Does Your Solar Array Need Snow Guards?

Are you the proud owner of a solar array in a geographical area with winter conditions that include snow and ice? Congrats – you’re contributing to a healthier environment, AND you’re saving money at the same time.

Win/Win!

Whether you have a new array or are considering installing one, you should be aware that the accumulation of snow and ice on solar panels could cause a new problematic condition on your roof. The build-up of snow and ice on solar panels has the potential to form an avalanche phenomenon as accumulated snow and ice leave the surface of the solar panel array.

Why would you have this problem? Snow has never fallen off your roof in an avalanche before….

In North America, over 80 % of the roofs installed on residential construction are asphalt composition shingles. If you own a building with this type of roofing material and live in an area with snow and ice conditions, you have probably never experienced a significant roof avalanche. The reason for this is that the granules on the surface on the composition shingles function as friction. Snow and ice accumulations tend to cling to these granules, while melted snow and ice, in the form of running water, works its way out from underneath the accumulated mass as a function of gravitational pull. Many people describe this as “snow melting into the roof.”

However, if your roof surface is hard and smooth, and in the case of solar panels, glass, the melting runoff acts as a lubricant between the panel surface and the accumulated snow mass above. As this happens the panel surface becomes frictionless (no granules to allow water to run off as the mass is held in place) and the entire accumulated snow mass will release and come barreling off the solar panels like an avalanche. We’ve even created a hashtag for this phenomenon: #SolAvalanche

When a roof snow avalanche occurs, gutters are sometimes ripped off, expensive landscaping can be destroyed, cars and other items in driveways and on porches or deck are sometimes damaged, and pets may be in harm’s way – but most importantly it can become a serious hazard to pedestrians.

Alpine SnowGuards, the leader in rooftop snow management devices, and the sister company of EcoFasten Solar, has the remedy: Solar Snow Management.

We manufacture frame-mounted systems that will manage the snow and ice. Systems that have been engineered through years of research to provide a super low-profile.  In fact, we’re the originators of solar snow management!

Take a look at your options:

Solar SnowMax – R2

Designed for use on the eave-edge of the array, Solar SnowMax-R2 is the largest fence option, with the fence/bar measuring 2” tall for projects requiring a higher fence on the eaves. The grooved front accepts an optional black insert strip to match the panel frame.

Solar SnowMax – Standard

Our original solar snow management system, which was designed to be installed along the eave-edge of an array, has now shifted to being used for additional, up-slope tiers of snow management. The 1-inch high fence/bar on the Solar SnowMax-Standard is ideal for up-slope installation due to the low-profile, which minimizes shading.

Solar Snow Pads

Like Solar SnowMax-Standard, our Solar Snow Pad was also designed to be used when additional up-slope tires of solar snow management are needed. The unique trait about the Solar Snow Pads is that’ll also accept 3/8” stainless steel rods, which creates a hybrid system in that it can be used as pad-style snow management AND as a pipe-style system if you choose to add the rods.

Determining proper application is easy with our Solar Snow Management Application Guide!

Because the majority of panels don’t generate electricity along the edges, the shading effect is next to nothing. Take a look at our Solar SnowMax Shade Angle Analysis, which was based on factors like roof pitch, geographical latitude, snow load calculations and the overall height of the Solar SnowMax system.

Installers all over the country are already using Solar SnowMax. Shouldn’t you, too? Peace of mind is priceless.

Monitor your solar panels. Watch how snow and ice melts and falls from them.  Be mindful of paths, your driveway, your landscaping, your pets, and most importantly, pedestrians.

We would love to hear your observations – let us know YOUR personal experience with snow and ice on solar panels.

Questions? Just email us or give us a call at 888.766.4273 – that’s what we’re here for!

We keep snow in its place

www.alpinesnowguards.com

[email protected] 

888.766.4273

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Sign up to start using our Online Project Calculator for FREE recommended layouts, BOM’s, pricing, system comparisons, and much more. We even have a tutorial that walks you through the calculator!

Subscribe to our monthly newsletter and keep up on the latest industry and Alpine news, products, and upcoming events!

Alpine SnowGuards designs, engineers, and manufactures snow management systems from our facilities in Morrisville, VT. We work closely with leading roofing contractors, architects, engineering firms, developers, and roofing manufacturers to ensure we deliver quality products that do what we say they’ll do. Alpine SnowGuards can help a building qualify for LEED® credits.

What’s New in Tile?

Here we are, hot off the heels of Intersolar….

In what seems like the blink of an eye, the industry will be meeting up again at SPI in Las Vegas!Late last week our trade show crates arrived back in our Phoenix facility, and we’re having a great time gearing up for our next product debut, which we’ll unveil to the industry at SPI (booth 4643).

SimpleTile-RB, without giving away too much, is that product. It’s one of those solutions that’ll leave you wondering why a system so simple isn’t already out there. I know that was my exact reaction.

More versatility. Less materials.

EcoFasten engineers have tested a handful of designs, and are confident that the one they landed on will leave installers impressed with the speed and ease of install. The cost-effectiveness doesn’t hurt either, along with the fact that the system employs our patented, watertight compression technology.

SimpleTile-RB:

  • Is customizable to each specific project
  • Replaces one complete tile
  • Eliminates cutting, drilling and grinding of tiles
  • Features a new attachment method
  • Allows a new approach to base and flashing alignment
  • Is available in configurations for flat, W and S tile profiles

So, come by booth 4643 and tell Alec, Elaine, Mike or Ryan that Jolene sent you (that’s me!), and that you want to see what’s new in tile.

While we’re on the subject of launching new products….I’ve been a part of the EcoFasten team since the summer of 2013. In just these 4 short years, I’ve worked on the testing initiatives as well as the marketing aspects of many new systems, all of which were launched at either Intersolar or SPI:

Intersolar 2017

3 entirely new systems made their first appearance on the floor of the Moscone Center:

SimpleBlock-PV – Rail-free racking for standing seam metal roofing

Rock-It System 4.0 – The new & improved rail-free Rock-It System

SimpleRack SR-X° – Engineered specifically for use on flat concrete roofs. Rail-free, fixed-position mounting

Intersolar 2016

Tile Hook Flashing – Ideal solution for flashing over 3rd party tile hooks

Rock-It System 2.0 – Pared down model, less materials, increased install efficiency

Intersolar 2015

Rock-It System, our first rail-free racking solution launches

SPI 2015

SimpleGrip-SQ – Engineered for solar mounting on low-slope and flat roofing

Intersolar 2014

Our Tile Flashing System, the first of its kind, debuts. The industry takes notice. Within months, a dozen or so similar systems started to inch their way into the solar arena.

CorruSlide, for corrugated metal, also made its industry debut at Intersolar ’14 and has become a go-to mounting solution for installs on metal roofing.

Will we see you at the Mandalay Bay again this year? We hope so.

If you’re there, stop by booth 4643, say hi to the crew, enjoy the install animations on our 3 big TV screens, and see all FOUR of our 2017 product debuts.

See you in Vegas! (Looking for some inexpensive things to do while you’re there? Check here).

Feel free to email us with any questions you might have about mounting solar on any roof – that’s what we’re here for!

www.ecofastensolar.com 

[email protected]

877.859.3947

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Follow us and feel free to share & tag us in your installation images. And don’t forget to sign up to receive our monthly eNewsletter for the latest industry and EcoFasten news, updates, and more!

Industry leader EcoFasten Solar designs, engineers, and manufactures patented, watertight solar roof mounts, rail-free racking systems, and components. The company provides mounting solutions that are easy to install, cost-effective, rugged in fabrication, and unsurpassed in quality. Comprised of a seasoned and growing team of professionals with talent, ability, and drive, all EcoFasten Solar products are precision-designed with the installer in mind. 

The Basics of PV Mounting on Various Roof Types

 

Before installing PV on any roof, it’s important to first have a good understanding of the basics.

Make sure you inspect the roof prior to PV array design, paying close attention to the following aspects:

  • Structural evaluation of the building
  • Structural evaluation of the roof
  • Age of the roofing materials
  • Type of roofing materials (especially important to determine the correct steps are taken in order to maintain the integrity of the roof)
  • Dirt build up
  • Pest damage
  • Condition of underlayment (as the primary source of waterproofing the roof, this step is absolutely essential)
  • Damage from past work (Remember, the last one on the roof is the one who gets blamed for damage, so repair any damage BEFORE installing PV)
  • Roof drainage
  • Roof traffic
  • Roof access and safety

Another important factor to consider on any installation is the need to pre-drill (and backfill). If you skip this step, you run the risk of cracking or splitting rafters, which will cause leaking and will ultimately be your fault. If it’s done the right way to begin with, there will be no headaches later on.

So, what are the unique differences and/or challenges that should be addressed when installing on specific roof types?

Composition Shingle

  • Nails – make sure to notch your flashing to fit around nails – this will ensure code compliance by allowing the flashing to extend up and under the third course of shingles
  • Position flashing between vertical joints of shingles for additional waterproofing measures

View EcoFasten Solar Comp Shingle Solutions

Tile

  • Try to keep your time on the roof to a minimum. Even the strongest tiles can be brittle and can break easily.
  • Be especially careful not to drop tools while on a tile roof.
  • Replace and cracked or damaged tiles prior to installing – think of it this way: the last person on the roof will usually be the one who is blamed for any recent damage.
  • Mission (clay) tile is fragile, and is not ideal to install over due to excessive risk of breakage. The “strip & go” method is often used, where the tiles are removed from the section of the roof that the array will be installed on, and replaced with asphalt shingles.
  • Make sure the flashing meets UL 441 standards as well as ICC-ES AC 286 4.1

View EcoFasten Solar Tile Solutions

Slate

  • The process/tips for installing on a slate roof are very similar to that of a composition shingle installation, but the slate tiles will need to be removed prior to installing – DO NOT drill through slate
  • For code compliance and waterproofing properties to remain intact on slate roofs, make sure the top edge of the flashing extends up and under the 3rd course of slate.

View EcoFasten Solar Slate Solutions

Metal

  • For installs on metal standing seam roofing, make sure to choose roof mounts that employ clamp-to-seam technology, which will never penetrate the roofing materials due to the use of set screws.
  • Make sure the mounts you use will not void roofing manufacturer’s warranties.
  • When installing on corrugated metal, it’s important to use a mount that either attaches to the ribs of the panel (as opposed to in the channel, where water flows and moisture accumulates), or to use mounts the employ waterproofing technologies such as EPDM rubber bushings that will form a compression-fit once the fastener is attached.
  • One of the advantages of installing a solar PV array to a metal roof is that metal is one of the longest lasting materials on the roofing market, so your chances of needing to re-roof prior to installation are slim.

View EcoFasten Solar Standing Seam Metal Solutions

View EcoFasten Solar Corrugated Metal Solutions

Low-Slope / Membrane

  • The roof must remain watertight!
  • In most low-slope roofing, this is achieved through flashing the attachment points
  • Different low-slope roof coverings will have different flashing requirements

View EcoFasten Solar Low-Slope Solutions

  SIPs Panels

  • Choose a mounting system that has a lightweight, durable construction that will enhance uplift and seismic values without adding additional weight
  • Opt for a system with a large base plate, allowing multiple attachments points to distribute compressive loads over standard insulation

View EcoFasten Solar SIPs Solutions

What else should you be aware of?

 Wind resistance

  • There are 3 zones for wind resistance analysis (Wind uplift could move or rip off and ruin the roof surface if the system is not engineered for the correct wind resistance):
    1. Field Zone- interior- lowest wind loads
    2. Perimeter Zone- ends- middle wind loads
    3. Corner Zones- highest wind loads
      • Wind uplift could move or rip off and ruin the roof surface if the system is not engineered for the correct wind resistance

Fire resistance

  • Roof Systems are classified for the level of fire resistance
    • Class A – highest rated (max spread of flames = 6 ft.)
    • Class B – max spread of flames = 8 ft.
    • Class C – max spread of flames = 13 ft.
  • The PV system must be engineered with materials to match the fire classification of the roof
  • The fire rating for PV components is governed by UL testing

Roof Warranty

  • Limited Manufacturer warranties may be void if design/install/maintenance procedures are not followed
  • Flashing must match the roofing manufacturers install instructions
  • Rooftop PV cannot interfere with roof maintenance
  • Work with roofing manufacturer and the roofing contractor

 

What about for different slopes?

    • Installing any roofing material on a roof with less than 3:12 pitch does not make it low-slope roofing
    • The minimum slope asphalt shingles should be installed on is typically 2:12 pitch
    • Low-slope roofs can be used on commercial roofing as well as residential
    • Low-slope roofs have a minimum ¼” rise over a 12” run (follow roofing manufacturer’s instructions)
    • All low-slope roofs must allow water to drain
    • Large commercial structures will have drainage paths
    • All low-slope roofs must have the ability to dry within 24 hours (humidity is an exception)
    • If the roof does not drain properly, bacteria and organic growth will appear on the surface of the roof
    • Organic growth will breakdown the roofing materials prematurely
    • Roof inspections increase the life of the roof, and should be done a minimum of twice per year
    • Low-slope roofs are often patched during roof inspections
    • Roofers look for signs of wear and patch the roof prior to any problems

Feel free to email us with any questions you might have about mounting solar on any roof – that’s what we’re here for!

See you all at Intersolar booth #9433!

www.ecofastensolar.com 

[email protected]

877.859.3947

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Follow us and feel free to share & tag us in your installation images. And don’t forget to sign up to receive our monthly eNewsletter for the latest industry and EcoFasten news, updates, and more!

Industry leader EcoFasten Solar designs, engineers, and manufactures patented, watertight solar roof mounts, rail-free racking systems, and components. The company provides mounting solutions that are easy to install, cost-effective, rugged in fabrication, and unsurpassed in quality. Comprised of a seasoned and growing team of professionals with talent, ability, and drive, all EcoFasten Solar products are precision-designed with the installer in mind. 

 

EcoFasten Solar to Debut FOUR New Products at Intersolar!

With just 20 days separating us from opening day of Intersolar N.A., the excitement in the air is palpable here at EcoFasten Solar. Everyone from Marketing (hey wait, that’s me!), to sales, production and shipping is getting stoked. That familiar July feeling is here….on the home front, that’s a very welcome feeling, especially up here in VT, where we still had snow on the ground in May. And on the business side of things, it’s full steam ahead as we prepare to knock your socks off with our debut of FOUR new products!

We’ll be at booth 9433, so make sure to stop by, say hi to the crew, see the new systems, and walk away with a deeper understanding of why the top installers in the country have been relying on our easy to install, patented, watertight systems to make their time on the roof less time-consuming, and their installs the most secure.

We’ve launched products in the past at Intersolar – products like our first rail-free system, Rock-It System, the low-slope go-to system, SimpleGrip-SQ, CorruSlide for corrugated metal roofing….the list goes on. This year will be no different, and we know you’ll like what you see – the 4 new systems have been precision-engineered and are just waiting for you….

I’ll let our show staff talk to you about ALL the advantages of each system, and in the meantime, here’s a (very) brief overview of each. Like I said, we know you’ll like what you see.

SimpleBlock-PV

Our latest rail-free racking system, SimpleBlock-PV, was designed for standing seam metal roofing applications, and can also be used as a rail-based mounting system (no mid-clamps).

SimpleRack SR-X°

Engineered specifically to fill a void in the marketplace – PV on flat concrete roofs. This rail-free system offers fixed-position mounting, as well as the ability to extend the mounting height to accommodate things like roof vents. Already introduced to the Puerto Rico and Mexico markets, SimpleRack SR-X° (the X° is for “10 degrees”) is the ideal solution for flat concrete roofing applications.

Rock-It System 4.0

I don’t know why, but I’ve never been a fan of the term “new and improved”, but, well, that’s exactly what the Rock-It System 4.0 is. Designed for use on composition shingle and tile roofing, the 4.0 is faster and easier to install with simple, straightforward components. Compliant with UL 2703: First Edition, Rock-It System 4.0 features integrated electrical bonding and is Class A Fire Rated.

Tile System – Rail Based

The newest of the 4, the Tile System (not yet on our website) will deliver huge time-savings and cost-efficiency for arrays installed on tile roofing. The innovative flashing replaces one complete tile and eliminates the need for cutting, drilling or grinding of tiles. The system is competitive with tile hooks, yet offers a much faster, cleaner, and simpler install.

So, we’ll see you in 20 days, right?

We can’t wait! Remember, we’ll be at booth 9433. See you soon!

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www.ecofastensolar.com 

[email protected]

877.859.3947

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Follow us and feel free to share & tag us in your installation images. And don’t forget to sign up to receive our monthly eNewsletter for the latest industry and EcoFasten news, updates, and more!

Industry leader EcoFasten Solar designs, engineers, and manufactures patented, watertight solar roof mounts, rail-free racking systems, and components. The company provides mounting solutions that are easy to install, cost-effective, rugged in fabrication, and unsurpassed in quality. Comprised of a seasoned and growing team of professionals with talent, ability, and drive, all EcoFasten Solar products are precision-designed with the installer in mind. 

3 Ways to Prevent a Solavalanche

Most of you already knew this, but in case you didn’t (it never hurts repeating), Alpine SnowGuards led the charge in engineering snow management systems that were designed specifically for use on solar arrays. In fact, we currently manufacture 3 systems, each with its own unique features, making deciding which system to go with a walk in the park!

So, what are these systems, and what are the differences between them? Taking a step back makes the most sense, so you can get a good feel of where the solar snow management idea stemmed from, as well as where it is now.

Because the face of solar panels are fabricated from glass, there’s no surface area/friction for snow to grip onto, and nothing to stop it from building up, eventually releasing in an avalanche manner, in the form of what we Alpine-ites like to refer to as a solavalanche.

If you live, work, or play in an area of the country that sees any accumulated snowfall, you know what I’m talking about….and you know the drill. Come to think of it, you probably know the noise, too: That shifting, sliding, melting snow that avalanches off your roof in one massive tha-wump. These solavalanches can damage expensive landscaping, vehicles, BBQ grills, gutters, plumbing vents….or worse, they can harm (and even kill) people and animals.

Enter Solar SnowMax, a frame-mounted solution that has become, over the years, a go-to for solar installers installing solar arrays in areas of the country that accumulate any amount of snow. Think about this: The calculated snow load of a single solar panel is approximately 800 lbs/panel (50 lbs/sf x 16 sf average per panel). It’s starting to make sense, right?

Take a look at our systems below:

Solar SnowMax-R2

Designed for use on the eave-edge of the array, Solar SnowMax-R2 is the largest fence option, with the fence/bar measuring 2” tall for projects requiring a higher fence on the eaves. The grooved front accepts an optional black insert strip to match the panel frame.

Installation Video:

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Solar SnowMax-Standard

Our original solar snow management system, which was designed to be installed along the eave-edge of an array, has now shifted to being used for additional, upslope tiers of snow management. The 1-inch high fence/bar on the Solar SnowMax-Standard is ideal for upslope installation due to the low-profile, which minimizes shading.

Installation Video:

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Solar Snow Pad

Just like Solar SnowMax-Standard, our Solar Snow Pads are also designed to be used when additional upslope tiers of solar snow management are needed. The unique trait about the Solar Snow Pads is that they also accept 3/8” stainless steel rods, which creates a hybrid system in that it can be used as pad-style snow management AND as a pipe-style system if you choose to add the rods.

Installation Video:

Determining proper application is easy with our Solar Snow Management Application Chart!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Managing snow on solar makes sense. These snow management solutions have been proven as the strongest on the market, due to their rugged engineering and aircraft-grade aluminum fabrication. They’re ideal for roof-top solar arrays and carports, for both commercial and residential applications, and can be installed on either portrait or landscape orientation arrays. The frame-mounted fence systems have a grooved front to accept an optional black color insert strip, to match black panel frames.

Now is the time to start thinking about solar snow management, long before the snow flies, and before we all get busy with other things like, oh, I don’t know….enjoying summer ☼

(Above: My husband and Son at one of our favorite fishing spots)

If you’d like more information, visit the solar snow management section of our website. Everything you need is there, including product-specific documentation like cut sheets, assembly sheets, installation instructions, and specifications. Feel free to email or call us if you have any questions or would like to know more about our Solar SnowMax and Solar Snow Pad product line.

Alpine SnowGuards will be at Western Roofing Expo in Las Vegas June 12-13 (print your free pass here), so if you’re there too, stop by booth 550 and we’ll show you our solar solutions, as well as answer any questions about our extensive line of rooftop snow management devices. We manufacture over 60 systems for all roof types, with countless custom snow guards under our belt!

If you’re a solar installer, our Sister company, EcoFasten Solar will be at Solar Power Texas in Austin (booth 10, June 13-14), Intersolar North America in San Francisco (booth 9433, July 11-13), and Solar Power International in Las Vegas (booth 841, Sep 11-13). We’ll have our solar snow management solutions with us, so come on over, say hi, and take a look at our complete product line, which includes solar roof mounts, components, and rail-free racking systems. EcoFasten Solar was voted #1 Racking & Mounting Company in 2016….come see what all the fuss is about!

alpine_noback

We keep snow in its place

www.alpinesnowguards.com

[email protected] 

888.766.4273

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Sign up to start using our Online Project Calculator for FREE recommended layouts, BOM’s, pricing, system comparisons, and much more!

Subscribe to our monthly newsletter and keep up on the latest industry and Alpine news, products, and upcoming events!

Alpine SnowGuards designs, engineers, and manufactures snow management systems from our facilities in Morrisville, VT. We work closely with leading roofing contractors, engineering firms, developers, and roofing manufacturers to ensure we deliver quality products that do what we say they’ll do. Alpine SnowGuards can help a building qualify for LEED® credits.

Part One: EcoFasten Solar Project Photo Series 2017

Earlier this month, like I do a few times every year, I sent out an email to our clients to see if they might have some images to share of projects utilizing our products. The bounty of photos that (almost immediately) began trickling in through my inbox was incredible! Thank you all for sharing! Every time I send one of these emails, there’s always one system I’m especially excited to see. That varies from year to year, as new products are launched or as system components evolve.

This time was no different. This time it was Rock-It System I was hoping to see. Why? I think because rail-free racking is not such a new concept anymore, and because I know how versatile the system is.

Enter Code Green Solar, and the image below showcasing the Rock-It System beautifully! Thank you, Code Green!

The rail-free Rock-It System can be installed on composition shingle or tile roofing, and features our unique top-down leveling so the array can be leveled during or after the install is complete. UL 2703: First Edition compliant, the Rock-It System is a lightweight, durable system that provides a fast, easy installation with impressive North-South adjustability and integrated electrical bonding.

Want to see first-hand how easy it is to install? Check out the video:

Thanks for taking the time to read this post, and stay tuned for future blogs showcasing project installation images. And remember, we LOVE receiving photos from our client. If you have 1 or 20 to share, feel free to send them my way. We’ll tag/mention your company when we use the image(s) and will link directly to your company’s website too! Win/Win!

Questions on Rock-It System (or any of the systems in our product line)? Give us a call at 877.859.3947 or email us – that’s what we’re here for!

EcoFasten Solar hopes to see you at Solar Power Texas (booth #10) in June, Intersolar N.A. (booth #9433) in July, and at Solar Power International (booth #841) in September! Come see what’s new including SimpleBlock-PV, our latest rail-free system for use on metal standing seam roofing applications!

As always, we look forward to seeing you!

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www.ecofastensolar.com 

[email protected]

877.859.3947

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Follow us and feel free to share & tag us in your installation images. And don’t forget to sign up to receive our monthly eNewsletter for the latest industry and EcoFasten news, updates, and more!

Industry leader EcoFasten Solar designs, engineers, and manufactures patented, watertight solar roof mounts, rail-free racking systems, and components. The company provides mounting solutions that are easy to install, cost-effective, rugged in fabrication, and unsurpassed in quality. Comprised of a seasoned and growing team of professionals with talent, ability, and drive, all EcoFasten Solar products are precision-designed with the installer in mind. 

Tile Roofs: 8 Essential Tips For Successful PV Mounting

Our R&D and Engineering teams have invested a lot of time in developing PV mounting solutions for tile roofs. Our end goal is always to provide installers with solutions that are easy to install, minimize your time on the roof, won’t break the bank, and that meet and exceed all known building codes.

Tile roofing is a completely different animal than installing on comp shingle, metal, or low-slope roofing, and like all roofing applications, there are many things to consider BEFORE you install.

Because we want all of your installs to be seamless and hassle-free, we thought we’d share some tips – if you have additional tips, please feel free to share them here! As I’ve always said, the more we share, the more we know. And that can only be a good thing for the industry.

  1. EVALUATE THE TILES

It’s common to find hairline cracks on tile roofs, the result of a dropped tool or a too-heavy footstep long ago. Often cracks are sealed together with silicone or some other adhesive. But just because you didn’t cause the blemish, doesn’t mean it’s not your responsibility. We’ve heard it again and again from the integrators we work with….regardless of who caused the damage, it’s always going to be the last person on the roof who will be blamed

  1. INSPECT THE UNDERLAYMENT

In 1986, the building code was updated to require underlayment on tile roofs, to protect homes from snow, sleet and wind-driven rain. No one says it better than our founder & President Brian Stearns: “I used to say that the tile was really a façade to protect the underlayment, which was your primary waterproofing.  That’s probably a little bit of a stretch, but the underlayment is critical.” A thorough inspection of the underlayment before taking ownership of the roof is important. If the material is deteriorating, rotting or cracking, it could spring a leak regardless of what you happen to do on the roof.

  1. CHECK FOR PESTS

Tile roofs are ideal homes for bats, squirrels, birds and even rats. Damage from gnawing pests can lead to moisture intrusion, which will rapidly degrade waterproofing properties and the structure underneath. Pay special attention to holes and cracks on the roof. If you can, get inside the house and do a survey of the attic – this will give you a good sense of whether or not the roof has leaked in the past, or is currently leaking.

  1. KNOW THAT YOU WILL BREAK TILE

Everybody does. It happens on every project we’re aware of, and it’s important to fix the material as you go, or at the very least, before you finish the install. Damaged tiles really need to be replaced before/during the installation.  Mounting solutions that replace a complete tile with a flashing are ideal.

  1. THINK ABOUT LONGEVITY

One way to install solar on tile roofing involves boring a hole for mounting posts through the tiles. The tile is placed over the flashing and post, leaving a gap between post and tile. One way or another, the installer will need to make sure the area around the post remains watertight. In the Southwest, caulking and adhesives won’t last the life of an array. Any time your solution involves “one way or another”, it should really lead to one question: Is this a 25 year application?

  1. CONSIDER TILE REMOVAL

The popular “strip and go” installation method has installers removing tile from the roof and replacing it with asphalt shingles. Solar is installed using typical flashing and attachment methods, and then the tile is reinstalled around the perimeter of the array so that it has the look of an array on a tile roof. In reality, the waterproofing layer is the asphalt shingles.

  1. INSTALL BRACKETS INTO RAFTERS

Structural engineers will sign off on installing into plywood, which will probably hold a solar array, but a strong enough wind could pull the plywood away from the roof because it’s typically held in place with just eight penny nails. Also, and this is a biggy: Use pre-drilled, backfilled holes for the lag bolts. Not doing so can split rafters.

  1. MINIMIZE ADDITIONAL WEIGHT

I’m telling you what you already know here: Tile is heavy. Limiting weight on the roof and gaining approval from a structural engineer will ensure structural integrity. Many installers I know wear soft-soled shoes like Vans or something similar. Make sure that when you’re doing your survey, you’re getting a really good feel for how the roof is assembled – this is essential prior to just jumping up there to do the installation. And beware: Even the heaviest tiles can be very brittle.

Do you have any other tips for mounting PV on tile roofing? Leave a comment!

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Our Tile Flashing System is an innovative and straightforward solution that should be considered when evaluating your mounting options. It replaces a complete tile, attaches to the roof deck with as little as 2 lag bolts, is faster and much easier than tile hook systems, and is certified by IAPMO. Watch the install video and see how easy it really is to install.

Let us know if you have questions or would like more information about the systems we’ve designed specifically for tile roofing applications.

Oh, and before I sign off, I wanted to let you know that if you’ll be in either San Diego, Portland, Oregon or Atlanta over the next few weeks, we’d love to have you stop by and see us at California Solar Expo booth 10, at the Oregon Solar Energy Conference, or at Solar Power Southeast booth 11.

We ALWAYS look forward to seeing you!

 

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www.ecofastensolar.com 

[email protected]

877.859.3947

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Follow us and feel free to share & tag us in your installation images. And don’t forget to sign up to receive our monthly eNewsletter for the latest industry and EcoFasten news, updates, and more!

Industry leader EcoFasten Solar designs, engineers, and manufactures patented, watertight solar roof mounts, rail-less systems, and components. The company provides mounting solutions that are easy to install, cost-effective, rugged in fabrication, and unsurpassed in quality. Comprised of a seasoned and growing team of professionals with talent, ability, and drive, all EcoFasten Solar products are precision-designed with the installer in mind. 

EcoFasten’s CorruSlide: An Interactive 3D Model

It’s been a little over a year since I’ve written about CorruSlide, one of our solar roof mount solutions for installing solar on corrugated metal roofing.  I was all ready to sit down this morning and write a great post….until I remembered that not only do we already have a great post about CorruSlide to re-share (below), we also have an equally great 3D model, which shows you exactly how it works, while also showing you just how easy it is to install – just like all of the systems in our extensive line of products.

So let’s cut to the chase….

If your name is Matt, and you’re the resident Animator at EcoFasten Solar, you do things that create confidence, in that your animations are so clear, so concise, that anyone who watches them even once can see first-hand how easy our solar roof mount systems are to install.

If you’re me? Well….you write about it.

I often refer to Matt as a Superhero. And really, it’s not that much of a stretch. To take devices that require a certain amount of mechanical acuity to install, and break them down into installation animations and 3D models that, at the literal click of a button, transform into devices that make sense and have you walk away going, “ohhhh! NOW I get it!”? That, to me anyway, is a Superhero quality.

Matt

In 2014 we launched CorruSlide at Intersolar – it’s another one of our solutions for mounting solar on corrugated metal roofs. CorruSlide attaches to the sides of the ribs, instead of in the valleys, where water flows and moisture accumulates, and features adjustability both N-S and E-W. If you’re looking for a universal design that works with all known profiles, you’ll want to try CorruSlide.

CS

Anyway, my whole point in writing this was to show off the CorruSlide Interactive 3D Model….CHECK. THIS. OUT. Play around with it, view it from all angles (even underneath), and if you want, and if you’re in the mood, let us know what you think!


Corru Slide

If you’d like more info, feel free to call (877.859.3947) or email us – that’s what we’re here for!

Oh, and if you haven’t already, check out our 2017 tradeshow schedule. Discover why the top installers in the country rely on us.

v1logo

www.ecofastensolar.com 

[email protected]

877.859.3947

tw fb yt li

Follow us and feel free to share & tag us in your installation images. And don’t forget to sign up to receive our monthly eNewsletter for the latest industry and EcoFasten news, updates, and more!

Industry leader EcoFasten Solar designs, engineers, and manufactures patented, watertight solar roof mounts. The company provides mounting solutions that are easy to install, cost-effective, rugged in fabrication, and unsurpassed in quality. Comprised of a seasoned and growing team of professionals with talent, ability, and drive, all EcoFasten Solar products are precision-designed with the installer in mind. 

Cut Installation Costs with NEW SimpleBlock from EcoFasten Solar

When it comes to mounting solar on metal standing seam roofing, our ASG Clamps have been a go-to for installers for years now, due not only to the ease of installation, but also because the two oval-point set screws don’t penetrate the roofing material or void roofing manufacturer’s warranties.

OvalPoint

We’ve heard great things about our clamps, and like the innovators we are, we’ve been focused on designing a leaner solution to bring installation costs down, while providing robust engineering values. I’m here to tell you….we did it, and you are going to be so happy we did!

Introducing a design so simple, we named it SimpleBlock. A solution SO new, it’s not even on our website yet!

UandT

The newly designed, pared-down clamps are fabricated from 6000 series aluminum and feature a streamlined design (less material). The integrated T-Slot allows for impressive N-S and E-W adjustability that wasn’t possible with the ASG Clamps, and the 2 configurations currently available (“U” for vertical/double lock seams and “T” for horizontal/single lock seams) give you greater flexibility when determining your project needs.

NOW FOR THE BEST PART….

Are you ready for this??

SIMPLEBLOCK CAN BE PURCHASED IN VOLUME QTY’S FOR AS LOW AS $3.79! 

Yup! You read that right! Installing solar should be easy. It should also be cost-efficient. SimpleBlock delivers both.

If you’d like more info, feel free to call (877.859.3947) or email us – that’s what we’re here for!

Oh, and if you haven’t already, check out our 2017 tradeshow schedule. Discover why the top installers in the country rely on us.

v1logo

www.ecofastensolar.com 

[email protected]

877.859.3947

tw fb yt li

Follow us and feel free to share & tag us in your installation images. And don’t forget to sign up to receive our monthly eNewsletter for the latest industry and EcoFasten news, updates, and more!

Industry leader EcoFasten Solar designs, engineers, and manufactures patented, watertight solar roof mounts. The company provides mounting solutions that are easy to install, cost-effective, rugged in fabrication, and unsurpassed in quality. Comprised of a seasoned and growing team of professionals with talent, ability, and drive, all EcoFasten Solar products are precision-designed with the installer in mind. 

EcoFasten Solar Invalidates D Three Enterprises Patents in Colorado District Court

Anyone who does business with EcoFasten Solar, in any capacity, knows that we pride ourselves on our innovative spirit and our proactive approach to anticipating gaps in the marketplace by engineering solutions that fill those gaps.

Just last week we learned that the District Court of Colorado granted our motion for summary judgement invalidating all patent claims asserted against us by D Three Enterprises. The Court’s order brings the dispute to a close, and for all of us at EcoFasten Solar, this is a long-deserved victory.

The action against us was filed a couple of summers ago, back in June of 2015. The action asserted claims against 2 of our patents. From the beginning, we’ve maintained that the claims were without merit and that the D Three Patents were invalid. In its recent order granting EcoFasten’s motion, the Court found that EcoFasten’s prior commercial activities came before to the effective filing dates of each of D Three’s asserted patents, making each of their claims invalid.

We have a very strong patent portfolio, and are, and will continue to, aggressively defend those patents by pursuing those companies that infringe.

The founder and President of EcoFasten Solar, Brian Stearns, says, “This finding by the Colorado Court confirms our long held belief that D Three’s claims were baseless.  EcoFasten Solar has a long, proud tradition of innovation. We also work diligently to respect the patent rights of others.  This action has also caused us to look at our own patent rights and move forward with actions to defend the innovation we have worked so hard to create.”

v1logo

www.ecofastensolar.com 

[email protected]

877.859.3947

tw fb yt li

Follow us and feel free to share & tag us in your installation images. And don’t forget to sign up to receive our monthly eNewsletter for the latest industry and EcoFasten news, updates, and more!

Industry leader EcoFasten Solar designs, engineers, and manufactures patented, watertight solar roof mounts. The company provides mounting solutions that are easy to install, cost-effective, rugged in fabrication, and unsurpassed in quality. Comprised of a seasoned and growing team of professionals with talent, ability, and drive, all EcoFasten Solar products are precision-designed with the installer in mind.