(A note from Erin: My home is already 100% solar. I still get hate mail for being “smug” on rare occasions and I barely even mention it. I own a 2 bedroom house next to the beach in the hardest hit town of Hurricane Matthew in the US. Not one panel was damaged by the storm despite being on the beach. I have friends who are school teachers and maintenance workers all going solar. I also have driven a solar car since 2005 (a glorified golf cart, although I’ve upgraded a little since then). I do these things because I care about the future of this planet and stopping travesties like the Dakota Pipeline, the Sunoco gasoline spill, the BP Oil disaster in Florida, and so many others.)
Tesla CEO Elon Musk recently showed off the company’s solar roof-top panels, new $5,500 Powerwall 2 high-capacity residential battery pack, and Powerpack 2 for businesses.
During the presentation, Musk displayed a Tuscan-style home with the solar glass tiles on the roof of the garage and to the naked eye, there was no way to tell (the rest of the house had its original tiles). Because the system requires batteries to keep going when the sun goes down, Tesla also introduced a new version of its Powerwall (which now includes a built-in power inverter). The two 14 kWh lithium-ion battery packs inside each pack, which are more than double the capacity of the previous version, will power a four bedroom house with lights, a refrigerator, and other appliances for the whole day.
Musk said that the installed cost will be less than a normal roof and the cost of electricity but there was no exact pricing given as cost will vary by home. The company will sell the tiles directly to customers instead of working with home builders.
They plan to begin installing the glass tiles in summer 2017 and insisted that the roofs will last a very long time: “We expect this to have two or three times the longevity of asphalt. It’s really never going to wear out. It’s got a quasi-infinite lifetime. It’s made of quartz.”
What do you think? Is the investment worth it to you?