Solar Builder

NOV-DEC 2018

Solar Builder focuses on the installation/construction of solar PV systems. We cover the latest PV technology (modules, mounting, inverters, storage, BOS) and equip installers/contractors with tips and tools to make informed purchasing decisions.

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SOLARBUILDERMAG.COM | 17 creates a stunning architectural detail for porches, patios, covered walkways, entryways, etc. Coupled with the Skyjack system it's a great way to add beauty to a home or business while making clean renewable power. Pairing the right system design with the right sales and marketing plan (and sales expectations), solar patios could develop into a nice side business. Chris Crowell is the managing editor of Solar Builder. and not designed to be cheap." "With our awnings, the wire is hidden behind wireways that are a part of the sys- tem," McClellan says. "The extruded alumi- num rails of the Solar Rainframe product can span about 20 ft with only two points of contact. This creates an uncluttered look underneath the awning because there is no need for additional beams supporting the solar array. Premium Solar uses its standard reinforced aluminum 3 in. x 8 in. support beam, which makes it an easy fit and retains the style of their other solar patios. Wire management is also key here. Be sure to select conduit or other solutions that will keep the wiring out of view. "We have a more commercial system in appearance that is a lower cost option to our Premium Solar Patio. Each option can be customized for the application the customer desires," Hunter says. "Due to it being a more complex project, it does come with an added cost versus a rooftop, but we have come to find markets that sell rooftop for what the patios retail for in the majority of markets." Key to each of these unique designs was the Skylift, a new mounting product specifi- cally designed for attaching to an existing roof and grounding one end of the patio while elevating the ceiling and the array. This makes it easy to retrofit a patio cover onto an existing building and attaching the solar while saving money on installing the footers and posts on that side. It also solves issues with eaves in some cases being too low to allow for the attachment of a solar patio along with the need to slope for water runoff. The Skylift allows for the needed height. "We would have many patios that could not be installed in many cases due to a pool," Hunter notes as an example. "Depending on where you are in the country, the require- ments to offset from a pool wall would be damning to a project. The Skylift provided the solution that allowed us to back further away from the pool and get these special cases permitted." "Another great option for building inte- grated solar roofs using our Solar Rainframe system is using clear backed or bifacial solar modules that let the light shine through between the solar cells," McClellan says. "It

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