce your building’s environmental impact, but they can help reduce your energy bill as well. Florida and many other states offer incentive programs to switch to solar, making it more affordable than ever to install solar paneling. However, there are many factors to consider besides cost before installing them onto your roofing. 

 

Solar panels are a major installation that is not suitable for all buildings. The panels are heavy and require a significant amount of space to be effective for commercial applications. Plus, improper installation can lead to structural damage. This increases your building’s risk of water damage, fire, and can cause your warranty or insurance to be canceled. In order to enjoy the full benefits of solar roofing, you need to work with an experienced contractor and determine whether your building is a good candidate for solar installation. 

 

The installation team will first inspect your roofing to determine whether it is in proper condition for solar panel installation. Roofing that is old, damaged, or structurally compromised is immediately eliminated from solar panel installation. Your roofing contractor will also look at: 

 

  • Height of the building
  • Frame load capacity
  • The seismic and wind loads
  • The slope 
  • The roofing material

 

After inspection, your contractor can talk about installation requirements and solar panel brands. However, before this conversation takes place you will want to talk to your roofing installation team to determine whether your warranty is still valid after the addition. You may also want to check with your insurance company to determine whether this changes your rates. By choosing a reputable contractor, your odds of keeping insurance and warranties are much higher. 

 

You should also ask your roofing contractor if your roof flashing is in good condition. The installation crew will have to drill through both the roofing material itself and the flashing to secure the panels. If the flashing is not in good condition, this can lead to water damage. The structural integrity of your building comes first. If your roofing contractor has concerns, you should replace flashing or roofing panels first. 

 

With these tips in mind, you can successfully implement a solar panel system to your commercial roofing. By understanding the risks, you can prepare your roofing and ensure a safe installation from start to finish. And, MaintenX is always here to help with your roofing and solar panel installation needs. 

 

To learn more about our maintenance and installation services, contact us!

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