If you are thinking about installing solar panels on your southern California home, you probably have some questions. You might be wondering if you should replace your roof first. Or, if there are certain roofing types that can’t be used with solar panels. Here are the most frequently asked questions regarding solar panels and roofing.
Where Do I Start?
Your best bet when it comes to making an educated decision about whether you should have solar panels installed on your roof is to talk with a roofing contractor who has experience dealing with solar panels and several local solar panel companies with a solid reputation in your community, as well as good reviews.
Should I Have My Roof Replaced Before Installing Solar Panels?
You would be wise to contact a roofing company to perform an inspection to make sure your roof is stable enough to handle solar panels and to estimate its remaining life expectancy. The general rule of thumb is that if your roof is less than 10-12 years old, it will probably be fine; however, you should still consult with an experienced roofing company before you proceed.
Additionally, if you don’t have your roof replaced prior to having your solar panels installed, you might also want to confirm who is responsible for removing and reinstalling your solar panels if you need to replace your roof in the future. Some solar companies include this expense as a part of their service and some do not. Therefore, this is something you will need to consider before making any decisions.
What Types of Roofing Can Sustain Solar Panels?
The good news is that it doesn’t matter what type of roof you have because you can install solar panels on just about any roof, including Spanish tiles, metal, flat and asphalt. However, it’s much easier and less expensive to install solar panels on an asphalt roof.
Will Solar Panels Ruin My Roof?
Generally, solar panels won’t ruin your roof unless your current roof is already damaged or weak. These types of existing conditions could ultimately cause your roof to sag under the weight of your panels causing it to leak and crack which could then lead to dry rot.
Will Installing Solar Panels Void My Roof’s Warranty?
In most cases, installing solar panels on your roof won’t void your roof’s warranty, if the panels were properly installed. That’s why it’s so important that you hire a reputable solar company with a history of satisfied customers. Additionally, you should read your solar company’s contract to see what is and isn’t covered and who is responsible for the repairs if there is ever a problem.
The Bottom Line
It’s extremely important that you spend some time educating yourself about solar panels and roofing before making any decisions if you want to avoid making an innocent mistake. Spend a significant amount of time consulting with your chosen roofing company and solar panel installer. Doing so could mean the difference between a rewarding experience and a nightmare that never seems to end.