As the demand for renewable energy sources increases and more energy programs become available, photovoltaic (PV) arrays are being installed on roof areas more frequently. Proper planning when considering installing PV arrays can greatly reduce the potential for roof leaks, voided roof warranties, structural damage, and unnecessary expenses. These considerations should include evaluation of the existing roof system while planning for the installation of a rooftop PV system, selection of the appropriate PV system for the building, design of the PV system attachment to the building and roof system, design of roof repairs or roof replacement in conjunction with the PV installation, maintenance of the roof system and PV arrays, and evaluation of the costs associated with each of these phases. Specifically, the owner and designer should review the condition and warranty duration of the existing roof system, the available capacity of the existing structure, options for PV systems and attachments, roof manufacturer limitations, life safety for maintenance, fire safety, and the appropriate coordination of the various tradesmen before, during, and after construction prior to proceeding with installation of a rooftop PV system.
Gale is presenting the educational seminar “Photovoltaics and Their Impact on Roofing Assemblies” for the New England Chapter of the International Institute of Building Enclosure Consultants (IIBEC, formerly RCI) on Thursday, April 25th at 5:30 PM in Braintree, MA. The event is open to the public. For more information or to register, click here.