Wind, snow, sleet, hail, tornadoes—the middle of the U.S. is all about varied weather. When warm and cold fronts converge, they bring on thunderous supercells and roaring straight-line winds. These fantastic natural light shows are amazing to behold but they can do some serious damage to your home, vehicle, and personal property.

Solar energy systems are designed to soak up sun rays outdoors from your rooftop, on top of a carport, or an open patch of your lawn. Your system is designed to withstand the harsh elements of wild midwestern weather, but it’s important to know what to check for and how to proceed after a particularly strong storm.

Solar energy systems and severe weather

Your solar energy panels were tested for brutal weather conditions during their development, which means that storm damage is relatively rare. Your system is waterproof and designed to withstand winter weather and hurricane-force winds. Solar panel systems are well-equipped to handle most storms.

Hailstones and solar panels

In general, most manufacturers create panels that can easily withstand a pummeling from one-inch hail at a walloping 50 miles per hour, which is far greater than the average ¼ to ½ inch diameter hail that we tend to see. The glass that covers solar panels may seem delicate, but it is specially engineered to take a significant beating from the elements.

Lightning strikes and solar panels

Lightning strikes can cause serious damage to solar panel systems, just as they can damage the electrical infrastructure on the grid. However, the most damaging would be a direct strike straight to your panels or inverter, which is extremely rare.

In most cases, you’ll see indirect lightning strikes, which can cause power surges that may damage parts of your system. A new solar panel system will be designed with high-quality inverters and surge suppression circuits; however, parts can degrade over time. It’s important to maintain your solar energy system with new surge components every five years or so if you live in an area with frequent lightning storms.

What to do in case of damage

If your solar energy system is damaged in a storm, it should be covered by your homeowner’s insurance. This is why it is vitally important when you go solar to make sure your homeowner policy is updated to cover your solar energy system and reflect the new value of your home since going solar will give its worth a boost!

When repairing your solar energy system, you’ll want to work directly with your homeowner’s insurance provider and Sun Solar (or whoever installed your system) to ensure that your investment stays under warranty.

Solar Workmanship Warranty

Your solar energy system, when installed by Sun Solar, comes with a 25-year workmanship warranty. This warranty covers the work provided during installation and manufacturing defects. To maintain the integrity of this warranty, any storm repair damage will need to be performed by Sun Solar.

Roof damage and solar panels

It isn’t uncommon during strong spring and summer storms to experience roof damage in the Midwest. If your home is damaged in a storm or you are ready to replace your roof, it’s important to coordinate with Sun Solar to handle the uninstallation and reinstallation of your solar panels.

Roofing companies are experts at their trade; however, most are not equipped to handle the complex nature of a solar energy system. If an inexperienced (and unaffiliated) contractor damages your system during its installation or reinstallation, unfortunately, that will void your Workmanship Warranty.

The best option is to contact Sun Solar for a quote to handle the removal and installation. If you’re planning roof work, it’s best to contact us as early as possible so that we can better coordinate our schedules with your roofing contractors and make the process simple and seamless.

Stay weather aware

Severe weather can be a fantastic light show, but it can also be a real headache. Before storms strike, make sure you’re ready for emergency situations and the aftermath. Always have a stock of emergency supplies including bottled water, non-perishable food, a weather radio, flashlight, and extra batteries. While getting your severe weather plan in place, take the time to check with your homeowner’s insurance provider before the storm to make sure you’re covered in the unlikely event damage occurs.

If your solar energy system needs to be uninstalled and reinstalled for roof repairs, contact us for a quote. We’re happy to coordinate with you and your contractor to protect your investment and its warranty so you can enjoy all the benefits of solar for years to come.