ION Solar Blog

Is Your Roof a Good Candidate for Solar?

January 22nd, 2021

Installing solar panels is a big investment for your home. Before making such a big commitment, make sure your home is a good candidate for going solar! Our team custom designs your system to accommodate the unique features of your home. These 5 factors will determine whether your roof is a good candidate for solar:

  1. Roof Direction
  2. Roof Shading
  3. Roof Space
  4. Roof Angle
  5. Roof Age

Roof Direction

We currently install in the United States, which is located in the Northern Hemisphere. This means that sun exposure is at it’s prime when your roof faces east, south or west! North facing roofs can limit sun exposure which will impact your solar production. However, if only a portion of your roof is oriented north, it may be sufficient for solar if accompanied by other arrays facing south, east or west!

Roof Shading

Sun exposure is key for efficient energy production. Trees, swamp coolers, chimneys and surrounding buildings can block the sun’s path to your roof and cause large areas of shading. This will greatly reduce the amount of energy production from your solar panels. Luckily, there are ways to work around shading issues. We can remove or cut back trees to eliminate shading during the day. We will also strategically place solar panels around chimneys and swamp coolers to maximize their time in the sun. Our solar designers will take into account all areas of shading and custom design a system that fits your home!

Roof Space

The size of your roof can limit the amount of panels that can be installed. The larger the system, the more energy production you can produce to offset your home’s energy needs. Your roof will need to be large enough to accommodate multiple solar panels to produce enough energy. 

If you do not have the roof capacity to hold enough solar panels, you can install a ground mount anywhere on your property. This is a great option to still incorporate solar into your home, while working around roof space.

Roof Angle

The angle of your roof can also impact your energy production. We recommend installing solar on rooftops that are between 0-45 degrees. This is the ideal roof angle range for maximized energy efficiency. We also install ballast systems on flat roofs, which have angled solar panels that face the sun to harness power!

Roof Age

If your roof will need to be replaced within 1-3 years, we recommend replacing your roof before installing your solar panels. This will ensure you do not have to remove your solar panels shortly after they are installed to replace your roof. While your roof does not need to be brand new to install solar panels, it does need to be free from leaks and damage. You will likely need to replace your roof during the lifespan of your solar panels. However, removing and re-installing solar panels can be quick and easy.

While these roof conditions are ideal for going solar, there are many options for each home. Reach out to one of our solar experts at for a free, customized quote. We will install solar that’s right for your home!


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