It’s hard to fathom how powerful the sun is. An hour’s worth of its energy is enough to supply the earth’s needs for a year. Imagine harnessing even a fraction of its power. We can, in a way, through solar panels. More homeowners are transitioning to solar energy for the various benefits it offers. It’s sustainable, requires minimal maintenance, and will save you big money in the long run.
But before you get too excited, you must first prepare your roof. You may not be aware of severe damages that could affect the installation and performance of your solar panels. The last thing you want is to install them only to remove them later. Save money, time, and effort by doing the necessary roof repairs. It’s best to have a professional on your side for this.
Here are some steps you can take to ensure your roof is ready:
Conduct a Roof Inspection
Homeowners must remember that once they have solar panels on their roofs, it will be harder to fix damages. Contractors usually have to remove the solar panels before they can do roof repairs. That’s why roof inspections are crucial before installation. It’s a chance to spot damages and address them immediately.
Roof inspections usually begin in the attic. Any roof issues will likely show up in your attic’s ceiling. It’s also helpful to look for other clues inside your home. Mold, mildew, and poor insulation and ventilation are all early signs of roofing issues. After the interior inspection, you can move to the outside. Look for signs of roof aging, loose shingles, damaged tiles, leaks, and gutter blockages.
The goal is to gauge your roof’s health and take note of everything that needs repairing or replacing. Roof inspections can be dangerous, so it’s best to leave the process to a professional.
Perform the Necessary Repairs and Adjustments
Solar panels can last up to 25 years, so your roof should be able to last longer than that. Set it up for long-term success by doing all the necessary repairs before installing solar panels. You might have to replace rotted wood or secure loose shingles.
You must also determine if your roof can handle the solar panel system’s size and weight. You might need to reinforce your roof to prevent it from sagging in the long run. Solar panels are relatively lightweight, but load issues can happen during the winter. Instead of scattering evenly, the snow will accumulate on the points where the panels attach to the roof.
In addition, check your roof for satellites, antennas, air-conditioners, and other installations. You might have to reposition them if they get in the way of the solar panels.
Improve the Insulation of Your Roof
Before committing to solar energy, consider improving your home’s energy efficiency first. By lowering your energy consumption, you can reduce the required size of the solar energy system and lessen your expenses. One option is to switch to energy-efficient LEDs. You can also consider upgrading your roof’s insulation.
Roof insulation helps keep your home cozy in the winter and cool in the summer. That means your AC units and heaters don’t have to work overtime, and you can save on utility bills. There are various types of roof insulation, each with pros and cons. Fiberglass batts, spray foam, and rigid foam boards are some examples you can consider. Do your research to learn more about which kind best suits your home and budget.
Place a Rain Gutter System
If you want your roof fully prepared for solar panels, consider equipping it with a rain gutter system. It will direct rainwater away from your home and solar panels, helping prolong their life and maintain efficiency. In addition, it will preserve your roof and help it last as long as your solar panels. You won’t have to worry about water damage, flooding, or wood rot.
For maximum protection, you can even install gutter guards. Twigs, leaves, and other debris can clog your gutter system and prevent it from doing its job. But gutter guards will keep foreign objects out, allowing water to flow and drain freely.
Increase Sun Exposure
Solar panels will work in different weather conditions. However, you’ll get the most out of them if you live in a sunny state. For example, those in the southwest are the best candidates for solar energy because they get 300 days of sunshine yearly.
If you live in a rainy area like Washington, you can still use solar panels, just as long as you maximize your roof’s exposure to the sun. If you have shady trees around your home, cut branches that may be blocking the sun’s rays. And if possible, install the solar panels on a south-facing roof. That will help them absorb more sunlight and generate more electricity.
Get Professionals to Wash Your Roof
Solar panels are an expensive investment. Don’t let your money go to waste by installing them on a dirty roof. Doing so will hamper their efficiency and can even lead to system failure. The professional roof cleaners here at Blue Collar can restore your roof to its pristine condition and ensure it’s ready for your new solar panels. We’ll eliminate organic matter like algae, moss, and lichen that could be feasting on your roof. That way, it’s ready to last for many more years.
Additionally, we can rebuild and restore your damaged roof getting it ready for solar installation.