New techniques for solar mounting and flashing can save time on rooftops

In this special edition of Contractor’s Corner, SnapNrack, manufacturer of solar installations and racks, talks about its new Miami-Dade-approved mounting solution that eliminates the need for cumbersome metal flashing. Below is a portion of the company’s Solar Spotlight podcast featuring: Solar energy world, but be sure to listen to the full episode here or in your favorite podcast app to learn more about SnapNrack’s work to speed up and eliminate steps in the setup process.

Tell us about your SpeedSeal technology and how it differs from other products on the market.

SpeedSeal is not one specific product, we like to say it is a technology. Within that technology, we have applied it to various roof fixings for composite shingles. Legacy systems out there generally use a metal flashing seal, and I like to say that a metal flash on a composite shingle roof is more of a passive seal. You can have problems there with strong winds or low slopes and combinations thereof, where water can flow back.

To install that blinking, you see guys there with crowbars; you need to place the flashings between the layers of the composition shingle. To do that right, you have to pop up small nails and that makes the nail holes visible. If you go through the actual installation instructions, you’ll know that you need to seal the nail holes, but installers don’t always do that.

The SpeedSeal technology is not a passive system, I like to say that it is an active system. Instead of relying on those passive flashes of sheet metal, we rely on what we call lag-driven seal geometry within our mounts.

So we call it an integrated flash, where we take that flash functionality and integrate it into our mounts themselves. We have in effect created this active seal around the fasteners you are applying, and there is no disturbance of the roof whatsoever. We don’t push crowbars into it; we don’t mess with those shingles.

How do these attachments help installers do their job better?

It really is speed and efficiency. When you look at installation crews, there’s usually one guy or girl running around pushing all these flashes in and then someone else comes back behind them and sets the L footpegs down. So what we’ve done is get rid of this damage they’re supposed to repair. We also eliminated this whole process when installing go and fill in flashes.

SpeedSeal is basically a surgical approach to perform your installation. Basically no wasted actions or actions. It’s just a much cleaner installation, it’s a much nicer installation, in the end it saves a lot of time on the roof and in the field.

How did you test and validate this solution?

We started by doing all of our wind-driven rain tests and then we started doing submersion tests. The other part of this that I would really hope is unique to us is all the structural testing. We do structural testing for our product, which is necessary to conceive our spans and the like in our structural engineering.

We’ve done all our homework and done a lot of our own internal validations to make sure this thing performs well and works under a wide variety of loads.

Can you tell me more about your Miami-Dade endorsement?

When you actually install in Miami-Dade and that jurisdiction, they will usually require you to have a Miami-Dade approved product. There is a very small list of products that have been approved by Florida, and there is an even smaller list of products that have actually been reviewed by the Miami-Dade AHJ, and we are on that list.

With this approval, installers using the SpeedSeal can streamline their permitting process, eliminating the need to go in and have a site-specific set of technical plans. They can rely on our standard turnkey technology and that approval from Miami-Dade. It speeds up and enables installations in that particular market, but it also gives tremendous credibility to the technology we’ve been installing for years.

This podcast is sponsored by SnapNrack

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