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Rocketman (Rocketman)
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Username: Rocketman

Post Number: 3
Registered: 08-2011
Posted on Sunday, August 21, 2011 - 04:48 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Hi Deb_in_catty,

In your image, I see a walkway that connects the garage and main house. Could you set up a large panel on top of that area of the house? It seems that the area would allow a panel on a stand, that raises it to the desired angle, without the need to operate on the slate roofs.
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Slate_man (Slate_man)
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Username: Slate_man

Post Number: 639
Registered: 01-2007
Posted on Sunday, September 26, 2010 - 07:11 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

If you need help I can help you with it.
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Slate_man (Slate_man)
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Username: Slate_man

Post Number: 638
Registered: 01-2007
Posted on Sunday, September 26, 2010 - 07:10 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Hinges!!
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Blue_sky_roofing (Blue_sky_roofing)
Intermediate Member
Username: Blue_sky_roofing

Post Number: 36
Registered: 05-2010
Posted on Friday, September 24, 2010 - 10:53 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Have you considered a windmill? If your goal is about saving on Electricity, consider the ways already mentioned of reducing usage - consider the Amish way of life (no electricity!). Not that I'm asking you to go that route, but to use that scenario to find possible ways of reducing electrical usage.

What you are trying to do is...
Is like being in a boat that is filling up with water. Instead of bailing the water out, your trying to build the sides of the boat higher.

You are going to regret putting it on your roof, as the potential problems already stated. If you go with shingles, what happens down the road when they need replaced? - $$$$$$$$$. If you ever sell the house, it will probably lower your value.

I don't believe I'm sayng this; but if you REALLY want solar panels on the roof, why not install Skylights instead and put the solar panels inside the attic.
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Deb_in_catty (Deb_in_catty)
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Username: Deb_in_catty

Post Number: 5
Registered: 09-2010
Posted on Thursday, September 23, 2010 - 11:44 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Standing seam metal roofs are not common in my area (Lehigh Valley), which means $$$, so I had not explored that option. But it is certainly worth revisiting given the alternatives. Have gotten a couple recommendations on local companies for such; following up with them now.
Also got a quote on "carrying down" the removed slates, and have a neighbor who can reuse them.
Thanks again, folks, for your help.
I'll let you know where I end up.
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Slate_man (Slate_man)
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Username: Slate_man

Post Number: 637
Registered: 01-2007
Posted on Thursday, September 23, 2010 - 04:29 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Install them on hinges!!
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Old_school (Old_school)
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Username: Old_school

Post Number: 520
Registered: 01-2009
Posted on Wednesday, September 22, 2010 - 09:52 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Good point Bud!
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Bud (Bud)
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Username: Bud

Post Number: 15
Registered: 02-2010
Posted on Tuesday, September 21, 2010 - 08:52 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I offer the following in the event that the decision to eliminate the slate roofing is made. (I still hope that the slate can somehow stay).

The bulk of my business is shingle roofs, it's what our market calls for and it's what I have to do. I offer other types of roofing such as metals too. For what you are looking to do I would recommend that your best choice for a replacement roofing material would be a standing seam metal roof. The roof would have no 'through' fasteners, the PV panels should be attached to the 'ribs' not through the panels. This would eliminate the need for maintenance of the roof and provide a sound surface to attach the panels without have anyone butcher the roof by putting holes in it.

If you would like more info on this please contact me, not selling here just don't feel like typing.

Thanks.
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Old_school (Old_school)
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Username: Old_school

Post Number: 519
Registered: 01-2009
Posted on Monday, September 20, 2010 - 07:47 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Hard to see what kind of slate it is. Is it getting soft? What does your roofer say?
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Deb_in_catty (Deb_in_catty)
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Username: Deb_in_catty

Post Number: 4
Registered: 09-2010
Posted on Sunday, September 19, 2010 - 10:00 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I'm on a small city lot surrounded by trees both mine and three neighbors (in a town with an active tree commission), so the grounds are mostly shaded (including that area on the left, Bud): the house roof is above the tree line and has the only good solar exposure on the property except for the front yard - I'm not willing to put a ground mount system in my front yard (even if I could get zoning approval to do so), and it would take most of it to provide the same KW. ...Its the front roof, or nothing.

As far as my objective: I'm looking at reduced roof maintenance costs (currently 1-2 grand each year) and energy cashflow in retirement (this PV installation will generate 3-4 grand a year). I don't use or need much hot water so I'm not interested in a solar hot water system.

Perhaps I have higher maintenance costs than others with slate roofs? What would cause that? I have no furnace in my attic. The attic is vented with a thermostated fan, though it still gets mighty hot up there in the summer, usually taking until midnight for the fan to kick off. The folks that have done the maintenance haven't mentioned anything unusual. Slate sloughs off in the winter, which seems normal for old slate. Note: Not sure if you can tell from the picture, but the front walk is round slate sections of core samples. Some of them are deteriorating, also - thinking of trying to flip them over to see if the undersides are in better condition. Heard of anyone doing this?
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Old_school (Old_school)
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Username: Old_school

Post Number: 518
Registered: 01-2009
Posted on Sunday, September 19, 2010 - 06:40 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Bud, she just drew lines on the roof to indicate where the panels would lie. No damage yet! She is talking about the panels that produce electricity and not a hot water unit. Both would work on the ground as you say, and the maintenace would be a breeze too. Good points!
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Bud (Bud)
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Username: Bud

Post Number: 14
Registered: 02-2010
Posted on Sunday, September 19, 2010 - 11:49 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Having 'vented', I too would like to point out that a 'solar' company is not a roofing company. I can tell you that I have seen my share of butchery that resulted from the 70's. Lot's of nightmares on roofs that don't take a craftsman to work on.

As we look at the photo, to the left of the home, install a free standing unit. Install will be less $, maintanence will be a breeze from ground level and you save the roof.

Find a pro to undo whatever you already did...save the roof!

I don't know what your goal is but there are some great units that use vacuum tubes to heat the water, a single family residence doesn't take alot and they don't look 'that' bad in the yard.
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Old_school (Old_school)
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Username: Old_school

Post Number: 516
Registered: 01-2009
Posted on Sunday, September 19, 2010 - 11:22 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Deb, not so much what you have written, and at the same time, all that you have written.

In order to mount the panels to the roof, they will have to put at least four sleeves through the roof for each panel, and probably 6 for the bigger ones. Over the top of the dormers, they would have to put some scaffold and by the time you finished all of that, your roof would be like a sieve.

That would be a LOT of work for someone who was very talented at slate repairs and installation, but an absoulte nightmare for a "Solar Company" It is definetly a lose/lose situation for all involved. Bud was talking about heating water with the heat in/on the roof instead of Photo-Voltaic panels, and that would make a lot more sense. Use the heat in the attic in the summer to preheat your water to save money. Cut down some of the trees and put panels in the back yard if you want to make electricity, but leave the roof alone. We are somewhat protective of our slate around here as you can see.

A slap on the wrist to wake you up as it were. Good thoughts, but a bad premise.
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Deb_in_catty (Deb_in_catty)
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Username: Deb_in_catty

Post Number: 3
Registered: 09-2010
Posted on Sunday, September 19, 2010 - 08:32 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I hear you all. I don't want to remove the slate, and I don't trust asphalt shingles lasting 25 years. I have been wrestling with this decision for a year, trying to find an alternative. So is there truly no way to maintain the slate if I install PV over it? Is it freeze-thaw cycles that result in the 'wear and tear' or thermal expansion/contraction that causes the need for near annual replacement of slates? And will this wear rate change if covered by panels - they sit on a rack about 4 inches off the roof, allowing for cooling air between the roof and panels - which I think may reduce the thermal expansion/contraction. Could I expect to do less maintenance; ie every 5 years access the roof with a bucket truck to lift panels and replace slates, for instance? Has anyone ever done this? Assume my solar contrator is very good at mounting over the slate and doesn't introduce new problems - I've had vent pipe penetrations for years without problems.
Thanks so much for helping me with this. Wish I'd found this site earlier!
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Planejane (Planejane)
Intermediate Member
Username: Planejane

Post Number: 40
Registered: 12-2006
Posted on Saturday, September 18, 2010 - 10:38 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Old-school and Bud are right! You have a beautiful roof and you would be anything but green if you wreck that roof to put up panels. There are so many ways you can be green and save money without disrupting the one thing that you have that is already green. Buy a more fuel effiecent car, put in new insulation, lower your thermostat, lower the temperature on your hot water heater, I could go on and on. None of these would cost you nearly as much money and you could save. Think about it???
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Bud (Bud)
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Username: Bud

Post Number: 10
Registered: 02-2010
Posted on Saturday, September 18, 2010 - 06:29 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Old School, Amen!

I would rather sacrifice my ceiling than a roof like this. Tear out the ceiling install the pvc directly under the deck allowing the same thing to happen on the inside. This will take heat away from the roof (underside) lowering the upstairs temp (a good thing), the ceiling can then be reassembled using blown in closed cell insulation which would be superior to whatever is there now (another good thing). The new ceiling could be installed simple enough and the roof ( A PIECE OF ART THAT ANYONE WHO KNOWS BETTER SHOULD BE CRYING AT THE THOUGHT OF 'SACRIFICING' FOR THE SAKE OF HOT WATER).

This solution would also preserve a truly green roof, and the curb appeal of the property.

I will pray that it is all stop for this effort to step over a dollar to save a nickel.
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Old_school (Old_school)
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Username: Old_school

Post Number: 514
Registered: 01-2009
Posted on Saturday, September 18, 2010 - 04:12 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Deb, You are breaking my heart!

1. Any energy you would "save" with the PV panels will be more than offset by the oil required to make the asphalt shingles that will go on the roof.
2. You will wreck a perfectly good slate roof.
3. there is no "good" way to anchor the panels to the roof, or for that matter to properly flash them.
4. It will be a maintenace mightmare in the near future, for all of the reasons you mentioned when you said you would tear off the old roof.
5. It is a roof for Gods sake, not a energy collector.
6. You would be money ahead to cut down the trees and install the panels in the back yard.
7. Are you crazy?
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Deb_in_catty (Deb_in_catty)
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Username: Deb_in_catty

Post Number: 2
Registered: 09-2010
Posted on Saturday, September 18, 2010 - 09:18 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Yes, the front roof of the house is the only location not shaded. I'm installing as much PV as will fit - ~6.7KV, dormers preclude covering the whole roof, so the lower part of the roof will still be exposed. The roof is very steep. Photo attached with panel plan sketched in.

Thanks for helping.PV roof plan
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Old_school (Old_school)
Senior Member
Username: Old_school

Post Number: 510
Registered: 01-2009
Posted on Wednesday, September 15, 2010 - 07:06 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Does it need to be on the roof? How much PV, how many panels and how steep is the roof?
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Deb_in_catty (Deb_in_catty)
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Username: Deb_in_catty

Post Number: 1
Registered: 09-2010
Posted on Monday, September 13, 2010 - 02:59 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

My slate roof is 80 years old and in fair condition. I want to install PV, but it looks like I will have to remove the slate since I will no longer have access to it for maintenance. Any ideas on retaining the slate?

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