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Improving Solar Panel Installation Safety, While Increasing Productivity

WPG-solar-tools-1There's no denying that solar collecting systems installed on metal roofs are gaining a great deal of popularity. It seems like virtually any type of metal-roofed structure is a candidate for solar panels, from small single-family homes to vast warehouses, factories, shopping malls, commercial offices and other buildings. Not surprisingly, safety is an ongoing concern for solar panel installers. Wood's Powr-Grip® addresses that concern by offering a variety of vacuum-lifting tools designed to improve worker safety, avoid property damage, and also increase productivity.

Solar panels come in a variety of dimensions, including some that can become challenging for installers to work with. Likewise, metal roof panels come in a vast range of profiles, installed anywhere from a 1/4:12 pitch to steep slopes that are imposing to even the most experienced crews. Add in gusting winds, challenging eave heights and other variables and it's clear that handling solar panels and related components can quickly become a safety concern. This is where Wood's Powr-Grip's line of lifting tools can be a tremendous asset on any solar installation.

Vacuum Lifting Cups

WPG-solar-tools-2To ensure that solar panels aren't damaged on the jobsite, vacuum-lifting cups allow workers to safely lift solar panels and related equipment - including the metal roof panels - at any stage of the installation process. They can be used on the ground, on the roof, or to move materials from the ground to the roof. The finger-operated vacuum pump uses atmospheric pressure to grip any flat non-porous material. Workers use vacuum cups to handle a range of sensitive, awkward and expensive items.

Below-The-Hook Lifters

Below-the-hook lifters allow a single person to handle a heavy load safely, while reducing labor costs. This is a great tool for solar systems, which typically require thoughtful staging and several steps to install. Securing solar panels with below-the-hook lifters brings peace of mind to installers who feel safer using them, while also offering assurance to the building owner or home owner who experiences less worry that their property may be damaged.

Channel Lifter 300

It's common sense that installers should avoid carrying solar panels while climbing a ladder, if possible. One way to avoid this is to use the Wood Powr-Grip Channel Lifter 300. Having 300 lbs. [135 kg] capacity the DC-powered Channel Lifter offers the operator full control of materials throughout the lifting process. With 180-degree rotation and 90-degree tilt capability, it has the capability of safely delivering solar panels and other materials to the exact spot where they're needed.


WPG-solar-tools-3The jobsite isn't the only place where material handling and safety are needed. In the factory, shop or warehouse, the Wood’s Powr-Grip Quadra-Tilt can lift a wide range of heavy or light materials up to 200 lbs.

Quadra-Tilt's multi-position vacuum pad arms can handle a variety of load sizes and shapes. Quadra-Tilt Rotators feature a mechanical advantage that significantly reduces the effort of tilting loads, without the weight or expense of a powered tilt actuator.

Manual Rotator/Tilters

Whether on the jobsite or in the plant, Powr-Grip’s Manual Rotator-Tilters (MRT) provide ultimate versatility. MRT lifters feature 360° continuous rotation and 90° tilt to make lifting and positioning solar panels a snap. With capacities from 700 – 1400 lbs., these lifters also feature removable pad arms to accommodate a variety of load shapes. One model is specially designed to lift and install insulated metal panels of more than 60 feet.

These are just a sampling of the vacuum-lifting devices offered by Wood's Powr-Grip to improve the safety and productivity of solar panel installers. There are many others available to meet the specific needs of any contracting, manufacturing or supply companies. To learn more, visit

About Wood's Powr-Grip

Woods_PowrGrip_logoWood's Powr-Grip Inc. designs, manufactures and distributes tools and equipment that improve efficiency, enhance safety, and lower costs for the industries that it serves. The company offers a full line of hand-held vacuum cups, below-the-hook vacuum lifters and vacuum mounting cups that make material handling and equipment mounting easier. The products are used to lift, hold and position a variety of smooth, nonporous materials such as insulated metal panels, glass, plastics, engine valves, sheet metal, solid surfacing, laminates, stone slabs and appliances. Powr-Grip products are individually tested before being shipped from the production facility, in order to ensure quality and promote safety for the user.

Wood's Powr-Grip's headquarters are located in Laurel, MT, and its vacuum cups and equipment products are distributed internationally in nearly 50 countries through an extensive network of dealers and distributors. For more information, visit

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