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    Photovoltaic shingles

    While solar panels are compatible with many different building structures, some roof-tops simply cannot support solar panels. It may be that the roof is inadequately shaped, or that there are obstructions which prevent mounting of large panels. If you have been told your roof cannot support photovoltaic panels there is no need to give up. You can install photovoltaic roof tiles instead.

    Photovoltaic shingles© solarcentury.co.ukPhotovoltaic roof tiles are about the size of a common roof shingle. Photovoltaic shingles need to be installed by a solar professional, just like a standard solar panel. The good thing about photovoltaic shingles is that multiple units can be placed on the roof in areas where a panel might not be able to fit.

    Like a solar panel, photovoltaic shingles are composed of cells made from layers of silicone or other semi-conducting material. When sunlight hits the photovoltaic shingles, an electric field is created over the layers. The more sunlight that hits the shingles, the more energy is produced. Photovoltaic shingles are plugged into your home's electrical system and produce power for the system.  

    Feed-In Tariff for photovoltaic roof tiles

    On top of energy efficiency, photovoltaic roof tiles are cost-effective as well. Not only can any surplus energy produced by the photovoltaic roof tiles be sold back to the power grid of your particular city or town, but the government's Feed In Tariff scheme will actually provide you with a subsidy for using photovoltaic roof tiles.

    Photovoltaic roof tiles© solarcentury.co.uk

    There are some disadvantage to photovoltaic roof tiles, however. Since they are specialized, the photovoltaic cost is about twice as much as for standard panels. That being said, photovoltaic roof tiles last about 25 years, which is as long as photovoltaic panels. Aside from that, photovoltaic roof tiles require little maintenance other than for a periodic cleaning. You'll also want to trim nearby trees to ensure they don't cover the shingles in their shade.