PVs Article

Publications  |  Roofing Magazine, July/August 2023

Photovoltaics (PVs) and Their Impact on Roofing Assemblies

As demand for renewable energy is increasing, photovoltaic (PV) arrays (also referred to as solar panels) are being considered for installation on roof areas more frequently.

Proper planning can greatly reduce the potential for roof leaks, voided roof warranties, structural damage, and unnecessary expenses.  Prior to installing PVs, facility owners and managers need to determine if their roofs are good candidates for PV panels. For existing buildings, it is important to review the roof system and perform a structural analysis of the existing building prior to considering new rooftop PV panels. If you have a new building or are planning to build a new building, the 2015-2021 International Building Codes require roofs to be solar-ready. Even if solar is not installed when the building is constructed, the building will need to be designed to accommodate solar in the future. The new codes require that a structure’s roof system not only has to handle the live load, dead load, and snow loads, it also needs to have the built-in capacity to handle a solar/electrical distribution system as well

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