A robustly engineered tile hook reduces noise, tile breakage, water intrusion and more. Watch now and learn about the differences in tile hooks on the market and the reasons to install using a robustly engineered hook that is properly flashed.
Special guest Johan Alfsen – Quick Mount PV’s Director of Training – talks about the recently introduced QRail racking system and what makes it a compelling consideration for rooftop PV installations. Sue and Jeff also discuss the benefits of staggering roof attachments and how the new QDesign tool offers an industry first, allowing staggering of attachments with easy to interpret engineering documentation on loading considerations.
Quick Mount PV is proud to present Solar Roof Talk, a podcast series for rooftop solar installers and others in the solar industry. Hosted by solar industry veterans, Jeff Spies, Senior Director of Policy & Susan Stark, NABCEP Certified PV Technical Sales Professional™ & Product Specialist.
In this episode, Jeff and Sue discuss the GTM Research report: U.S. PV Racking 2017: Landscape, Pricing and Forecasts and a comparison of rail-based vs rail-less pv mounting. Topics include:
- Comparison of rail-based vs rail-less pv systems
- Module-level electronic attachments
- Residential and commercial racking and mounting markets
- Surprise conclusions from the report
We are getting excited for Solar Power International next week and wanted to share with you what we have in store! So stop by our booth (#1412) and say hello. What are you looking forward to checking out at the show? See you in Vegas!
Introducing Quick Rack, an innovative rail-free
mounting system that significantly increases speed and ease of solar installations. Quick Rack will be featured at our booth with live product presentations so stop by and learn more.
Quick Rack, featuring QRack™ technology, is an integrated roof mount and racking system, engineered to be robust and structurally sound. Quick Rack is fast and easy to install, with only a few components and minimal tools required. Quick Rack features integrated flashing and grounding, requiring only one ground lug for up to 300 contiguous modules.
Eliminating long rails significantly reduces material handling, installation time, and labor costs. The Quick Rack system also features our patented Elevated Water Seal. This ensures long-term water seal integrity and waterproofing for the life of the roof and solar array. Quick Rack also comes with design software, ensuring every solar array is accurately designed and code-compliant.
Quick Hook® Series
To better meet your needs in the tile market, we’re updating our Quick Hook product line to work with a broader range of tiles and mounting options. Quick Hook, featuring QHook® technology, is now designed for use with side-mounted or bottom-mounted rails. Multiple height options allow for use with a variety of tiles. Includes preformed flashing for code compliance. Updated hooks will be available in late November but we will have a special sneak peek at our booth at SPI. Current Quick Hooks products will continue to be available until then.
Quick Hook® SS/LS – For Side Mount Rails
Standard height & low height hooks for side-mounted rails. Preformed flashing and adjustable hook with 6″ base for simple, clean installation.
Available finishes: aluminum mill (A)
Quick Hook® SB/LB – For Bottom Mount Rails
Standard height & low height hooks for bottom-mounted rails. Preformed flashing and adjustable hook with 6″ base for simple, clean installation.
Available finishes: aluminum mill (A)
Download our tile product brochure for more information. (PDF 514KB)
Classic Composition & E-Mount Series
The Classic Comp Mount and E-Mount, featuring our patented QBlock® Elevated Water Seal technology, are now available with three attachment options: standard 6″ hanger bolt, extended 6.5″ hanger bolt, or lag screw.
We have doubled warranty coverage for our QBlock®, QBase® and QHook® line of solar roof mounts to 20 years. Effective Sept. 1, all solar mounts featuring the patented technologies QBlock, QBase and QHook, will be covered with a 20-year limited product warranty. Our engineering, ISO 9001:2008 certified manufacturing, and years of field experience means we can stand behind our products for decades.
If you have any questions, please leave a comment below. We look forward to seeing you next week in Las Vegas!
One of the most common code violations we see in tile roof PV system installations is the failure to install a base flashing. However, flashing at the underlayment level is highly recommended as it is required by the Tile Roofing Institute (TRI). While tile routes most the rainwater off the roof, water routinely blows up between tiles and the underlayment serves as the ultimate waterproofing of the deck. Standoffs, tile hooks, tile tracks, or hanger bolts without base flashing are vulnerable to leaks, and are a fundamental code violation. Violating this important code requirement puts your customers and your business at risk since the installer is legally responsible for any resulting leak damage.
The TRI guidelines specify the flashing requirements for penetration flashing, and the TRI Technical Brief for Solar Systems (#2008-01) specifically states Deck mounted or other systems that penetrate the tile or roof deck shall have both primary roof tile flashing and secondary deck flashing. Since tile hooks do not penetrate the tile, you only need a base flashing, but you MUST have a base flashing. Base flashing must be installed using either underlayment bibbing or 3-course sealing to the base level.
Since the IBC and IRC codes require installing flashings per the roofing manufacturer guidelines, the TRI guidelines become the code requirements for all member companies. You can find a full list here. To add further validity to the TRI guidelines, they have been certified with the International Code Council using the ICC Evaluation Service Report system. – ICC-ESR-2015P and some TRI member companies including the two largest tile manufacturers (Boral/Monier and Eagle) even specify the TRI flashing guidelines in their ICC Evaluation Service Reports:
So always remember to install base flashing. Your customers will thank you, and you will protect your contracting business from the legal liability of avoidable roof leaks.
Quick Mount PV offers both live trainings and free webinars on installing flashed solar mounts on tile roofs. For more information, visit our website.
Our training and tech team spends much of their day answering technical questions on solar mounts for comp shingles, tile, shake, metal shingles and other roof types. We advocate quality installation practices that improve reliability and longevity of rooftop solar systems. Most PV arrays are capable of producing power for 20-30+ years. If the roof and waterproof mounts last the life of the solar system, the homeowner reduces their monthly energy cost and insures clean, emissions free power for years to come.
We’ve compiled our top ten tips for installing solar on shingle and tile roofs. By following these guidelines you will ensure better long-term system quality and lower the cost of power for your customers.
1. Locating rafters
Rafter-finding techniques include attic rafter mapping, rubber mallet roof tapping, drilling two to three holes through the sheathing to locate the edge of the rafter or using sophisticated stud finders like the Bosch D-tect 150.
2. Centering attachment point
Take care to center your lag bolt in the middle-third of the rafter. This ensures the fastener has the structural capacities listed by the American Wood Council charts.
3. Piloting holes
Drilling pilot holes is critically important when using 5/16- or 3/8-in. lag bolts in a 2x rafter. This is true even with the newer generation of self-drilling fasteners (like those from GRK). While these specialty fasteners can be installed in wider lumber without pilot holes, failure to drill pilot holes in the outer chord of 2×4 or 2×6 rafters will likely result in split rafters.
4. Remove shingle nails
Always remove the nails on composite shingles to allow the upper edge of flashing to be 1/2-in. above the butt edge of the third course shingles. Failure to remove nails will prevent the flashing from being positioned up under the butt edge of the third course of shingles and thus become a leak risk, especially when the flashing is positioned under a butt joint between two adjacent sections of shingles.
5. Acceptable working temperature
Shingle temperatures should be between 45° and 85° F to avoid damaging the shingles. When installing on asphalt shingles above 85° F, care must be taken to avoid compression deflection of the flashing from over-torquing the lag bolt. Special roofing shoes or protective mats can be used to minimize the risk of bruising on warm or cold days.
This diagram shows the acceptable position for flashed roof-mounts. Most mounts will require at least one nail be removed.
6. Flashing width
Asphalt shingle flashings should be at least 9 in. wide to comply with roofing industry best practices. This assures at least 4 in. of coverage from the edge of the hole to the edge of the flashing. More width provides additional protection from wind-driven rain making 12-in. wide flashing very popular. Tile flashings typically are 18 in. or wider to meet Tile Roofing Institute (TRI) guidelines.
This flashed Quick Hook uses a three-course sealing system that is approved by the TRI guidelines. Mastic applied to fiber mesh provides long-term waterproofing of the top and sides of the base flashing to the rolled roof underlayment.
7. Flashing material
Flashings should be made from an NRCA-compliant metal (aluminum, stainless steel, lead or galvanized steel). The TRI requires curved tile flashing be made from malleable metal. SMACNA (Sheet Metal and Air Conditioning Contractors’ National Association) considers galvanized steel to be suitable only for 15 years of service life, and any breach of the zinc coating will cause corrosion and rust staining. For this reason, galvanized is inadvisable in coastal and industrial environments as well as any installation with more than 15 years of expected life.
8. Seal design matters
Select flashed mounts with a robust seal. Seals that are elevated above the waterline will provide longer life than seals at the waterline, especially in freezing climates. Please note that sealant is a helpful addition to a properly installed flashing; however, when used alone, sealant is not an alternative to metal flashing required by building codes.
The Tile Roofing Institute guidelines require a base flashing be used at the underlayment level. The TRI guidelines are code-required for most tile roofs. Underlayment bibbing is one of two accepted methods for waterproofing the base flashing.
9. Install base flashing on all tile roof mounts
This frequently disregarded code requirement will cause premature leaks on tile roof installations within five to 10 years. All major tile manufacturers abide by TRI’s guidelines which mandate flashing at both tile and underlayment levels. All tile standoffs need a “base flashing” that is bibbed or three-coursed to the underlayment. Then the “tile-level flashing” is installed either on top or just below the tile. Tile hooks also require base flashing, but tile-level flashing is not required since the tile is not penetrated.
10. The benefits of re-roofing under the array before solar installation
Most arrays are installed on roofs with less than 10 years of remaining life. It is strongly advised that the installer replace the shingles or tile underlayment under the field of the array before installing solar. Replacing the roof under an average-sized array prior to PV installation will add $1,000 to $1,500 to the initial installation cost. Homeowners who ignore this advice will pay an additional $3,000 to $5,000 to remove and reinstall an average-sized system for the inevitable roof replacement. Simply stated, unless your roof is relatively new, re-roofing prior to PV installation is the most effective strategy to getting the best financial performance from a solar investment.
Written by Jeff Spies. Original article appeared in Solar Builder’s May/June issue.