Recycled Plastics for Solar Mounts

Rooftop photovoltaic panels are being mounted on bases made from recycled plastics. The plastic bases are made from both 100% recycled and mixes of virgin and recycled resins. There are only a few manufacturers in the United States making the bases or mounts.

Roof Contractors like the product because it is lightweight and if dropped will not damage the roofing membranes like the heavier and sharper metal bases do.

Gaining Popularity

Although relatively new on the market, plastic mounts are gaining popularity over the stainless steel and aluminum bases being used now.

“Our product is less expensive than aluminum and definitely less than stainless, but the real cost savings comes in speed of installation, prevention of damage to roof membranes and wiring, and improved grounding.” Said John Hudson of Renusol America.

Lighter Weight

Consumers like that the product is “green”, 100% recycled, easier and lighter to handle, and requires fewer parts and tools to assemble.

A Few Drawbacks

Since Underwriters Laboratories cannot be sure where the recycled materials came from, the tests are unable to certify that the plastic product meets the flammability and resistance to electrical ignition sources requirements.

Another issue with the plastic mounts is the warranty is usually not as long as the warranty on the solar panels.

Good for the Environment

As more technologies emerge, recycled plastic bases will be more cost effective and easier for the installer to mount as well as being good for the environment.

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