Solar panels provide a lot of benefits for homes across America, but there’s one question people often ask themselves before they commit to upgrading: “are solar panels safe for every roof?” Fortunately, in the vast majority of cases, the answer is yes, solar panels are safe for your roof and most other roofs, too. However, there are a few things you should hire an experienced roofer to check before fully committing to solar panel installation. Keep reading for the answers you need to know, courtesy of our expert roofers at Lyons Roofing.
How to Tell If Solar Panels Are Right for Your Roof
In roughly 95% of cases, your existing roofing system is strong enough to support solar panels. However, you should still have a professional evaluate your property, to ensure it is structurally sound and there is no chance your roof will collapse under the weight of an addition. In the case your roof cannot support the added weight that comes with solar panels, there are usually a few options. For some homes, it may be necessary to put in additional support beams or rafters. For others, it may be necessary to repair parts of the roof, or even to replace the whole thing. This usually depends on the age of the home, since with older houses, it is usually more cost-efficient to replace the whole roof rather than paying to patch parts of it, only to have it get weighed down again by solar installation. In parts of the country that receive a lot of snow, it is also important to take into account the additional weight that puts on your home (luckily, this is something you don’t have to worry about throughout most of Arizona.)
While you can rest easy knowing that most solar providers are qualified professionals who know what they are doing, you will still want to go out of your way to ensure any panels mounted overhead have been safely measured and installed in a way that won’t negatively affect your roof. For certain types of roofing systems, additional openings may necessary to ensure the solar panels can be mounted correctly. For these homes, you should definitely hire a qualified roofer for an inspection ahead of time, to make sure your property is not vulnerable to leaks. Above all else, just remember that different types of roofing require different adjustments for solar panels. In the case of asphalt shingles, for instance, a piece of flashing is installed underneath so the lag bolt can be set into the rafter without causing any leaks. For metal roofs, you may need a special bracket with the same galvanized roofing screws used by professional roofers in order to mount the panels. Varying degrees of work may also be needed based on whether you have a flat or a pitched roof.
Although solar panels should not have any impact on the lifespan of your roof, you should still check with your roofer and your solar provider to make sure adding panels will not affect your roof’s warranty. If anything, solar panels should help your roof last longer, as they usually bear the brunt of the impact from storms and other severe weather events.
Call for Solar Upgrades from Lyons Roofing
At Lyons Roofing, we are a big believer in innovation. That’s why whether you do or do not decide that solar panels are right for your home, we are proud to offer solar attic fans and solar tubular lights, which will improve your property’s aesthetic value while helping you save money in the process. Call today to learn more about these upgrades and other additional services, and remember, for all your residential roofing needs, you can always trust Lyons Roofing.