The Calcaire House is a 15,000-square-foot modern Colorado single-family residential compound consisting of five interconnected buildings. Floor-to-ceiling glass connects the interior space to the exterior landscape, offering spectacular views of the Boulder Flatirons. A combination of exposed timber, stone and steel structural design elements, and exposed custom roof trusses complement the gabled standing seam metal roof.
Boulder Roofing Company and The Solar Revolution were charged with installing a metal roof and solar array with more than 60 kilowatts of solar dispersed over multiple rooftops. Boulder Roofing installed both standing seam metal and TPO roof systems on the project. Crews installed approximately 12,000 square feet of 14-inch, 24-gauge panels from Drexel Metals in traditional black over Titanium PSU30 high-temp peel and stick underlayment.
They also installed 3,000 square feet of 60-mil Versico TPO over low-slope areas. The TPO was adhered to quarter-inch DensDeck Prime over tapered EPS insulation. Boulder Roofing fabricated and installed custom flashings and coping, and also installed an S-5! snow-guard system incorporating the S-5! ColorGard bars, S-5-S Mini clamps, SnoClip IIs, and VersaClips.
The Energy Challenge
The city of Boulder has strict energy codes in place and requires all new construction to meet a certain level of efficiency. The requirements are based on the square footage of the home and are more stringent on larger homes — the larger the home, the more efficient it needs to be. The goal is to have a net-zero home, not taking energy from the grid, and the only way for a larger home to achieve this is with solar. A modest home or small addition might only require about 2 kilowatts. A large home might require 20-30 kilowatts.
The most optimal rooftops for solar were also the most visually prominent, and the homeowner was concerned about aesthetics. These concerns were alleviated after seeing a small-scale mock-up of the S-5! PVKIT 2.0 solution combined with an all-black solar module.
In addition, the area is considered a high-wind area and would require a study to account for windspeeds, as the solar installers could only rely on the roof itself and its attachment to the wood sheeting when attaching solar panels using S-5!’s zero-penetration system.
Another difficulty was finding a viable path to route the energy created by the solar panels back to the point of connection with the home’s distribution. The Solar Revolution worked with the builder and the architect, and analyzed photos and design plans to find ways to conceal the conduits. They ultimately found a viable path that was aesthetically pleasing, code compliant and cost-effective.
The Solar Revolution installers utilized S-5!’s PVKIT 2.0 to build the solar array. The installation team started at ground level prepping S-5! PVKIT MidGrabs and EdgeGrabs. Another team member prepared the solar modules by installing the power optimizers and managing the various wires. By completing this work on the ground, the roof crew could focus on setting modules, and it minimized their time in harnesses on a steep metal roof. The solar installers prefer to install modules starting with the bottom row and working up. Extra care is taken when aligning the first row. This precision allows for subsequent rows to drop into place on the S-5! PVKIT MidGrabs.
“The Solar Revolution has been utilizing the S-5! PVKIT 2.0 solution since it first hit the market,” says Doug Claxton, CEO of The Solar Revolution. “Hands down, it is the best solar mounting solution for metal roofing of any description. At first, we were a little worried about wire management and installing in landscape, but those worries were overcome with our first installation. It’s a piece of cake.”
With the S-5! PVKIT 2.0, the Calcaire House was able to meet the city code requirements for solar and establish itself as an energy-efficient, net-zero home. Because the PVKIT comes in black, it matched the roof nicely, pulling together all of the design elements in an aesthetically pleasing, cost-effective manner — saving the customer time and money on installation and materials.
Architect: Surround Architecture, Boulder, Colorado, www.surroundarchitecture.com
General Contractor: Harrington Stanko Construction, Niwot, Colorado, www.harringtonstanko.com
Engineer: Anthem Structural Engineers, Boulder, Colorado, www.anthemstructural.com
Roofing Contractor: Boulder Roofing Company, Boulder, Colorado, www.boulderroof.com
Solar Installer: The Solar Revolution, Boulder, Colorado, www.thesolarrevolution.com
Metal Roof: 175SS 14-inch, 24 gauge panels, Drexel Metals, www.drexmet.com
Underlayment: Titanium PSU30, Owens Corning, www.owenscorning.com
TPO Roof: 60-mil Grey TPO, Versico, www.versico.com
Cover Board: DensDeck Prime, Georgia-Pacific, www.buildgp.com
Solar Attachment: S-5! PVKIT 2.0 in black with S-5-S Mini Clamps, www.S-5.com
Snow Guards: S-5! ColorGard, S-5-S Mini Clamps, SnowClipIIs and VersaClips