KB Racking

The steps for installing a solar racking system

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Courtesy of KB Racking

You’ve decided to go solar and plan to install a solar PV system on your rooftop. Let’s get into the necessary steps needed to install the solar racking system onto your roof in order to start reaping the benefits of your new solar-paneled roof.

First, you need to make sure that your roof is strong enough for solar installation and to support the weight of the solar panels. Inspecting the roof for damage prior to installation is a major checkpoint. Ensure proper drainage on the roof. Water accumulations may lower the load reserve of the rooftop and decrease lifespan. Ensuring the roof is not going to cave in will ultimately save you money in repair costs.

Once you can confirm the roof is in good condition, you will need to measure the roof and make sure the solar arrays will be spaced a minimum of 4ft (1.2m) from each other, E/W, with a minimum 1ft (0.3m) gap ever 15 to 16 modules to allow emergency crews easy access between arrays.

Before you can start the installation it’s essential to clean the roof surface and remove all dirt and debris.

Now, you can begin with installing the mounting supports.

Install the system on a per array basis, partially ballasting the EkonoRack supports. Leave enough space to secure the windshields. Once windshields are fully installed, add the remaining ballast to the supports. This process will save you from re-arranging ballast blocks to create space while installing windshields.

Next, you will install the ballasts. Place ballast blocks on mounting supports before installing panels to prevent panels from lifting. Once you’ve placed the ballast blocks on the racking supports, you can start installing the solar panels.  Place a solar panel onto the module support, Along the array edge, click end-clamps into top and bottom mounting slots, making sure each module has four end-clamps attached.

Place the next solar panel in the row. Click middle clamps into mounting slots on the modules supports End clamp blocks provided by KB Racking® are designed to match your solar module thickness. This ensures the clamp sits flat. Secure the first panel in the row. Tighten the end clamps and middle clamps with a standard drill or torque wrench. When securing clamps, ensure EkonoRack support is firmly secured. Continue placing the rest of the panels the same way, ensuring the end clamps are secured.

Once all panels are safely secured, you may begin installing the cables.  Cable trays are required for wire management of the system. KB Racking® offers an optional wire management solution designed specifically for easy installation with our EkonoRack 2.0 system.

It’s important to keep in mind for product maintenance. To maximize the life span and ensure peak performance, KB Racking® recommends routine maintenance checks.  The following checklist should be completed every 6 months to maintain the system’s integrity.

  • Remove debris from the rooftop that can damage panels or stop solar absorption.
  • Clean solar panels and remove bird waste.
  • Check clamps and hardware to ensure intended connections are secured.
  • Check components for damage (warping, bent).
  • Check that the windshields are in place and secure.

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