Three Questions To Answer Before Investing In Solar Shingles


If you're looking for a way to permanently shrink the size of your energy bill, installing solar shingles is a good option for saving money on electricity. However, this roofing material requires a big upfront investment, and you should first make sure these shingles are right for you by answering these three questions.

How Much Solar Power Do You Need?

There's no doubt solar shingles can save you money by converting the sun's rays into free electricity. Whether they will provide all the electricity you need, however, is another issue altogether. While it's true both solar shingles and solar panels have around a similar efficiency rate, how well the shingles collect sunlight is wholly dependent on your roof's slope and position.

The problem is that the shingles are part of the roof itself. They can't be adjusted or moved like solar panels. So, if your roof is too steep or not positioned the right way, the shingles may not get enough sunlight for optimal electricity production.

Thus, you need to decide if the amount of electricity the shingles will produce based on your roof's characteristics will be enough to meet your needs. If you're trying to go completely off-grid but your roof isn't in the shape or position required to maximize the shingles' efficiency, you'll have to adjust your plan or opt for solar panels instead.

It's essential you have an expert evaluate your roof and provide you with an estimate on how much electricity it could realistically produce after being outfitted with solar shingles and decide if that's good enough for you.

How Long Do You Plan on Being in the Home?

Solar shingles are a major investment, costing nearly 2 to 7 times as much as solar panels ($10k to $37k for panels vs. $65k to $72K for shingles). While the actual price you pay will differ depending on the quality of the materials used and the cost of labor, the reality is that it will take a lot longer to earn back your investment with the money you save on your electric bills.

So, you want to make sure you'll be in the home long enough to make installing the shingles worth the cost. You may not want to get them if you plan on moving out of the home in a couple of years. If you're living in your forever home, though, then getting solar shingles may be a great long-term investment, especially if you need to replace the roof anyway.

Is There a Repair Service Nearby?

Although solar technology has been around for a long time, solar shingles are fairly new, only being commercially available since 2005. Because of this, there aren't many companies that install and service them, though that's likely to change in the coming decades as solar shingles become more prevalent.

Until then, though, you need to make sure there's someone in your area who can make repairs to your roof if something goes awry and they stop working or are damaged. This is particularly important if you plan on primarily using solar to power your home, as even a small reduction in the shingles' efficiency can mean the loss of several hours of usable electricity.

Additionally, you need to make sure you can perform any maintenance the shingles may need. It's even more important to keep the roof cleared of debris, such as leaves and snow, and to clean the shingles regularly to keep built-up dirt from blocking the shingles' ability to absorb sunlight.

Solar shingles can be a good alternative to solar panels. Take time to discuss the pros and cons of installing them with a roofing expert, though, to ensure they will work with your needs and lifestyle. For more information, contact a local roofing company.


27 October 2020

Creating Great Roofing From the Start

When you want to make your home shine, there are some very important basic components you should be mindful of. For starters, you should evaluate the exterior of your home to determine whether or not the siding or exterior cladding needs to be replaced. Next, you should check to see if the roofing needs to be replaced, since it really can make a powerful difference. Roofing can take up a great deal of the visual space from the outside, so think carefully about how yours looks. Pay attention to issues like aged, curling shingles or roofing that contains dips or divots. Check out this blog for great tips about roofing.