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Ground-Based Solar Panels Or Roof-Based Solar Panels?

When you seek to install solar panels, you are faced with a simple choice unless you live near a body of water. Do you install a roof-based system or a ground-based system? There are several factors that you need to consider before installation— such as space, aesthetics, costs, maintenance, fortification, orientation, shading, and other factors. You need to conduct a detailed cost benefit analysis of both the options before opting for one solution.

Space

If your property has a lot of space, you should ideally install a large PV system on the ground as it will lead to better savings over the long term. This is because on the ground you can orient the solar panels more easily unless you have a large roof. If you lack ground space, you have no choice but to go for installation. In such a scenario, you need to ensure that you the panels are installed in a south-facing manner as solar panels work best in this orientation. Ground mounting allows you to be more flexible with regard to installation.

Performance

In most scenarios, ground-based systems will always have better performance than roof-based systems. This is because there is more cool air on the ground (to cool down your panels) than there is on roofs, which are normally concrete. Over the course of the panels’ lifetime, this can translate to more savings and more surplus energy, which can be routed into the main utility grid. If you live in a windy or cool area, this won’t be a problem.

Costs

As long as your roof is in good health, a roof-based system will be cheaper to install as there is no need to place a cement foundation or a reinforced pole structure to support system. This is before you consider the problem of wiring the panels to your home. If your roof is in poor condition, you should ideally get it renovated before installation as you may otherwise need to do so during the lifetime of the panels, and removing panels is a time-consuming and expensive process.

Maintenance

Roof-based panels will always be harder to clean, especially if you have limited space on your roof. Ground-based panels are safer and easier to clean when required as they are closer to the ground. Owners may need to clean the base of ground-based systems regularly to ward off snow and dirt. For roof-based panels, it may be advisable to hire professional help when required as maximum caution is required.

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