Are 6 R-164XD 3" prosolar rails sufficient/overkill to span 13 feet?

The recommendation is  '6 foot on center with 2-1/2" tall RoofTrac® rail'.   Will tripling the number of rails (and increasing the height to 3") support four 42 pound panels 'hovering' (1/12 pitch) over an awning - without a middle support?

One end of the each rail is to be FastJacked (in the 'dip'/groove/V of the awning) to the 6"x4" awning I-Beam (supported every 7.5 feet by 3x3" posts - I've already cleared the weight with the awning installer)  and the other end ubolted to a 40' pipe parallel to the roof/awning supported by joist connections every 4 feet.

The awning grooves (and therefore the rails) are a foot apart, this would give railing support to the 66" panels at 3|12|12|12|12|12|3 inches.  There will be 6 of these 4 panels spans.


Hello, this sounds like a great project.  Awnings can sometimes present difficult to design circumstances with longer spans and specific aesthetic concerns.  The 3-inch tall RoofTrac support rail by ProSolar is stated to have a maximum span of 8 feet.  Adding additional parallel rails will help reduce the load each rail experiences. However, we are not able to state whether or not this strategy will work.  It would be best to contact ProSolar directly (805-486-4700) to determine if they would support such an installation.  

There are other rail systems available that might work for you depending on the location of the project.  Schletter's S-series rails are able to span greater distances. Additionally, DPW's LD and MD Power Rails are also able to span greater distances.  Again, the span is very dependent on location where wind and snow loads need to be considered.

Feel free to contact us with additional information about your project and/or questions to get you moving in the right direction.

Regards, Eric

4 years 9 months ago
Asked by
Daylan Darby
Support topics
Racking and mounting
Support tags