About this course

Even the best solar installers started with no experience. This is a series of foundational, free courses for new solar installers. Our goal is to give you an understanding of the basics of the industry, electricity, solar construction, and energy storage that lays the groundwork for a career in solar.

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Bundle outline

4 courses • 12 modules

Course 1 • 2 modules
Introduction to Solar PV Design, Installation and Code
Module 1 • 4 assignments
Introduction to Sean White, HeatSpring, NABCEP, and this Course

Let's get started! In this opening module you'll meet Dr. Sean White, the lead instructor for the course (you will also meet Bill Brooks later in the course). Here we talk about the North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP) and why it is so relevant today. You will learn how to get a NABCEP Certification and how to study for and pass the NABCEP exams. One of Sean's learning techniques, is making sure everyone has fun and that the class information is memorable. These classes are definitely upbeat! Enjoy! Sean

  • Connect with your instructor Sean on LinkedIn
  • Introduction (18:19 minutes)
  • Solar Market Report Summary (.pdf)
  • Totally optional: iPhone App for taking this class (50 seconds)
Module 2 • 10 assignments
Introduction to Solar PV Design

Becoming a great solar PV and energy storage sage takes a deep understanding of electricity, engineering, and construction. We don't cover all of those things here - but we give you just enough to be dangerous. Work your way through this series of assignments, and you'll be on your way to becoming a solar PV and energy storage guru.

  • History (06:38 minutes)
  • Statistics and Outlook (07:04 minutes)
  • PV Market and Applications (04:21 minutes)
  • Safety Basics (06:29 minutes)
  • Energy Units (04:37 minutes)
  • Electricity Basics (09:24 minutes)
  • PV Module Fundamentals (19:02 minutes)
  • IV Curves With Bill Brooks (10:59 minutes)
  • Solar Energy and Solar Power (09:57 minutes)
  • Building Integrated Photovoltaics and Tesla Solarglass (aka Tesla Solar Roof) with Bill Brooks (05:37 minutes)
Course 2 • 1 modules
5 Things You Should Know About Silicon PV Panels
Module 1 • 7 assignments
5 Things You Should Know About Silicon PV Panels

  • Introduction (06:46 minutes)
  • #1 - PV panels are more delicate than you might think (13:34 minutes)
  • #2 - PV modules can get really hot and bypass diodes are very important (08:52 minutes)
  • #3 - Walking on panels can hurt them (05:38 minutes)
  • #4 - Cracked solar cells are common (10:59 minutes)
  • #5 - Many defects electrically impact only 2/3 of the panel (04:57 minutes)
  • Conclusion (02:50 minutes)
Course 3 • 8 modules
IronRidge’s Installing on Pitched Roof – Comp Shingle – Course
Welcome • 4 assignments
Orientation Materials

This is a free course. We take pride in our free courses, but keep in mind that this is only a taste of what we do in a full HeatSpring course. You can get started immediately after you enroll.

  • Introduction to IronRidge (03:00 minutes)
  • How ICP Works (01:42 minutes)
  • About IronRidge Installer Certification
  • Totally optional: iPhone App for taking this class (50 seconds)
Module 1 • 5 assignments
Introduction to Solar PV

  • Intro to Solar PV (04:37 minutes)
  • Rail-based racking systems (03:56 minutes)
  • Codes & Standards (07:10 minutes)
  • Recap (14 seconds)
  • Module 1 Quiz
Module 2 • 6 assignments
Introduction to Roofing Systems

  • Roof Types & Pitches (02:34 minutes)
  • Roof Anatomy (01:38 minutes)
  • Composition Asphalt Shingles (02:50 minutes)
  • Roof Attachments & Applications (01:28 minutes)
  • Recap (08 seconds)
  • Module 2 Quiz
Module 3 • 13 assignments
Rail-Based Racking

  • Flush Mount System Overview (01:04 minutes)
  • Design Considerations (02:20 minutes)
  • Required Tools & Supplies (01:52 minutes)
  • Roofing Sealant (02:08 minutes)
  • Project Plans (49 seconds)
  • Module Orientation (36 seconds)
  • Roof Zones (01:53 minutes)
  • Know Your Jobsite (01:02 minutes)
  • Ladder Placement & Equipment (02:55 minutes)
  • Roof Hazards & Conditions (01:50 minutes)
  • Staging Tools & Materials (03:18 minutes)
  • Recap (18 seconds)
  • Module 3 Quiz
Module 4 • 6 assignments
Marking Array Dimensions

  • Laying Out The Array (03:27 minutes)
  • Module Clamping Zones & Rail Spacing (04:45 minutes)
  • Determining Rafter Locations (04:06 minutes)
  • Marking Attachment Locations (27 seconds)
  • Recap (10 seconds)
  • Module 4 Quiz
Module 5 • 11 assignments
Installing Attachments

  • Installing Roof Attachments (49 seconds)
  • Required Tools & Materials (42 seconds)
  • Drilling Pilot Holes (01:43 minutes)
  • Sealing Missed Pilot Holes (01:31 minutes)
  • Preparing Attachment Locations (49 seconds)
  • Flashing Features (01:06 minutes)
  • Removing Nails (01:37 minutes)
  • Aligning the Flashing (01:01 minutes)
  • Pro Tips (38 seconds)
  • Recap (09 seconds)
  • Module 5 Quiz
Module 6 • 9 assignments
Flush Mount Racking

  • Flush Mount Racking Assembly (02:12 minutes)
  • Determining Rail Lengths & Making Cut List (01:39 minutes)
  • Cutting & Splicing Rails (02:16 minutes)
  • Squaring & Levelling Rails (02:11 minutes)
  • Array Grounding Components (01:42 minutes)
  • Attaching Module-Level Power Electronics (02:11 minutes)
  • Housekeeping (32 seconds)
  • Recap (12 seconds)
  • Module 6 Quiz
Module 7 • 5 assignments
Wire Management

  • Wire Management (03:00 minutes)
  • Wiring Plans (02:23 minutes)
  • Junction Boxes & Conduit (03:03 minutes)
  • Recap (10 seconds)
  • Module 7 Quiz
Module 8 • 7 assignments
Module Installation

  • Solar Module Installation (04:54 minutes)
  • Connecting MLPE Devices (02:34 minutes)
  • Securing Modules to Rails (02:37 minutes)
  • Trimming Rails & Hiding Ends (02:40 minutes)
  • Recap (12 seconds)
  • Course Summary (16 seconds)
  • Module 8 Quiz
Conclusion • 4 assignments
Feedback and Additional Resources

This is our last module but you still have access to the all of course materials so keep working and you'll be able to complete the course at your own pace. Enjoy the course and keep in touch!

  • IronRidge Installer Certification Final Test
  • Take the next step: IronRidge Installer Certification
  • Feedback: 2-minute Exit Survey
  • Certificate of Completion: Request a Certificate
Course 4 • 1 modules
Battery Capacity - The Basis of Storage
Module 1 • 4 assignments
Video, Resources, Call-In Information, and Questions

In this module, you'll watch the video lecture, check out the supporting resources, and download an MP3 recording of a 1-hour Q+A call with Christopher LaForge.

  • Battery Capacity - The Basis of Storage (39:42 minutes)
  • 1-hour Q+A Call Recording (.mp3)
  • Article: Energy Storage Basics for Solar PV by Christopher LaForge
  • Totally optional: iPhone App for taking this class (50 seconds)

Continuing Education Units

Approved for the following CEUs

  • NABCEP Advanced Credit Hours
  • NABCEP RE Elective
  • NABCEP PV Associate Renewal
  • IronRidge Solar PV Installation Certification

Approved NABCEP CEU Hours

NABCEP Registered Provider

This course counts towards the training requirements for taking NABCEP professional certification exams and CEUs for renewing all certifications.


  • Dr. James Rand

    Core Energy Works
    View profile

    Dr. James Rand has over 30 years of experience in the manufacturing, research, and development of solar energy products. His work spans the entire value chain, from raw materials to system level performance. His recent technical projects focused on testing and evaluation of solar modules for performance and long-term reliability. This work led to the formation of Core... Learn more

  • IronRidge Training Team

    View profile

    Whether you’re a new entrant to the solar industry, training your crew, or just refreshing your credentials, the IronRidge Installer Certification Program was built for you. Learn more

  • Christopher LaForge

    Certified Master Trainer (IREC), NABCEP Certified Photovoltaic Professional - Emeritus , Great Northern Solar
    View profile

    Christopher LaForge is the CEO of Great Northern Solar and a NABCEP certified photovoltaic installer-emeritus. He has been designing, specifying, and installing systems since 1988. He has been an instructor with the MREA since 1993 teaching Advanced Photovoltaic design and installation and is an ISPQ Affiliated Master Trainer. In 2016 he was named IREC's Master Trainer... Learn more

  • Sean White

    2014 IREC Trainer of the Year, HeatSpring / White House Energy Inc. / Sean White Solar / Norcal Solar
    View profile

    Sean White was the 2014 Interstate Renewable Energy Council Trainer of the Year. He is an IREC Certified Solar PV Master Trainer and has authored several books on solar. He contributed to the development of the NABCEP PV Installation Professional Job Task Analysis and has been a member of the NABCEP PV Installation Professional Technical Committee. Sean is a... Learn more

Frequently asked questions

How does this course work?
This is a free course. Enroll today and get access to all of the materials instantly. This is a self-study, self-paced course and you can set your own schedule to complete the materials. You can begin the lecture videos and other course materials as soon as you enroll. After successfully completing the course, you will be able to generate a certificate of completion.
How long do I have access to the materials?
For free courses there is no guarantee for how long the course materials will be available.
Is there a certificate of completion?
Yes, when you complete this course you are eligible for a certificate of completion from HeatSpring. You can download your certificate as soon as you have completed all of the course requirements. Students can easily share their verified certificates on their LinkedIn profiles using our LinkedIn integration.
Can I register multiple people?
Yes, this is a free course so you can share this page with other people from your team.


Based on 3243 reviews from the 4 courses in this bundle

I really enjoy this course everything was good and brief I really enjoyed learning about the PV designs thank you for that

Ahmad Williams

The course is very informing so make sure you listen up for close details, teaches us new vocabulary and breaks down how things should be done.

BreNaia Johnson Roberson

For me its just great, Thank you

Ahsan Rasheed

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