Solar Dual-Purpose Achitecture

by Ken Giustino
For years I’ve been interested in solar power. Each time I looked into it the price of a system, even with the tax incentives, with the cost of the lone (15 to 25 years) to pay off the system it would leave me with a higher power payment than I had before. The salesperson said that I would save money in the long run because the cost of power will continue to rise. “Fair enough” But I was looking for more than that, so I waited for the technology to improve.
The panels, like a roof, have a life span. So, if you invest solar on top of an existing roof you want to be sure it is in good shape, having a comparable life span. After 25 years the panels are less productive, but still produce, and if the roof becomes compromised the solar panels would have to be removed to repair the roof. One of my concerns was that after 15 or 20 years of having an old solar system on the roof, it could hurt the property value.
I have an indoor pool and had the roof replaced about 8 years ago, but some of the skylights leaked and compromised the rafters and the inertia celling; it needed to be completely replaced. This was also the part of the house that gets the best sun, so I thought it may be time to incorporate solar into the project. The solar incentives do include the cost of bringing the roof up to par so the roof would match the life span of the solar panels. The problem being the skylights would occupy 40% of the space which would be beneficial for having enough solar panels to make worthwhile power for the investment.

There is one company that incorporated solar panels into sunrooms. They worked with me to prefab the frame that would hold a modified solar panel of my choice. The panel was constructed of two pieces of glass with the solar cell mounted in-between leaving the space around the cells transparent and the final thickness measured 3/8” thick. Then I had a glazier add a ¼” piece of glass with an air space to it to make a 1” thick insulated unit that could be used as the roof glass. I used forty Prism 72 cell bifacial 365-watt Panels. With full sun the 40-panel system can produce 14,600W DC.

Optional Ridge Vent System creates airflow throughout the enclosure

The cost of the structure and the solar equipment is eligible for Federal and State rebates. Federal Solar Investment Tax Credits have been extended for this year, for the third year in a row.  The 26% federal solar tax credit is available for purchased home solar systems installed by December 31, 2022.  NY State Solar Energy System Equipment Tax Credit is 25%. This state solar tax credit is available for purchased home solar systems in New York. (Max. $5,000 state tax reduction.)  These incentives not only help the customer with state-of-the-art solar equipment, but can also knock a chunk off the price off the entire project…design, materials, site work, and installation!

This can be a dual-purpose home addition & solar power for your home, that can at the same time increase your real-estate value. A new addition can be a living room, solarium, family spot, dining area, carport, or personal hideaway. This system is unique to the solar market and will add a beautifully unique living space to your home!
To learn more about the possibilities or schedule an appointment contact Ken Giustino at 631-668-5077  or