Occasionally, sealants, gaskets or even subcomponent labels will outgas. This
process, akin to vaporization, results in gases inside the collector frame. They
condense on cold surfaces. Unfortunately, this includes the inside of the glazing.
on a Collector
Outgassed material usually forms a uniform cloud or haze on the inside of the
glazing. (Figure 3-2) When this is found, it is usually best to do nothing about the
problem for six months to be sure whatever material has outgassed is completely
gone. If the problem reoccurs, one collector should be dismantled to determine the
source of the outgassed material.
Frames should be physically sound, with no evidence of paint loss or other surface
damage. Make sure no galvanic corrosion is occurring between aluminum collector
frames and steel or galvanized steel mounting hardware.
As indicated above, condensation of water on glazings may indicate gaps in frame
joints. All collector joints should be tight, with sealant or gaskets in good condition.
Some collectors are made with weep holes to allow moisture and outgassed
materials to escape. If the collectors are so equipped, check that collector insulation
has not shifted to block the weep holes. Also make sure that weep holes are on the
bottom or back of the collector, so water cannot run into the frame. (Figure 3-3)
3.1 INSPECTION PROCEDURES