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Durability of Temperatures: Select Bolts for solar applications


The solar industry is booming, and with it comes a unique set of challenges for the materials used in solar installations. Solar panels and their supporting structures are exposed to extreme weather conditions, including scorching heat, freezing cold, and rapid temperature fluctuations. These extremes put a tremendous strain on every component, including the humble bolt

Choosing the right bolts for solar applications is crucial to ensure the longevity, safety, and efficiency of these systems. In this blog post, we'll explore the challenges of extreme temperatures, the key considerations for selecting bolts, and how Citizen Fasteners can provide the high-performance solutions you need

The Solar Challenge: Extreme Temperatures and Their Impact

Solar installations face a wide range of temperature extremes. In desert environments, panels can reach temperatures exceeding 150°F (65°C) in direct sunlight, while in colder climates, they can plummet to well below freezing. These temperature swings cause materials to expand and contract, putting stress on joints and fasteners

  • Loss of Preload : Preload is the tension created within a bolt when it's tightened. This tension acts like a spring, holding components together securely. However, extreme heat can cause the bolt and the materials it's fastening to expand at different rates. This differential expansion can reduce the preload, effectively loosening the bolt and compromising the joint's integrity. In solar applications, where vibrations from wind and other factors are common, loss of preload can rapidly accelerate wear and lead to complete fastener failure
  • Material Degradation : Not all bolt materials are created equal when it comes to handling extreme temperatures. Some metals, like standard carbon steel, can soften and lose strength when exposed to excessive heat. This softening makes the bolt more susceptible to stretching, deformation, and even breakage under the mechanical stresses of a solar installation. The constant heating and cooling cycles further exacerbate this degradation over time
  • Corrosion : The combination of moisture (from rain, humidity, or condensation) and temperature fluctuations creates a perfect breeding ground for corrosion. In solar installations, this is particularly problematic for metal components like bolts. Corrosion weakens the bolt's structure, reducing its load-bearing capacity and making it more prone to failure. The harsh outdoor environment of solar installations, often with exposure to salty air or other pollutants, can further accelerate the corrosion process

Selecting Bolts for Solar: Key Considerations

To ensure the long-term performance of your solar installation, it's vital to select bolts that can withstand the rigors of extreme temperatures. Here are the key factors to consider

  • Material Selection : Opt for bolt materials that are specifically designed for high-temperature applications. Stainless steel, particularly grades like 316 and 316L, offer excellent corrosion resistance and maintain their strength even at elevated temperatures. Super duplex stainless steel is even more resilient, making it ideal for the harshest solar environments
  • Coating and Plating : Consider bolts with specialized coatings or plating, such as zinc plating or hot-dip galvanizing, to further enhance corrosion resistance. These coatings create a protective barrier that shields the bolt from moisture and other corrosive elements
  • Thermal Expansion : When selecting bolts for solar installations, it's important to account for the thermal expansion of both the bolt and the materials it's fastening. Using bolts with a coefficient of thermal expansion similar to the surrounding materials can help prevent stress and deformation due to temperature changes
  • High-Temperature Lubricants : Applying high-temperature lubricants during installation can reduce friction and wear, ensuring that the bolts maintain their preload and don't seize up due to thermal expansion
  • Thread Design : Choose bolts with thread designs that are resistant to galling or seizing at high temperatures. Coarse threads are often preferred for their strength and ability to handle thermal expansion better than fine threads

Citizen Fasteners: Your Partner in Solar Solutions

At Citizen Fasteners, we understand the unique challenges of solar applications. We offer a wide range of high-performance bolts specifically designed to withstand extreme temperatures and deliver long-lasting performance in solar installations

Our bolts are made from premium materials, including stainless steel and super duplex stainless steel, and are available with various coatings and platings to provide superior corrosion resistance. We also offer specialized bolts with features like anti-seize properties and self-locking mechanisms for added security

Our team of experts can work with you to identify the best bolt solutions for your specific solar project, ensuring the reliability, safety, and efficiency of your installation


Extreme temperatures pose significant challenges for the fasteners used in solar installations. By carefully selecting bolts that can withstand these conditions, you can ensure the longevity and performance of your solar system. Citizen Fasteners is your trusted partner in providing high-quality, durable bolt solutions for the demanding solar industry. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you achieve success in your solar projects

Need guidance on high-strength bolts for your Solar projects? Our staff is always there to help you. For a consultation, reach out to us at right now