Solar 101: Types of Solar Systems

Solar systems come in a variety of shapes and sizes. Each home and business is unique and has their own elements that need to be considered when deciding to go solar. Common factors that we take into consideration when evaluating your home or business are: which direction the roof faces, the angle of the roof, and the amount of yard space available. Therefore, there are 4 main types of solar systems: Roof Mount, Ground Mount, Solar Outbuilding/Shed, and Solarscape.

Roof Mount

Roof mounted systems are the most cost-effective option. We are able to utilize the home or building as the structure to hold the panels. There are several criteria that we take into consideration when identifying if a roof is qualified for solar: size, material, shading, orientation, and the age/condition of the roof. A roof mounted system also protects and extends the life of your roof.

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Benefits:

  • Won’t take up any additional space in your yard
  • Protects your roof
  • Most cost-effective

What to Consider:

  • Size of your roof
  • Roof material
  • Roof shading
  • Roof orientation
  • Age/condition of roof
Ground Mount

A ground-mounted system is a great solution for customers who do not have adequate space on their roof for a solar system, or if the building is not oriented to maximize solar production. There are 3 common options available: Standard Ground Mount, Pole Mount, and Dual Axis Trackers.

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Benefits:

  • Cost effective & scalable
  • Set for the perfect orientation with the sun
  • Easy access for cleaning/sweeping

What to Consider:

  • Yard Size
  • Ground Condition
Solar Outbuilding/Solar Shed

A solar outbuilding/solar shed is a fully customized structure that functions like a ground mount and doubles as a storage space. It can be used as a gardening shed, tool shed, or a small garage. A customized solar outbuilding functions like a ground mount that provides the primary building with solar-generated electricity. It is a simple all-in-one solar solution best suited for customers who want to benefit from some outdoor storage on their property.

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Benefits:

  • All-in-one solar solution with storage capability
  • Fully-customizable
  • Oriented to maximize solar production
  • Efficient use of space

What to Consider:

  • Yard space
  • Shading
Solarscape

A solar canopy, carport, or patio cover can generate solar power while creating shade and protecting the sheltered space from the elements. It doesn’t require additional land the way a ground mount does and is an efficient use of space that is also aesthetically pleasing. The optional bi-facial modules can absorb additional sunlight reflected from the ground boosting the energy yield as well as the overall curb appeal.

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Benefits:

  • Fast/easy to install & scalable
  • Doesn’t require additional land
  • Provides coverage for cars, patio, etc.
  • Option of bi-facial transparent glass modules: higher production

What to Consider:

  • Yard space
  • Shading

With all of these options for a solar system, we will be able to help you find the right one for your home or business and lifestyle. You can contact us with any questions about your options and to find out which system type is right for you. If you are ready to make the switch you can request a free quote here!