Since 2008, solar power in the United States has become more prevalent, affordable, and accessible with installations growing 35-fold to about 62.5 GW today.
The type of solar panels you have on your house speaks volumes about you. By using solar panels, you are telling people that you are conscious about your wallet and you care about the environment. However, there are people who think these panels are too conspicuous.
Why do people find it hard to appreciate solar panels despite their long-term cost-efficiency and eco-friendliness?
The truth is, some people do not think solar panels were cool because they are not aesthetically pleasing.
As a homeowner, it is only natural that you want more than just a solar system that powers your home appliances. You want to take advantage of the many benefits while adding some glamour to your home. To do this, it is crucial that the installation of your solar panels is done smartly and subtly.
Consequently, the aesthetics of the solar panels is now a priority, alongside cost competitiveness and efficiency.
Before we continue, here are some of the things this article will cover:
- How solar panel aesthetics are changing the solar industry;
- The different aesthetic options for solar panels
- What to look for in the aesthetics of your solar panel
Let’s dive in!
How Are Solar Panel Aesthetics Changing the Solar Industry?
In research carried out on The relative Importance of Aesthetics in the Adoption Process of Solar Panels in the Netherlands, the definition of aesthetics, when applied to solar panels, is: “for the eye beautiful things, because they are in harmony with the environment and this makes it a pleasure to watch.”
The research indicated that there are several attributes that influence consumers’ purchase of solar panels. These attributes are:
- Payback period
- Reliability of the performance of the system
- Expected service
So, when you are presented with solar panels that exhibit the same functionality and price range, what is the next thing to look out for?
The most attractive panel in the aesthetic sense, of course!
Thanks to advancements in technology, we now have many solar panel options with a wide variety of well-made modules for homeowners and other customers to consider.
Because of the high demand for better looking solar panels, most manufacturers now emphasize more on aesthetics when marketing their solar panels. These panels have also been tested and proven to work very well under extreme conditions.
By leveraging aesthetics, these manufacturers can appeal to homeowners who are interested in how their panels look, as well as their efficiency.
Different Aesthetic Options for Solar Panels
Have you been put off when you look at the solar panels on your roof?
You are not alone. A good number of people also worry about what their solar panels look like. To solve this problem, we have come up with a wide range of panels that you can choose from. This variety ensures that you do not lose interest in becoming energy-independent.
Because people have different perceptions of beauty, we have come up with innovative solar panels that will positively impact your perception of this new way of acquiring energy-independence.
Solar panel aesthetics fall into 2 broad categories, namely:
- Standard solar panels
- Non-standard solar panels
Let’s take a closer look at the aesthetics of these solar panels.
1. Standard solar panels
This category includes some of the basic designs for people who love and appreciate simple, regular solar panels.
Silver frame with white backing and wires:
This is often the least expensive design you can find from most manufacturers. It has an aluminum frame that stands out, while you can see the white backing sheet between the cells.
Such a set up does a great job of reflecting more heat, thereby keeping the panel cooler and increasing its efficiency. Since they also look quite industrial, a lot of inner-city settings prefer to use them since they fit in perfectly with the trending industrial look.
Do you live in a high-density urban area?
This solar panel, with its silver frame, white backing, and wires, will look great on your metal roofs.
Are you thinking of the most cost-effective way to power your warehouse?
This is a great option for you. It is cheap, very efficient, valuable, and generates high energy.
Black frame, with white backing, and wires
This design was created as a quick response to the demands of consumers who prefer their roof looking less conspicuous. Black frames are popular among people living in modern houses located in suburban areas.
The black color does not affect the performance of the solar panels. Instead, the harsh edge accompanying silver-framed panels is replaced with a black frame.
It looks aesthetically pleasing, remains efficient, has more value, and is slightly pricier than its silver-framed counterpart.
Black frame with white backing but no wires
Enlightened Solar has a beautiful solution for people who need lovely solar panels without the grids.
What is so special about these panels?
The black frame, white backing, and no wires solar panels are designed to hide the wires under the panels. Patented technology is required to make this possible. As a result, the price is higher, and above the paygrade of the average homeowner.
Don’t let the higher price scare you. You will get a lot of value for your money because of the panel’s exceptional power generation and excellent build quality.
Have you been wondering about the best way to enhance your light or old grey slate roofs?
This type of solar panels will give your slate roofs a grey sheen that complements the entire roof and make you look classier.
All black with wires
Are you in need of a less conspicuous style?
Then check out the solar panels that use a black backing sheet with a white one. This is a beautiful way to upgrade your panels.
On the downside, the operating temperatures will increase, resulting in reduced performance.
If you use traditional slate roofs and you have an average budget, you may want to get the all-black solar panels with wires.
You may not be able to pick out your panels from the roof because of the way they blend into the roof. The wires are only visible when you are up close.
All black without wires
Enlightened Solar has come to the aid of customers who want a budget-friendly energy solution that offers plenty of value and high performance, while blending in exceptionally well with modern slate roofs. All black solar panels with no wires look a lot like Velux windows.
Solar PV with colors
Would you love to add some color to your home?
Why not consider solar PV panels in any hue you prefer. With these beautiful panels, you get to either stand out or blend in. Whichever you prefer.
It has some value, looks good, is efficient, and comes at a price that will not break the bank.
2. Non-standard solar panels
Must your solar panels be placed on your roof?
Definitely not! If you love your roofs so much and don’t want the regular solar panels to detract from their beauty, there are creative ways in which you can mount your solar panels.
Let’s see the non-standard options for mounting solar panels.
In-roof mounting solar PV
How do you feel about replacing some parts of your roof material with PV solar panels?
Although setting your solar PV panels flush with the roof or replacing some sections of the roof is costlier, you can offset this cost by not using any roof fabric. As a matter of fact, if you are planning on building a new house, consider using in-roof solar PV.
Sometimes, the in-roof mounting system is referred to as semi-integrated or roof-integrated mounting systems.
This type of solar panel aesthetics will reduce the cost of buying roofers and tiles/slates. You can also decrease your heating bills by installing in-roof solar PV with heat recovery technology.
We know that solar PV systems cannot be 100% efficient without good ventilation. This is the main reason why the performance of in-roof solar PV mounting is about 5% lower.
Solar PV roofs
What about having your roof constructed entirely from Solar PV?
You can go all the way!
Instead of using the conventional roofing fabrics, you can have the top of your house covered with Solar PV material.
This new non-standard solar panel system looks amazing and when set up properly, it can be very efficient. It is expected to be the trendiest thing by the next decade. You too can join this new trend. Talk to us. We can help you envision new possibilities for your home.
Slate and tile Solar PV
Thinking of the best solar panels for your traditional properties and listed buildings?
Try slate and tile solar PV.
These solar-powered slate and tiles look great and are quite inconspicuous. However, they are expensive and not extremely efficient.
While the reduced ventilation is not so good for performance, it can be improved by using good PV software.
It is definitely a great option if you want to change the way your property looks or if you live in a conservation area.
Ground-mounted solar panels
You can decide to have your solar panels mounted on the flat ground instead of tampering with your roof. Installing large ground-mounted solar panels will require the use of frames that are constructed using ground-screwed or pile-driven posts.
Another option is to build the frames on concrete foundations below the solar array.
What To Look For in the Aesthetics of Your Solar Panel
Aesthetics have become a primary concern for people who are considering installing a solar system in their homes.
Are you still unsure what you should look out for in a better looking solar panel system?
Here are some key features that a beautiful solar array should have:
1. It should hide all unpleasant roof characteristics
There are many aspects of the roof that homeowners find unpleasant to even look at, which typically deteriorate over time. These include discoloration, roof sag, fading or rusting, and plumbing vents.
An expert will ensure that the system is properly designed, modifying the plumbing vents in such a way that they will accommodate the solar panels and become completely invisible to anyone looking at the roof from the ground.
There are solar racking systems with height adjustment capabilities that make it possible to flush systems even when the roof is wavy. Also, a good solar system will hide any discoloration and/or fading that roofs experience after some time. Furthermore, it will shield the roof from moisture and sunlight that cause roof deterioration.
2. It should hide the solar components
A good solar system needs many mechanical and electrical components to function properly. However, when these components are visible, they don’t look good at all.
You should ensure that the mechanical attachments and junction boxes are inside the array where they will not be seen. As much as possible, run the electricals through the attic so that there will be no need to use rooftop conduit runs. Most national installation companies ignore this.
Also, check to be sure that the systems are designed in a way that reduces electrical components.
3. The solar panels should be properly and carefully designed and installed
If your solar panels are not properly designed, you will get a system layout with a jagged and unprofessional appearance.
The expert designers at Enlightened Solar have the best arrangement of solar panels. First, they design it carefully, then they install it neatly and with the utmost care. In the end, you will have well-arranged solar panels that look organized.
You need our experts to mount your panels in any of the ways that will be aesthetically appealing to you.
So, What is the Ultimate Solar Panel Aesthetics?
Clearly, there are a myriad of aesthetic options when it comes to solar panels, each with its own frame, cell type, and backing sheet. For now, we have many creative ways of mounting these solar panels, and we are looking forward to what the future holds in this ever-changing solar panel market.
If you are at a loss as to which aesthetic option will work best for your roofing type or you are wary of choosing aesthetics over quality, efficiency, and price, we’d love to help you.
Our designs at Enlightened Solar are created by experts with decades of experience in residential design. Also, we offer the best value at a reasonable price with mouth-watering warranties. If you work with us, we will help you to successfully manage your entire solar project.