Do Solar Panels Cool Your Roof?

By Kami Turky

Last Updated:

The answer to this question is yes, solar panels can cool your roof.

However, they do not directly make your roof cooler.

They absorb heat from the sun and reflect sunlight away from your roof, providing you with a second layer of roofing.

In this post, we will talk about many factors that can affect whether or not solar panels do in fact cool your roof and how do they reduce roof heat.

So without further ado, let’s jump into it.

Why Do Roofs Get So Hot?

To understand how solar panels reduce your roof heat, first, you need to know what causes roofs to get hot.

Roofs can get too hot for many reasons such as:

1. Color Of Your Roof

Without a doubt, the color of your roof does affect how much heat is absorbed into your attic.

Recent studies showed that the plywood under dark roofs in direct sunlight is consistently 10 to 15°F hotter than the plywood boards under light colored roofs.

This is due to the fact that light colors tend to reflect light (heat) while dark colors tend to absorb more light, resulting in more heat trapped in the roof and flow into your attic.

2. The Roofing Material

The second reason that cause your roof to get so hot is your roofing material.

For instance, homes with metal roofs tend to have much cooler attics than homes with asphalt roofs.

Related article: Can you put solar panels on a metal roof?

This is because asphalt can only reflect about 30% of light that hits your house, so the other 70% won’t be reflected, heating your roof and attic.

Metal roofs, on the other hand, are more like mirrors, which means that they are extremely good at reflecting light.

In fact, metal roofs can reflect up to 70% of the sunlight!

For this reason, many people who live in very sunny states such as Florida prefer metal roofs.

3. Your Roof Construction

Anyone who works in the roofing business will tell you that proper roof ventilation is the greatest method to ensure your house stays cool in the summer.

If your home is well-constructed and your attic has enough insulation, as well as adequate ventilation, it will allow excess heat to escape, which will significantly reduce your roof heat and keep your home cool.

Related article: Can you put solar panels on a shake roof?

Do Solar Panels Generate Heat?

Many people do believe that solar panels generate heat but that’s a very common misconception.

Solar panels work by converting sunlight into usable electricity, it has nothing to do with heat.

In fact, they do absorb and reflect sunlight (heat) that otherwise would have been passed to your roof, preventing excess heat from increasing your home temperature.

Additionally, recent studies showed that solar panels don’t only cool your roof during the day, they also prevent heat from escaping at night, when it’s cooler, reducing your heating costs in the winter even more.

How Do Solar Panels Reduce Roof Heat?

As we already mentioned above, solar panels do not directly make your roof cooler.

Instead, they absorb and reflect sunlight back into the pace, preventing them from passing to your roof, which as a result, reduces your roof heat.

So in other words, when you install solar panels, you will have 2 layers of roofing that won’t only reduce your roof heat, but also add another layer of insulation against weather conditions such as rain, wind, and snow.

Last Words

Solar panels don’t only save money by producing clean, cheap energy, they also increase your home’s insulation efficiency, which can significantly reduce your heating expenses, resulting in even more savings.

Do you have any more questions about solar panels and roofs?

If so, please share your thoughts with us in the comments section below.

In the end, we really hope you enjoyed this article as much as we did, and stay tuned for more awesome articles from our team at Solar Energy Hackers.

Kami Turky

Kami is a solar engineer with nearly a decade of experience in researching, testing, and reviewing various solar products. He has also provided technical consultation to several organizations on the best ways to incorporate solar energy into their operations. When he’s not busy helping others find the best solar solutions, Kami enjoys spending time outdoors, hiking, camping, and exploring the natural wonders of his home state.

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