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Should You Replace Your Roof Before Installing Solar Panels?


A standard solar photovoltaic (PV) system is designed to last around 25 to 30 years. However, some roofing structures only have a lifetime of 20 years or less depending on the local climate and maintenance pattern. If you’re going to install solar panels and your roof needs to be replaced soon, it’s best to upgrade your roofing system first to avoid complications down the road.


Asphalt Shingle or Composite Roofs


An asphalt shingle roof is the most popular and widely used roofing system in the U.S. It is generally less durable than solar panels and is typically expected to last for two decades. In fact, it’s quite common for solar panels to shield asphalt shingles from hail damage. If your asphalt shingle roof is old and in poor condition, a replacement may be due.


Tile or Ceramic Roofs


It is possible to install solar panels on a ceramic roof, but it requires meticulous attention from an experienced professional to fend off potential damage. The ceramic tiles need to be removed first and then the brackets are put in place with a sturdy flashing material to prevent roof leaks. While there are other solar panel installation approaches, drilling through tiles can result in them breaking.


Metal Roofs


A standing seam metal roof is the ideal roofing system for solar panels. However, it does come at a higher upfront cost than traditional asphalt shingles. A well-designed and skilfully built metal roof can last between 40 to 70 years, which is notably longer than solar panels. Thanks to their inherent strength and longevity, metal roofs are inexpensive to maintain, resulting in substantial cost savings.


Installing a solar energy system can lead to significant long-term savings, but needing to remove the panels a year or two after the installation to remove a shabby roof would surely decrease your solar investment return.


Contact Us for Your Solar Roofing Needs


JMB Renewables LLC is a top-rated solar maintenance and project management company. Our experienced team of solar professionals are committed to providing efficient and industry-leading solutions to every client, whether it’s solar removal, solar reinstallation, storm damage module testing or system upgrades. To set up an appointment, call us today at 877-224-6447 or fill out our contact form.


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