Solar Panels vs. Solar Roof: Which Option Is Right for You?


During the last decade, solar has undergone an average annual growth rate of around 42%.

If you live in a state that gets plenty of sun, then you might be considering having a solar system installed. However, you also might be wondering whether you should get solar panels vs solar roof.

So, how does a solar roof vs solar panels work and how are they different? In this article, we’ll take a more in-depth look at both to help you decide which is best for your home.

What are Solar Panels?

Think of solar panels as a collection of solar cells arranged in a grid-like pattern. They integrate atop your existing roof. Since solar panels are atop your existing roof, they do not fully blend in with the shingles.

Now, let’s take a look at the various pros of solar panels:

  • You will have many different products to choose from for solar panels
  • Many installers deal with solar panels
  • The cost for solar panels has fallen in recent years
  • They have a high efficiency
  • Solar panels are easy to adjust for optimal sun charging

Next, here are some cons you might encounter with solar panels:

  • There’s a tendency for solar panels to appear bulky atop the roof
  • The roof must be in good condition before you can look for a solar installation provider
  • The installation process can take longer for panels versus other types
  • They have a shorter lifespan in comparison to a solar roof

What Is a Solar Roof?

You can think of a solar roof as solar roof tiles or solar roof sheets. They are meant to appear like an ordinary roof. However, unlike a regular roof, a solar roof harnesses solar energy and generates electricity. To sum it up, a solar roof is a fully integrated solar energy system that will replace your existing roof.

Here are some of the pros to choosing a solar roof:

  • Solar roofs look like a normal roof and won’t stand out as bulky as solar panels do
  • Durability is better than solar panels and can last upwards of 40 years
  • Possess a Class A fire rating
  • Made of solid glass and have an impact rating of Class 4 impact resistance, making them stronger than panels
  • Resistant to strong winds of up to 130 mph
  • Made of UV-resistant glass

Next, here are some cons to a solar roof:

  • Not as popular as solar panels, meaning fewer companies do this type of installation
  • Often limited to specific locations
  • Became commercially available in 2005, so they’re still in something of a testing phase
  • The cost for solar roof tiles are much higher than panels
  • If you purchase a new house, you cannot transfer the solar roof like you can with panels
  • You won’t get an ROI on a solar roof until after around 15 years

Solar Panels vs Solar Roof

When looking at solar panels vs solar roof, you must decide for yourself which best suits your situation. However, for many people, solar panels will be the best investment. This is both because the cost of installation is much lower and also because you can transfer panels to a new home should you ever move.

We hope you found this article informative. Before you go, be sure to take a moment to browse our site for other great reads!


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