Solar power is a great investment for the home, but the problem has been the tedious installation and the bulky panels. However, take one look at the new solar powered model home, and you will wonder where the panels are hiding. Truth is, they are there right in plain sight – and they are called solar shingles.
Solar shingle is a new form of solar panels. Unlike the big roof panels of the past, these small panels fit together just like roofing shingles, so blending into the background, making it seem like they're not even there! And because of the way they are made, they are more efficient than the old panels too.
You see, these solar-power generating shingles are amorphous silicon, which means they absorb more light than the regular photovoltaic panels before them, so producing much more energy for the home to use. And due to their extra durability, they can be safely used as roofing materials.
Now this extra efficiency comes with a price: so much sunlight also equals immense heat, so when the solar shingles are being installed, they are attached to a ventilated plywood under decking. Through the plywood also runs all the tiny cables and wires, which end up at the power inverter. Any electricity the shingles form into direct current (DC), the inverter converts to alternating current (AC).
Once the shingles are placed, they are glued down with a heat activated compound that can withstand the heat the panels will be creating. The shingles overlap each other just like the normal asphalt roofing shingles, thus providing the same protection from weather, small animals and other such housing problems. Also, due to the heavy-duty EVA compound, the shingles will not and can not shift in high winds, which will help them last longer than typical roofing shingles.
The average time that the shingles last and work well is approximately twenty years. But if you actually stay in the same house for more than twenty years, you should have no problem replacing any necessary shingles with all the money you will save (and even some you may possibly make by feeding the power company any of your excess energy the small panels create).
Once installed, the solar shingle blends in flawlessly with all other roofing materials, such as the suffet, gutters, and so on. This makes the shingles virtual undetectable as solar panels, making the home appear more traditional instead of overly technical. Due to this very reason these solar panels are truly on the cutting edge of new technology, and are beginning to revolutionize the alternative energy sources more than ever before.
Still A Bit Pricey, But Worth It
Due to the newness of these amorphous solar shinglees , the price to obtain them, and the added cost to install them can be a bit steep for the average person. However, some banks will try to help you with the financing to do so in hopes of making a more green community. These solar panels can also lend you some tax credits and rewards for working on making our planet a better place to live.