GAF Energy recently launched Timberline Solar, which contains solar cells within a shingle. (Image Credit: GAF Energy)
This is what I want to see everywhere. A simple solar solution - deployable over every roof.
What if, instead of traditional shingles on our rooftops, we installed solar panels? Tesla attempted this concept before, but that had problems. For example, the solar tiles were difficult to install and ended up costing customers a pretty penny, sometimes skyrocketing to tens of thousands of dollars the original price. GAF Energy recently launched Timberline Solar, a solar roof that makes home solar an attractive and feasible solution.
This new design involves integrating solar cells into a traditional roof shingle. Overall, installation is pretty straightforward: just grab a nail gun and attach the solar shingle to your roof. The shingle also required several safety features to protect the home, including a waterproof and fireproof barrier. Plus, it needed to be designed so that roofers could walk atop for roof accessibility. Even then, engineers needed to use the proper material and form so that light could pass through, allowing the solar cells to generate energy.
The solar shingle has waterproof and fireproof barriers to help protect a homeowner’s structure. It’s also very easy to install. (Image Credit: GAF Energy)
It only takes two days rather than weeks to install the solar shingle compared to solar roofs since it can be nailed down. This is a huge benefit because it’s more affordable for the customers. Solar roof products typically spend $5,000 per customer in marketing expenses. GAF, collaborating with GAF Energy on this project, is working with its network of thousands of roofers to share the product. GAF Energy’s shingles also have materials that are available at a large scale instead of ones used in competitive products.
The company’s new design also offers improved aesthetics versus other solar roofs, and the savings from transitioning to solar covers a new roof purchase. Even better, the shingles are capable of generating the same amount of energy as conventional solar panels covering the same area.
Network roofers help homeowners determine whether their rooftop receives sufficient sunlight for solar power. Afterward, GAF Energy utilizes its software to calculate the placement of each solar shingle. In addition, it obtains solar permits and delivers materials. After successful installation, the company sends electricians to connect panels to the power grid.
GAF Energy expects to see a transition toward solar on roofs much quicker than before. The roofing industry is 20 times larger than solar, and approximately 5 million roofs in the U.S. are replaced every year compared to 200,000 to 300,000 homeowners installing solar panels. If 10% of roofing customers switched to solar shingles, it could overshadow the industry.
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