Roofs are important to the home, generally speaking. Not only do they keep in heat, protect from elements, and represent 40% of the visual exterior thus playing a role in aesthetics, but they can also lower your energy bills.
In more ways than one.
In the last few months, Tesla announced its intention to work with Panasonic on a large factory in Buffalo, NY for solar panels. The partnership caught a lot of attention, especially with the expected 1,400 jobs to be brought to the area.
But recently there has been a challenge to the two technology giants in the form of a startup company called Forward Labs. The startup claims that it can install their product in half the time that Tesla can and that it is 33% cheaper than the technology giants.
The startup also has added creative colors and designs to their solar panels, hoping to stand out from their competition by being cheaper, and more creative.
Zach Taylor, Forward Labs CEO, believes that it is the right thing to do, to offer more options for people’s homes, with less invasive methods.
“It’s wrong to devalue people’s houses with something that doesn’t look good. It’s wrong to put holes in roofs; it’s wrong to go to war with the homeowner associations, and it’s wrong to try to ram something down people’s throats that they don’t want.”
This was in response to his company’s choice of design, which is a standing-seam design which aims to avoid drilling holes in roofs.
The Forward Labs system is cooled passively through gaps below the panels, and if a panel breaks, it can be popped out and replaced by a new one. The roof looks identical to other metal roofs, so it could easily pass a Home Owner’s Association’s regulation and inspection.
The company is also working with traditional asphalt shingle companies to recycle removed roofing materials.