A roof that will last

Our roof is going on slowly and we’re anxiously waiting to see it finished. Insulation went in last Thursday and though it’s covered, it’s not safe from moisture until the steel roof’s in place. When heavy, ominous looking clouds rolled in late Monday, I felt the urgency in a major way. Winter is nipping at our heels.

One section of the south roof was finished last week so Curt, Ben, Andrew and Micah from Solar Connection installed racks to hold the solar panels on Thursday, then 15 of the 18 panels on Monday. They’ll be back to add the last three panels when the solar hot water system arrives so all remaining work can be finished at once.

The roof is steep (12/12, or 45°), and the wide dormer section where the solar system is mounted is 9/12, or 37°. No one’s been too excited to go up there. But Ben and Micah say the solar panel racks are extraordinarily stable clipped to the standing seams, and they looked confident moving around once the racks were in place.

We decided on a standing seam roof for two reasons: 1) durability, and 2) the solar system. It’s a practical, good looking roof that uses fewer resources long term. Frankly, we hedged on price and looked at alternatives until we realized it would be foolish to put panels over a roof that might need replacing someday. We’ve also avoided using asphalt, a petroleum product. Architectural Metal Specialists worked with us to keep price in line with our budget, so we took the long view and bit the bullet. The roof is 24 gauge Firestone UC-3 steel with 1-1/2″ rib height. It has a 35-year warranty and will need no maintenance.

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Lanesboro, Minnesota
Climate Zone 6 (cold/moist)
Latitude: 43° 44' 18'' N
Longitude: 91° 54' 48'' W

House Size

Net Treated Floor Area: 1,514 SF
Gross Square Footage (House only): 2,210 SF

Building Envelope

Roof: R-99
Wall: R-61
Ground: R-53

Windows & Doors

Glazing: U-0.10 BTU / hour / sq. ft.
Solar Heat Gain Coefficient (SHGC): 0.48”
Frame: U-0.19 BTU / hour / sq. ft.

Modeled Performance

Specific Primary Energy Demand (Source Energy Demand): 12.1 kBTU / sq. ft. / year

Specific Space Heat Demand: 7.0 kBTU/sq. ft. / year

Peak Heating Load: 7,047 BTU / hour

Space Cooling Demand: 0.44 kBTU / sq. ft. / year

Peak Cooling Load: 3,625 BTU / hour

Pressure Test Goal: Whole House Air Changes Per Hour (ACH) = 0.4 ACH 50


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