For many organisations in the UK, powering their facilities via solar panels on their roof is something that is steadily making its way up their list of priorities. The appeal of generating free, clean, electricity on site is almost too big an opportunity to ignore.
Sadly, however, many businesses are put off installing solar panels on their roof because of question marks surrounding the long-term suitability of the roof cladding.
With this in mind, BeBa Energy have developed a number of solutions to assist businesses who find themselves in this situation. By combining the roof work with the installation of solar panels not only will there be some efficiency savings – scaffolding is one – but in most instances the resulting energy savings will cover the cost of the roofing work.
For many sites removing the existing roof is simply not an option; if the roof is asbestos it may be that they cannot vacate the premises long enough for the works to take place for example. With an over-cladding solution the existing roof is left in situ and a new roof is installed over the top. This new roof comes with a roof warranty – typically 10 years – and can even be installed in such a way that insulation can be fitted between the old roof and the new one. The solar panels would then be fitted to the new roof so that they can start generating clean power.
As demonstrated by the Port of London , solar panels can actually become your roof. The panels are mechanically connected using innovative rails or trays to form a completely watertight seal that can even be installed with insulation underneath. This option – also known as ‘Building Integrated Photovoltaics (BIPV)’ – is perfect for buildings that cannot take the additional weight of solar panels as in many instances the weight of the panels is equal to the original roof covering. Not only have BeBa developed and constructed this solution, we also manage several similar installations that have been in place for nearly 10 years.
If neither over-cladding or ‘Power Roof’ are suitable then option 3 would see the existing roof covering removed and replaced with something like-for-like. Once the new roof was in situ the solar panels would be fitted as normal. Thanks to our extensive work in the commercial-solar space the installation of the solar panels will not invalidate your roof warranties – a fact that helped us secure the Berry Gardens contract in 2019.