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Thread: Solar Panel Leak -- Call Contractor, or DIY?

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    Join Date
    Jan 2015
    Livermore, CA

    Solar Panel Leak -- Call Contractor, or DIY?

    Hi All,

    Curious for opinions: I have leaking heliocol panels on my roof. The leak is quite substantial (you can see it trickle off the roof) so it should be easy to identify the source of the leak and fix it. Here's the problem: The building the panels are on is approximately 21 feet from the ground to the eve of the roof. My last house was a single story, and I did lots of DIY projects on the roof, but I'm new to house-ownership with a tall roof.

    So here are my options:
    1) Call a contractor. What type of contractor would I call? My gut says that this is going to be in the $500 range. Not a huge deal, but what about the next time I need to get on my roof? I don't love the idea of being reliant on contractors every time something needs to happen on my roofs.

    2) Get a tall ladder and safety equipment -- do it myself. I'm thinking that I'd get a harness and throw a rock climbing rope across the top of my house. I'd be tied down at all times and I'd also probably ratchet-strap the ladder in place. I'm a bit of a safety freak so if I'm going to do it myself I'm going to basically do it as close to zero risk as possible. I'm moderately experienced with plumbing, so I'm sure I can handle the actual fixing of the leak.

    I'm not excited to get on my roof and do it myself, but at the same time I'm not enthusiastic about always being reliant on contractors. Anyone in a similar boat have an opinion? What type of contractor would I even call?
    15k gunite pool with attached spa; iAqualink controller; Intelliflo VF pump; hayward cartridge filter; Heliocol solar panels; Hayward H250 natural gas heater

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    Mod Squad
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    DFW, TX

    Re: Solar Panel Leak -- Call Contractor, or DIY?

    I hate high roofs. I gave away my 24' ladder long ago and don't want it back. Every leak I have had on my solar panels has been hose clamps, tighten em up and good to go. My stuff is all one story now. I think I would invest in the safety gear for future needs. If you had to call someone I guess it would have to be a pool guy.
    TFP Moderator
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    2012 build and pics, 20k gal gunite, black onyx pebblesheen, OK flagstone, IntellifoVS, cart filter w/Pleatco, IC40 SWG, Solartouch, 5 12'x4' solar panels, HP50HA heat pump, 8mil solar cover, borates, TF-100 test kit, SONOS, Doheny's Discovery Robot, hot tub on bleach

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    jjslinger's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Santa Rosa, CA

    Re: Solar Panel Leak -- Call Contractor, or DIY?

    The Heliocol website has a dealer locator you can use. I have used my local dealer for a repair, and I found them to be quite reasonable. My opinion is, if you don't feel comfortable getting up on the roof for a repair, then hire the job out to a pro. But, I'm sure that you could do it safely the way you describe if you wanted to go that route.
    16K gal IG 16'x28' pebble since 2011; Pentair Easytouch; Sta-Rite Intellipro VS pump; Sta-Rite 400 sq. ft. cartridge (System 3); 6 Heliocol Solar Panels; Aquamatic Cover; Legend pressure-side cleaner with Hayward booster pump; TF100 Test Kit.

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