Tesla has begun taking orders for its new solar roof system – and its low cost could revolutionize the home solar industry.
When viewed from the street, Tesla’s solar tiles look like regular asphalt, terracotta, or slate shingles. But when viewed head-on, the tiles appear opaque and the solar cell within becomes visible. This allows sunlight to pass through the tile and into the solar cell.
As Bloomberg reported, a traditional roof with solar panels on top would be about 30 percent cheaper than the Tesla roof. But, when factoring in the long-term energy savings, the Tesla tiles are slightly cheaper to install than even conventional shingles.
For instance, installing Tesla’s solar roof system in a median-sized home in North Carolina would incur a net cost of just $1,400 over 30 years. (If you’re curious as to how much it would cost to install the solar roof system in your home, you can use Tesla’s handy price calculator to find out.)
Tesla expects that most customers will ultimately reap more in energy savings than they spend on the cost of installation.
Oh, and on top of all that, the tiles are guaranteed to produce power for 30 years and to remain intact over the lifetime of the house.
At a promotional event, Musk said:
“The goal is to make solar roofs that look better than a normal roof, generate electricity, last longer, have better insulation, and actually have an installed cost that is less than a normal roof plus the cost of electricity. Now, why would you buy anything else?”
The roof system is one part of Tesla’s strategy to develop a more sustainable world. Musk envisions a future in which every home has a solar roof, a wall-mounted battery to power the home at night, and an electric vehicle in the garage.
The solar roof is expected to be competitive in North Carolina, Texas, and California – Sunbelt states where the solar market is already booming. Production will begin this summer at Tesla’s California manufacturing plant.
Featured image via YouTube video.