Yes, Solar Panels Can Survive a Hurricane
Stronger than they look
If you’re wondering what can happen to solar panels in a hurricane, take a look at the photo above: even as other parts of this Florida roof were torn away, the solar panels stayed firmly in place. Solar panels are surprisingly tough. The key is proper installation on a high quality roof.
Keeping up to code
If you live in an area that’s particularly prone to hurricanes, your insurance company and/or local building codes may require “hurricane proofing” of your solar panels. In Florida, for example, anything attached to a house has to comply with the Florida Building Code requirements for wind loads, which vary depending on the part of the state you live in. If you live on the southern coast, your solar panels will have to be installed to withstand the pressure of 150 mph winds. Your installer will know your local requirements and will take all the steps necessary to install the panels properly.
While your solar panels aren’t likely to go anywhere, it’s possible that something could come flying at them in a hurricane. The most likely culprit would be tree limbs; the good news is that since your solar panels will be located in a place where they aren’t shaded by trees anyway, this probably won’t be a problem. Another bright spot for those in hurricane-prone areas: not only are your solar panels probably safe from winds, but it’s likely that you live in one of the sunniest places in the U.S., which makes you a prime candidate for solar power! Just think: air conditioning that doesn’t cost a dime!
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Image credit: Roger Messinger