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    Thinking of getting a Tesla Solar Roof? Here’s everything you need to know

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    First launched in 2016, Elon Musk’s Solar Roof system has taken the photovoltaic (PV) world by storm. Tesla’s Solar Roof is not the only solar roof tiles on the market but is some of the most attractive and most expensive.

    Solar tiles offer a completely different approach to solar PV installations, the final product is, inarguably, far superior in aesthetic terms to traditional solar PV installations, and seeks to add a cool factor to generating your own power.

    While Tesla claims its Solar Roof is competitive in terms of providing a two-for-one solution (you do get a new roof after all), ultimately, the proof of the pudding is in the eating.

    So, is Tesla’s Solar Roof all it’s cracked up to be? Let’s take an honest look.

    What is Tesla’s Solar Roof?

    Tesla’s Solar Roof, like other solar roof tiles, is an innovative system of specially engineered roofing tiles or shingles. Unlike conventional solar PV panels that are mounted onto an existing roof, a solar roof acts as a direct replacement for existing roof coverings.

    The system allows potential customers to benefit from generating their own power without unduly affecting the aesthetics of their homes. Win-win.

    Tesla’s Solar Roof consists of two main types of textured glass tile shingles. The first is purely decorative and is termed inactive. These look exactly the same as the second kind, called Active, to ensure a uniform look of the finished roof.

    The Active shingles are effectively small, shingle-sized solar panels that are integrated into the main roof surface in strategic places to maximize their efficiency. In most cases, most of the south or west-facing areas of a roof will consist of Active shingles, with the rest of the surface consisting of the visually similar Inactive shingles.

    Active shingles, like conventional solar panels, will also be fitted as close to the best angle of incidence to the Sun’s rays throughout the year. In the northern hemisphere, this is as close to a 60 degrees inclination as possible, which, on most domestic homes is around 30-45 degrees, depending on the pitch of your existing roof.

    Of course, if you choose to install a Solar Roof, your old roof will need to be stripped and replaced in totality.

    The system can also be used with a Tesla Solar Inverter to convert the direct current generated by the shingles to useable alternating current in your home. While non-Tesla inverters can also be used, the use of Tesla’s own proprietary equipment ensures the systems will run with fewer potential snags.

    This inverter also enables you to tag on a Tesla Powerwall battery to store excess energy, if desired.

    The system was developed in a collaboration between Tesla and its subsidiary SolarCity and was first announced in 2016. It wasn’t until 2018 that Tesla and SolarCity were in a position to begin the manufacture and delivery of their first Solar Roofs, however.

    Since then, Tesla has continued to make improvements to the technology, with its latest variant, Solar Roof V3, boasting the best efficiency and durability to date. The product comes with a generous 25-year weatherization warranty.

    Great, but what are some of the downsides? One is whether Tesla actually serves your geographical area.

    For the most part, Tesla should be able to provide an installation in most of the continental United States. However, in some states, they may use authorized installers to do so.

    The same is true for other parts of the world, with the rollout continuing around the world. If you are interested in finding out if they serve your area, the best thing to do is contact Tesla, or try to get a quote, and they will tell you.

    How much does a Tesla solar roof cost?

    According to data from actual Tesla quotes, their Solar Wall system costs approximately 1.80 per generated watt of electricity for their Active shingles. The cost of their Inactive shingles then varies depending on the complexity of the roof in question.

    For simple roofs, i.e., basic pitched roofs start at around 13.30 per square foot. For more tricky roofs like hipped roofs or multiple-level roofs, these shingles should cost about 15.30 per square foot. For more complex roofs (i.e. cross-gabled, steep or variable pitched, multiple heights, or lots of obstacles), costs could be as high as 18.54 per square foot.

    You will also be charged for the removal and disposal of your old roof at a rate of around 3.55 per square foot.

    Just like any solar energy installation, the actual cost will vary depending on the size of roof coverage, location, and construction of the building. Smaller pitched roofs on a single-story home will be considerably cheaper than a large complex roof on a multi-story building, for example.

    This is for a variety of reasons, but chief among them are additional costs for access equipment to higher roofs or increased time in labor to design and install the roof on larger and more complex roofs like cross-gabled roofs.

    Tesla may also require customers to upgrade their electrical systems in order to actually work with their Solar Roof system. Upgrading elements like electrical panels can cost anywhere in the region of 5,000 and up.

    However, to give you a rough estimate, using Tesla’s own calculator, a good-sized family home would cost around 70,000 dollars to install an 8.05 kW system before tax incentives. This quote is based on a home in Nashville, Texas, with a floor area of 2,500 feet 2 (232 m 2 ) and using an average monthly energy bill of 115 (this was the U.S. average in 2019, according to the EIA).

    This, according to Tesla’s estimates, should be able to produce for this hypothetical home, somewhere in the order of 12,800 kWh/year, or roughly 100% of the building’s electrical energy consumption. You also get the added bonus (for additional cost) of energy storage with this system, which is a considerable advantage over some conventional domestic solar panel arrays.

    If this estimate is accurate, that should provide a payback period (the time taken to recover your initial investment) of about 50 years, give or take. This will likely be closer to 40 years after tax incentives are factored in to reduce your initial capital outlay.

    Another estimate for a 1,700 ft 2 (158m 2 ) roof in California with an electrical bill of 150 per month came in at 39,000 before incentives for a 6.13-kilowatt system. It should be noted that this quote was generated in 2022 and for a different state, so costs likely vary for that reason.

    You should also remember that energy costs from the grid are likely to rise over time, so the true payback will likely be much shorter, ignoring any maintenance and cleaning costs of course.

    We’ve chosen this square footage as it is about the average size of a new family home in the United States.

    To put that into perspective, installing a similarly sized conventional solar panel array would cost around 26,000 before incentives. Using the same statistics as above would give you an equitable payback of between 15 and 22 years, depending on tax incentives.

    tiles, cost

    However, remember that the estimated lifespan of conventional solar panels is also roughly 25 to 30 years, so you would probably need to replace the array after a few decades.

    It should be noted, however, that such estimates should be taken with a pinch of salt. The final figures will likely vary widely depending on where your home is located if you were to actually order an installation.

    This is especially the case for conventional solar panel installations and you are always advised to source several quotes from recommended installers before authorizing any work.

    Any and all costs for such installations should also include any planning and design work required prior to the installation. This will not only ensure the costings are as accurate as possible but also discover if your existing roof is appropriate for such an installation.

    The latter is less relevant for Tesla solar roofs, as these tend to be a direct replacement for your existing roof covering.

    You should also note that costs are likely to vary over time as labor, consumable, and material costs will fluctuate, given the current economic climate. There may be other costs, too, such as various local authority planning requirements, where relevant.

    Solar panels vs. Tesla solar roof: which one is better?

    Generally speaking, on a per watt average cost, Tesla’s Solar Roof is actually pretty reasonable, all things considered. According to some estimates, in the United States, Tesla’s come in at around 1.80 per watt. Traditional solar PV panels tend to cost around 3.00 per watt.

    However, any direct comparison between the two is complicated by a few factors. The first is that Tesla’s Solar Roof is not just some PV solar panels but actually a new roof and some PV panels in one package.

    Traditional solar PV panels are where your roof can handle it, simply mounted to an existing roof without needing to replace it. So, in order to provide a fair comparison, we’ll need to do a like-for-like summing up.

    Pv tiles cost

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    • Become a Smartly Partner

    ⚡️ We are extremely excited to become Megasol’s UK installation partner. Europe’s leading solar panel and solar tile manufacturer. the multi-award winning company based in Switzerland.

    ⚡️ No longer do you need separate roof tiles and solar panels. Solar Tiles (or Slates/Shingles) are electricity generating roof tiles.

    tiles, cost

    ⚡️ Megasol’s Solar Tiles are second to none in terms of quality, looks and performance. They fit seamlessly with Smartly’s no compromise goal to supply reliable and sustainable products, which perform well, and look incredible.

    ⚡️ Our expert design and installation team works with you to find the best solar solution for your needs, and work with you through any design, grid applications or planning consent required. Reach out to us to arrange a call, and we can tailor a solution to suit your exact needs.

    Solar Options

    Integrated Solar Roof Tiles. Traditional Slate Style in Grey

    Integrated Solar Roof Tiles. Modern Black

    Integrated Solar Roof Tiles. Modern or Traditional

    High performance Solar Panels, mounted on existing roof structures or integrated in-roof. Multiple brands available.

    ⚡️ With skyrocketing electricity prices, there has never been a better time to invest in solar power. Solar Panels, battery storage and EV charging are the perfect combination to generate and use renewable and sustainable electricity, instead of buying at a premium from the grid.

    ⚡️ We have chosen to partner with Megasol as they have a proven 30 year track record of quality manufacturing and superior products. Our values align and we share a drive for a cleaner, greener, sustainable future.

    Award Winning Market Leaders

    Megasol is the industry leader in European Solar design and manufacture. A multi-award winner in design, architecture and technology.

    Megasol has ISO9001 accreditation and all their products are extensively tested to the highest European standards (IEC/EN 61215, 6170, 61701, 62716). Megasol also offers an extended 10 year product warranty and guarantees performance for 25 years.

    Is your project unique? We work outside the box too!

    Smartly and Megasol can help with projects that are not your usual roof structure. Car Ports are a popular choice. Store the electricity produced and charge your car(s) directly from the car port structure.

    No project is too big. Here is Schaffhausen Football Stadium in Switzerland. An epic solar stadium roof with 8707m² of Megasol solar tiles, producing an output of 1.2MWp.

    We can provide guidance on projects. Here is the highest PV system in Europe, 3821m above sea level in Zermatt, Switzerland. producing an output of 77kWp. Megasol solar tiles can operate in the harshest of environments!

    ⚡️ You do not need to compromise the look of your home, office or commercial building to be greener and more sustainable.

    ⚡️ Some people do not like the look of standard solar panels, but still wish to generate their own power and/or offset their carbon footprint. Solar Tiles are the perfect solution, while making your roof look great.

    ⚡️ Solar tiles are also an option in conservation areas or on listed buildings where standard solar panels cannot be installed (subject to planning permission).

    Frequently Asked Questions

    Your Solar Questions Answered.

    tiles, cost

    Solar tiles cost slightly more than standard solar panels. However, when you consider that they are the roof material and solar panel combined, you do not have to purchase a new roof and additional solar panels.

    As a rough estimate (depending on the product), Standard Solar Panels cost on average £1750 per kW, or £250 per square metre. Solar Tiles cost on average £2250 per kW or £350 per square metre. However it is worth remembering that solar tiles replace the roof materials, so you do not need to purchase and install roof tiles if you go for the solar tiled option.

    Plus UK customers pay ZERO VAT on solar panels and tiles between now and 2025. So it is an ideal time to make the investment.

    Please note these do not include installation costs (which are usually around 25% of the material cost), or any battery storage.

    Megasol solar tiles are made to order so delivery will be approximately 12-16 weeks from date of order.

    Smartly works with every party involved to align schedules and make sure the project is completed as smoothly as possible. We’re here to help every step of the way.

    Megasol solar panels and tiles are manufactured for each specific project, and we work with you every step of the way.

    Contact us in the first instance with an enquiry and we’ll help with design and costing. Click here to contact us or email If you have roof or structural drawings then it would be great if you could send them to us. We will work with you to fully understand your requirements, and advise on the best tile or panel type for your project.

    Yes, we have a fantastic team of qualified installers across the UK ready to go.

    We break down the decision to two aspects. cost and carbon footprint.

    With skyrocketing electricity prices, there has never been a better time to invest in solar power. Solar Panels, battery storage and EV charging are the perfect combination to use ALL the power you generate instead of buying electricity from the grid!

    If you are replacing your roof, or building a new home or commercial premises, solar tiles mean you do not need separate roof tiles and solar panels.

    You also do not need to compromise the look of your home, office or commercial building to be greener and more sustainable. Some people do not like the look of standard solar panels, but still wish to generate their own power and/or offset their carbon footprint. Solar Tiles are the perfect solution for a greener, more sustainable future, while making your roof look great.

    Of course! Standard Solar panels have fantastic benefits too. Click here to find out more about our Standard Panels.

    Or feel free to contact us with an enquiry and we’ll help with design and costing. Click here to contact us or email

    Solar Tiles Summary

    ⚡️ Solar tiles and solar slates are the perfect way to invest in a solar solution for your home. With modern options and traditional choices for a range of home aesthetics, Smartly has everything you need to make the switch to solar power all in one place.

    ⚡️ With world leading leading brands in the solar technology industry such as Megasol, Smartly only stocks the very best solar options for our customers.

    Solar tiles and solar slates are the ideal choice for those who want a roof and solar power option rolled into one. You do not need to compromise the look of your home, office or commercial building to be greener and more sustainable.

    Tiles and slates with solar technology differ from solar panels in that they also act as roofing materials. This means that by opting to choose tiles, we’ll be replacing your current roofing tiles with solar versions.

    Some people do not like the look of standard solar panels, but still wish to generate their own power and/or offset their carbon footprint. Solar Tiles are the perfect solution, while making your roof look great.

    Solar tiles are also an option in conservation areas or on listed buildings where standard solar panels cannot be installed (subject to planning permission).

    There’s an abundance of options to choose from, such as:

    ⚡️ Match solar roof tiles with a traditional slate look. This option has a variety of colour options available such as black, terracotta, and grey. They generate 165Wp/m2⚡️ Level solar roof tiles for a modern style. These tiles don’t overlap like slates but sit neat and flat. This option comes in terracotta or black and generates 165Wp/m2⚡️ Nicer solar roof tiles. A more efficient, integrated option that is ideal for modern homes. These tiles generate 220Wp/m2 and are available in black gloss.

    Find the ideal tile for your roof by contacting us today!

    Solar Roof Tiles: Cost, Options, and How They Work

    The solar system market is changing each year, with different technologies coming up to make for more comfortable installations and usage. One of the newest technologies to grace the solar market is solar roof tiles.

    Solar roof tiles, also called building-integrated photovoltaics or BIPV, are materials that make up part of your house’s roof, inconspicuously integrated with other non-solar roofing tiles to cover the entire roof. Unlike solar panels, they are not separate from the regular roofing tiles but are actual roofing tiles with photovoltaic properties.

    These tiles typically cost more than solar panels, but they come in handy if a property does not have a roof that can hold solar panels for the best output. This article will look at the cost of solar roof tiles, how they work, and the options currently available in Australia.

    Average cost of solar roof tiles

    The average cost of the tiles will depend on the retailer. The installation will depend on the installation area, contractor, roof size, pitch, and slope.

    If you are considering using solar roof tiles, you may want to choose a contractor and discuss these factors with them before determining the cost for your specific installation.

    Solar roof tilesQtyLowHigh

    Solar roof tiles options

    Several options for solar roof tiles are available in Australia. As mentioned before, the tiles’ cost varies from manufacturer to manufacturer. And because solar roof tiles are relatively new, there are not many options to consider.

    However, more people are becoming aware of them, which will eventually affect availability and cost in the long run.

    Tesla solar roof tiles

    The CEO of Tesla, Elon Musk, announced the Tesla Solar Roof product in 2016 to offer consumers an option for solar panels. Some homeowners do not like the look of the panels on their properties, so solar roof tiles are a more modern way to get green energy without defacing their property.

    Tesla offers both active and non-active solar roof tiles. It may cost between 80 and 130 per square meter to install the tiles. The cost to install a watt of Tesla solar tiles is 1.80. This is cheaper than installing a solar panel, which costs about 3 per watt. You can also buy non-solar tiles so that you can blend all the tiles with none standing out.

    However, the Tesla solar roof tiles may not be currently available for consumers in Australia. You may have to visit the official website to determine whether you can make a deposit for a future purchase.

    Monier solar roof tiles

    Monier is another popular manufacturer of solar roof tiles in Australia and has some of the best products on the market. It was previously known for putting tiles on the roofs of houses, but it launched its solar roof tiles about half a decade ago.

    The product has a warranty of 25 years with an output of over 80% for the duration. But the life of the solar tiles has a warranty of 10 years.

    The Solartile product is made from monocrystalline cells, so they are some of the most efficient on the market at 17.3%. However, the tiles fit only the flat-profiled concrete roof tiles from Monier and can be retrofitted or added at any point. Buying and installing a 4KW unit on your roof, including an inverter, is 4,500. Monier supplies the system, installs it, and manages the rebates on your behalf.

    Bristile solar roof tiles

    Bristile is a roofing company in Australia but ventured into producing solar tiles in 2017. You can easily integrate the solar tiles into the Bristile flat tiles in concrete or ceramic/terracotta range. Bristile claims the tiles have the same solar efficiency as regular monocrystalline solar panels at 16%.

    A 4KW unit, which will cover about 28.5 square meters of a roof, will cost about 15,700 at 550 per square meter, complete with an inverter. Depending on the size of the unit and roof, you can cover a portion of the roof and use the regular flat non-solar tiles from Bristile for the rest of the roof. The non-solar tiles cost 65 per square meter.

    The product has a warranty of about 25 years, performing at 80% of its overall power generation capacity. There is also a 10-year warranty to guarantee the structural integrity and a total roof warranty of 10 years for the unit.

    Nulok solar inserts

    The Nulok roofing system is an Australian company with some of the finest roofing systems, including solar inserts. It also makes ceramic and slate tiles in its roofing systems.

    The solar inserts designs are discrete and top-quality, and architects favor them for new buildings. The systems are highly efficient, ranging between 18.6 and 22.3%, which is one of the most efficient units on the market.

    A fitted 4KW solar roof tile unit costs between 8,000 and 14,000, but it does not include an inverter or the electrical installation. The cost of the system can significantly increase, depending on the type of tiles, the size of the unit, and the installation.

    There is a warranty of 12 years with a power output of 90%. It also has a warranty of 25 years with a power output of 80%.

    Tractile solar roof tiles

    Tractile has a patented style of interlocking roof tiles, which are about six times the size of normal roof tiles. The uniqueness of this product is that it has hot water channels that preheat water to about 30 degrees Celsius.

    With a 20% power output, the roof tiles sit on modern buildings and are a favorite with many builders. They are made up of cells that perform better in hot conditions, as they are cooled by water being channeled behind them.

    An installed 4KW solar tile system costs 55,000, but this amount excludes rebates and includes an inverter and a solar-warmed water and heat exchange tank. This total cost can vary depending on location, roof size, design, and site. But a typical 4KW system with water channels, battens, and an inverter may cost about 13,000.

    Solar roof tiles are typically more expensive than regular solar panels because they are new, so not everyone uses them yet. Therefore, there are a limited number of contractors and installers around the country. They also cost more because of the installation; it will take reroofing a house to install the tiles in an already-existing structure.

    What are solar tiles?

    Solar tiles are similar to regular solar panels and function in much the same way. But they are smaller and fit more compactly on a roof than solar panels. In other words, the tiles fit in with regular roof tiles and do not stand out.

    With solar panels, you have to mount them to sit on top of the roof, but solar roof tiles are part of the roof. Many roofing system companies are working hard to produce these tiles along with the regular tiles in their ranges, with a few already selling the tiles in Australia.

    How do solar roof tiles work?

    Solar roof tiles work like the familiar solar panels. They trap sunlight in the cells and convert the energy into usable electricity through the help of an inverter. Therefore, there is not much difference between solar panels and solar roof tiles except in their appearance and installation.

    Where solar panels are bigger and are mounted on the roof, the tiles are part of the roof. So, using the tiles covers a larger surface area because they blend in with the roofing tiles or shingles. In addition, they are more aesthetically appealing and less bulky than solar panels.

    Advantages of using solar roof tiles

    If you do not want the hassle of solar panel installation or do not appreciate their look on your roof, solar roof tiles could be a better option.

    There are several advantages of using solar roof tiles, and as they become more popular, we are sure to see more.

    Aesthetically appealing

    The tiles fit better into a building’s roofing than solar panels. As a result, they are more pleasing to look at from every angle. Newer buildings that want to go the solar way prefer using them, even though they are more expensive because they do not detract from the design or beauty of the property.

    Suitable for use in difficult places

    Solar panels may be difficult to install in certain roof areas. If those areas get the best sunlight at peak hours, you may be losing the best use of the solar system.

    Contractors and installers may have a hard time reaching those areas for installations. But with solar roof tiles, the reverse is the case. They can be installed during roofing, which is usually much easier than installing panels. Besides, they have a better balance than panels.

    Protection for the roof

    Since the tiles are part of the roofing system, there will be no need to drill holes in the roof, which may be potentially damaging. Also, the installers will not need to mount equipment for the installation, eliminating the risk of straining the roof. Furthermore, unlike solar panels, the tiles do not pull on the roof if there are strong winds or rainstorms.

    RENEWABLE ENERGY Solar roof tiles – A good alternative to the classic photovoltaic system?

    Many industry analysts point to solar roof tiles as being the next revolution in photovoltaics. But are solar roof tiles really able to match the output of traditional solar panels? We compare the two to see what the better option is.

    Solar power has long been touted as a viable alternative to fossil fuels. Lobby groups worldwide point to solar as the cleanest and most readily abundant source of renewable energy. Indeed, solar power use is soaring across the globe. Worldwide solar energy production increased by a record 22 % in 2021. China, the United States, Japan, and India now rank amongst the top countries for solar power capacity. In Europe, the push towards making solar power commonplace has been stepped up thanks to recent measures by the European Parliament. The EU Parliament is currently planning a large-scale roll-out of solar energy in order to remove dependence on Russian oil and gas.

    The cost of solar photovoltaic (PV) technology has dropped by more than 80 % during the last ten years. Solar power is now more available and more affordable than ever before. Currently, two types of solar power systems are popular: traditional solar PV panels and the newer technology of solar roof tiles. But which of these options is the most effective? What are the costs involved? Where does the future of the solar industry lie? We take a closer look at the pros and cons of solar panels and solar roof tiles.

    Solar Panels – tried and tested renewable energy technology

    The history of solar panels begins in 1839 when a young French physicist named Edmond Becquerel first discovered the photovoltaic effect. Becquerel’s rudimentary solar cells, however, were not that efficient. Then in 1883, New Yorker Charles Fritts published a paper titled “On a New Form of Selenium Photocell” in the American Journal of Science. Based on his research, Fritts was able to create a working solar cell using selenium and gold, but only managed a 1 % conversion of sunlight into electricity.

    The breakthrough that led to modern solar panels came in 1940 from another American, Russell S. Ohl. Ohl found that silicon was highly efficient in converting sunlight into electricity and produced the first-ever patented solar cell. From Ohl’s remarkable discovery, the solar industry was born.

    In 1950, the price of a silicon PV solar cell was an estimated USD 76 per watt, an astronomical sum that made solar technology impracticable. Fast forward to 2021, and the price per watt was listed at just USD 0.20.

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    The solar panels that we see in use today are made from monocrystalline, polycrystalline, and thin-film panels. Monocrystalline panels are made using one single silicon crystal, whereas polycrystalline solar cells contain numerous crystals fused together. Thin-film solar panels are made by placing incredibly thin layers of semiconductors onto plastic, glass, or metal panels.

    tiles, cost
    • Monocrystalline panels – The first generation of modern solar cells, monocrystalline panels are the most efficient and most widely used form of solar panel. Although it is expensive and resource intensive to manufacture monocrystalline panels, they can achieve between 15 % to 24 % efficiency.
    • Polycrystalline panels – Manufacturing polycrystalline panels is simpler and less expensive than producing monocrystalline panels. A cheaper option than monocrystalline panels, polycrystalline solar panels are not as efficient and usually achieve between 13 % to 16 % efficiencies.
    • Thin-film panels – There are three categories of thin-film solar panels: amorphous silicon (a-Si), copper indium gallium selenide (CIGS), and cadmium telluride (CdTe). While they are the least efficient type of solar panels, thin-film panels are lightweight, highly versatile, and inexpensive to manufacture. Thin-film panels have efficiencies of anywhere between 7 % to 18 %.


    Solar roof tiles – a better way to harness the power of the sun?

    Many people first became aware of solar roof tiles in 2016 when Tesla released a solar tile in conjunction with SolarCity. However, solar roof tiles manufactured by the Dow Chemical Company had been available on the commercial market in 2005. In fact, solar roof tiles were originally invented by NASA employees in the 1970s and patented by NASA in 1976.

    What are solar roof tiles?

    Often called solar roof shingles, solar roof tiles are classified as building-integrated photovoltaics (BIPV). Solar roof tiles generate electricity using the same photovoltaic technology as solar panels. Most early versions of solar roof tiles were made with thin-film CIG cells. The majority of solar roof tiles now use monocrystalline or polycrystalline silicon cells. As the name suggests, solar roof tiles are made to mimic traditional roofing materials. While one single solar roof tile can only generate a small amount of electricity, when combined to cover an entire roof, solar roof tiles can produce power equal to that of normal solar panels. Solar roof tiles are used to form the roof itself and seamlessly blend in with the architectural aesthetics of a building, unlike solar panels which sit quite obtrusively on the top of a roof.

    Generally, solar roof tiles have an expected lifespan of approximately 20 to 25 years. Regarding efficiency, solar roof tiles have an average of 10 % to 20 %, with most achieving around 16 % efficiency. Quite a bit less than solar panels. Also, because air cannot easily flow underneath solar roof tiles, they are more prone to overheating and so do not generate as much energy as solar panels.

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    Solar panels vs solar roof tiles – a comparison

    Making the choice between installing solar panels or solar roof tiles on a building depends on a range of factors. Cost, aesthetics, efficiency, and durability must be carefully considered.

    If a building requires the roof to be entirely replaced, or it is a new build, then solar roof tiles can be installed for a little more than the cost of a new roof. Solar roof tiles do not impact the look of a building, so they are suitable for historical buildings that must maintain their aesthetics. While less efficient than solar panels, solar roof tiles are still preferable over conventional roofing tiles or shingles. Not all types of roofs, however, are suitable for solar roof tiles. Also, as solar roof tile technology is relatively new on the market, fewer installers may be available.

    Conversely, solar panels can be installed on any building without the need to replace the roof entirely. The installation process for solar panels is quicker and much less expensive than installing solar roof tiles. Unlike solar roof tiles, solar panels can be adjusted periodically to maximize their efficiency. The higher efficiency of solar panels means that the installation costs are able to be recouped in less time.

    Solar Panels

    Solar Roof Tiles

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