Tesla CEO Elon Musk introduced its solar roof last October and had dropped teasers about it ever since, promising that the cost of the nearly invisible solar roof tiles would be less than that of a traditional roof. Now Tesla has unveiled the cost of the highly anticipated devices, which it says is less than the cost of a new roof for a home and are is now taking orders for them.
Tesla’s Solar Roof consists of Panasonic's solar cells in glass panels that use a special color louver film. The film allows the tiles to look exactly like any other roofing material from the ground, but allows them to absorb a maximum amount of sunlight.
“Solar Roof is more affordable than conventional roofs because in most cases, it ultimately pays for itself by reducing or eliminating a home’s electricity bill,” the company said in announcing the pricing. Referring to Consumer Reports Tesla asserted that it’s roofing product needs to cost less than $24.50 per square foot to be competitive with the cost of a normal roof. “The typical homeowner can expect to pay $21.85 per square foot for Solar Roof,1 and benefit from a beautiful new roof that also increases the value of their home," Tesla said.
“The cost of our non-solar tiles is comparable to regular roofing tiles,” Tesla said. “Although the cost of our solar tiles is more expensive up front, it can be more than offset by the value of energy the tiles produce. In many cases, the reduction in a home’s electricity bill over time will be greater than the cost of the roof.”
As with its cars, Tesla is taking pre-orders for the systems now. It plans to start installing them this summer. When Musk unveiled the tiles last year Tesla said they would initially be available in California first and rolled out to the rest of the country soon—since then he’s been teasing about them. Upon announcing the pricing, Tesla said: “Installations of Solar Roof will begin in the US this summer and we expect installations outside the US to begin in 2018.”
The Solar Roof will be installed by Tesla’s solar company, SolarCity. But at this point the pricing was not announced on SolarCity’s web site. Since Tesla purchased SolarCity last year, the company has been introducing new solar products on its site like its low-profile solar array. That product is designed for roofs in good condition that don’t need an entirely new roofs.
Tesla’s new Solar Roof also carries what Tesla is calling an infinite warranty. “We offer the best warranty in the industry—the lifetime of your house, or infinity, whichever comes first,” Tesla stated. The tiles are made with tempered glass and the company said they are more than three times stronger than standard roofing tiles.Tweet