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Solar Training at SEI's PV Lab Facility Features Quality, Code-compliant Flashing Products

Posted by: april
April 19, 2011

Jeff TobeBy Jeff Tobe, PV Lab Manager & Instructor
ISPQ Certified Instructor  #01021
NABCEP Certified PV Installer  #031508-84
NABCEP Certified PV Technical Sales # PVTS012911-90

In preparation for a busy summer of installation-based solar training workshops at our PV lab Facility in Paonia, Colorado, we recently worked on installing flashings for an existing lab system that was recently re-roofed. The days of L-feet straight to the roof surface with copious amounts of sealing "goop" are long gone thanks to variety of quality, code-compliant flashing products available in the industry.

There are a few important criteria to consider when selecting a flashing product and even more attention is needed during the actual installation. Be sure to select a product that has been designed for the roof type (i.e., composite shingle, flat tile, curved tile etc...) and check to ensure it's blessed with code compliance from the roofing/building industry which would typically fall under the International Building Code (IBC). Also, do your homework and read the instructions from the manufacturer of the roofing product to understand how to maintain the original roof warranty. If the roof is new, try to involve the contractor who installed it to maintain their warranty on workmanship.

Proper installation is key to ensure a waterproof penetration for the life of the system (think 20-40 years). Since our roof consisted of composite shingles, working knowledge of a roofing bar is essential. This tool allows for the "lifting" of shingles and removal of any nails in the way for the flashing to slip up under the course of shingle. A common mistake is to have the flashing not far enough up under the shingle due nails in the way or notching that may be required on the top layer of shingle. This can quickly lead to water infiltration at the top of the flashing and into the penetration resulting in expensive repair work. If you do not feel up to the task, it's highly recommended to source this work out to a roofing contractor with years of experience.

Check out these photos for the good, bad and ugly:

Solar Energy international

The key is to get the flashing far enough up under the shingle for proper water proofing. 




  Solar Energy International

This flashing is installed incorrectly, there is not enough overlap from the upper row of shingles.



Ever wonder what goes on behind the scenes in creating a world class hands-on solar training opportunity at Solar Energy International's PV Lab Facility? Join Solar Energy International on April 12 for an interactive webinar showcasing new technologies important to the solar industry at our Paonia, Colorado, PV Lab Facility. The webinar also features SEI's methods of teaching these technologies to the hundreds of students who visit our PV Lab each year. Take a sneak peek into SEI's world-class lab facility and learn more about our hands-on training coming up this spring, summer, and fall.

Register for SEI webinars here

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