Can You Get Tesla Solar Panels In The UK?

Many folks have heard the buzz surrounding Tesla’s solar roof panels, and customers love the sleek, subtle look of the energy-saving solar tiles. However, Tesla has faced harsh criticism concerning the rollout of its solar panels. 

Europeans interested in installation got their hopes up when Elon Musk tweeted that he hoped to have solar panels available in 2021. However, as of March 2022, Tesla solar panels are still unavailable to those in the UK. 

After continued rollout delays since 2018, UK customers can sign up for updates on the Tesla site. Because solar panels are available in other parts of the world, hopeful UK customers have the opportunity to see what Tesla got right and what they got wrong. 

In this article, we’ll explore your critical questions regarding Tesla’s solar roof so that when it becomes available in the UK, you’ll be ready to make an educated decision. 

  • Where can you find Tesla solar roof tiles?
  • Is it worth it to get Tesla solar roof tiles in the UK?
  • How much can you expect to pay to get solar panels fitted in the UK?
  • What’s the cost of Tesla solar roof tiles in the UK?

News concerning solar panels is constantly evolving. Thankfully, we’ve researched for you, so you don’t have to!

Tesla Solar Inverter And Ac Disconnect. - Sol Voltaics: Solar Panel Information
Tesla Solar Inverter and AC disconnect – Photo by RickyCourtney

What Are Tesla Solar Roof Tiles?

Let’s ensure we understand this product’s basics before diving any deeper. Unlike traditional solar panels, Tesla’s solar roof tiles are created to look like a typical shingled roof. 

Elon Musk unveiled the Tesla solar roof in 2016 during his “house of the future” presentation. Since then, three roof versions have become available.. The Tesla solar roof V3 boasts easier installation and larger power tiles, among other updates. 

You may not know that there are actually two types of tiles installed: solar and non-solar tiles. However, from the street view, they are supposed to look uniform and identical to one another. 

Tesla’s solar roof comes in a variety of styles and designs. The customer can choose between smooth or textured and Tuscan or slate styles. 

These tiles are made from tempered glass, and Tesla has an impressive warranty to back them up. Tesla claims that this is the most durable roof on the planet and won’t degrade like asphalt or concrete over time.

To back this up, Tesla says, “the glass itself will come with a warranty for the lifetime of your house, or infinity, whichever comes first.” 

Sydney Australia May 5 2018 Tesla Building In Martin Place In Sydney Nsw Australia. - Sol Voltaics: Solar Panel Information
Sydney Australia May 5 2018 Tesla Building In Martin Place In Sydney Nsw Australia.

Where Are Tesla Solar Roof Tiles Available?

Currently, Tesla solar panels are limited to just the United States. However, the rollout for Canada and Europe is in the planning stage. 

Initially, the Tesla solar roof tiles were only available to a select few states in the US. These states included with well-established solar markets, such as California and Arizona. Not only were many homeowners prime candidates in these western, sunny states, but they were close to Tesla’s headquarters and factory. 

Now that Tesla has several worldwide factories, one can hope that solar roof tiles will be available in more countries soon. Currently, solar roof tiles are being manufactured in Tesla’s Gigafactory 2 in Buffalo, New York. 

Although Tesla customers worldwide may feel frustrated, the company recently announced that it expanded to every state in the United States last year. Although it may seem like a small step towards progress, it shows that Tesla is expanding, albeit slowly. 

Tesla Sign From Their Office In 47700 Kato Road
Tesla Sign From Their Office In 47700 Kato Road

Are Solar Panels Worth It in the UK?

Anyone familiar with the UK’s weather may doubt solar panels are a wise investment. Gray, cloudy days are a fact of life, and some may wonder how much power they can produce on a typical overcast day.

As technology continues to improve, so does the efficiency of solar panels. Solar panels today are still effective, even on dark, rainy days. This is because the panels work by absorbing direct or indirect sunlight. 

In addition to improving technology, many grants and financial programs are available that incentivize buyers to make the solar leap. These programs are designed to ease the financial burden of the upfront cost of the panels so that they’re available to a broader audience.

Solar panels are also an asset that reportedly increases property value. As climate change weighs heavier on consumers’ minds, incorporating eco-friendly elements into your home will likely attract buyers. 

Beyond monetary benefits, let’s not neglect the ecological benefits that installing solar panels will provide. By harnessing the sun’s power to run your home, you are reducing your carbon footprint and doing your part to combat climate change. 

Two Rows Of Solar Shingles On A Roof
Two Rows Of Solar Shingles On A Roof (Wikimedia)

Solar Panels vs. Solar Roof Tiles

Most of the solar market belongs to companies making traditional solar panels. However, a select few companies pursue a smaller and more aesthetically pleasing product; solar tiles. While US companies are popping up with their version of the solar tile, they are much harder to come by in the UK. 

Currently, only GB Sol and Solecco Solar are producing solar roof tiles. Wales-based GB Sol has a PV Slate product with a clean, uniform look while providing solar energy. Leeds-based Solecco Solar also offers a solar roof tile with a clean, contemporary finish. 

Unlike solar panels, which have been around for decades, solar roof tiles are considered a new development in the solar world. The first solar panels appeared in New York City in 1884. Solar panels have been used on residential homes regularly since 2005. 

Solar roof tiles are primarily attributed to Elon Musk’s company Tesla. However, the first original patent for solar roof tiles dates back to 1993. In all likelihood, Musk’s company will likely be the one remembered for bringing the product to mainstream culture. 

Solar roof tiles weigh less than traditional panels and are nearly equal in energy output. Many customers love how similar solar roof tiles look to a conventional roof and prefer their aesthetically pleasing look. 

Because solar roof tiles need to cover the entire roof space, new home builders or homeowners already in the market for a new roof are ideal candidates. With traditional solar panels, a new roof is not always necessary as long as the roof is in good shape and can support the panels.

Due to newer technology, less competition, fewer experienced installers, and longer installation times, solar roof tiles usually cost considerably more. 

Tampa Flusa A Tesla Battery Powerwall At The Tesla Dealership In Tampa Fl. Tesla Inc. Is An American Automotive And Energy Company That Specializes In Electric Car And Solar Panels.
Tampa Flusa A Tesla Battery Powerwall At The Tesla Dealership In Tampa Fl. Tesla Inc. Is An American Automotive And Energy Company That Specializes In Electric Car And Solar Panels.

Is Tesla Powerwall Available in the UK?

Yes! The Tesla Powerwall is available in the UK and has been since 2016. The Powerwall is a battery that stores energy from both the grid and solar panels. This feature allows homeowners to have a backup energy source when the grid is down. 

Once the Tesla solar panels are available in the UK, they will be compatible with the Powerwall. There may even be package deals available if bought together. 

How much does a Powerwall cost in the UK? They aren’t cheap. Excluding installation fees, they are going for £8,700. 

How Much Does It Cost to Have Solar Panels Fitted in the UK?

Thankfully, even though Tesla’s product is not yet available in the UK, several options are available on the market to the consumer.

The average cost to go solar in the UK is about £6,000-7,000 for an average home. This estimation is an astounding 60% decrease in price since 2010.

Many factors impact the cost of solar panels. Factors include how large of a system you need, the brand of solar panels, the materials, the installer fees, and the overall quality of the panels. 

When determining the cost, keep your typical electricity usage and the number of occupants in your home. 

How Much Will the Tesla Solar Roof Cost in the UK?

Unfortunately, it’s hard to say until the product gets released in the UK. To further complicate matters, the price of the Tesla solar roof has fluctuated over the years in the US. 

Shipping costs from the US, hiring, and training of installers, and lack of competition will likely not help prices come down.

To estimate possible prices in the UK, let’s look at what a Tesla solar roof is going for in the US. Remember that quotes will vary dramatically based on roof size and what Tesla refers to as “roof complexity.” 

The condition of the previous roof also plays into the price. For example, if the old roof has rotten areas, additional construction must be done to ensure the new roof is strong enough to support the solar tiles. 

According to Forbes, an average Tesla solar roof costs just over $55,300. Convert that to the pound sterling; you have just over £42,000.


General Solar Panel FAQ

What Problems Do Solar Panels Solve?

In environmental terms, solar panels can potentially solve a handful of problems, including;
1. Air pollution
2. Water pollution
3. Greenhouse gases
4. Reduction in fossil fuel use

For individuals, solar energy allows you to become completely self-sufficient when it comes to your electricity needs and can save you a lot of money in the long run.

What Are 3 Important Uses Of Solar Panels?

The three most important uses of solar panels are;
1. Solar electricity. This can be used to power almost any appliance in your home, including TVs, computers, and fridges.
2. Lighting. In addition to the use of low-power, LED lightbulbs, solar panels can provide an efficient, low-cost, and environmentally friendly way to provide lighting to homes. 
3. Portable solar. In our modern, always-connected lives, our phones, tablets, and computers are almost always with us, and all run on batteries. Portable PV chargers can help keep our batteries topped up no matter where we are, as long as there is some sun to charge them.

Do solar panels give you free electricity?

Once the cost of the array is paid in full, the energy it produces is free. There are ongoing maintenance costs, too, such as annual panel cleaning, etc. 

How much will my electric bill be with solar panels?

Suppose your solar array includes a solar battery backup system, and it is large enough to fully cover your energy usage per day. In that case, your monthly electric bill will be next to zero dollars, even with a grid-tied system. 

If your solar array does not include a solar battery backup system, then at night, your house or business will use grid electricity. That cost will vary but expect to pay from 1/3-2/3 of your average electric bill, and that cost will fluctuate seasonally. 

Do you save money with solar panels?

The simple answer is, Yes, you save money with solar panels. There is an initial upfront cost, but since solar panels are warrantied for 25 years, you will save money over time. You will also begin to see monthly savings in energy bills, but there are other ways that solar panels pay you back. Those include:
1. Adding value to your home or commercial building 
2. Monthly decreases in energy costs
3. The ability to add more energy appliances without increased monthly costs
4. The potential for tax credits for going solar

Can solar panels power a house 24-7?

Most definitely! Solar panels can certainly power a house 24-7, with the addition of a high-quality inverter and a suitable battery bank, of course. To power, a house under normal usage will require a massive solar array, though, and there will be a very expensive initial financial outlay.

Do I need to tell my energy supplier I have solar panels?

This depends on where you live, but in most cases, it’s not necessary to inform your energy supplier that you have solar panels. That said, you may be producing excess power with your solar system, in which case you may be able to sell that excess power back to energy companies.

In this case, you’ll naturally need to be in contact with them. 

What Are Solar Cells Known as and Why?

Solar cells are also called photovoltaic (PV) cells. They are called so because the term ‘photovoltaic’ literally means light i.e. photo and electricity i.e. voltaic.

These cells generate electricity through the photovoltaic effect. This effect basically causes the generation of free electrons from the semiconducting silicon material of the solar panel when sunlight hits its surface.

What Type of Solar Panels Are Most Efficient and Why?

There are currently three types of solar panels available in the market that are:
1. Monocrystalline
2. Polycrystalline
3. Thin-filmed

Among these, monocrystalline solar panels are known to be the most efficient among all others.

Does heat enter your home through the roof?

Absolutely. Heat enters your home through your roof, and on a hot day your attic can get up to 150 degrees Fahrenheit or more. Through conduction, heat from the sun warms your roof which then warms your attic and the rest of your home.

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