Basics about Solar Roofs

About the Author

John Harding has been involved in home improvements and services, specially roofing and its related sub niches for more than 15 years. He has reviewed numerous products first hand and had provided useful insights into the pros and cons of each product. Many customers have found his findings extremely helpful when making a buying decision. Hope you will find John's and his teams work helpful as well.


John Harding

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We realize you have most likely seen solar panels on office or home roofs. We also understand you may not have known quite what they were. A solar shingle is an integrated PV (photovoltaic) building product capable of using sunlight to generate electricity. An electronic process is triggered by the sun due to the specific materials.

When we look at them from a distance, they appear to be typical roof shingles. When closely inspected, they are obviously more. The shingles are used for residential and commercial roofs for the conversion of electricity to heat.
According to How Stuff Works ,the same materials are used for solar panels and shingles including the wire. The product is waterproof to protect the roof from the environment. Both panels and shingles operate through the generation of an electrical current triggered by the sun.

The biggest difference between solar panels and shingles is the cost. The only function of solar panels is the generation of electricity. Shingles act as traditional shingles while generating electricity, so they are more cost-effective.

The special property of a solar shingle enables the production of electricity from sunlight. This is accomplished through a scientific process based on a unit of electromagnetic radiation called a photon.

A photon does not have a charge due to the even distribution of protons and electrons. When the sun hits a solar shingle, the special coating on the surface knocks off one of the electrons from the light particle.
The electron then travels to the place other electrons have been stored through the electrical circuit. The harvesting of the electrons collected generates the current. According to Solar Power World., all solar power works this way.

Solar Shingles

Solar panels and shingles are capable of providing enough power for everything from a calculator to a commercial skyscraper.

The Amazing Power Backing the Technology of Solar Shingles

Shingles can potentially produce enough energy to handle the usage of an entire building. This is dependent on several factors such as the demand, how much sunlight is available, the utility rates and the available space on the

Shingles are effective almost anywhere because they use scattered or diffused sunshine on rainy or overcast days. There are more buildings in Germany using PV devices for buildings than anywhere else despite the fact the United States has more sunlight.

Even if the location does not have ample sunlight throughout the year, shingles are effective. Any excess energy is sent directly to the electric grid resulting in a credit for the upcoming electric bill or a check from the electric company.

The size of a solar shingle is about the same as a traditional roof shingle. Solar panels are rigid and flat covering a few square feet. The difference is size means installation of the shingles requires more time and labor.

solar shingles

More shingles are necessary for any roof as opposed to panels. Each shingle must be installed separately prior to being wired inside of the building. We believe shingles should always be installed by a certified professional.

The Amount of Energy Produced by Solar Roofs is Amazing

Prior to having shingles installed, a home energy assessment must be performed. The assessment determines how many tiles or shingles the home will require to keep up with the energy needs. 

The most recent report we saw showed the maximum power for each shingle at 12 watts. The equivalent of a single traditional solar panel can then be calculated at approximately 20 to 25 shingles.

 Important Differences Between Solar Panels and Shingles

solar shingles

The best comparison we can make is a shingle is like a miniature solar panel. Each shingle uses photovoltaic cells similar to the panels. This difference is shingles provide a more inconspicuous and flatter appearance.

The shingles produce electricity, waterproof the roof and do not require a racking system like regular solar panels. Not every shingle will produce electricity. Non-solar tiles are interspersed to make the roof more economical.

We have looked at this type of roof from the ground and could detect no difference between the shingles. Depending on the energy requires, the roof of most homes contains thirty to forty percent solar shingles.

The Truth About Using a Battery In Conjunction with a Solar Roof

There are batteries compatible with a solar roof. The battery adds solar storage to the power provided by the shingles. Most experts believe a battery is only necessary if the building is located in specific geographic locations.

The price to purchase and power the battery does not make sense in certain areas. California is offering an incentive program, so the battery makes perfect sense. In all of the other states, the financial cost is not worth the additional solar storage.

Determining the Cost of Shingles for the Average Home

We have found the cost of solar power depends on the location, how much energy is being used and how much of the roof is being converted. According to Solar Metric, the cost is determined by the watts and square footage.

We compared the cost of different kinds of solar tiles and shingles. The average cost per square foot is $22 to $26. The average cost per watt is $7.85 to $9.00 for a Tesla solar roof.

The cost of other types was lower. Sun Tegra solar tiles and shingles cost an average of $10.35 to $17.75 for each square foot with each watt running $3.80 to $6.51.

Understanding the Difference Between Solar tiles and Panels

Tiles and panels function in the exact same way. Both convert sunlight into electricity. According to Modernize..., Tesla offers a variety of styles including glass and slate, textured and smooth glass.

A homeowner in the United States will pay approximately $28.4 for each square foot of a Tesla solar roof including installation. The roof includes both solar and non-solar cells. The active tiles are approximately 35 percent of the roof.

The average 2,000 foot home in the Bay area in California would require a solar roof costing $67,911 to offset the costs of a $260 per month electric bill. One of the most important factors is the ratio between non-solar and solar tiles.

The cost for each square foot is impacted by the tile ratio. According to This Old House at This Old house, the cost per foot of a solar tile is $54, with the non-solar cost at $14.2.

A solar roof from Tesla reflects the higher end of the scale. We have determined the cost of a Tesla roof is approximately 2.5 times higher than a similar non-solar roof. A 30-year warranty is provided with all Tesla tiles.

According to Tesla, this means the savings in electricity after 30 years will cover the price of $28.3 for each square foot when compared to a traditional roof.

  Different  options regarding Solar Powered Shingles

The most viable option for the majority of homeowners at this time is
Tesla shingles. Orders are now being accepted online. The biggest disadvantages are the lengthy wait for installation and the limited availability of the shingles.

Once the shingles become officially available in specific areas, the shingles can be installed. The amount of time necessary is dependent on when the order was initially placed.

Tesla does not necessarily offer the best options for a solar roof. Other options are available.

Apollo II and SunTegra offer solar roofing systems with potential benefits for numerous markets. One of the advantages of Tesla is aesthetics. All the tiles provide the same appearance for a more uniform look.

Only a portion of the preexisting shingles is replaced by shingles other than Tesla. Tesla provides an infinite lifetime warranty and uses durable tempered glass for making its shingles.

tesla roof tiles

Factors to consider when choosing a snow removal rake

1. Length

When choosing the right rake, it is vital to consider the height of your roof in relation to the length of its handle. Snow removal rakes are extendable, so you should look at the maximum extension length of the handle.

However, most rakes are not very useful when extended to their full length; hence you should choose one that you don't have to stretch to its full extent to reach your roof.

2. Design

The design of the rake significantly affects its comfort ability and effectiveness. It is better to choose a rake with a design that offers a good grip and doesn't get stuck on your roof edge. Also, rakes can cause damage to your roof shingles; hence you should choose one that won't damage your roof.

Curve-bladed and wheeled rakes are the best at protecting your roof.

3. Weight

The weight of the rake has great significance on the level of comfort it provides and proper handling. Heavy rakes are very uncomfortable to use and also make you fatigued. You should go for a lightweight rake, but be sure to check the materials it is made of as a material like wood breaks when subjected to a lot of weight.

4. Durability

Nobody wants to see their money go down the drain; hence you should consider buying a rake that doesn't break or rust. Rakes with aluminum handles and polyethylene are the most durable as they are not susceptible to rust and breakage.

Question: Is Switching to a Solar Roof Worth the Money?


We believe solar solutions for energy issues are necessary for the modern world. The question is if you believe solar roofs are a potential solution after everything you have just read.
Due to the amount of space required for proper installation, solar panels are not always practical. Wiki offers an excellent explanation of solar shingles at solar feeds.

A lot of individuals are interested in products capable of solving numerous different issues ar the same time. One of the best examples is the solar shingle. As time passes, shingles save both money and time.

Only one product and a single installation crew are necessary for producing solar energy for roofing. We do not see much about this type of roof mentioned often. Another plus is the roof does not need a lot of maintenance.

The shingles are capable of producing the same amount of energy as traditional roof-mounted solar, ensuring they are extremely efficient. We believe as the price continues to decrease, more homeowners will become used to PV systems.

The result may be shingles gaining market share. Trying to predict the future of a solar roof is extremely difficult due to both the benefits disadvantages of the technology. We do not believe an accurate prediction is possible at this time.
The popularity of the solar industry is definitely increasing. We believe this is partially due to the awareness of climate change. A lot of people are now using renewable energy including wind and solar for primary energy sources.

The demand is leading to increased sales of solar products. The issue with shingles is the inability to successfully compete with solar panels at this point in time. Solar panels are simply a more affordable and mature technological option.

Many individuals are choosing solar panels over shingles or tiles for this reason. Some individuals are also unwilling to stretch finances to pay to replace a roof in good repair with either panels or shingles.

The homeowners interested in having solar homes view solar panels as being much more practical due to the lower expense. On the other hand, shingles offer certain benefits panels do not.
Panels can be replaced on residential roofs with shingles to improve the aesthetics of the home. Shingles are also usually available in a fairly wide selection of shapes and designs as opposed to solar panels.

Shingles ate much easier to install than solar panels. All of these benefits combined have led the majority of homeowners to the conclusion that shingles may replace panels in the not too distant future. You need to decide what is right for your needs.

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