One of the key decisions homeowners and businesses face when installing solar systems is whether to opt for ground-mounted solar panels or rooftop solar panels. Both options have distinct advantages and disadvantages, and the best choice depends on various factors including space availability, budget, energy needs, and aesthetic preferences. 

Keep reading to learn more about the pros and cons of ground-mounted solar panels and rooftop solar panels to help you make an informed decision.

Ground-Mounted Solar Panels: Pros

Optimal Positioning

Ground-mounted systems offer flexibility in positioning. They can be placed in locations with maximum sun exposure, avoiding shadows from trees, buildings, or other obstructions. This can lead to higher efficiency and energy production.

Ease of Maintenance

Being at ground level, these panels are more accessible for cleaning, inspection, and maintenance. This ease of access can lead to better long-term performance and lower maintenance costs.


Ground-mounted systems are often easier to expand. If you need more energy in the future, adding more panels to a ground-mounted array is generally simpler than expanding a rooftop system.

Cooling Efficiency

Ground-mounted panels tend to operate at cooler temperatures since they have better airflow around them. Cooler panels are more efficient, as high temperatures can reduce the efficiency of solar cells.

Ground-Mounted Solar Panels: Cons

Space Requirements

One of the significant drawbacks of ground-mounted systems is the need for substantial ground space. This makes them less suitable for urban areas or properties with limited land.

Higher Installation Costs

Installing ground-mounted systems can be more expensive due to the additional materials and labor required for mounting structures and trenching for wiring.

Aesthetic Impact

Some people find ground-mounted systems less aesthetically pleasing as they can be more visible and may take up space that could otherwise be used for landscaping or recreation.

Permitting and Zoning Issues

Ground-mounted systems may face more stringent permitting and zoning regulations, depending on local laws. This can lead to longer installation times and additional costs.

Rooftop Solar Panels: Pros

Utilization of Unused Space

Rooftop solar panels make use of existing space, which is particularly advantageous in urban environments where land is limited. This allows property owners to harness solar energy without sacrificing usable land.

Lower Installation Costs

Generally, rooftop installations are less expensive than ground-mounted systems. The existing roof structure can be used for mounting, and less wiring and trenching are required.


Rooftop panels are often less noticeable than ground-mounted systems, especially with modern low-profile designs. They can blend more seamlessly into the architecture of the building.

Simpler Permitting

In many areas, the permitting process for rooftop installations is more straightforward than for ground-mounted systems. This can result in faster installation times.

Rooftop Solar Panels: Cons

Limited Space

The size of your roof limits the number of panels you can install. This can be a significant drawback for those with high energy needs or small roof surfaces.

Access and Maintenance

Maintenance can be more challenging with rooftop panels. Accessing the roof for cleaning or repairs can be hazardous and may require professional services, adding to the cost.

Potential Roof Damage

Improper installation can lead to roof damage, including leaks and structural issues. Ensuring that the installation is done by experienced professionals is crucial.

Efficiency Issues

Rooftop panels might not always be positioned at the optimal angle or orientation due to roof design constraints. This can lead to less-than-ideal solar exposure and reduced efficiency.

KC Solar Can Help You Design and Install Your Ideal Solar System

Both ground-mounted and rooftop solar panels offer substantial benefits for generating clean, renewable energy. The choice between the two largely depends on your specific circumstances and should be based on a careful evaluation of your property, energy needs, budget, and personal preferences. 

Consulting with a solar energy expert can also provide valuable insights tailored to your situation, ensuring you make the best choice for harnessing the power of the sun.

If you are looking for the best solar company in Kansas City, look no further than KC Solar. They are your local Kansas City solar panel installation experts. Once you schedule a no-pressure site visit, our experts will help you understand what solar system specifications would be best for your home or business.

KC Solar is a local company made up of KC natives with KC pride — in our city, and in our work. Which means we’ll always give you the best of ourselves.

Get in touch with us today.