In the last two decades, solar power has become more and more popular as a trustworthy source of renewable energy. Innovations such as solar roof tiling have made it even more cost-effective and accessible in this day and age.
We’re going to be looking more into a few of the benefits solar roof tiling provides, some of the drawbacks and the best brands out there as well in this article.
Solar Tile Benefits
Made to match conventional roof tiling, solar roof tiles—also known as solar shingles—are narrow photovoltaic (PV) sheets that take the place or lay atop shingles already in place. Similar to solar paneling, solar roof shingles take in the energy from the sunlight and can be used in any environment or climate.
Solar tiles take up less space than conventional solar panels and are similar in size to regular roofing shingles—roughly 12 inches wide and 86 inches long. They weigh approximately 13 lbs/sq ft. The shingles are usually less than one inch in thickness and a traditional installation is typically 350 tiles.
A lot of PV tiles are slim film solar cells (TFSC) produced from a semiconductor, copper indium gallium selenide, that provides the cells with thin and flexible characteristics. The material is proven to have one of the best efficiency rates when it comes to conversion—coming to an average of around 10–12%.
Different brands will make use of a naturally occurring semiconductor utilized in the computer chip manufacturing, monocrystalline silicon (mono-Si). Mono-Si cells carry an average efficiency rate of 15–20%, but they’re more expensive overall.
Depending on what type of shingle you purchase as well as the brand, the power your solar shingles generate is going to vary. The majority of shingling makes between 13-63 watts. 350 shingles can reduce the regular utility bill by 40-70% according to some projections. Every system is going to require an energy inverter equipment to control the power the cells capture.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Solar Roof Shingles
Although people who want to save the world—and a bit of money on electric bills—might find that reason enough to buy solar tiles, a few pros and cons should be considered before anyone proceeds to the installation phase. The following provides you with a few points to remember before you re-shingle your entire house with PV cells.
One main advantage solar shingle systems provide as opposed to solar paneling is the inherent aesthetic charm. Solar panels have the potential to be bulky and noticeably due to how much they stick out from rooftops, while shingles are intended to coincide with the existing roofing.