Investing in solar panels is an excellent long-term move toward a more sustainable and energy-efficient home. But how will they impact your roof? What’s the best roofing material for solar panels?

Deciding on the material that will support your solar investment is an essential step that often goes overlooked yet can significantly impact your system’s functionality and longevity. Here’s what you need to know about roofing materials before installing your solar dreams.

Why the Roofing Material Is Important for Solar Panels

Your home’s roof is the first line of defense against the elements and is crucial in garnering the most out of your solar investment. Different roof materials offer various benefits and considerations for solar installations. The type of material can affect the installation costs, the panel’s performance, the overall environmental footprint, and the long-term viability of your solar system.

Factors To Consider When Choosing a Roofing Material

Choosing a roofing material is not a one-size-fits-all scenario. The process requires careful thought and an understanding of how your selection might affect your solar experience. Here is what you should consider before deciding on a material.

Weight Tolerance

Solar panels can add significant weight to your roof, especially when considering a full installation. You need a material that can handle the load without additional support or reinforcement.

Longevity and Durability

Solar panels usually come with a warranty of around 25 years. The roofing material you choose must have a similar or longer lifespan; otherwise, you may have to uninstall your system to replace your roof.


How easy is it to maintain the roof, and how will such maintenance impact your solar system? Some materials, like metal, require little maintenance, while others, like wood shingles, may need more attention.

Energy Efficiency

The roof material’s ability to reflect or absorb heat will influence your home’s overall energy performance. This will directly impact your cooling needs and the efficiency of the solar panels themselves.

Popular Roofing Materials Used With Solar Panels

Several roofing materials stand out as favored partners for solar panels. Cost, sustainability, and ease of installation heavily influence these selections.

Asphalt Shingles

The most common and cost-effective roofing material, asphalt shingles, offers a balance of function and form. These shingles are lightweight, widely available, and easily installed with solar brackets. Newer asphalt shingles also provide better energy efficiency, reflecting heat away from the home.

Stone-Coated Metal Shingles

Stone-coated metal shingles marry the resilience of steel with the visual appeal of traditional roofing materials. These shingles are designed to withstand the elements and the demands of a solar installation while retaining a low-weight profile that many homeowners find advantageous.

So, what’s the best roofing material for solar panels? While new asphalt shingles or stone-coated metal are great options, remember the factors above when deciding on a material for your home. Selecting a roofing material that will maximize the potential of your solar panels is an important step in any homeowner’s sustainable energy journey.