Tesla Inc started taking orders for its solar roof tiles, a foundation of Elon Musk’s method to sell a fossil-fuel-free lifestyle under the brand of its luxury electric cars.
Tesla said the item, which creates solar energy without the requirement for traditional rooftop panels, will be more expensive than a traditional roof but will look better and eventually pay for itself through reduced electricity costs.
The solar roof tiles were revealed in October as Musk sought to persuade investors of the advantages of integrating his electric vehicle maker with SolarCity, the solar installer run by his cousins.
Tesla acquired SolarCity last year, and has been working to rebuilt a money-losing company that was selling standard solar systems into a premium energy brand. To this day, other companies have had little market success with efforts to incorporate solar technology directly into roofing tiles. It stays unclear whether the items will attract customers as much as Tesla’s electric automobiles do.
To get in line for a solar roof, house owners must put down a $1,000 deposit through of Tesla’s website. There, they can likewise compute the approximated in advance cost of a solar roof.
A 1700-square-foot roof in Southern California, with half the roofing covered in “active” solar tiles, would cost about $34,300 after a federal tax credit. Tesla approximates such a roof might produce $76,700 of electricity over thirty years.
The company states its solar roofs would cost between 10 and 15 percent less than a common new roofing system plus standard solar panels.
However Jim Petersen, chief executive of PetersenDean Inc, which sets up more than 30,000 new roofs a year, estimated that a 1700-square-foot roofing system with new solar panels, including the tax credit, would cost about $22,000, much below the Tesla website’s price estimate. Expenses differ depending on roof type.