Solar Panel Roofing Problems - Showalter Roofing
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Can Solar Panels Damage Your Roof?

Published by Andrew Schmidt

Many businesses today prioritize sustainability, such as company-wide recycling programs, onsite composting, and solar panel roofing. Solar panels convert solar cells into solar energy. With rooftop solar power, business owners can reduce their carbon emissions and save on monthly energy costs.

However, they also increase the risk of structural damage if improperly installed. Read this guide to see some common problems from solar panels you’ll want to avoid.

Aerial view of solar worker near solar panels on the roof of a business.

Roof Leaks

One of the main issues with solar panels on roofs is that they can cause leakage. Roof leaks typically occur if the solar installer does not seal any penetrations properly after affixing the panel rails. We will work with solar installers on prepping the roof to avoid any leaks after the install.

Cracked Beams

Cracked beams are another considerable problem with solar panels on roofs. Solar installers must fasten the panels through drill holes in the roof rafters. Only roof bolts can secure the solar beams into place. Roof bolts have larger heads that allow even pressure distribution on the surface.

Otherwise, average bolts can weaken the surface area, stressing the wooden beams underneath and causing them to crack.

A construction contractor will determine the strength of the rafters to see if they can support the solar panels. We work with structural engineers and solar installers to avoid cracked beams and other load-bearing issues. That way, we ensure the decking can support the weight of the panels so that they’re properly installed.

Structural Damage

Lastly, buildings with solar panels can increase the risk of structural damage, especially in areas of heavy snow. The metal rails that secure the panels may bend under immense weight and cause roof damage or other structural problems. While this can damage your roof, the solar panels may also fall off and injure passersby below.

Showalter is Here to Help

As commercial roofers, we are not responsible for solar panel installation. However, we work with professional solar installers on the best ways to protect your roof and avoid these common problems.

Our professional roofing experts will repair or replace roofs in preparation for the installation process. We collaborate with all parties for decking, structural support, and roofing preparation. This meets the solar panel and roofing material manufacturer’s specs for installation.

If you want to learn more about green roofing to improve your business’s solar energy production, call us at 630-499-7700! We’re happy to consult on the best type of roof to support any solar installs. We’ll give a free estimate on all green commercial projects so you know what to expect.

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