Warning – Solar Installations and Your Roof

Before any installations take effect, follow this important steps to save stress and money.

Warning about solar installations and your roof.

While a solar installation on your roof this days is the best to save energy and help the environment one important thing to consider is your roof. Before you have your solar system installed ask your contractor about the roof, what about the roof, what is going to happen if your roof leaks and you already spent a lot of money putting your solar system, what if those leaks are located under your solar system is your contractor going to come and un install the system so the roofing contractor can take care of your leaks or if not, are you ready to pay another solar contractor to uninstall the system so the roofing contractor can take care of your leaks?

Be careful and always ask this questions so you minimize the money you spent after your system is installed and working for you. The best thing to do is find a roofing contractor and fix the area where the solar system is going to be installed and ask for a warranty on any repairs, plus let the roofing contractor interact, talk with the solar contractor, one of the reasons is the solar cells always requires steel pipes and roof pipes to hold the new solar system attach to the roof, and no one than a roofing contractor that can take care of your roof.

Many roofs have solar systems, solar cells installed on the roof. The bad thing is that the solar contractor never told the home owner about the condition of the roof, and one thing is because they do not want the home owner to refuse their contract or sometimes they do not want the home owner to worried about the roof, but many times they just want to complete their work get their check and go. While many roofs are old and they need to be replace is not going to be a good idea to installed a new solar system on your roof and then later on have to un installed the system because no one told you that the roof needed to be replace before any solar installations took effect. Even if you have a new roof there always going to be roof penetrations, holes going to your roof to attach the new solar system, the best thing to do is call a roofing contractor before any installations take effect.

How to Choose a Solar Installation Team

When ready to switch to solar power, most begin with a quote. However, they shouldn’t choose based on price alone, there are a few other things to consider beforehand. Once the type of solar power panels has been chosen, and the buyer has figured how they’ll finance their purchase they are ready for the toughest decision ever, choosing the installation team. Here are some tips.

The team selected will be in and out of one’s home or business and on their roof basically building a custom solar power system.The way the company handles the job directly affects energy production, service and will basically determine if the panels will last as long as possible.

Since solar installers vary by reputation, size and experience as well as products offered, delivery and fees and their geographic focus it’s difficult to assess them using the standard methods of financing options, cost and general benefits. Happily, installation of solar equipment isn’t very complex. As long as the team in question is experienced the job should go off without a hitch.

Consider the following attributes and standards when looking for solar installers:

Expert Knowledge

Any solar installer should have a skill set that’s specific to the install of particular systems. There are specific types of training and several affiliations that the company should have depending on where they are located. By asking them to show their certifications one can see fi they are validated and considered experts in their field of solar power.

Checking certifications means quality assurance will be met for every system that is installed, and any crew that is affiliated with the company for the project at hand should carry at least one professional to oversee the work.

While there are plenty of talented solar installers without certifications, it’s much better to go with those who have been. This way one is guaranteed to be satisfied with the results, and they’ll know they are up to the latest standards.

Licensed and insured

In addition, all solar installers should be licensed and insured to the specifications of the area they are working in. These vary by jurisdiction. The best solar installer will provide their license number before a potential client even asks. At the very minimum they should have liability insurance.

Track record and experience

As an industry on the rise, solar power brings all types of people from professionals to homeowners and even caravan travelers. Many contractors now include solar options along with their regular electrical, plumbing, roofing and other construction jobs. This is a growing trend that hasn’t let up for years and is projected to continue to grow.

When it comes to one’s own system it’s smart to find solar installers that have a proven record for installing the specific system of interest. There is no shame in asking for stats on how many systems they’ve installed, and it’s always smart to get references.

Be Wary of Sub-Contracting

Solar installers are not immune from using sub-contractors. While having “some” is okay, be wary of any company that uses mostly sub-contractors. If they bring a specific expertise or has worked with the company for years, it can be a great arrangement. On the flip side there are tons of risks involved when too many sub-contractors are used.

Ask how the company chooses who to work with, and what the extra hands will be in charge of doing and why. It’s the property owner’s right to know all the details of the job they are paying for.

Finally, the best solar installers are also advisors, and should always be interested in the particular project at hand. They should lend advice at all times, and offer a lasting relationship should any new products be available that would benefit the set up.

Buy Local When Choosing a Solar Installer Or Contractor

I am sure you have heard the words, “buy local,” when referring to locally grown food.  This motto is transferable to all other goods and services.  A locally owned business is more likely to produce income, jobs and tax receipts for a given community over many generations. 

As adoption for solar energy systems grows, your options for choosing a solar panel installer are increasing.  I want to first describe the major types of solar installers and then talk about why it makes sense to contract from a local solar panel installer. 

1. Solar Panel Manufacturers – Their business is primarily manufacturing panels, but they also bid on utility-scale photovoltaic projects. Solar Panel Manufacturers are well suited for larger projects since they can supply the panels directly and eliminate the middleman, reducing overall system costs.

2. National Solar Installers – National players usually operate in multiple states across the country, with many having their national headquarters in California.  National Solar Installers tend to handle the largest volume of installations per year.

3. Regional or Locally-owned Solar Installers – This group specializes in only solar installations for a certain local area usually designated by state. 

4. Other Contractors – The largest group of solar contractors are those that offer solar panel installations as  part of their portfolio, but specialize in something else – many are electricians, roofers, door and window contractors, or general contractors.

Why Buy Local?

  • Local contractors are better acquainted with the local weather conditions and how to design a system to fit those requirements.
  • A PV installer that is based in your area will be more familiar with regional permitting rules and electric codes reducing design errors, speeding up time to installation, and providing the best overall service.
  • Statistics show that buying from independent, locally owned business, rather than a nationally owned business,  will infuse three times as much money in your region’s economy, strengthening the economic foundation of your community.
  • Locally owned contractors tend to make more local purchases requiring less transportation.  This reduces congestion and transportation-related emissions.
  • Small businesses hire locally and will support green jobs where you live.
  • A local installer will help you maximize the incentives for your solar projects because they have a greater awareness of different rebates, tax credits and exemptions, loan programs, SRECs, etc.