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Old 10 May 2017, 08:22 PM
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Errata Errata is offline
Join Date: 02 August 2005
Location: Santa Barbara, CA
Posts: 13,048

Originally Posted by thorny locust View Post
there may be people who really don't like the look of panels.
There are definitely people who don't like the look of the panels. Different circumstances mean they can be more visible on some houses than others. But if they're going to be highly visible, a lot of people don't like the look of something huge and plasticky that appears to have been tacked on to a completely different style of roof as an afterthought. And even if the homeowner doesn't mind, it doesn't mean it won't affect the resale value of their home or be rejected by an HOA.

I don't think many people are going to rush out and redo their roofs immediately, but having a product like this available means that people can start to design new homes with these in mind. They can design the exterior of their home to integrate these seamlessly into it, so they look like they belong. On a contemporary home they could potentially look nicer than boring composite.

Personally, my house is on the South side of the street, with a sharply pitched roof, so the part of the roof that gets good sun exposure is on the opposite side that you can't see from the street. So I don't really care what solar panels look like. I'd shop for panels based purely on function and value. But under different circumstances looks could be a consideration.

As of right now, electricity is just so cheap and I use natural gas appliances where I can, so it would take forever for any of this stuff to pay for itself. And I use electricity more at night so I'd need good battery capacity, which isn't cheap. I like the idea of going solar, but the technology needs to mature a bit before it's a home run looking solely at the economics. I'm pretty sure it will reach a point that I can justify doing the work within the coming decades.
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