Watch out, Tesla!
In recent weeks, Tesla has received copious amounts of attention for its new solar roofs – and for good reason. However, what if we were to inform you that one of its main competitors has developed a new roof that is 33% cheaper and can be installed in half of the time? Caught your attention yet? Keep reading…
Forward Labs’ new solar roof technology blends right in with traditional roofs but is made of monocrystalline solar cells that have a higher density than typical solar roofing options.Tesla’s solar roof may be made of individual shingles, but Forward Labs’ standing-seam metal roof is one large, layered piece. In a result, it can be installed in just a few days – half of the time as other solar roofs.
The tempered glass surface has an “optimal chromatic cloaking” below the metal roof. Though the roof is sold in eight colors, any color could technically be possible due to the chromatic layer.
A selling point of Forward Labs’ solar roof is that it costs 33% less than a Tesla version. This makes it very cost-effective. Zach Taylor, The CEO of the company, explains that the solar roof costs $8.50 per square foot, which equates to $3.25 per watt.
“The way we achieved such fantastic cost savings was fairly simple. We use more affordable materials than our competitors and employ standard manufacturing processes. The roof’s installation process is simple and quick—we can install our system in half the time that other companies can. The benefit to homeowners is a return on their investment that cuts the usual solar payback time in half,” explained Taylor.
Tesla’s solar roof has a lifetime warranty, granted, but Forward Labs’ version is very easy to fix. If a panel breaks, for instance, it can be popped out and easily replaced with a new one. Best of all, each installation can provide decades of solar power.
The aesthetic is also a pleasing aspect, as the roof looks identical to other metal roofs. This means residents don’t need to worry about passing a Home Owner’s Association inspection.
Taylor told Green Tech Media that the company wants to do the right thing for the right reason. Audaciously, he claimed Tesla’s design is the “wrong thing for the right reason.” Said Taylor,
“It’s wrong to devalue people’s houses with something that doesn’t look good. It’s wrong to put holes in roofs; it’s wrong to go to war with homeowner associations; and it’s wrong to try to ram something down people’s throats that they don’t want.”
As TreeHugger reports, the Palo Alto-based startup is presently working with conventional asphalt shingle companies to recycle scavenged roofing materials. Reservations to begin installations will begin in 2018 and can be secured with a $1,000 refundable deposit.
Visit the company’s website to learn more.
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