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Tesla begin taking orders for its Solar Roof system

Tesla begin taking orders for its Solar Roof system
Source: None

Tesla’s Solar Roof beautifully complements your home’s architecture while turning sunlight into electricity.

Glass solar tiles so durable they are warrantied for the lifetime of your house

Elon Musk’s Tesla Inc. has begun taking orders for its solar roofing, as part of Musk’s strategy to sell a fossil-fuel-free lifestyle under the brand name of its luxury electric vehicles.

Almost indistinguishable from terracotta, slate, or asphalt shingles. Tesla unveiled its first ever solar product at an event at Universal Studios in Los Angeles on October 29, 2016. And it’s not a solar panel – it’s a range of four solar roofing materials that look almost indistinguishable from high-end terracotta, slate, or asphalt shingles. Source: Youtube/Bloomberg

Pricier than a conventional roof but will look better and pay for itself

Tesla Inc on Wednesday (May 10, 2017) began taking orders for its Solar Roof, a cornerstone of Elon Musk’s strategy to sell a fossil-fuel-free lifestyle under the brand name of its luxury electric vehicles. 

Tesla said the product, which generates solar energy without the need for traditional rooftop panels, will be pricier than a conventional roof but will look better and ultimately pay for itself through reduced electricity costs.

The solar roof tiles were unveiled in October as Musk sought to convince shareholders of the benefits of combining his electric vehicle maker with SolarCity, the solar installer run by his cousins.

Tesla acquired SolarCity in November, and has been working to remake a money-losing company that was selling traditional solar systems into a premium energy brand. To date, other companies have had little market success with attempts to incorporate solar technology directly into roof tiles. It remains unclear whether the products will appeal to consumers as much as Tesla’s electric vehicles do.

Source: Nichola Groom, for Reuters

Tesla claim the glass solar tiles are so durable they are warrantied for the lifetime of your house, or infinity, whichever comes first.
Guaranteed for…infinity? Tesla claim the glass solar tiles are so durable they are warrantied for the lifetime of your house, or infinity, whichever comes first. Source: None

Debate over the costs

To get in line for a solar roof, homeowners must put down a $1,000 deposit via Tesla’s website. There, they can also calculate the estimated upfront cost of a solar roof.

A 1700-square-foot roof in Southern California, with half the roof covered in "active" solar tiles, would cost about $34,300 after a federal tax credit, according to the calculator. Tesla estimates such a roof could generate $76,700 of electricity over 30 years.

The company said its solar roofs would cost between 10 and 15 percent less than an ordinary new roof plus traditional solar panels.

But Jim Petersen, chief executive of PetersenDean Inc, which installs about 30,000 new roofs plus solar a year, estimated that a 1700-square-foot roof with new solar panels, including the tax credit, would cost about $22,000, well below the Tesla website’s estimate. Costs vary depending on roof type.

Source: Reuters

Glass tiles will be available in the United States later this year, beginning with gray smooth glass and black textured glass versions, Tesla said. Slate and Tuscan styles will be introduced in 2018. Overseas markets will receive the products next year.
Different styles for different tastes Glass tiles will be available in the United States later this year, beginning with gray smooth glass and black textured glass versions, Tesla said. Slate and Tuscan styles will be introduced in 2018. Overseas markets will receive the products next year. Source: Tesla

Industry leading warranty and specifications

Made with tempered glass, Solar Roof tiles are said to be more than three times stronger than standard roofing tiles. That’s why Tesla are offering the best warranty in the industry:

  • Tile warranty – Infinity, or the lifetime of your house, whichever comes first.
  • Power warranty – 30 years
  • Weatherization warranty – 30 years
  • Roof Pitch – 3:12 to vertical
  • Hail rating – Class 4 FM 4473 (best hail rating)
  • Wind rating – Class F ASTM D3161 (best wind rating)
  • Fire rating – Class A UL 790 (best fire rating)
  • Glass Coating Standards – ASTM C1376, EN 1096 (best in class reliability)

‘Our tile warranty covers the glass in the tiles. The power warranty covers the output capability of the solar tiles. Weatherization means that there will be no water leaks or other weather intrusions during the warranty period that result from our installation.’ – Tesla Inc

Source: Tesla

Solar Roof integrates with the Powerwall home battery, allowing you to use solar energy whenever you choose and providing uninterrupted electricity during grid outages.
Off-Grid Reliability Solar Roof integrates with the Powerwall home battery, allowing you to use solar energy whenever you choose and providing uninterrupted electricity during grid outages. Source: Tesla

So how much exactly will a Solar Roof cost?

While nobody can say at this stage exactly how much any given roof will cost, Tesla do break down some of the factors on their website:

‘The estimated cost of your Solar Roof includes materials, installation, and the removal of your old roof. Taxes, permit fees and additional construction costs such as significant structural upgrades, gutter replacement, or skylight replacements are not included. The Solar Roof cost is based on estimated roof square footage for your home, provided by Google Project Sunroof where available, and the portion of your roof covered with solar tiles.’

Value of energy

The value of energy your Solar Roof is expected to produce over 30 years is based on the average price of electricity in your area, adjusted for inflation by 2% annually. Your ability to realize the full value depends on your home’s electricity usage, amount of energy storage available, and utility regulations on solar in your area. Electricity price estimates are sourced from the Energy Information Administration and solar production estimates are based on irradiance data from NASA.

Cost of roof

The estimated cost of your Solar Roof includes materials, installation, and the removal of your old roof. Taxes, permit fees and additional construction costs such as significant structural upgrades, gutter replacement, or skylight replacements are not included. The Solar Roof cost is based on estimated roof square footage for your home, provided by Google Project Sunroof where available, and the portion of your roof covered with solar tiles.

Cost of Powerwall battery

The estimated cost of your Powerwall includes the battery, supporting hardware and installation cost. We recommend that every Solar Roof be installed with a Powerwall battery to enable you to use more of the solar power your roof produces and keep your home running during a grid outage. In states that do not have Net Energy Metering policies, we estimate and recommend a number of Powerwalls that will enable you to realize the full benefit of the energy your Solar Roof produces.

Tax credit

The 30% Solar Investment Tax Credit applies to the cost of the solar tiles and associated solar energy equipment as well as the cost of the Powerwall batteries. To receive the full tax credit, you must have federal income tax liability that’s at least equal to the value of the tax credit. This credit may be carried over to future tax years. Additional state, local or utility solar incentives may apply but are not included in this calculation.

Net earned over 30 years

The value of energy your Solar Roof produces may exceed the cost of the roof, earning you value over time.

Recommended solar tile coverage for your home

We recommend the portion of solar tiles for your roof that we estimate will produce enough electricity to cover your home energy usage. To customize your usage, enter your average monthly electric bill. If you choose to increase the portion of your roof covered with solar tiles, your home may generate more electricity than it needs. In this case, you may not realize the full value of energy your Solar Roof produces. Your entire roof is not eligible to be covered with solar tiles due to building regulations and obstructions. Recommended solar tile coverage is based on estimated eligible roof area for solar.

Warranty and specs

All warranties and ratings apply to the United States only. Similar warranties and ratings will be developed for other markets. Our tile warranty covers the glass in the tiles. The power warranty covers the output capability of the solar tiles. Weatherization means that there will be no water leaks or other weather intrusions during the warranty period that result from our installation.

Installation timing

Installations will start in June, beginning with California and rolling out to additional markets over time. When Solar Roof is rolled out in a particular market, Solar Roof customers will be installed based on when their order was placed. Installations performed by Tesla, Inc.’s wholly owned subsidiary SolarCity Corporation.

Source: Tesla

Make an Impact

Tesla Solar Roof FAQS

If you are have further questions about Tesla Solar Roof, or are interested in placing an order yourself, this is the place to look.