Ground Mounted Solar Panels Are They Right for You

Ground Mounted Solar Panels: Are They Right for You?

When you think of installing solar panels, you probably envision them mounted on the roof of your house. They always seem to end up there, don't they? Not always. While rooftop installations are the most typical, solar panels may be installed in a variety of other methods and locations. Of the many alternatives, ground-mounted installations are the most popular.

Ground-mounted solar panels are one type of solar energy system that may be installed on your land. Before you decide to install a ground mount system, you need make sure you are the suitable person for the job. Space availability, affordability, and power requirements will all play a role in picking between a rooftop and ground-mounted solar system.

In this post, we'll explain what a ground-mounted solar system is and why you should consider one for your house.

How Can You Install Ground-Mounted Solar?

Rooftop solar is not suitable for every property, and ground-mounted solar panels are sometimes the best solution. Your property must meet some conditions in order to build a ground-mounted solar array. Before deciding on ground-mounted solar, there are three major factors to consider:

  • Space available
  • Land Geology and Soil Type
  • Financing Options Available

Space Available

The physical area that ground-mounted solar panels require on your property is one of the first requirements. In contrast to a rooftop solar system, a ground-mounted installation will add square footage to your property. You'll need a large enough area to place panels in that gets lots of sunshine, as well as room for trenching and sending wiring to whichever structure will be powered by solar energy.

Check your property line as well to ensure that any ground-mounted solar panels do not intrude on a neighbor's land. Depending on where you reside, your city or municipality will have different setback rules that govern how close a structure can be erected to a property line or a road. For further information about setback rules, contact your local government's planning department.

For a ground-mounted solar array, heavy machinery required to build a new foundation and racking system must be able to access the land.

Land Geology and Soil Type

Ground-mounted solar arrays rely on heavy-duty foundations to stay in place and must be installed on solid ground. A ground-mounted array, for example, will not operate in some low-lying coastal locations because the moist, unstable ground may destroy portions of the array or foundation.

Because deep, strong foundations are required, your soil must match certain specifications. Large boulders that come in the way of drilling foundations are a regular concern with soils. There are workarounds for most ground mount installation concerns, but you will wind up paying substantially more money to guarantee your installation is correctly secured in the ground.

Ground-mounted solar can potentially be affected by unstable ground space. Installing a good foundation for an array will be difficult or impossible in places with less stable soil or rock formations. It will also most likely not be suited for any property in or near an active seismic zone. A soil or structural engineer can assist you in surveying your site and determining whether or not a ground-mounted project is feasible.

Financing Options Available

Ground-mounted solar panels often have a greater upfront cost than rooftop panels due to the cost of equipment and the extensive installation process. Because of these distinctions, you should check with your finance provider and installer to see if their products are still applicable for ground-mounted systems. Some loan programs, for example, are only available for installations within a specified price range, and the increased cost of ground-mounted solar might push an installation out of that range.

You may also find that certain parts of a ground-mounted installation (such as trenching) are ineligible for rebates or incentives. It is always a good idea to talk with your installer and do some internet research to find out which local incentives may or may not apply to your new solar array.

Is Ground Mounted Solar Panel Right for Me?

Ground-mounted panels may be ideal if your home consumes a lot of electricity. This is especially true if your property has a lot of open areas, allowing you to put more solar panels than you can accommodate on your roof. Installing a bigger system will allow you to generate more electricity and satisfy your demands more effectively.

Of course, if you have a small yard, a large number of solar panels may not fit. Furthermore, placing solar panels on the ground will leave little to no area for your lawn, flower beds, or other landscaping if you don't have the extra space. If this is essential to you, rooftop panels could be a better choice.

Who should consider installing ground-mounted solar panels?

When looking for solar, a rooftop installation is usually the best option. Ground-mounted solar systems can be more difficult than rooftop arrays, but in some circumstances, they may be the best option for homeowners. If your roof is not appropriate for solar, or if you have a very big energy demand that necessitates more solar panels than your roof can accommodate, a ground-mounted system is a viable choice.

How many ground-mounted solar panels do I need?

The average home needs around 20 solar ground-mounted panels.

Assuming you're using 300-watt panels in an area with 5 peak solar hours per day. During that period, each solar panel will generate 1.5 kWh (1,500 watt-hours) of power every day.

According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, the average household uses nearly 900-kilowatt hours (kWh) per month or about 30 kWh per day. As previously stated, each solar panel generates 1.5 kWh of power each day, therefore installing 20 solar panels can balance the typical daily demand of an American home.

To get the actual number of panels required to match your home's power use in your area, contact a local solar installation provider for a free quotation.

Which Ones are The Most Efficient Ground-Mounted Solar Panels?

Here are the top five providers of ground-mounted solar panels.

  • Panasonic: Known for its high quality and reasonable prices, Panasonic: Has one of the greatest reputations in the industry.
  • LG Solar: Have one of the highest rates of converting solar energy into electricity.
  • Canadian Solar: One of the greatest solar panel deals available.
  • Trina Solar: Excellent all-around performance at a reasonable price.
  • SunPower: The most efficient panels on the market, with the top solar panels converting at a rate of 22.8%.

Final Thoughts

Ground-mounted solar panels have many benefits over traditional rooftop panels. The extra energy they may generate can make them well worth the cost. Conduct your own research and speak with your local solar contractor to learn how ground-mounted solar panels can best assist you to fulfill your home's energy demands. Contact Forme Solar today to learn more about ground-mounted solar panels or to make the switch to solar. To get a free quote, call 1-714-694-2262 or fill out our online inquiry form.