As evident on this lengthy page, there are many, many players in the solar industry. It can seem overwhelming to narrow down the choices for the best mounting and racking system for a new solar project. Some companies focus on specific applications — like metal rooftops or landfill caps — while others focus on different materials — like fiberglass or HDPE.
Solar Builder reached out to the vast and diverse mounting and racking community, and the following are submissions from companies spanning all corners of the North American market, from residential rooftops to large ground-mounts and everything in between. It’s interesting to see how companies are working to reduce installation risks and system costs. Here are the newest and most unique mounting and racking systems out there now for your reviewing pleasure.
Advanced Racking Solutions VICERACK
VICERACK by Advanced Racking Solutions offers a low-weight, tilted mounting solution for all low-pitch, standing seam roof profiles. The weight of a VICERACK system (including solar modules) is less than 2 psf and is designed for inclinations of 5 to 30°.
The versatility of VICERACK means the system, connected with S-5! clamps, can be installed either square or skewed to the roof on both the north and south facing pitches.
Analyzed by several pre-engineered building supply companies, VICERACK systems are configured to avoid additional snow accumulation. The rear vented design and open side profile result in lower operating temperatures and improved solar yield. Access is available to all modules for maintenance. advancedracking.com
Applied Energy Technologies RAYPORT-B
AET claims to have the only stainless steel roof ballast system on the market with its RAYPORT-B solar rack that is designed to minimize installation time and cost. The RAYPORT-B is designed with the end-user in mind. Ease of ordering (only four part numbers to order), top-down assembly of PV modules, integrated fasteners (allowing one common bolt to be used for all joints), integrated panel grounding and industry-leading installation time make the RAYPORT-B a favorite with installers.
AET’s racks are the quickest to assemble on the market and fit all major solar modules. A full layout and loading analysis is provided for every project. With manufacturing located in Ohio, AET has the shortest lead-time in the industry. Most racking systems are available for immediate shipment. aetenergy.com
Creotecc Mounting Systems
Creotecc mounting systems provide superior module retention without the use of clamps, thereby accelerating installation times, minimizing stress on modules and improving aesthetics. With no clamps to fasten, modules are placed quickly and easily into insertion rails for faster panelization. Resting securely in place without clamps, modules are able to contract and expand naturally, minimizing the risk of micro-cracks and early degradation. Finally, straight rows are automatically produced by the insertion rail, creating a continuous, even plane surface and a beautiful, gap-free appearance. With more than 1 GW installed globally, Creotecc mounting systems for residential, commercial and utility applications are made in the United States, are P.E. certified and UL 2703 recognized. creotecc.us
The DynoRaxx Evolution flat roof system features rugged fiberglass components and DynoRaxx’s innovative tool-less clamping mechanism. The compact ballasted design requires no roof penetrations and has a smaller footprint than competitive systems.
The DynoRaxx Evolution fiberglass components cost less than traditional metal systems. The baskets are stacked like cups for huge savings in shipping. Installers assemble the system quicker with the tool-less pivot clamp design. This means a lower installed cost per watt and more profitable PV installations.
After an initial measurement and chalk line to place the first row, the precision components require no further field measuring. From module to module and row to row, installers work quickly assembling racking and clamping solar panels. dynoraxx.com
Ecolibrium Solar ballasted systems
Ecolibrium Solar designs ballasted, flat-roof racking hardware, with a goal of reducing the cost and duration required to install solar arrays by focusing on polymer-based solutions, weatherability and roof-membrane material compatibility.
Ecolibrium’s original product, Ecofoot, offers simple installation — one foot and one bolt provides 15 modules/man-hours install time, with the ability to accommodate any framed module. Ecofoot2 offers integrated grounding and built-in wire management. The low part-count and simple, top-down clamping system makes installing the largest projects fast and easy. The system only requires a drill to install all the components including wind deflectors which reduce the ballast requirements lightening the load placed upon the roof. ecolibriumsolar.com
HatiCon Solar Pitched Roof System
HatiCon Solar’s pitched roof system is optimized for simple and fast on-site installation with no fabrication. Solar PV panels can be easily installed in portrait and landscape orientations. HatiCon Solar’s adjustable universal clamps click or slide on to the rail and only require one Allen wrench to tighten. This means less clamp inventory for the distributor or installer. Integrated grounding technology is available. Angle brackets connect standard industry stanchions to the HatiCon Solar rail. Angle brackets allow up to 1 1/2 in. of vertical and 3/4 in. of back-to-front adjustability in the field with no fabrication. The pitched roof system is available in mill and black anodized finishes. All hardware is stainless steel. Rails can span up to 16 ft and the system can work on a pitch of up to 70°. haticonsolar.com
MAGE SYSTEMTEC is a universally adaptable, easy-to-use mounting system that reduces installation time over conventional systems. It is designed to provide customized solutions with strong results on a wide array of ground and pitched roofing applications. Its innovative click-lock technology requires only a few tools which drastically reduces the installation time. This, in turn, increases the overall yield of the PV system for the end-customer due to lower costs for the investment and accelerated pay off time.
Covered by MAGE SOLAR’s 10-year material warranty, the rails are made of high-tier 6063-T6 extruded aluminum with fasteners and other hardware parts from stainless steel. M5 and M8 bolt sizes, a drill and clamps are sufficient for installation. magesolar.com
OMG Roofing Products PowerGrip
OMG PowerGrip is a roof mount system for securing solar racks to thermoplastic (TPO and PVC) roofing membranes. PowerGrip provides a secure connection directly to the roof deck or structural members. Once secured and heat-welded in place, properly installed PowerGrips limit rack movement and remain watertight.
Factory fabricated OMG PowerGrip assemblies are easy-to-install and compatible with most solar racking systems on the market. No field fabrication or assembly is required. Since they eliminate the need to cut open the roof down to the deck, the system saves time and labor. PowerGrips feature a 9-in. wide diameter welding flange and a 1/2-in. tall weather resistant aluminum perch. An exposed 1-in. tall by 3/8-in. diameter stainless steel bolt provides a secure connection point for solar racks. olyfast.com
PanelClaw Sun Bear
Sun Bear is a penetrating ground-mount racking system from PanelClaw designed for large-scale installation of PV power plants for almost any terrain, foundation and environment. With its distinct truss design structure Sun Bear streamlines PV construction with just four major components and zero loose fasteners to reduce construction risk, integrated turnbuckles to safely perform in-field adjustments, telescoping frame that maximizes shipping capacity and interchangeable foundations to reduce project risk.
Sun Bear takes an innovative approach to large ground-mount applications to reduce project risk and decrease total project lifecycle costs. Its four-component design includes a pre-assembled frame and in-field adjustability, for an unmatched combination of simplicity and flexibility. panelclaw.com
Patriot Solar 375 Series Ballasted Ground Mount
With only four major components — block, post, truss and rail — Patriot Solar’s ballasted ground-mount system is ideal for large commercial and utility-scale installations. The mounting structure is 100 percent hot-dipped galvanized steel. Five panels can fit per section. Tilt angles range from 10 to 40°. It’s rugged and weather resistant, and the ballasted ground mount comes with a 10-year guaranteed against mechanical failure (breakage) of the frame construction. patriotsolargroup.com
Find information on PV Racking for roof and ground-mounted racking here.
Quick Mount PV roof mounts
Quick Mount PV uses its patented QBlock Elevated Water Seal technology for superior waterproofing in the Classic Composition Mount and the Classic Shake Mount mounts on wood shake roofs. The QBase Composition Mount is a base-and-post style mount ideal for new roof construction. The QBase, the strongest mechanical roof attachment available, is also used for the QBase Low Slope, QBase Shake & Slate and QBase Universal Tile Mounts. The Classic Conduit Mount lifts conduit off the roof to prevent wiring from overheating, and the Conduit Penetration Flashing waterproofs roof penetrations for conduit passing through the roof.
Quick Hook USA is the industry’s first flashed tile hook mount, available for curved and flat tile roofs. The Quick Groove offers Quick Mount PV’s patented waterproofing technology for Zep-compatible installations. quickmountpv.com
Check out installation instructional videos from Quick Mount PV here.
SolarDock mounting system
Invented in 2003, SolarDock was designed to meet the needs of commercial property owners and tenants for racking that would protect their building while providing a strong ROI. SolarDock is made from durable mill-grade aluminum and stainless steel, has been rigorously tested in the wind-tunnel and has TUV Rheinland’s certification.
SolarDock is engineered to protect the roof with no penetrations and has no metal parts touching the roof, eliminating the chance of roof leaks and damage. SolarDock’s full-frame support protects the panel from micro-fractures created by wind uplift forces. Enclosed sides and back protect the wiring from damage caused by weather, animals and birds. SolarDock saves money throughout the life of the system, with reduced installation costs, little or no operations costs and increased power generation. solardock.com
Solar FlexRack Utility Ground Mount
The SFR Utility Ground Mount incorporates advanced design engineering for optimal use of materials. Its all-steel rack dramatically reduces the price per watt. The entire system comes pre-assembled in two pieces, allowing for easy installation by a three-person crew in less than 10 minutes. The SFR Utility Ground Mount also has an integrated wire management system built into every rack by using z-purlin horizontal rails.
The SFR Utility Ground Mount utilizes a direct bolt connection for mounting modules to the rack. This method also bonds the module to the rack eliminating the need for an extra step to ground the modules to the racking system. Every rack is custom designed and project specific using structural analysis software to analyze the structure and ensure compliance with all applicable local building codes. solarflexrack.com
Sollega Inc. debuts the new FastRack (FR5) 5° low-pitch solar roof-mounting system. The FR5 complements Sollega’s existing InstaRack (IR10 and IR15) product line and is the first truly universal one-piece modular mounting system engineered to mount all 60- and 72-cell modules. The lightweight stackable design is efficient to ship and quick to stage and install. The FR5 arrives assembled and ready to install with all hardware pre-attached. To install, position the FR5, add ballast and attach the module with four pre-installed top-mount bolts. Grounding is performed using a UL-certified mid-clamp. As with all Sollega mounting systems, all attachments utilize one tool, a standard 1/2-in. socket. Manufactured in California utilizing recycled HDPE plastic enhanced with ultra-violet (UV) inhibitor, the FR5 is guaranteed for 25 years. sollega.com
SunLink Precision RMS
SunLink’s Precision RMS boasts design innovations that enable installation on rooftops with limited deck capacity and advanced features that allow for faster installation making it possible for more building owners to install solar, even in locations where it wasn’t previously possible.
These features include roof-friendly rubber feet that can be adjusted to align loads with structural elements of the roof, and a roof following capacity of 7°/12 percent. Plus, with a linked rail structure and stiff aluminum frame, Precision RMS can withstand conditions in the highest wind, seismic and corrosion zones — opening up a wider range of environmental sites to solar, as well. sunlink.com
Sunmodo Ez Roof Mount
Not only is the Sunmodo’s Ez Roof Mount easy to install, but it is water tight and durable when used with any composite shingled roof. Ez Roof Mount has been certified under IAPMO ES for 100 percent compliance with International Building Code (IBC), International Residential Code (IRC) as well as watertight compliance UL 441 criteria.
In addition, Sunmodo offers Ez Metal Roof Mount, specially designed for metal roofs. With few components and single penetration, Ez Metal Roof Mount has a fast installation.
Recently, Sunmodo introduced another product line for metal roofs. The universal seam clamp is specially designed to distribute load evenly against metal standing seam roofs and allow for continuous pressure contact against the attachment surface with no permanent damage to the roof. sunmodo.com
Check out an installation video from Sunmodo here.
Zilla racking and mounting systems
Zilla designs and manufactures innovative solar racking, flashings, mounting systems and products that make solar power more practical and affordable than ever before. Zilla accomplishes this through thoughtful design that facilitates intuitive use and cost-saving efficiencies throughout the manufacturing, delivery and installation processes.
The Zilla product line applies best-in-class technology to provide outstanding racking and mounting solutions. Zilla leads the industry with systems that are on the cutting edge of technology and is redefining solar mounting solutions in ways that make solar installations safer, easier and more affordable. The company offers flat roof, flush mount, ground mount and custom systems to meet customer needs while focusing on strength, performance and value. zillarac.com
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