What’s Wrong With This Picture?

I’d have done this a little differently.

Take a good look at the photo. These guys are going to lose space for an entire panel because of a vent pipe poking up through the roof. Why are there vent pipes? Because when you use a sink or any other water source in the house, it needs to be vented to drain properly. The vents stick out the roof because clean water is not the only thing that goes down the drain. You don’t want the aroma of your septic tank or sewer line in your attic.

Why is it on the roof? Plumbers put a vent for every drain cluster because it is easier and cheaper for them. I don’t like holes in my roof, so I went to the expense and effort of plumbing them all into one vent. My roofer dude tells be there is a gadget available so you don’t have to have ANY vents poking through the roof. It is basically a check valve that lets air into the line when you pull the plug on the bathtub, but does not let the stinky fumes out. These guys (or the homeowner) could have eliminated that vent, gaining a few more watts and a better looking installation.

Next, put your modules up in order. That saves having to walk on the glass. Glass is slippery, (more so when dusty) which is a danger to the installer. Most panels are not made to support a lot of weight, either. At least where this guy’s foot is, the frame is taking most of the load. Oh, and a suction cup would have made it easier to get the bottom end of that module brought up even without risking a finger.

Finally, why not give the panels a wipe down before installing them? Rain won’t necessarily wash all of that off.

Otherwise, things look pretty good. Two rows, mounting on good hardware and walkways for future access.


1 thought on “What’s Wrong With This Picture?”

  1. I live in both Miami and Mali. In Mali I am putting together a solar system with the goal of handling power requirements during the day time and being able to keep a few computers going during power cuts which can last 6 hours. If possible, I would also like to be able to run an 1200 watt air-conditioner about 6 hours a night plus a ceiling fan for another two plus an amateur radio station of about 500 watts for two more from energy stored in batteries.

    With 32 monocrystalline panels (rated about 200 watts) imported from Germany (and maybe 8 more polycrystalline panels which could be added to the system, can I meet these needs? I have a 48 volt system regulated by a Victron 85A 48 volt controller and 5000 watt inverter (220v). How many batteries will I need to buy and what kind? Low maintenance is a priority since lack of maintenance caused the original US Battery US2200 batteries to self-destruct.

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