Can solar attic fans and shade get along?  

solar powered panels in a field

Trees and solar panels haven’t always been the best of neighbours. However, modular setups come in handy in keeping solar attic fans running even in locations that don’t have a lot of shade.

Like all solar-powered devices, solar attic fans rely on exposure to the sun in order to generate the power necessary for ventilating attics. Solar attic fans help homeowners reduce the risk of moisture-related damage by boosting air circulation. This in turn helps lessen the load on air conditioners by pushing out hot air that accumulates inside buildings. Increased air circulation prevents the buildup of mould and mildew caused by moisture-related damage. All of these actions end up improving overall air quality for everyone indoors.

Sunlight should be accessible to solar attic fans

Ideally, homeowners should position their solar attic fans facing south or southwest. Homeowners should also install the fan for about 18 to 24 inches from the roof’s peak and as close to the middle of the roofline as possible. This arrangement allows the fan’s solar attic panels to make maximum use of the sun’s rays.

But what happens if shade from trees or structures end up blocking these preferred installation spots?

Cutting out shade can be tricky

In a 2011 study, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory found that solar panels lose about a quarter of their efficiency when sunlight gets obstructed. Depending on local regulations, homeowners has the right to trim or remove sources of shade on their own lot. On the other hand, things can get much more complicated when the sources of shade come from a neighbour’s property. Though some regions have laws which protect solar panels from neighbouring shade, many others do not. In some extreme cases, feuds over solar access have had to be resolved by court rulings.

How can a modular solar attic fan system help?

Unlike many other models on the market which offer limited installation options, iSolar Solutions offers a lineup of solar attic fans with modular design. This enables mixing and matching of components and create custom configurations to fit every installation challenge.

Models like the best-selling 20W106-FLEX, for instance, utilize extension cables to connect with solar panels. This means it can be installed anywhere on a property where sunlight is least obstructed.

Many competitor models restrict consumers to powering one fan with one solar panel. In contrast, the modular design of iSolar Solutions’ products enables the fans to connect with multiple solar panels. This increases the total amount of solar energy harnessed in regions with less sunlight. This also allows mounting the fans in a variety of locations other than on top of a roof.

All of the products in iSolar Solutions’ lineup come with a 20-year limited manufacturer’s warranty. For more information on what solar attic ventilation solutions are best for your home, please contact one of our knowledgeable staff for more information.

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