Edmonton Solar Array

Avoiding Roof Damage from Solar Installation

Attic and ceiling damage, mold, high utility bills and wasted energy, or worst case: fire or flood. These are just some of the consequences of a leak in your roof. No homeowner or builder wants to walk in the door one day and see signs of leaks. Quite frankly, neither do their home builders or roofers.

Leak problems are not common when a roof is first installed, but become a concern when unqualified contractors penetrate the roof to add equipment to it. If not done with care, unqualified contractors can cause damage to the roof, the shingles, or the waterproofing. Therefore, it is critical to ensure your contractor is fully qualified to install your Solar PV System.

The primary concerns of qualified contractors are:

  • Safety,
  • Waterproofing and
  • Preserving the integrity and service life of the roof.

Industry standard best practices (or higher) need to be used when installing anything on a roof. These best practices include roof design, equipment being installed, and items penetrating the roof. Equipment, such as a Solar PV System can be installed on a rooftop without jeopardizing the waterproofing or life of the roof. Make sure you are hiring a reputable, qualified contractor to install the PV system to prevent damage.

How It Works

A 7/32” hole is drilled once the roof structure has been located. The hole is not drilled through the roof member so as to prevent a full penetration. This pilot hole is then filled with roofing sealant.

A 3″ lag is installed. Then, the lag is tightened so that the EPDM washer is compressed ensuring a watertight seal.

Next, we make sure nothing will impede flashings. Using a shingle bar, the shingles are gently lifted to check for nails. The flashings are also then dry-fitted to ensure proper fit, and ensure that there are no obstructions.

By using a 100% watertight flashing system, PV system installation can be done without causing damage to a roof. Roof sealant is applied to the underside of the flashing to provide a watertight seal and encourage drainage. 

The flashing kit is installed with “L Bracket” and is ready for the racking. Finally sealed and waterproofed, this installation prevents both water leaks and un-necessary damage to the roof. This prevents costly insurance claims and damage to roofer or electrical contractor reputation. With solar panels correctly installed, the customer is able to become energy efficient without worrying about the integrity of their roof!

Who to Contract

We expect that our Solar PV systems will last so long, we recommend having fairly new shingles so that you don’t need to worry about your roof for years to come. Have old shingles? If so, consider having new ones installed. If you’re seeking a roofing expert, we are proud to partner with, and recommend LoDan Exteriors. With our Solar PV Systems and LoDan Exteriors roofing, you will have an energy efficient rooftop that will last for decades.

Looking for a qualified contractor to install a PV system on your roof, or a customer’s roof? We believe in above-and-beyond customer service. Because of this, we only have journeyman electricians who have completed our CSA approved PV design and installation course to complete these installations, and each one is treated with utmost care and attention to detail.

Connect with us to learn more!

Gridworks Energy Group: (587) 405-9090
Click here for a Solar PV System Free Estimate

LoDan Exteriors: (780) 288-2290
Click here for the LoDan Exteriors Website