Solar Market Outlook in Kenya
There is an ongoing debate in Kenya’s energy sector because of the growing shift towards solar energy. The leading electricity distributor in Kenya has cited a decrease in revenue as more consumers and businesses are shifting towards solar power.
The proponents of solar energy continue to champion the benefits of this renewable energy source and consumers are shifting to solar power generation, which continues to eat further into the traditional electric distributors’ profits. The high cost of electricity and taxes are the primary motivation to consider renewable energy as an alternative source. As of now, the Energy and Petroleum Regulatory Authority in Kenya has reported that solar energy accounts for 1% of the country’s current electricity mix. And yet, the country’s location in the equatorial zone means that it has high potential for solar energy. Solar is, therefore, looked at as a viable energy source and as part of the effort to achieve carbon emission goals. Despite having the highest exposure to the sun, Kenya is the most underdeveloped in terms of solar PV capacity. The wider adoption of solar energy will require education and training to succeed.
Solar Energy Equipment Supply Capacity in Kenya
There is a lack of domestic suppliers and distributors of solar power equipment. They rely on the importation of these supplies from global and online suppliers and distributors.
Top Major Seaports & Logistics in Kenya
There are plenty of commercial ports in Kenya wherein solar equipment can be transported. Some of them include
- the Port of Shimoni,
- Kilindini Harbor,
- Port Tudor,
- Port Reitz, Port of Kiunga,
- Port of Lamu,
- Port of Mombasa,
- Port of Mbaraki.
Ballasted Mounting Solar System
Ballasted Mounting Solar System
You may assume that installing a solar panel system is easy as some commercial ads say it is. But in reality, solar installers conduct a roof inspection beforehand to check if your roof is safe to install solar panels to avoid future conflict in the installation process. Note that, not all roofs can pass the test, as there are requirements to follow.
In today’s article, we will be discussing one of the ways to install your solar panel system on your roof.
What is Ballasted Mounting Solar System?
There are few ways to install a solar panel system on your house roof, the traditional way is directly attaching them to your home’s rafters. This common way needs cutting and putting holes into the roof to place the solar panels. Although most installers care to seal all those holes to avoid water leakage, it will eventually turn into trouble, as those sealers can break down sooner. That’s a real problem to be considered especially if you have a flat roof. It is one of the reasons why some homeowners choose ballasted mounting solar system installation.
Whereas, Ballasted mounting is a way of installing your solar panels on your roof without needing to place bolts on it to fix the panels. The ballast is usually heavy holding itself in place. Its weight distribution sometimes can be used as the ballast itself, but other installers use trays to receive concrete blocks. If you’re concern about those roof holes, this mounting system is ideal for you.
How to Install Ballasted Mounting Solar System?
Unlike the traditional one, Ballasted mounting does not require any holes to fix the solar panels on your roof. A ballasted mounting system offers various benefits of installing solar panels without causing damage to your home’s rafters. Generally, solar ballasts are not directly attached to roof rafters the way traditional solar panel installation works. Instead, concrete blocks or a solar racking system are used as based where the solar panels are placed directly on top and cemented to the surface.
Typically, after your installers inspect your roof, they will suggest the best way to install your solar panels so it is best to follow what your installers recommend than what you like.
What Kind of Roof Structure is Best for a Ballasted Mounting System?
Most architects design houses with low-slopped and flat roofs, particularly with a complex drainage system. However, this type of roof structure usually brings water leakage problems if small holes start to appear due to rust.
If you plan to install a solar power system with this type of roof structure, solar installers often suggest choosing the ballast mounting system as it can prevent damage to your roofs. With ballasted mounting, your roof will be free from expansion bolts or chemical bolts that usually damage your roof. To make it simpler, ballasted systems are preferable for homes with flat and low-slopped roofs.
Conclusion: Should You Install Ballast-Mounted Solar Panels?
Choosing the Ballasted mounting solar system is indeed a good way to install your solar panels. They are relatively easy to install, most importantly, they cannot damage your roof, retaining its great shape. However, you should pick this mounting system if your installers advised you because they surely know what’s best for your roof. Remember it is much suited to low-slopped and flat roofs than those high-slopped ones.