Which Types of Roofing are Best for Installing Solar?

Solar power has rapidly grown in popularity, especially here in Florida. After all, we are the Sunshine State! Solar is growing so quickly that people are looking to build custom homes or remodel their homes with solar in mind.  

Most homeowners choose to install solar panels on their rooftops since roofs receive ample direct sunlight each day. However, mounting solar panels on your rooftop means that you must work with — or around — the material that your roof is constructed from.  

Solar panels aren’t exactly light, and they need to be secured to your roof to withstand rain, wind, and other natural hazards in Tampa Bay.  

If you are getting ready to replace your roof or are looking for an ideal roofing material to use when going solar, keep reading!  

Roofing Rules

In the Sunshine State, the orientation of your home is important to consider where your solar panels will receive the most sunlight throughout the day.  

Make sure that your roof does not have large amounts of shade cast by neighboring trees, homes, or buildings. If it does, there are workarounds, but that can get costly.


Also,  think about the pitch of your roof. Roofs with pitches between 40-45 degrees typically work well for solar panels. Roofs with extremely steep pitches, such as A-frames- can make installing solar more difficult and may compromise solar panel efficiency.  

A Solid Foundation for Solar Panels

Now, let’s discuss which types of roofing is best for solar installation:

Clay Tiles

Clay tiled roofs are some of the most common in Florida. Their lighter color helps keep the heat out, and they are incredibly durable—some installations can last 50 years or more.  

They are also a great base for installing solar! Because tiles are small, it is easy to work around them when installing mounting hardware. Keep in mind that solar installers may need to remove some tiles or modify their size or shape to mount your solar panels properly.  

Solar installation on a clay tile roof can be a bit more expensive, due to the added labor needed to modify the clay tile surface and the fact that installation can take more time to complete. Also, you may need to purchase different mounting hardware to hold the panels above your roof, as solar panels cannot rest on the surface of the clay tile roof.  

Did you know that you may be eligible for PACE financing if you are installing an energy-efficient roof or solar panels? Contact Goodfriend Roofing today to learn more— (813)579-5789!

Tar & Gravel Roofs

Though tar and gravel roofs are a popular type of flat roofing used in commercial applications, they are becoming more prevalent in homes. Their low cost, durability, and energy efficiency make tar and gravel roofing an ideal choice for a roof in Tampa—especially if you want to install solar!  

When installing solar panels on a flat roof, the mounting hardware is different. Solar panels need to be mounted at an angle to maximize sun exposure and productivity. The lack of slope on this type of roof makes installing solar quite easy.  

MORE > Best Roofing for Your Florida Home

Composite Roofing

Composite roofing is made from recycled materials and is becoming quite popular because they are an often inexpensive way to be more eco-friendly.


Much like tile roofing, they may require some modification when installing solar panels for the panels to sit properly and your roof to remain fully functional.  

Metal Roofing

Metal roofing with standing seams is a perfect candidate for solar panel installation. The standing seams practically eliminate the need for drilling to attach solar panels, which can reduce the labor costs and modifications to your roof.  

Metal roofs also provide additional reflection where the sun doesn’t hit the panels, thus keeping your home cooler.  

Further, unlike other types of roofing, metal roofs perform quite well in high winds and have a longer lifespan than many other kinds of roofs. This longer lifespan means that your roof will generally outlast your solar panels, eliminating the need to remove and reinstall solar mounts and panels until the panels themselves need to be replaced.  

Not only are metal roofs durable, but they are energy-efficient! Save on energy costs with Goodfriend Roofing! Give us a call for a metal roof installation quote— (813)579-5789!

Asphalt Shingles

Asphalt is the most common and inexpensive type of roofing material and can be a good choice for installing solar. To install solar, studs are drilled into the roof and then mounts are attached to the studs. The space between the panels and the studs is sealed with flashings to prevent leaking.  

Keep in mind, one of the main drawbacks of installing solar on an asphalt shingle roof is that their life expectancy is around 15-18 years, while solar panels typically last for 30. Down the road, you will likely have to replace your roof and the process of taking down the solar panels and reinstalling them can lead to damage and extra expenses.  

MORE > What are “COOL” Roofing Shingles?

Install Solar Friendly Roofing with Goodfriend Roofing

If you are ready to go solar but are unsure if your roofing will be a good fit, call the roofing pros at Goodfriend Roofing for an inspection and consultation. We will ensure that your roof is in good shape for installing solar and can install a completely new roof that will better suit the installation of solar panels.  

We love Mother Earth and your property. For all your energy-efficient roofing needs anywhere in Tampa Bay, call your friends at Goodfriend Roofing— (813)579-5789!

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