Renewable Energy > Solar Thermal
Building Codes, Covenants, and Regulations for Solar Water Heating Systems
Before installing a solar water heating system, you should investigate local building codes, zoning ordinances, and subdivision covenants, as well as any special regulations pertaining to the site. You will probably need a building permit to install a solar energy system onto an existing building.
Not every community or municipality initially welcomes residential renewable energy installations. Although this is often due to ignorance or the comparative novelty of renewable energy systems, you must comply with existing building and permit procedures to install your system.
The matter of building code and zoning compliance for a solar system installation is typically a local issue. Even if a statewide building code is in effect, it's usually enforced locally by your city, county, or parish. Common problems homeowners have encountered with building codes include the following:
Potential zoning issues include the following:
Special area regulations—such as local community, subdivision, or homeowner's association covenants—also demand compliance. These covenants, historic district regulations, and flood-plain provisions can easily be overlooked.
To find out what's needed for local compliance, contact the following: