Tesla has officially started giving out price estimates and taking pre-orders for their solar roof tiles. A beautified alternative to solar panels, Tesla’s solar tiles will allow you to blend right in with your neighbors.
They are offered in four styles: smooth, textured, tuscan (think ceramic tile), and slate. In addition to being an alternative for the much less visually pleasing solar panels, Tesla also boasts that its solar tiles are three times stronger than your standard roofing materials.
Tesla provides a price estimator based on your geography and house size. The cost is somewhat prohibitive. It seems to be about 4x the cost of a standard asphalt roof, however there is a significant tax break offered, which helps towards the setup costs. Once the tiles are installed, the solar tiles will allegedly pay for themselves, and over time you would theoretically earn money back from the electric company. Tesla will also recommend, based on your geography and usage, what percentage of your roof should be covered in the solar tiles versus the matching non-solar tiles. It is a bit vague as to whether the price estimate includes the cost of the non-solar tiles, or if that would be an additional expense.
I think Tesla’s solar tiles are a great start to the ever-increasing need for green sources of energy—especially those sources that people will willingly embrace, unlike traditional solar panels, in my opinion. I myself will be eagerly waiting to see if the prices drop in coming years to make these more affordable to the average homeowner.