The state of Massachusetts is a huge advocate for alternative energy sources. For homeowners (and businesses) the most popular form of alternative energy comes in the form of solar energy from installed solar panels. There are hundreds of solar panel installation companies out there to choose from, and the benefits of installing these are boundless.
But how do solar panels attach to your asphalt roof? Is there risk of damaging your existing roof? Here are a few things you need to know about the installation process.
The Ideal Roof for Solar Panel Installation
Unfortunately, not every home in Massachusetts will be a candidate for solar panel installation simply due to the home’s structural design. Solar panels require a roof that is directly pointing towards the sun, a roof that’s sturdy enough to hold the weight of these panels, as well as a roof that is unobstructed by cables, chimneys, and other protruding objects. Luckily, if your roof fits these requirements, then a professional residential roofing company will be able to install solar panels to just about any type of roofing material — whether it be slate tiles or traditional asphalt shingles of varying thickness.
How Solar Panels Are Mounted To Your Roof
If your home has been properly inspected by your chosen solar panel installer and give the green light for installation, then there are a few more things you will need to know regarding the installation process. Solar panels must be mounted by drilling into your home’s rafters. The rafters are part of your home’s fundamental structure and thus significantly reduces the chances of upforce. Updraft is when — during storms — high winds will be funneled under the panels and lift them off your roof like a sailboat’s sails. Bolting the panels to the rafters completely eliminates the upforce problem.
Many homeowners are concerned about solar panel installation companies drilling holes into their roof. There is no way around this, but in order to prevent leaks and compromising the functionality of your roof, the bolts and screws will be surrounded by layers of flashing in order to make a water-tight seal around the hole. The difficulty of installing solar panels varies depending on the type of roofing materials used, so it’s important to contact both a professional roofing company as well as an experienced solar panel installer regarding what they think would be best to mount the panels in a safe and efficient way.
Interested in solar panels for your home? We highly recommend contact Bay State Exteriors beforehand for a roof inspection to determine if there are any issues with mold or rot in the rafters. We also recommend that homeowners replace their roof before the solar panel installation because removing the solar panels for a roof replacement later down the road is much more expensive. Contact us today for a free estimate!