Terra Cotta v.s. Black Heliocol Solar Panels


LifeTime Supporter
Jul 27, 2007
Sahuarita, AZ
In my recent pool build our sales person sold us on the Terra Cotta colored solar panels so that they would match our roof tiles better. I agreed but now that I see them on the roof I wish I had just gone black. Our roof tiles are more brown then reddish-brown and the 'terra cotta' solar panels are more orange than anything so in the end I'm left with something that sticks out like a sore thumb but I'm taking an efficiency hit v.s. the black panels. I can't even really see the panels on my 2nd story roof from my yard anyway.

My question is, how big of a difference am I going to see w/ the Terra Cotta panels v.s. black ones? Is it a big difference or is it negligible?



LifeTime Supporter
May 4, 2007
I researched this last year and remember someone stating that it is between 10-15 % less effecient than the black panels. Which in heating water is makes a difference but the workaround was to add 10-15% more panels. If you have the room on your roof, then it is a matter of cost, is it worth to add 1-2 add'tl panels to get the color to match?


LifeTime Supporter
Jul 25, 2007
Alamo, CA
You could either add the 10-15% cost for more panel area or, perhaps, you can work a deal of similar cost with your PB, if the panels are still new, to swap for the black ones.