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Unirac Engineers to a Higher Standard: Why Product Approvals Like Miami-Dade NOA Are Essential for Solar Installers

Unirac Engineers to a Higher Standard: Why Product Approvals Like Miami-Dade NOA Are Essential for Solar Installers

Figure 1 Unirac® NXT UMOUNT™, Miami-Dade NOA Approved

The solar industry has seen a surge in installations over the past decade, with more and more homes, businesses, and institutions harnessing the power of the sun. Solar installers aim to provide customers with systems that are not only energy-efficient but also safe and compliant. That's why key approvals like the Miami-Dade Notice of Acceptance (NOA) and the LA County Building Approval are crucial for solar professionals. In this article, we will delve into the significance of these approvals, especially emphasizing the Miami-Dade NOA's focus on the High-Velocity Hurricane Zone (HVHZ).

Figure 1 Unirac® NXT UMOUNT™, Miami-Dade NOA Approved

1. Miami-Dade NOA: Preparing for the High-Velocity Hurricane Zone

Miami-Dade County is no stranger to the wrath of nature, especially when it comes to hurricanes. The region is classified as a High-Velocity Hurricane Zone (HVHZ), which means that structures, including solar installations, must be robust enough to withstand the high winds and debris impact of a major hurricane.

The importance of the Miami-Dade NOA for solar installers cannot be overstated:

  • Robust Design: The NOA requires that solar installations be tested against wind speeds and conditions reflective of a major hurricane, ensuring that they will remain intact even in the face of extreme weather.
  • Rigorous Testing: Solar installations in Miami-Dade County need to prove they can withstand Wind Driven Rain and high Mechanical Load factors.
  • Assurance for Homeowners: For homeowners, the Miami-Dade NOA is a stamp of assurance. It indicates that their solar installation is prepared to handle the worst of the hurricane season, giving them peace of mind.
  • Compliance and Trust: The Miami-Dade NOA ensures compliance with local building codes. It also serves to instill trust in the minds of potential solar adopters, knowing that their installation will stand the test of nature.

2. LA County Building Approval: Ensuring Structural Integrity

Los Angeles County is one of the largest and most populated counties in the United States, making it a hotspot for solar installations. However, the county also experiences earthquakes, making it essential for solar systems to adhere to strict building standards.

The LA County Building Approval ensures:

  • Safety: By following LA County's strict guidelines, we ensure that solar installations are safe and secure, especially during seismic events.
  • Quality: This approval indicates that the solar installation meets the high standards of workmanship required by the county.
  • Compliance: Just as with the Miami Dade NOA, LA County Building Approval assures homeowners and businesses that their solar installation is compliant with local building codes and electrical safety standards.

How Unirac is Different

Engineering at these high standards is difficult and time consuming.  This is why many solar racking manufacturers achieve the minimum requirements to get their products on the market.  For example, many will test to the lowest loads required to attain their solar racking certification (UL2703) instead of testing to the highest allowable module loads as Unirac does.  In Florida, many racking products cannot pass the demanding standards and test regimens of the Miami Dade NOA and instead elect to seek alternative, less demanding product approvals.  Unirac approaches these challenges as an opportunity to prove the quality and reliability of our products and to provide the best possible products to our customers.  

In Conclusion

For solar installers, staying updated and compliant with regional building codes and standards isn't just a bureaucratic necessity—it's a testament to our commitment to quality, safety, and long-term value for our clients. Whether it's preparing for the seismic challenges in LA County or the hurricane threats in Miami-Dade, recognizing and respecting these standards ensures we offer the best to our customers, and they enjoy the benefits of solar power without compromising on safety.

Stay tuned to for more insights into the solar industry and best practices for installations!

Click here to view our Miami-Dade NOA

Click here and type in Unirac in the search field to view our LA County Approved Products.

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