Solar Panels On The Ground Vs Roof
There is no best solar panel mounting option. Much depends on available roof space, the pitch and facing of the roof and any restrictive covenants or planning issues related to roof mounting. Solar panels on the ground can work equally well as roof mounting but will obviously use up ground space which is often a premium over roof space.
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If you are ready to install a ground-mounted or a roof-mounted solar system, call our pros at Solar Bear! We offer free estimates on solar panel systems across Florida and can help you choose which solar system is best for your Florida property and energy needs.
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Should You Choose Ground Mount Or Roof Mount Solar Panels
When deciding which set-up to go with at your facility, there are many factors to think about before making a final decision.
For a rooftop solar energy system, youll have to consider how much rooftop space you have, the health and age of your roof, and what types of obstructions you have in the way, such as skylights or vents.
When it comes to installing a ground mount system, youll have to consider the type of location and space available. Will the ground be able to withstand large holes and be able to hold ground mount panels racking in place? Do you have enough ground space or the right space for a ground mount?
Both are good options, it just depends on what your ultimate goals and priorities are with your solar panel system and how much you want to invest. Either way, whether you go with a roof mount or perhaps a carport ground mount installation, you will be able to enjoy the benefits of generating solar energy on your site.
Solar power is the ultimate renewable energy source. No matter what type of mount you choose, you will benefit from cheaper utility bills, a reduced carbon footprint, and the opportunity to move away from complete reliance on the grid especially when paired with anenergy storage system, among other perks.
If youre looking for more information or guidance on how to get a commercial solar installation on your site, reach out to us,wattlogic.com, or drop us a line: 834-8737.
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Ground Mounted Solar Panels
Ground mounted panels allow you to have control of the angle and orientation of the panels to optimize the output. In the UK an off-grid system has an ideal angle of 45-55 degrees. This provides high performance in the winter months when most needed. On-grid requirements are closer to 30 degrees for all year maximal performance.
A ground mounted solar system allows this to be adjusted more freely to suit the purpose. It can also be cheaper on a small scale or where access to a roof is costly or obstructed. Ground mounted panels also operate at a lower temperature than roof mounted which can mean a difference of up to 25% more efficiency.
Ground mounted systems come in various guises with quick and easy low-cost ballast systems to fully blown ground mounted systems you see used in solar farms.
Some ground mounted solar arrays may need planning permission, which is an extra consideration.
Pros of ground mounted solar panels:
- Easy to access and maintain
- Stronger racking and support
- Can be oriented to the perfect angle
- Not restricted so the size of the roof
Cons of ground mounted solar panels:
- Installation can take longer and cost more
- Requires more complex racking and support
- Uses valuable outdoor space
- Unobstructed view of the sky can be harder to achieve
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More Labor Intensive & Requires More Cost Upfront
The main reason why a ground mount requires more cost upfront is because the system requires more parts to be assembled.
Think of it this way when you place a solar array on the roof, half of the structure has already been built for you. But when you place a solar array on the ground, you have to build a sturdy roof-like structure to hold the panels in place.
This process involves getting your soil surveyed to make sure it can hold the system firmly in place, digging large holes, and paying extra for parts to build a suitable foundation for the panels.
Roof-mounted systems skip a lot of these costs. Assuming your roof is in good shape and doesnt have structural damage, it should be strong enough to support the weight of the solar array. You dont run into any of the hassle of building a brand new foundation to hold the panels in place.
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Do You Need Planning Permission For Solar Panels In A Field
The installation of solar panels and equipment on residential buildings and land may be permitted development with no need to apply to the Local Planning Authority for planning permission. You should discuss with the Local Planning Authority for your area whether all of the limits and conditions will be met.
Is The Osprey Powerplatform Right For You
If you really want to grow your solar business and begin receiving measurable savings both in terms of time and money traditional ground-mounted solutions can only take you so far.
In fact, conventional racking systems can actually create more problems than they solve.
But with the Osprey PowerPlatform, you can:
- Settle account receivables much faster.
- Dramatically reduce unnecessary expenses.
- Eliminate delays, holdups, and downtime.
- Improve the cash flow of your business.
- Increase annuals sales across the board.
Theres one final benefit of this revolutionary racking system.
Many ground-mounted solar teams close up shop during the winter months. Its simply not feasible to install systems in frozen ground without damaging equipment .
However, the Ospreys earth anchors dont require excavations or drilled piles. This allows you to assemble each unit in frost line conditions even when working in hard, frozen soil.
This flexibility allows you to redefine the very concept of installation season. While your competitors are forced to turn away contracts during the winter months, your team can continue servicing customers all year long.
So what are you waiting for?
Request your Free Solar Racking Quote from Nuance Energy today.
Or, you can call us directly at 877-537-2221 to learn how we can help immediately improve your cash flow using the Osprey PowerPlatform.
Save Time & Money on Your Next Solar Project
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Businesses And Government Entities
Ground mounted solar panels can serve well in environments with large energy consumption needs. Industrial facilities, Apartment buildings, Subdivisions with HOAs, Hospitals, Government complexes, Schools, and many other property usage types are well served by this form of green energy production. Just some of the benefits from solar energy use these organizations could realize include the following:
- Major electrical power users can save large amounts on energy costs.
- Large collectives of users can realize enormous reductions in pressure on the energy grid.
- When organizations go solar, they significantly reduce harmful emissions.
- They elevate their image as a socially and environmentally conscious organization.
- They set an example of economically responsible organizational leadership.
- The leadership builds community confidence in the organizations commitment to positive social and environmental impact.
For a detailed cost/benefit analysis and projected rate of return on your solar energy investment, contact Solarise to discuss your needs with a commercial solar energy system specialist.
Ground Mounts: Pros And Cons
Pictured is a carport and ground-mounted solar system. Two popular options for many considering a solar investment.
Pros of a ground mount:
- Ground mounts can be installed to face any direction and in almost any location, positioning them for optimal energy production
- They can be installed at multiple angles
- The system can easily be accessed for maintenance
- Carports can be installed in existing parking lots – providing shading, lighting, and protection to parked cars
Cons of a ground mount:
- Limits the use of the land
- Takes up large areas
- Easier access for unauthorized visitors
- Increased chance for accidental damage from rocks or other particles thrown from a mower and other equipment
- Will likely be required to install a fence adding cost to the project
- It likely requires mowing around multiple posts and under low clearances
Things to consider when installing a ground mount:
- The long-term plan for the plot of land
- The terrain of your property
Both roof-mounted and ground-mounted solar systems are good options. Ultimately, you need to select the option that best meets your specific requirements. If you have plenty of unshaded roof space available then a roof mount is likely going to be the best, cheapest option. If your available roof space is limited and you still want a way to take advantage of the financial and environmental benefits of solar, then a ground mount or carport might be a great option.
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What Is A Ground Mount Solar Panel
Ground mount solar panels are alternatives to roof mount panels. Ground mount panels are designed to be easily installed on a large ground space in a yard, empty lot. Ground mount solar panels are positioned for maximum absorption of the suns energy. Optional tracking devices enable panels to change positions along with the suns movement through the sky. The poles supporting ground mount panels can be sized to varying heights, to fit with the topography of the area.
Orientation And Inclination Variability
One of the biggest advantages of ground mounted solar systems is their maneuverability. You have several design options and you are free to decide which one suits your needs better.
In ground mounted solar panels, the tilt angle can be directly adjusted to achieve maximum possible irradiance in your location.
Solar panels will perform the best when facing South, West or Southwest, because they will receive the maximum sunlight throughout the day.
Even if the system does not face the South directly, you can easily tilt your panels to get the maximum possible sunlight.
Regarding the inclination, ground mounted panels often come with a much better range to choose from when compared to roof mounted solar panels, because they are not limited by the roof angle . So, you can adjust their tilt to achieve the best energy output according to seasons, which for example allows you to prevent snow buildup on the panels in winter.
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Rooftop Solar Panels Vs Ground
Solar companies can provide critical information to help solar shoppers make informed decisions. Explaining the pros and cons of ground mounts and determining if your client will benefit from this mounting option is critical.
Dont let design and engineering hurdles deter you from installing ground mounts. GreenLancer’s network of design and engineering professionals are specialists in all types of solar projects, including ground-mount design. Connect with a rep today!
Are Solar Trackers Worth It
Are solar trackers worth the additional investment? In most cases, solar trackers are not worth the additional investment, even though they do produce more electricity. Because solar panels are cheaper than ever, it would cost less to install more solar panels than it would to include a tracking system.
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Roof Mounting Your Solar Panels: The Pros
First, were going to take a look at roof mounting your sonar panels and the pros that this option has. Roof-mounted solar panels are, rather self-explanatorily, panels that have been placed on the roof of your building.
The first major pro of roof mounting solar panels is that it takes up otherwise unused space. In all likelihood, youre not currently using your roof to house anything else.
This means that theres a large amount of space on your property that isnt being maximized. Using up your roof space means that your solar panels arent taking up space from other areas of your home, like your garden.
In this manner, they can both use up space and be kept out of the way. There are also different forms of roof-mounted solar panels on the market today. This means that theres likely to be a form of roof-mounted solar panel that works perfectly on your property.
In a nutshell, roof-mounting solar panels are also a cheaper option and are easier to install. This is an essential thing to consider if youre looking to get solar energy on more of a budget, roof mounting may be the right option for you.
Roof Mounts: Pros And Cons
Pictured is a Roof Mounted Solar Panel System on a Standing Seam Metal Roof.
Pros of a roof mount:
- Roof mounts utilize space that otherwise wouldnt be used.
- Typically the installation cost is lower compared to a ground-mounted system
- Doesnt take up land that could be utilized for other activities
- Limits unauthorized visitors from accessing the panels
- Panels can protect the roof from exposure to certain elements
Cons of a roof mount:
- Roof penetration is required for shingle roofs
- Could require a new roof before installation
- You might have to remove and reinstall panels for roof repairs or to install a new roof
- Adds weight to your roof, and in some cases, the roof could require additional support mechanisms
- Some believe solar hurts curb appeal
- Can be a safety hazard for the installation team
Things to consider when installing a roof mount:
- The age and condition of your roof
- The impact solar could potentially have on your roof warranty
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Solar Construction Soft Costs
The best solar racking & mounting systems feature minimal components and attachment hardware. Additionally, the amount of solar panels per post is a significant indicator of labor per solar panel costs. To ensure minimal soft costs at the outset, comparing how many panels per post quantity of attachment hardware per panel is an indicator of the amount of cost in the installation.
Is Your Solar Racking Lacking
Ground mount solar racking and solar panel mounts are a critical component when considering installation costs. Racking material costs on carports and ground mounts is often the only aspect considered during project budgeting. The financial impact on soft costs are considerably important to the bottom line cost of utility scale solar installations.
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What Is Included In My 40kw Solar Installation Kit
Our kits provide all the solar components you need from start to finish.
- Solar Panels – 100x 410W tier-1 144-cell polycrystalline PV modules with 25 year warranties.
- Grid-Tied String Inverter – Ultra reliable SMA Sunny Boy inverter with Secure Power Supply and Rapid Shutdown.
- Racking and Attachments – Industry leading IronRidge ground racking mounts the solar panels on the ground.
- System Monitoring – Free with every kit purchase! View and analyze your solar energy production in real-time.
- System Design and Financial Analysis – We’ll custom engineer this system for your home and calculate the payback on your solar investment.
- Not Included – Concrete, schedule 40 pipe, wire, conduit, fittings, breakers, AC/DC Disconnects , junction boxes and a sub panel . All these items can be purchased at any electrical supply shop, Home Depot or Lowes, and will typically cost $1,500 or more for larger systems. Our technical support representative will provide a shopping list once your plans are complete.
Ground Mounts Are Easier To Access
Ground-mounted panels will be easier to access over panels installed on rooftops. This can come in handy should you need maintenance or repairs for your panels. Itll be easier for solar technicians to access ground mounts, which can help keep costs down.
That said, ground mounts also make it easy for unauthorized people and animals to access your system. Anytime there is intense pressure on the panels, whether it be from climbing on them or hitting them, it can accelerate the degradation of your panels, and curious animals may even chew on wiring.
Oftentimes, solar owners will install a fence around their ground mount system to keep out unwanted visitors. In fact, this may be a requirement, depending on your systems size and the local rules. The need for a fence will be determined during the permitting process or during the inspection of your installed solar system.
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How To Install Ground
Roof-top solar panels are the most common way to set up a solar system but do you know about this great alternative: ground-mounted solar panels?
Ground-mounted solar panels are easier to install and maintain, making solar energy accessible to the non-specialist at a lower cost.
This article will guide you step-by-step in the installation of your ground-mounted solar panels in a pure DIY fashion.
If youve been wondering about the best design for a ground frame as well as how to build, install and connect your solar panels, check out the first part of the article. Weve made it easy to understand and reproduce thanks to pictures and plans of an actual set-up.
Here are 5 steps for a DIY installation of ground-mounted solar panels:
If you want to know more about the cost, production capacity, and advantages of ground-mounted solar panels, then jump directly to the second part of the article.
Lets begin with our installation guide.
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Advantages Of Roof Mounted Solar Panels
Rooftop solar systems are the most popular setups for residential installations.
Solar panels are installed on roof of your house either by the system of rails or by solar flashings . The choice of a suitable roof mounting option depends on your budget and your roof type, as some systems are not suited for all roofs.
Either way, both of these rooftop mounting structures share similar advantages and disadvantages over the ground mounted systems. It is worth to analyze them when deciding to install a solar system.
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