A new solar shingle installation on the roof of a Nashville home.

Solar panel installation is the ultimate conversation starter with people in your neighborhood. Some of the most common questions that homeowners hear are: 

  • Are solar energy systems expensive? 

  • What is the cost of solar panels? 

  • Can you power your home with solar panels? 

  • Do solar panels lower your energy costs? 

For those who have added solar to their rooftops, you may find them singing the praises of getting clean energy production by utilizing their roof spaces.  

Adding solar is easier than ever. Between government incentives, technological advances, and increasing costs of fossil fuels to heat and cool your home- the time to add solar is now.  

Music City Roofers is proud to install GAF Timberline Solar in the Nashville area. Solar shingles are the perfect fit for homeowners in need of replacing their roof. The innovative solar shingle replaces standard roofing materials with a flush mount solar panel that doubly acts as a roofing shingle.  

Homeowners will not have to add a racking system to their roof as the solar shingle mounts directly to your roof decking to create a seamless integration with your home. The solar shingle is the world's first nailable solar shingle which provides a quicker installation process when compared to rack mount systems.  

Not only do GAF solar shingles have a quicker installation time compared to their competitors, but they also carry a dual warranty. One for solar panels and one for roofing shingle. 

With the various benefits of solar, Tennessee homeowners must ask- is adding solar panels worth it? The team at Music City Roofers will walk you through everything you need to know about solar in TN.  

Everything Your Need to Know About Net Metering in TN 

Net metering is where homeowners that generate excess electricity can send it back to the power grid and receive credit for future electric bills. Net metering usually requires swapping of electric meters to allow the homeowners to pull electric when they need it and send it back when they do not. 

As of this time, Tennessee does not require net metering. That said, some electric providers do have net metering in place. 

If your provider does not offer net metering, homeowners could investigate battery storage systems for their homes. This would allow them to store excess energy to use whenever they need it. A battery storage system can act as a generator but only as long as the batteries contain enough energy to power the home. Additionally, if your home uses an electric vehicle, a battery storage system will allow you to charge your EV using solar generated electricity.  

Do Solar Panels Need Direct Sunlight to Work? 

Solar panels work best with direct sunlight during peak hours from 11 AM to 3 PM (when the sun is highest in the sky). South facing roof tops are preferred, but homeowners can utilize other facing areas of their roof to supplement their solar production.  

Homeowners should be aware of neighboring homes and trees that can restrict the amount of sunlight their roof receives. 

There is a marked difference in solar production during the spring/ summer months when the sun is higher in the sky. 

Solar will still work under cloudy conditions as the sun is still out but shrouded by clouds.  

Will Solar Shingles Work in TN Winters? 

It’s true that the sun is lower in the sky in the winter due to the earth’s tilt. This reduces our sunlight hours which will impact the amount of solar energy that can be harnessed. While there is a reduction of potential sunlight hours, sunlight will still hit the roof of your TN home.  

While the solar production will be less than other months, your solar panels will still produce during the winter.  

Will Adding Solar Shingles Add Value to My TN Home? 

Adding solar panels to your TN home has a hidden benefit, home value and marketability. The National Renewable Energy Laboratory conducted a study and determined that adding solar panels does add value to your home. For every $1 saved using solar panels, you can add $20 in home value.  

In short, if you save $500 a year on electricity by using solar, your home value will increase by $10,000. Not only does your home value increase, homes with solar sell 20% faster than homes without.   

If you’re selling your home with solar shingles or panels, Zillow has found that there are perks associated with marketability. Homes with solar panels sell for 4% more than homes without solar panels.  

Benefits of Rooftop Solar Panels 

The obvious benefit of adding solar is generating electricity while reducing your carbon footprint. Homeowners can start immediately and it’s a great use of your rooftop space. Besides the obvious, what other benefits can homeowners expect from adding solar? Music City Roofers will walk you through some of the pros and cons of switching your TN home to solar. 

Pros of Adding Solar Panels in TN 

  • Crunching the solar numbers makes sense. Solar shingles and solar panels are built to last 25 years. Tennessee is above the national average in terms of electric bill expenditures. In fact, TN ranks 16 in overall cost of utilities. With solar, you can offset electric bills by generating electricity using your roof. Now expand that over 25 years (and factor in rate hikes) and it becomes abundantly clear that adding solar can be extremely beneficial for your home.  

  • With solar production, the price stays the same. If you purchase solar panels and have them installed, they are yours. Meaning that you own the means of production. Whether you pay for them out of pocket or get a solar loan, there aren't any rate increases because you own them.  

  • The Federal Tax Credit for Solar Photovoltaics. This is a big one that you do not want to miss out on. Homeowners adding solar have until 2032 to get a tax credit on their solar installation. This tax credit is not small change. It is 30% credit until 2032 and will drop to 26% in 2033 and 22% in 2034. Consult your tax professional with any questions surrounding the tax credit.  

  • Sunshine matters. TN averages around 205 sunny days per year. The national average of sunny days happens to be 205. This is an ample amount of sun to increase your energy efficiency by adding solar.  

  • Adding value to your TN home. Going green increases the value of your TN and makes it more marketable if it’s going up for sale.  

  • Reduces reliance on fossil fuels. Simply put, solar is renewable.  

Cons of Adding Solar Shingles in TN 

  • Installation costs are higher than roof shingles. An increase in average cost should be expected as adding solar is considered an upgrade over shingles or metal roofs. However, the increase in cost should be weighed against total savings for the duration of the solar system.  

  • Lack of statewide net metering. While the lack of net metering is unfortunate, some individual electric companies do provide it. It truly depends on your provider. However, homeowners can harvest their solar power by using a battery storage system. 

  • Adding solar shingles requires roof replacement. Solar shingles are a great addition to your roof. It is important to note that solar shingles require a total tear off of your existing roof. If your roof is newer and has many years of life ahead of it, we will not recommend adding solar shingles. Homeowners can explore the route of adding solar panels, which do not require a complete tear off. 

Should You Install Solar Panels in Your Home? 

We like to think of adding solar panels like this.  

  • Do you need a new roof? 

  • Can you use the tax credit to go solar? 

  • Are you interested in lowering your utility bills? 

  • Do you want to add value to your home? 

If you answered yes to any of these questions, then we should chat about our solar solutions.  

Music City Roofers Are the Leading Nashville Roofing Company and Solar Shingle Installers 

With our Nasville roofing contractors, we’ve made a great career out of being a top-rated roof installer. We know the ins and outs and how to install roofs correctly. That’s why choosing a roofer like Music City Roofers to install solar shingles makes sense. We won’t cut corners or make an inexperienced and expensive mistake.  

If you’re in the market for a new roof and are curious about upgrading your roof to GAF Timberline Solar, give us a call. We’ll get you scheduled for a free roof inspection.