While solar panels are still the most popular type of solar energy for the home, solar tiles offer a couple of extra benefits. They’re less of a disruption to your roof’s appearance because they often look exactly like normal roof tiles, hence the name ‘solar tiles’.
Unfortunately, you may want to replace your entire roof at the same time, depending how suitable it is for tiles. This does however mean that solar tiles are commonly designed with roofers in mind, so you should find it easy to get your hands on different tile styles which are both practical and that blend in with your roof.
So how much do solar tiles cost?
Unfortunately, solar tiles cost a fair bit more than traditional solar panels. The average cost of installing a domestic solar panel system is £7000, but can be anything between £5500 and £9500. These prices have actually fallen in recent years, but solar tiles cost almost double this amount on average. To help keep your costs down, you should get quotes from at least 3 different suppliers and weigh up who is going to give you the best deal for the price they charge.
Inevitably prices vary between suppliers. When looking for quotes from people you should make sure only to compare the prices of suppliers who are MCS accredited (Microgeneration Certification Scheme). If you buy from MCS accredited suppliers, you can earn money back each year from the government who have agreed to pay households and businesses for all electricity which has been generated by solar power.
The Feed-In Tariff and other savings
The initial cost can be scary, but you can make the cost back and make savings along the way. The bigger and more powerful your system is, the more electricity you can generate and the more you can make back from the government. You can also make money by selling leftover electricity back to the national grid via the Feed-In Tariff. The rate at which you get paid is getting lower and lower every year, so you should invest in solar tiles as soon as possible before the incentives are reduced beyond appeal and the cost of traditional fuel becomes unaffordable.
If you get a system which is eligible for the Feed-In Tariff, you could make savings (plus income) of a combined total of around £645 a year. To get a more accurate idea of the savings you’ll make back on your solar tiles cost, check out the Energy Saving Trust’s solar energy calculator.
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