Solar Tiles: The Complete Buying Guide For Solar Tiles

John Doe
Ritik N.
Solar Tiles: The Complete Buying Guide For Solar Tiles

Are you looking for a stylish and environmentally friendly way to improve your home's energy efficiency? Take a look at solar tiles! These innovative tiles seamlessly integrate solar technology into your roof, providing clean and renewable energy while improving your home's curb appeal.

So say goodbye to unsightly solar panels and hello to a fashionable and environmentally conscious option. In this blog, we'll look at the advantages of solar tiles and how they can improve your home's energy efficiency.

What are Solar Tiles, and how do they work?

black solar tiles installed on roof

Solar tiles are roofing materials that can produce energy directly from sunlight. Solar tiles are integrated into the roof itself and function as both a roofing substance and a source of energy, as opposed to conventional solar panels, which are mounted on top of an existing roof.

Photovoltaic cells in solar tiles turn sunlight into direct current (DC) energy. To imitate the size and shape of conventional roofing tiles or roof shingles, the cells are usually silicon, the same material used in traditional solar panels.

Types of Solar Tiles

There are many kinds of solar roof panels on the market, so it's important to pick the right one for your roofing system.

Monocrystalline Solar Tiles

Low-profile, high-performance solar systems are provided by photovoltaic solar tiles, which are made to resemble the profile of typical flat concrete tiles. These standard solar panels have a 25-year warranty and are constructed of steel roofing and glass solar tiles. Due to their three pounds per square foot modest weight, installation is simple, and they are durable.

In addition, the solar tile has a conversion efficiency of about 17.8%, much greater than conventional solar panels. These solar tiles are appropriate for various applications because they can function from -40°C to 90°C.

In addition, they are a tough solution for installation on roofing or building surfaces because they are also waterproof.

Photovoltaic Solar Tiles

Photovoltaic solar tiles are a new technology option for solar energy systems because they have several advantages over conventional solar panels. Because of their resilience and lightweight construction, they can withstand high wind speeds and temperatures while simplifying installation.

In addition, photovoltaic solar tiles are the best solar energy solution for commercial and residential buildings due to their high conversion efficiency, low production costs, and many additional advantages.

Thermal Solar Tiles

The capability of solar energy generation and the conventional function of roofing tiles are combined in solar thermal tiles, sometimes called solar thermal tiles or solar collectors. These tiles capture solar energy and transform it into useful thermal energy.

Solar thermal tiles are typically constructed from strong, weatherproof materials like metals, glass, or ceramics. There are several layers in each solar thermal tile, including an absorber layer, insulation, and a clear covering.

Understanding that solar thermal tiles differ from photovoltaic (PV) solar panels, which harness sunlight to produce energy, is crucial. Thermal solar tiles are created primarily to catch and use solar heat instead of PV panels, which concentrate on generating electrical energy. 

Hybrid Solar Tiles

Hybrid solar tiles are roofing shingles that produce solar energy and mix solar and non-solar tiles to produce a roof that both produces energy and protects against the weather.

For a neat and seamless look, hybrid solar tiles are made to fit the profile of flat concrete roofing tiles. The typical material for hybrid solar tiles is tempered glass, with a 25-year warranty. Typically, they are made of solar and non-solar tiles made of clay, asphalt, and ceramic. 

Solar Roof Tiles vs. Solar panels

Both solar panels and roof tiles generate clean, renewable energy that powers dwellings. But unlike solar panels, which are constructed of connected solar cells, solar roof tiles are fashioned to resemble regular, roofing tiles.

Glass and steel roofing tiles make up solar roof tiles. While the latter is flexible and can be installed on rooftops of any size or shape, the former is strong and offers exposure to the sun, which produces energy.

In addition, while solar panels have a 20-year warranty, solar roof tiles have a 25-year warranty. This shows that solar panels have a high level of durability, while solar roof tiles have a lesser level of durability. However, solar roof tiles cost more than solar panels, which has disadvantages and benefits.

How to choose the best Solar Tiles?

solar tiles on roof

It's crucial to comprehend the critical aspects of selecting the ideal solar tiles for your particular needs if you're considering putting solar tiles on your roof. We will walk you through the crucial factors to consider so that you can decide to obtain the best solar panels for your new roof.

Roof type and condition

The roof significantly influences solar tile installation and appropriateness. Solar installations are typically a good fit for metal roofs. The mounting solutions for metal roofs can attach solar tiles directly to the metal surface.

To maximize solar energy generation on flat rooftops, tilting or elevated mounting techniques are needed. Asphalt shingles, the most common roof, are compatible with various solar tile systems. In addition, the old shingles can be blended with solar tiles to create a seamless appearance.

Another important factor to consider while selecting solar tiles is the state of your roof. The performance and endurance of the roof and solar tile system over the long run depend on how well the roof is maintained.

Check to see if the solar tiles' added to the roof's structural integrity can support the weight. Compared to conventional roofing materials, solar tiles often contribute greater weight. Thus, a sturdy roof is necessary to support the load.

Energy needs and goals

Energy production is a crucial factor to consider when selecting solar tiles. Think about solar tiles' electricity output, which is between 25W and 114W. Furthermore, solar tiles with high electrical efficiencies—between 15.9% and 17.2%—can reduce energy loss and lower energy expenditures.

Ensure the solar tile system has been validated and tested by a reputable testing facility to guarantee it is eligible for government incentives like the Energy Company Obligation Scheme. Finally, review the solar tile system's temperature working range to ensure it can endure extremely hot conditions.

Budget and financing options

When deciding which solar tiles are appropriate for your project, your budget and financing alternatives are essential considerations. Installations of solar tiles cost money upfront, but they may result in long-term energy savings and environmental advantages.

Investigate your alternatives for financing to reduce the cost of installing solar tiles. Cash purchases, solar loans, power purchase agreements, and solar leases are a few popular forms of financing.

In addition, look into the various tax breaks and incentives that may help with the installation costs of solar tiles. Local, state, and federal governments frequently offer financial incentives to encourage the use of renewable energy. 

Climate and weather patterns

Solar tiles are made to complement flat concrete tile profiles and mix in with the roof plane. They are also suitable for restoring structures in historic or conservation-protected regions because they may use more of the roof's surface to produce the most electricity.

Some solar tiles are strong enough to endure winds that reach 140 mph in speed. Solar tiles are also suitable for areas with high solar incidence since they absorb more solar energy. Solar tiles are an all-around affordable and environmentally friendly option for roofing needs.

Financing and Incentives for Solar Tiles

The adoption of solar products is a boon for our environment and society, which is why the united states government has incentives for solar power expansion by residential and commercial entities. Some states that provide such benefits are new jersey, Maryland, Virginia, Colorado, California, Florida, new york, texas, Pennsylvania, etc.

Government grants and tax credits

Municipal, state, and federal governments provide various tax credits and incentives to encourage the use of renewable energy. The price of installing solar tiles can be greatly lowered thanks to these advantages.

Refunds, grants, tax credits, and performance-based incentives are examples. Look into the incentives offered in your area and verify the requirements.

For example, while some incentives may be income-based, others may be based on the energy production or capacity of the solar tile system. By taking advantage of these discounts, you may reduce the installation costs and increase the solar tile installation's profitability.

Rebates and incentives from manufacturers

Solar tile producers may have their finance programs or collaborations with financial institutions to offer appealing financing alternatives. These programs may offer exclusive privileges, enticing conditions, or special loan offers.

When considering solar tile systems, ask the producers if they offer financing options. These initiatives can improve access to financing and cater to the solar tile product you select. It has been reported that solar installers and roofing firms provide financing plans to help cover the cost of installing solar tiles.

If solar tiles are used with current roofing materials, some roofing companies, such as Tesla, timberline solar, Integra, and luma solar, may even give a 25% discount on installing the solar tiles. Installing solar tiles can be much cheaper than installing standard roofing, thanks to installer rebate programs. 

Financing options such as loans and leases

Solar leases entail renting the solar tile system from a third-party provider, just like PPAs. With a solar lease, you make a monthly payment covering all system upkeep and maintenance.

Although you own the system partially, leasing offers a means to take advantage of solar energy without paying any up-front expenditures. It's crucial to remember that leasing can still result in cost savings even though the financial advantages may be modest compared to buying the equipment outright.

Cost-benefit analysis

According to some estimates, the cost of solar tiles may be twice as high as that of conventional solar panels. Solar tiles can, however, provide certain advantages over conventional solar panels, including increased energy efficiency and durability.

In addition, solar tiles might be a good option for projects where weight restrictions are an issue because they are lighter and simpler to install than conventional solar panels.

Therefore, considering the two technologies' various performance traits is crucial when weighing the costs and advantages of solar tiles and conventional solar panels.

How to install Solar Tiles?

solar installer installing solar tiles

In addition to improving the performance of your roof, solar tiles—also referred to as solar shingles or photovoltaic roof tiles—offer a novel approach to producing clean, sustainable energy.

To ensure a successful and effective installation of solar tiles on your roof, it's crucial to comprehend the installation procedure. We'll lead you through installing solar tiles in this step-by-step manual.

Inspection and preparation

Assessing your roof's condition and appropriateness for installing solar tiles is a good place to start. Ensure the roof is properly exposed to the sun, structurally sound, and damage-free.

Check your roof's direction and tilt to maximize the amount of solar energy it can absorb. If necessary, seek the advice of a qualified installer or a structural engineer. Make sure the roof surface is spotless, debris-free, and in good condition.

Any harmed or compromised sections should be fixed. Remove any existing roofing materials that can obstruct the installation if necessary.

Mounting and flashing

Install mounting hardware and flashing first. Flashing is essential to waterproofing and leak prevention. In addition, the mounting hardware gives the solar panels a stable basis. For correct installation, adhere to manufacturer recommendations and regional building regulations.

Electrical wiring

When installed on a roof, solar panels must be connected to the main service panel and power inverter within the house. The home's inverter and main power supply must be connected to these solar panels via an external cable.

The cables that make up this external wiring often extend from the solar panels on the roof down to the electrical service panel. All wiring in solar shingles and tiles is internal and concealed to prevent damage during installation and ensure it is safe under the roof insulation below.

Due to the absence of the possibility of outside forces damaging the installation, installation time and costs are reduced.

Installing the Solar Tiles

Lay the solar tiles out by the layout design. To produce a smooth, weather-resistant surface, carefully place each tile and connect them firmly. For proper tile connection and placement, adhere to the manufacturer's instructions.

Ensure all solar tiles are sealed properly and firmly attached to the roof. This step is essential for stopping water intrusion and guaranteeing the installation's durability. Use the right sealants and adhere to the best waterproofing practices.

Inspection and testing

The system should be extensively checked after installation to ensure optimal operation and performance. This includes checking electrical connections, running system inspections, and evaluating energy production. During the initial phases, monitor the system closely to spot and resolve any potential problems.

Maintenance Tips for Solar Tiles

Solar tiles are a great choice if you're looking to install solar roof shingles on your roof. They're more durable, reliable, and more cost-effective than solar panels. However, they do require some care and maintenance to ensure their longevity. Here are some tips for taking good care of solar tiles.

Keep the Solar Tiles Clean

To keep solar tiles operating as effectively as possible, cleaning is essential. Regular cleaning will preserve the solar tiles' ability to produce solar energy over time. Solar tiles should be cleaned with a soft brush or cloth and a little detergent or soap.

To protect the solar cells, water should be used cautiously. Safety equipment, such as safety goggles, must be worn when cleaning solar tiles. In addition, use caution while cleaning abrasive products because they may harm the solar tiles. Use a clean, lukewarm water solution to clean solar tile surfaces safely.

Check for damage

The condition of your solar tiles should be checked frequently for cracks, warping, and discoloration. Solar tiles should be cleaned, mended, or replaced if they exhibit damage symptoms.

Cleanings regularly maintain maximum effectiveness. Solar tiles with monocrystalline solar cells are made to convert sunlight into electricity rapidly and effectively. Solar tiles should be installed on a clean roof free of moss, leaves, and other debris to provide maximum performance.

Trim nearby trees

Trimming trees and bushes close to solar panels is essential to ensuring that they receive enough sunshine. Solar panels should be installed in a location with lots of sunlight to save energy expenses. However, solar panels shouldn't be placed directly in the sunlight to prevent overheating and harming solar cells.

Pros & Cons of Solar Tiles

Before taking your new solar system out for a spin, consider the pros and cons of installing solar roof shingles over regular shingles.


Solar tiles are made to blend in with your entire roof perfectly, giving it a tidy and modern appearance. Asphalt shingles, concrete tiles, and metal roofs are just a few of the roof materials that solar tiles can be installed.

This versatility makes the ability to incorporate solar electricity into many architectural designs and roof materials possible. Utilizing solar tiles, which turn sunlight into electricity, enables roofers to generate clean, renewable energy and less dependency on the grid.

Rain, snow, and hail are just a few of the numerous weather conditions that solar tiles are made to survive. High-efficiency solar tiles frequently have long-lasting performance and need little upkeep because they are composed of sturdy materials that can resist the rigors of outdoor exposure.


The upfront cost is typically higher when comparing solar tiles to conventional solar panels. The initial investment may be more expensive due to the cost of the specialized roofing materials and the integrated solar technology.

Due to their integrated design, solar tiles may have a lower energy efficiency than conventional solar panels. Solar tile installation demands specialized knowledge and competent installation.

Compared to conventional solar panels, the integrated design and connection to the electrical infrastructure may necessitate more difficult installation procedures. Longer project schedules and greater installation costs may arise from this.

While solar tiles have attractive features, there may be fewer design alternatives than conventional roofing materials. 

Bottom Line

Solar tiles have a variety of benefits and drawbacks to take into account in conclusion. On the plus side, solar tiles are attractive, adaptable, and can raise the value of your home.

In addition, they are strong, offer clean energy, and can be installed on many roofs. There are significant disadvantages, though, such as greater initial costs, potentially lower energy efficiency, installation difficulty, fewer design alternatives, and unique maintenance and repair needs. 

Frequently Asked Questions

How long do Solar Tiles last?

The lifespan of solar tiles is 25 to 30 years. Steel roofing tiles and sturdy, durable glass solar tiles are used to construct solar roofs, which also come with sizeable warranties. Solar shingle installation can take up to a week. However, with routine maintenance, solar tiles can last longer than the typical 25–30 years.

How long does it take to install Solar Tiles?

The roof's complexity, the system's size, and the installation process can all affect how long it takes to install solar tiles. On average, the time needed to install solar tiles might range from a few days to a few weeks.

How Many Solar Tiles do you need?

The roof's kind, size, and placement determine the solar tiles you need. For example, to achieve a maximum power output of 0.114 kW (kilo-watt) per tile, a conventional roof would need between 16 and 24 solar tiles

About The Author
ritik n.
Ritik N.
Content Writer
Ritik is a seasoned writer with a passion for copywriting. With 12 years of experience under his belt, he has honed his craft and developed a unique voice that resonates with readers. When he is not writing, he enjoys hiking and volunteering.