Solar panels have existed for decades, while solar roofs are their most viable competition. However, since solar roofs are so new to the mass market, few people understand how they can change the solar market in places like Orlando, where solar panels are a popular home renovation.

What is a Solar Roof?

A solar roof uses tiles or shingles that act as solar panels. These tiles can take the shape the consumer desires and blend in with most architectural plans, which makes them aesthetically pleasing. While the solar shingle was patented in the 1970s, it first became widely commercially available in 2005.

The Weight Difference

Solar roof manufacturers advertise the products as putting less weight on the roof than traditional solar panels, which could be a boon to older construction in areas like Orlando. This difference is because solar panels sit on top of the roof, while the solar roof is the roof. However, the exact weight per square foot will depend on the roof pitch and installation plan in either case.

The Efficiency of Solar Roofs and Solar Panels in Orlando

Both solar roofs and solar panels are dependent on the environmental conditions and installation for their efficiency. For example, in Orlando, solar panels can hit 18% to 22% efficiency regularly. Meanwhile, a solar roof might only hit 14% to 18% efficiency, but a bigger surface area is available to generate power.

Ease of Repair

Repairing solar panels and solar roofs is a significant difference between the two options. In Orlando and other areas, it’s much easier to remove solar panels for repair as most use a bracket system. Meanwhile, solar tiles will be an integral part of the roof hooked into the electrical system of the home or business. Those repairs will require specialized expertise.

The Incentive Availability

Another consideration is tax and local incentives available for adding solar power, which can reduce installation costs. However, as solar roofs are relatively new, they are often not included in these incentive programs. Meanwhile, solar panels are the main components of these programs and are therefore easy to file for.

The Cost of Solar Roofs vs. Solar Panels in Orlando

Solar roofs are new to the market, and the cost to install one reflects that. Installing a Tesla solar roof, for example, depends on the complexity of the roofline. The middle package costs $16 per square foot plus $2 for every watt installed. For example, a 1,700 square foot roof with 10.23 kW of power comes to roughly $39,000 after solar incentives.

Meanwhile, solar panels dominated the alternative energy market for decades, and their cost has come down 99% since they hit the commercial market. The average solar panel installation costs about $19,000 for a 10.23 kW system after tax incentives.

Warranties and Longevity

Both solar roofs and solar panels come with warranties ranging from 10 to 30 years, depending on the manufacturer. While solar panels have often outlasted their warranties, especially in Orlando, there is little data on the longevity of solar tile operation due to its relative newness. There is no large pool of data to support the companies’ claims.

Solar power may be on the rise, but you may not know everything there is to know about this fantastic energy option. If you are considering solar panels for your home or business, call the top Orlando installer of solar systems today.

Solar Panels are Recyclable

While solar panels typically maintain optimal performance for 30 to 40 years, it’s still good to know that you can recycle solar panels. Right now, you need to research to find a facility. Still, in the future, the growth of solar power will mean more recycling options for solar panels and components.

The Idea Behind Solar Dates to 1839

In 1839, Alexandre Edmond Becquerel proved the photovoltaic effect, which is the principle solar power operates on. However, it was a hundred years before someone turned this idea into the solar cells and panels you see on Orlando roofs with solar systems today.

Orlando Solar is Practical Year Round

Orlando averages 233 days of sunshine, which is above the national average and perfect for solar power. With a professionally installed system, you can take advantage of the free sunshine available in Orlando to power your home with green solar power.

The Cost of Solar is Much Less Today Than in the 1970s

How much do solar panels cost in Florida? Florida’s average cost of a solar panel installation ranges from $11,135 to $15,065. On a cost per watt ($/W) basis, a solar panel installation in Florida ranges in price from $2.23 to $3.01.

Residential Solar Panels Break Even Quickly

The average solar power system may cost thousands, but most homeowners see their system breakeven in under a decade. The average is eight years, and in Orlando, many owners of solar panels break even sooner. That means you can start making money from grid-tied panels sooner.

Solar Panels Work After Storms

One of the big Orlando misconceptions is how solar will handle the variety of storms the city sees. You do not need to worry as solar power systems installed by Spectrum Solar are rated for hurricane-force winds. You can even install a solar system that continues to work even if the Orlando power grid goes down.

People Used Solar Power Before the Development of Panels

Using the sun for energy is not a new concept, even though solar panels are. Historians have documented the use of the sun to start fires going back 2700 years. The idea of sunrooms and greenhouses goes back almost as far. The difference is that there was no simple way to store solar power for later use.

Solar Panels Do Not Need Direct Sunlight

One of the big myths that circulate periodically is that a cloudy day could leave you without power. However, clouds still let a lot of sunshine hit your solar panels. In fact, you may not notice a significant difference in how much energy your panels produce.