While solar shingle offers great rewards as well as advantages over conventional solar cells, there are unique challenges inherent in the installation of such a roof. Careful planning is required, and attention must be paid to the wiring of your solar shingle. To simplify your installation process, we provide this guide to installing a photovoltaiac solar shingle roof.
Solar shingle offer not only better aesthetics compared to conventional solar panels, but also a less complicated attachment to the home. Unlike solar panels, which require a mounting rack to be installed on top of the roof, solar shingles are stapled directly onto the roof. If you view the cost of ordinary roofing shingles you would have to buy anyway as a sunk cost, you find that you are only adding the difference in price between regular and solar shingles to your cost, in addition to also saving on the cost of mounting racks for conventional solar panels.
Careful planning is required before you proceed with the installation of your solar roof. Factors you must consider include: the layout of your roof; the number of tiles you will need to generate the amount of power you need; and how the wires will be routed through the house to the power control panel and inverter.
Solar cells must be wired in series in order to deliver high voltage to the inverter. In this wiring arrangement, the positive terminal of each element is wired to the negative terminal of the next, in contract to parallel wiring in which each element is placed on a different branch of the same wire. In a serial wiring arrangement, the voltages of each element add.
To install your solar shingle, staple them onto the roof in an overlapping pattern just like ordinary roofing shingles. When installing conventional shingles, you would be done at this step, however in the case of photovoltiac shingles you also have to wire them. A typical arrangement entails the placement of wire holes drilled through the roof every 3 in inches along a line of overlapping tiles It is wise to use a template and draw outlines of each hole in chalk before proceeding with the actual installation of shingles.
Once you have passed wires despite the wiring holes, guide each line of wires though a wiring raceway. Be careful to place wiring holes, and raceways, between structural members in your roof!
The services of a licensed electrician is required to perform the wiring of your solar cells to the inverter and power control unit, and from the inverter to the electric utility grid.
Keep in mind that solar shingles can not be cut, as doing so will render the solar cell non-functional. In addition, a minimum roof slope of 3:12 is required to ensure proper drainage.
While installing a solar shingle roof will delver profit rewards, the installation of such a roof is no small task. Proper installation requires care and planning; and is not an appetite to be rushed into. With the information presented here, you may better understand the challenge of installing your new solar roof.