If you are one of the many homeowners considering the installation of solar panels on your home’s rooftop, then undoubtedly one of the burning questions on your mind is whether the pros of solar energy outweigh the cons when it comes to residential solar powers systems for homes.
Let’s examine the main benefits and drawbacks of solar energy systems to help you make a well-informed decision:
Your options for building integrated photovoltaic solar roofs have expanded with Suntegra, CertainTeed Appolo, and Luma Solar tiles to compete with other PV solar products currently being installed.
This guide covers the currently available and newly emerging BiPV / roof integrated PV (RiPV) solar shingle options, their costs, availability in specific markets within the US, and pros and cons of each option.
The table below includes the cost info and availability details for the top four leading RiPV competitors:
Cost per sq.ft.
Cost per watt*
2,750 sq.ft. roof
CertainTeed Apollo II Shingle
$17.25 – $22.00
$6.40 – $8.00
$47,230 – $60,500
CertainTeed Apollo II Tile
$20.88 – $27.37
$7.65 – $10.00
$57,420 – $75,281
Dow PowerHouse II) (Discontinued due to bankruptcy)
$15.00 – $20.00
$41,250 – $55,000
$15.52 – $17.4
$5.70 – $6.40
$42,694 – $47,850
$16.80 – $21.30
$6.16 – $7.81
$46,200 – $58,575
Tesla Solar Tile
$32.00 – $42.00
$88,000 – $115,500
Note: the above figures are baseline costs (estimated). The actual costs can, in some cases, be up to 25% higher, depending on the particulars of the jobs including more complex roofs and/or in areas with high cost of living and in major coastal cities.
All costs include what is known as BOS, or balance of system, costs. These include the connectors, wiring and electrical inverter required for the installation. They do not factor storage battery costs ($7,500 – $9,000 for most systems).
Federal tax credits for the installation of solar power equipment remain in effect, and there is significant money to be saved.
This guide to the Federal solar investment tax credits gives you what, how, and how much can be saved when you install solar electric panels or BiPV solar tiles aka solar photovoltaics or a solar hot water system on your residence. Saving money at tax time has never been easier – and this is a very good time to consider going solar.
What is the Federal Solar Investment Tax Credit?
Since Congress passed the Energy Policy Act of 2005, the Residential Renewable Energy Tax Credit has allowed homeowners to deduct a percentage of the installed cost of a solar PV system for their home. It was originally set to expire after 2007 but has since been extended several times. The current expiration date is December 31, 2023. Will it be extended again? Probably, but it’s a risk to wait.