Introduction

A rooftop PV system is a photovoltaic system which generates electricity from solar panels mounted on the rooftop of a residential or commercial building or structure.

Generally, roof or open space of about 100 to 120 square feet is needed to place the panels on metal frames.

Rooftop mounted systems are small compared to ground-mounted photovoltaic power stations with capacities in the megawatt range.

Rooftop PV systems on residential buildings typically feature a capacity of about 5 to 20 kilowatts (kW), while those mounted on commercial buildings often reach 100 kilowatts or more.

Rooftop PV systems can also be installed on top of most large (40,000+ square feet), single-story buildings or parking canopy structures, so long as the roof is in good condition.

Estimating rooftop solar isolation is a multi-faceted process, as insulation values in rooftops are impacted by the following:

  • Time of the year
  • Weather conditions
  • Shading from adjacent buildings
  • Shading from overhanging vegetation
  • Roof slope
  • Roof aspect
  • Shading from adjacent buildings and trees.

Parameters Considered to Set-up a Roof Top Plant

Type of roof needed: – Asphalt shingle (sometimes referred to as a comp or merely shingles) is the most common roofing material around and, luckily, is the easiest type for solar installers to work on. Flat roofs also provide a good situation for solar panel installation.

Age of roof: – If your roof does not need to be replaced for another 10-15 years, then it’s a great time to consider going solar.
Aging roofs can prove to be challenging and sometimes increase the chance of damage occurring during installation. It is that it will significantly increase your costs in the long run. When you decide to reroof, it is costly to remove and reinstall the solar panels.

Orientation of the roof: – East or west facing roofs also allows solar panels to soak up a significant amount of the sun and provide enough energy to power your home.
But nowadays with the available technology of “solar tracker”, orientation of the roof doesn’t really matter.

Available roof space: – solar panels can be laid down in nicely organized rows to offset your electricity usage.
A roof with a lot of obstacles (such as roof vents or skylights) can make solar installation complicated.  This will most likely increase the price.