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Musk solar tiles. Long-Term Costs of Tesla Solar Roof

Musk solar tiles. Long-Term Costs of Tesla Solar Roof

    Tesla solar roof tile installations in the wild, a photo gallery update

    We discover two more Tesla solar roof tile installations this week and update a few more. That leaves 998 more roofs to document this week, given Elon Musk’s claim of 1,000 roofs per week by the end of 2019.

    musk, solar, tiles, costs, tesla, roof

    Two down, 998 solar roofs to go this week.


    than three years after its introduction, and after having received deposits from interested homeowners, Tesla has connected just a handful of solar-integrated roofs to the grid.

    pv magazine has been chasing down these installations, speaking to the homeowners, and taking photos. This is an update of an earlier photo gallery.

    Maybe 2020 is the year

    musk, solar, tiles, costs, tesla, roof

    Last year, Tesla CEO Elon Musk dubbed 2019 “the year of the solar roof,” its long-promised building-integrated photovoltaic product.

    It turned out that 2019 was not the year of the solar roof.

    Late last year, Musk introduced version 3.0 of the solar roof tile and, with characteristic optimism, claimed that the company would ramp production to 1,000 roofs per week by December of 2019. In a conference call, Musk said:

    • The solar roof version 3.0 with larger tiles is ready for mass deployment.
    • The tiles now look the same from any angle — using new cell technology and new materials.
    • Musk said the goal is to install the roof in a single visit.
    • Tesla intends to open up the product to roofing contractors.
    • He said, “The solar roof does not make financial sense for someone with a relatively new roof.”

    Musk said that the goal was to install the solar roof as quickly as traditional composition shingles — with a target of eight hours. This requires a streamlined process of getting parts to the field along with assembly equipment to allow customization for flashing, edges and trim in the field.

    Early-stage solar roof tile installs

    This installation in San Carlos, California is four days into the process. The old roof material has been removed, Firestone Clad-Gard SA-FR underlayment has been installed.

    About half the tiles have been laid on this relatively simple roof. There was a crew of five to seven people, including a separate crew for the Power Wall battery install. Three trucks were on-site at times.

    The owner lauded the professional nature of the crew and expected about seven more days of work until the job is complete. The homeowners are documenting the install, which includes battery storage, here.

    This installation, also in San Carlos, California is two or three days in, and had a crew of six men when I was there. Again, it’s a relatively simple roof.

    Completed installations in the wild

    user Austin Flack provided a video of his solar roof tile installation that includes the economics of the roof tile along with a bonus drone crash.

    He told pv magazine that the “install went fairly smoothly. Took 7 days, they originally estimated 5.” He said, “Everyone was very professional. Worked with me to get stuff right: like placing the inverter in a more appealing location. So far, we’re very satisfied, but obviously very much looking forward to turning the system on.”

    Prepping for Austin Flack’s version 3 install.

    Josh Pomilio, a Tesla solar glass crew lead, put up these version 3 installation photos on Instagram (since removed) taken of a home in San Jose. This installation included two Tesla battery units and three inverters, according to the home owners.

    31 Комментарии и мнения владельцев

    The government should quickly build networks of hydrogen production factories, so that household solar rooftops can automatically sell electricity to networks of hydrogen production factories without batteries.(household solar plans are very cheap and lucrative if without battery purchases ). Or publicly announce tender for various corporations to build networks of regional hydrogen production factories. By that model, it is effective and quickly to collect capital of citizens as they build themself their household solar rooftops. People are forced to buy ineffective and expensive lithium batteries for their household solar plans while network of hydrogen production factories still do not exist.

    So, we need to use electric power to hydrolyzed water to make hydrogen to be used to produce power later because (pick one): 1 It’s enormous less efficient than storing power in batteries and eating power is good. 2 it would cost more than batteries and eating money is good.

    The crews need more training. I don’t think a single worker in those pictures was using a tether properly. I saw some in safety harnesses with no tether visible and some with tethers that were long enough to let them hit the ground. I didn’t see anyone with a tether short enough to stop someone’s fall before they hit the ground. Professional? Not really. Abnormally unprofessional? Probably not. Using safety gear properly is a hassle

    Eric, Wouldnt that be great if BIPV Roof Tile installs take off finally and Tesla with there billions got it there? We know better but they can always improve. All Tesla needs is that hang time and the money to eventually get a design that works. I dont like the design and see right through it….

    Eric, Oh I have a whole laundry list of things I find undesirable……Here are a few… 1. If you’re going to use glass to make your tiles, they should be sustainable and be made from recycled glass. There are mountains of it waiting for secondary use at the landfill. We actually made a traditional handmade barrel tile from recycled glass one year before Tesla made their first one and it tested to twice the break-strength of clay tile and at half the thickness. Tempered glass from Tesla cant come from recycled glass from the landfill and makes it difficult to fashion on the jobsite so you lose flexibility in the install. If the use of tempered glass was used to create a 30 year life cycle for the roof, this is a fail because 30 years is too short a life cycle for such a cost and would create a problem for sustainability via landfill issues. Glass waste is already a big problem at the landfill and PV embedded complicates this even further. I would like to think that the vast majority of people that support Tesla do so because they wish to save our Earth. Low life-cycle roofing systems with or without PV made with non-recycled materials doesn’t get us there. 2. I don’t like the fact that the design cant be used with other manufactured tile. If you want to create scale, you should make designs that can be used by other manufacturers for scalability. That way, other manufacturers can use the technology to offer their own tile systems and we have variety. Right now, all the versions of Tesla look like they turned the whole roof into a solar panel. And I’m very concerned with the walk-ability on flat glass tile without texture on pitched roofs. This creates obvious fodder for Workmans Comp issues. 3. The many connections this system takes with all its components just to make a claimed 30 year roof does not add up just so you can not distinguish a solar tile from a non-solar one. There are many areas on a roof that are concealed from the observer on the ground that can be embedded with flexible thin film without all the expense and complexities of a Tesla Solar Roof. We do this now with Barrel Roof Tile and Flat Traditional Roof Tile. I’m not a big fan of traditional c-Si glass mounted panels using racks with roof penetrations. 4. The Tesla Tiles by themselves should be Class A without help from the underlayment system. Judging by the use of the Firestone, some BIPV guys actually use this underlayment to get past their fire testing. If you use another one afterwards, you know what comes next. Rember what happened to Suntech c-Si integrated roof modules? The Peel and Stick asphalt underlayment being used in the photo you provided appears to be applied direct deck. There are two problems here: Asphaltic underlayments are unsustainable and they have short life spans. Direct deck application doesn’t guarantee full adhesion and could compromise longevity. A better job would be with minimum two ply or multiple ply of synthetic felt. I understand they are now experimenting with Sharkskin Ultra Underlayments from Simi Valley. California. If this is true, they are on the right track. But your photos show otherwise. The underlayment is the best way to get longevity. SharkSkin Ultra has a 50 year limited manufacturer warranty and is perfect for hurricanes, earthquakes. blistering heat and freezing cold. It does not appear that Tesla takes too seriously what they use as an underlayment and has no testing including the underlayment in their system at this time. 5. Tesla appears much concerned with only integrating PV at the moment. The better value would be to lower overall costs by adding solar thermal for domestic hot water heating and for pool heating by the use of PexTubing over the underlayment and underneath the tiles. A 1kW area plus tubing to harvest heat energy equals approximately 3.5 kW in total solar output for the same area covered. This makes total sense for Tesla…With all that money, they should be integrating more than one technology to increase the sustainability of their unsustainable glass tile design. We at ArteZanos have been integrating solar thermal, pool heating and thin film PV all in the same envelope since 2010. 6. The use of foam adhesive tile installations actually eliminates penetrations and help create a hurricane resistant and seismic resistant roof. FEMA actually recommends this in coastal hurricane prone areas. The longevity of a system is lengthened by minimizing penetrations. The use of a one part Storm Bond foam by DAP is what everyone should be looking at. Its the best and has been tested with use for SharkSkin underlayments. Tesla seems to be using only mechanical fastened systems that create penetrations to the waterproofing underlayment.

    What are Solar Roof Shingles?

    Solar roof shingles are roof tiles with built-in solar cells. The photovoltaic shingles can, therefore, completely substitute for your roof and look much better than standard solar panels added to the roof. Proponents of the technology also say that roof shingles are more durable than traditional solar panels and that they give multipurpose to the otherwise useless surface: generating electricity and staying protected from the elements now go hand in hand.

    As yet another product on the solar market, solar tiles can help usher renewables into daily life and help mitigate climate change. Made from conventional roofing materials, with an added solar cell in each tile, they are a great substitute for building-integrated photovoltaics – a solution many disliked. The newer generation of solar tiles can cover the entire roof and give it a uniform, sleek design that you will want to see, not hide away from.

    When choosing solar shingles, there are several factors you should consider. All of these are important in determining what your roof will look like, which brand you will use, how much energy you will get, and lastly, what the cost will be. The factors to consider when choosing solar shingles for your home include:

    The Surprising Benefits and Long Term Value of Tesla Solar Roofs


    The lifespan of solar shingles is around 25-30 years. This means that your shingles will generate electricity for the next two to three decades after the installation is done. During this time, your shingles will produce energy that is enough to pay them off, especially as your energy costs will be almost nullified. Conventional shingles cannot do this.


    When it comes to the size of your shingles solar array, it can be observed that the size can relate to the size of individual shingles and the size of the total solar array. In the former case, choosing shingles you think will work the best with your existing shingles is the most important factor. In the latter case, the size of your solar system is also important, as it should be large enough to produce all the energy your family needs, especially in the upcoming years. You may need an expert to help you with the calculations.

    The number of roof shingles is also important. Here, you need to understand that each shingle produces only a limited amount of energy. This means that you need to divide your total energy needs with the DC output of the shingle model you would like to purchase. As most shingles can produce between 35 and 80 Watts a piece, you will need quite a few to cover your needs.

    Bear in mind that the total cost of your installation and the average cost per foot sq. will depend on the ratio between active and inactive shingles. Tesla solar shingles, for example, come with both active and inactive shingles. However, their ratio is determined by your energy needs and roof size.


    The material used in your shingles also has a big say in their looks and performance. In general, the basis for the shingles is asphalt, concrete, or metal. The solar cell inside can be polycrystalline or monocrystalline. Alternatively, thin-film solar cells can also be found. Monocrystalline shingles have the highest efficiency, while thin-film technology offers the lowest possible power output.

    Energy Generation

    Different materials mean different efficiency, which, in turn, means differences in the energy generation capacity. With solar shingles, you can generally expect an energy generation capacity of between 35-80 Watts per shingle, which is great considering their cost and the number you need. Always take all these factors into consideration before making your purchase.

    How Do Solar Shingles Work?

    Solar shingles have been around for a while. They came into the market because many people complained that traditional PV panels simply do not look good enough on their roofs. With the advent of polycrystalline silicon solar cells and thin-film solar panels, the market was finally ready for solar shingles and their production. Thin-film solar cells are inexpensive to produce, but as the technology is still new, the cost of solar shingles is still relatively high.

    Solar shingles are installed as regular shingles: they are mostly either screwed or nailed in place. Once there, they are connected either in series or using parallel connections and connected to your solar inverter and the solar battery. Once everything is connected, they act as regular solar panels, producing electricity when exposed to direct sunlight.

    One of the biggest solar shingles pros is that they produce solar energy and act as a traditional roofing material. You get to use renewable energy in your home and do so at a high conversion efficiency: some solar shingles use monocrystalline technology – enabling around 20% conversion efficiency.

    Types of Solar Roofing

    As solar shingles became more popular over time, other types of solar products started appearing. Solar shingles or solar roofs became so popular because they already included the cost of replacing the roof and reduced the need to look for two separate contractors: one to replace the roof and one to install PV panels. For this reason, two new products have sprung up in the solar market:

    Integrated Solar Metal Roofing

    Integrated solar metal roofing is a type of multi-layer metal roofing that consists of glass coating, color, and a monocrystalline layer. The wiring and all other electrical components are hidden under metal for a clean look. The entire system is placed on a vented racking system, increasing its efficiency and power output.

    Interlocking Solar Panel Roofing

    In response to the ever-increasing of solar roofs, GAF and Suntegra introduced interlocking solar panel roofing. This kind of roofing helps you avoid the solar shingle cost and all the additional work accompanying solar shingles. A system like this is easy to install, competitive in price, and it makes a good compromise in an aesthetic sense, especially between regularly mounted solar panels and an interlocking, integrated system.

    Solar Roof: Installation Cost Average Cost

    Solar shingles worth thousands of dollars are sold every minute in the US. But what is the cost of a roof installation for you? The answer to how much money you should cash out for solar shingles on your rooftop depends on the following factors:

    • The age and the condition of your roof,
    • The orientation and the slope of the roof,
    • The average insulation in your area (in hours/year),
    • The average solar irradiation in your area (in W/m2),
    • Your energy habits and needs,
    • Any future plans for introducing new electricity-powered devices.

    All these factors will significantly influence the cost of solar shingles and roofs in each case. These factors, especially your energy needs (on an average monthly basis), will determine the number of solar shingles or integrated solar panels you need, as well as which type of solar shingle products you will need. A solar shingle roof can therefore cost anywhere between 15,000 to 20,000, with additional costs if you need a new roof.

    SolarSkin achieves double the efficiency of Tesla roof

    Tesla’s solar roof has been clocking in ,around 8-10% efficiency. SolarSkin, on the other hand, boasts efficiencies of 16-20%, which is comparable to some of the best modules currently offered to homeowners. We previously ,ranked current panel technologies by aesthetics, and regardless of if you choose polycrystalline, monocrystalline, or another module, SolarSkin matches your ideal performance.

    What is truly innovative about SolarSkin is its ability to achieve unparalleled aesthetics while still maintaining high efficiency. Put simply, it is the most efficient aesthetic solar tech in the market. One of our recent residential projects in an HOA community in Indianapolis helped the homeowner ,generate 50% more electricity than before. See how harmoniously the solar panels now appear on his home.

    SolarSkin is affordable for everyone, not just the affluent

    Industry estimates indicate that the Tesla solar roof comes at a 33-50% premium to traditional solar panels, suggesting that its primary market is likely to be high income households. This would be in line with Tesla’s new product strategy, which typically sees early versions targeted at the affluent and the costs being driven down over time to make later versions geared towards the mass market. Consider the target audiences for the Tesla Roadster vs. the Model 3.

    SolarSkin, though, was designed for the mass market from the outset. For less than the price of a pro laptop, a SolarSkin installation is a worthwhile investment for any homeowner. Adding SolarSkin to your array not only boosts your curb appeal and home’s value, but it also protects your panels from UV rays and other harsh elements. The list of benefits for the price you are paying is an advantageous way to preserve both the panels themselves and your home’s aesthetics.

    Tesla roof is geared towards new roofs, SolarSkin is applicable for all roofs

    Because the Tesla roof is a product that is both solar and roof in the same, it can’t be applied on existing roofs. It requires your current roof to be replaced. However, many homeowners are not in a situation requiring a new roof, but still excited at the prospect of going solar.

    For them, SolarSkin is a perfect solution because it can be applied anywhere solar panels are installed. This allows maximum flexibility in the realm of aesthetic solar. SolarSkin is the best complement to existing solar modules, allowing your solar transition to be a breeze. Here, you’ll see SolarSkin designed for a client who wanted an emerald pattern to match their roof.

    musk, solar, tiles, costs, tesla, roof

    Financing Options and Incentives

    Like other residential solar systems, a Tesla solar roof is eligible for the solar Investment Tax Credit (ITC). But there is an important difference in how to calculate the federal solar tax credit for each type of system.

    • When you install traditional solar panels, you can include all project costs when calculating the 30% tax credit.
    • When you install a solar roof, you can only count the cost of the photovoltaic components toward the credit. The solar tax incentive does not cover traditional roofing materials that only serve a structural purpose.

    A Tesla roof may qualify for other clean energy incentives and rebates, depending on where you live. Tesla’s website features a list of financial incentives you can apply to its products by state.

    Tesla also offers a solar financing program, which is available in the following states: Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Massachusetts, Maryland, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, Nevada, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Vermont and Washington.

    Tesla Solar Roof Customer Reviews

    Tesla offers high-end solar energy products with some of the best warranties in the industry. The company is not accredited by the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and has mixed customer reviews, but overall ratings reflect the company as a whole, not just solar.

    We compiled the below reviews to give you an idea of the Tesla customer experience. Reviews reflect solar products as a whole, not just solar roofs. While some customers seem generally satisfied with the company’s level of customer service, others mentioned communication and installation issues.

    “I was skeptical at first, but [Tesla] solar designing and technology dispelled that concern. The [initial] presentation was outstandingly professional, the installation was quick and my system is already producing as expected.”—Landon via the BBB

    “The sales representative was extremely knowledgeable! The entire solar installation process went off without a hitch.”—Kyle B. via the BBB

    “Customer satisfaction [is] the lowest priority for Tesla. It really just doesn’t care. Good product but unbelievably bad customer service. If you buy a car, solar panels, solar roof or anything from [Tesla] and don’t have an issue, it’s great. But the second you have an issue be prepared for months of frustration. Not worth the hassle in my opinion.”—Ian W. via the BBB

    “Very poor customer service. I paid for my panels in full and three weeks later, my submission has not been sent to my electric company for approval. Extremely unresponsive customer service [and] constantly changing project managers. I would not recommend Tesla for your solar panels.”—Nancy M. via the BBB

    The Bottom Line

    At around 6.40 per watt, the Tesla solar roof costs more than a traditional PV system — but you are also getting a new roof. Based on our research, a Tesla solar roof can cost anywhere from 32,000 to 64,000, depending on your system size. Residential solar panels are a more affordable option if your roof is in good condition and does not need a replacement.

    Your installation will include a roof assessment to ensure your provider can properly secure your solar panels. A 2,000-square-foot traditional roof can cost upwards of 15,000 if you need a replacement, bringing your total project costs to 30,000 or more when you add the solar PV system. A Tesla roof may make more sense financially if you are in this situation.

    Solar shingles and panels have comparable lifespans of 25 years or more, and the best solar companies offer 25-year warranty coverage to protect your investment over time. When choosing between solar panels and a Tesla roof, there is also a subjective factor — appearance. Tesla roofs use solar and non-solar shingles that look identical, an attractive option for homeowners who don’t like the appearance of bulky solar panels.

    Solar Incentives by State

    Alabama | Alaska | Arizona | Arkansas | California | Colorado | Connecticut | Delaware | Florida | Georgia | Hawaii | Idaho | Illinois | Indiana | Iowa | Kansas | Kentucky | Louisiana | Maine | Maryland | Massachusetts | Michigan | Minnesota | Mississippi | Missouri | Montana | Nebraska | Nevada | New Hampshire | New Jersey | New Mexico | New York | North Carolina | North Dakota | Ohio | Oklahoma | Oregon | Pennsylvania | Rhode Island | South Carolina | South Dakota | Tennessee | Texas | Utah | Vermont | Virginia | Washington | West Virginia | Wisconsin | Wyoming

    Frequently Asked Questions About Tesla Solar Roof

    How much does a Tesla solar roof installation cost?

    The average cost of a Tesla solar roof system is 6.40 per watt or around 38,400 for a 6 kW system. Solar roof costs can vary depending on your system size and your roof size and complexity.

    Are Tesla solar roofs worth it?

    Solar energy can be worth it for any homeowner looking to save on power bills. Tesla solar roof tiles are cost-effective if you need a roof replacement — you get a solar power system and a brand-new roof with a single investment. However, regular solar panels are more affordable if your existing roof is in good condition. But a Tesla solar roof also may be worth the investment for other reasons, like if you prefer the sleek design over bulky solar panels.

    Are Tesla solar roofs more expensive than traditional solar panels?

    Yes. A Tesla solar roof can be two to three times more expensive than a traditional solar panel system, but you also get a new roof in the process. A 6 kW solar energy system with traditional panels costs 19,500 based on the national average price per watt, whereas a solar roof with the same sized system costs around 38,400.

    Elon Musk Claims New Insane Version of Solar Roof (v3.5), 100 years of Power, 0.20/watt!

    Are there other solar roof providers besides Tesla?

    Yes. For example, GAF Energy has been a leading provider of asphalt shingles and other roofing materials for decades. The company launched its Timberline solar roof in 2022 and offers four roof options with different colors.

    Leonardo David is an electromechanical engineer, MBA, energy consultant and technical writer. His energy-efficiency and solar consulting experience covers sectors including banking, textile manufacturing, plastics processing, pharmaceutics, education, food processing, real estate and retail. He has also been writing articles about energy and engineering topics since 2015.

    Tori Addison is an editor who has worked in the digital marketing industry for over five years. Her experience includes communications and marketing work in the nonprofit, governmental and academic sectors. A journalist by trade, she started her career covering politics and news in New York’s Hudson Valley. Her work included coverage of local and state budgets, federal financial regulations and health care legislation.

    Leonardo David is an electromechanical engineer, MBA, energy consultant and technical writer. His energy-efficiency and solar consulting experience covers sectors including banking, textile manufacturing, plastics processing, pharmaceutics, education, food processing, real estate and retail. He has also been writing articles about energy and engineering topics since 2015.

    Tori Addison is an editor who has worked in the digital marketing industry for over five years. Her experience includes communications and marketing work in the nonprofit, governmental and academic sectors. A journalist by trade, she started her career covering politics and news in New York’s Hudson Valley. Her work included coverage of local and state budgets, federal financial regulations and health care legislation.

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