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How Much Is The Cost To Install Solar Panels

How Much Does Solar Panel Installation Cost

How Much Does it Cost to Install Solar Panels?

The cost of installing a solar panel system is built into the price for most solar companies.

If a company is advertising the price for a 6.6kWh solar panel system as being $5,899, this price includes installation after the rebate.

Any solar installer claiming they will charge you extra to install the system is most likely a scammer.

You are not able to legally install a solar panel system and claim the rebate as the installation needs to be done by a certified installer.

Solar Panel Cleaning: $300$600 Per Year

It costs an average of $150 per clean to have your solar panels thoroughly cleaned. Considering that your system will lose roughly 1% efficiency every month when they are cleaned by rainwater alone, this means that solar panel cleaning costs are a worthwhile investment.

You should aim to get them cleaned quarterly or at the very least once per year. You could always clean them yourself, however.

How Does Sunlight Amount Affect Solar Panels

Different areas of the United States receive more or less sunlight compared to other areas. The amount of sunlight you receive directly correlates with how many solar panels you will need.

Typically, southern states get more sun than northern states. But southern states with higher altitudes and less cloud coverthink of Arizona and New Mexicoget more energy from the sun than states such as Florida or Georgia. So, for the same size house, you would generally need more solar panels in Georgia than you would in Arizona.

Remember, the sun may be shining, but if it is behind a cloud, youre not getting the same amount of solar energy absorbed by your solar PV system. This means that a solar panel in San Diego will produce more energy in a year than the same exact solar panel located in Seattle.

The image below will help you determine the solar energy, known as solar insolation, in your area. Exploring your sun number score should also be helpful. If your roof does not get a good amount of sunlight and you live on a good size amount of land, you may have other options for mounting solar panels elsewhere with better sunlight.

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What Can Affect How Much I Get Paid For My Solar Energy

The main factor that affects what youre paid is how much energy you produce. Secondary to that is what you get paid for it. But of course how much energy you produce to sell isnt the same as the energy produced by your solar panels. You have to factor in how much you use too.

What you use is important as it can determine what you have left to sell back. So by using most of your power during the day, when there is solar, you stand to make more than at night depending on if you have battery storage. As otherwise that power is lost and youll be charged for what you need from the grid during those dark hours when youre not generating power.

As mentioned above the company that you sell to is also important as the rates of payment vary wildly from as low as 1.5p/kWh to 20p/kWh.

Of course the initial outlay affects all this too. Spend more and get the maximum number of solar panels and youre going to produce a lot more power than you need, meaning you have more to sell. But with the average charge for electricity greater than the amount paid to buy it back, youre still looking at a while to pay back the initial solar panel cost.

Reduce Or Eliminate Your Energy Bill

How Much Does It Cost To Install Solar Panels?

If you plan to be in your home for the long haul, rooftop solar could help you reduce your monthly expenses even before its paid off. The cost of traditional energy is rising every year, but your monthly payments towards your solar energy system will remain the same throughout. For every year you stay in your home, you get closer to paying off your solar energy system, and when thats complete, the energy your home generates is yours to keep.

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How Long Does It Take To Break Even On The Cost Of My Solar Panels

It can take years to break even on the cost of your solar panels and their installation cost. If we take a typical 3.5kWh system, which will cost you about £4,800 to get fully installed and ready to go, it can take between nine and 21 years to pay it back.

This depends on a number of factors including where you live, how much electricity produced and when youre using it. Then, of course, there is the amount youre getting paid for the energy you sell back under the SEG.

  • If you live in London you can save up to £440 on electricity bills and export as much as £125 on the SEG. At the cost of a £4,800 system you would have it repaid in just under nine years.
  • Go further north to Stirling and that can be different. There you can save up to £412 on bills and earn up to £95 on the SEG. Based on the same solar panel installation cost this can be paid back in 10 years.

Both these examples use favourable examples with the biggest bill savings and the most SEG payments.

What Is The Roi On Solar Panels

You can calculate the return on investment for installing solar panels by calculating your total payback. Calculate the amount you spent to install a solar panel system and then figure out the amount you will save on energy bills monthly. These two numbers show how quickly your savings will cover your initial costs. Electricity rates will vary by region, being higher in the Northeast than in the Northwest. Solar tends to be more cost effective where electricity prices are high and sunshine is abundant.

40 percent of homeowners

Also Check: How Much Solar Power Per Square Foot

Start Your Solar Journey On Energysage

The best way to get the most competitive prices for solar is to compare multiple quotes. EnergySage is the nations online Solar Marketplace: when you sign up for a free account, we connect you with solar companies in your area, who compete for your business with custom solar quotes tailored to fit your needs. Over 10 million people come to EnergySage each year to learn about, shop for, and invest in solar. .

Six Things To Consider Before Buying Solar Panels

How Much Does it Cost to Install a Solar Energy System in 2021?

Before buying solar panels, make sure:

  • Your roof is suitable for solar panels. Solar panels should be installed on a south-facing roof , at an angle between 10 and 60 degrees. Your roof shouldn’t be covered in shade from trees or buildings.
  • You have carried out a structural inspection of your roof. Have your roof surveyed to make sure there is no damage that could compromise your solar panel installation, such as water damage. Any problems should be fixed before you buy solar panels.
  • Your roof tiles are in good condition. Solar panels last for around 25 to 30 years, so if your roof tiles are already over 15 years old, it might be worth getting them replaced before you buy solar panels. It will be harder to repair/replace roof tiles once solar panels have been installed.
  • You’ve considered what size solar panel system is right for you. Make sure you buy solar panels that cover your household’s energy needs. After all, you don’t want to install solar panels that produce far too much electricity, or worse still, not enough. Check how much electricity you use by looking at your energy bills.
  • You’ve thought about whether to install a solar battery at the same time. Solar batteries enable you to become more self-sufficient by storing the electricity your solar panels generate. It’s much more difficult to retrofit a solar battery to solar panels which have already been installed.
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    Solar Panels Cost Per Square Foot Guide

    So, how much do solar panels cost per square foot?

    Well, this is not always a straightforward situation as many of us might want it to be.

    The cost of solar panel installation is influenced by various factors.

    For example, you might want to look at the size of your house and its energy needs, location, solar panel brand, etc. Labor costs will also determine your total installation costs as some professionals might be more expensive than others.

    This means that even with the cost of a solar panel, so many other things come into influence the overall installation costs.

    Generally, the average solar panel installation cost ranges between $10,626 and $26,460, after tax credit. These are costs for a system between 6kW to 12Kw, which is capable to power most average homes.

    As for the return on investment, it takes between 7 and 12 years to cover that cost. This is considering that solar energy will help you save $600 to $2,000 annually on electricity costs.

    Solar Panels Tier 1 Tier 2 & Tier 3 Cost Comparison

    Solar panel manufactures are broken up into tier 1, tier 2, and tier 3. These tiers basically separate the larger companies from the smaller ones. Another way to say it is Tier 1 are bigger and more well-known producers like Panasonic, Trina, LG, Canadian Solar, etc. and their solar panels cost more than tiers 2 and 3.

    This is not to say other manufactures produce solar panels of lower quality, its just the tier ones have been at it for a while not as with a warranty that lasts 25 years, you want to be sure the company is still going to be here if you want to make a claim in 10 years time. So you will pay less for tier 2 and 3 panels, but what is the real cost if you cant claim on the warranty?

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    Finance Options For Solar Panels

    There are a number of companies offering finance for solar technology in the United Kingdom. Finance, in the form of loans and leasing agreements, is available for domestic, commercial and industrial installations, in both the private and public sectors. Finance for renewable energy technologies allows customers to avoid large upfront costs and make payments out of the income from any Feed-in tariffs, as well as energy bill savings.

    Finance may be offered on a range of bases, each offering varying levels of financial risk and reward, as well as varying interest rates. Typically, the finance company will provide the money to fund the cost of installation in return for payments spread over a period of time. Depending on the type of agreement, the client will most likely own the technology from the outset.

    The arrangements offered by finance companies will vary, and each company will offer different advice. It is therefore advisable to obtain quotes and agreement terms from a range of companies. They should be based on clients energy needs and financial situation. Caution should also be taken when calculating ones ability to make repayments, as the returns offered by some renewable technologies depend in large part on the weather. Remember that if using finance arrangements this may impact on your future benefits and savings from having the solar panels and this should be carefully considered.

    Look Here for some UK companies offering finance for renewable technologies.

    Three Case Studies Of Solar Panel System Costs

    How Much Does It Cost to Install Solar Panels 2021
    • Starting small, if you want a minimal install of a 1kW system, that needs around eight square metres of roof space, this will cost around £1,840. That amount of power is super minimal though and is likely only to cover bills for a person living alone.
    • Jump up to a couple, with a 2kW system and theyre going to need around 12 square metres of roof space and a system that will cost about £3,680. Again this is likely to cover electricity bills but not produce too much more for the SEG payments.
    • Go for a larger three bed family home and its going to be close to the 4kW system youll want if you plan to cover bills and make money back from the SEG. This will need a 20 square metre roof space and should cost around £6,000.

    The location you have these installed likely wont change the price too much but based on the amount of sun you get, it can affect how much you stand to save in bills and make in selling back electricity to the grid. This is so varied its best to go for a local free quote to find out the potential in the area you are.

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    Not All Homes Are Suitable For Solar Panels

    To maximise what your panels can make, it’s best to make sure your home is right for them:

  • You usually need a predominantly south-facing roof. If your roof faces south-west or west you’ll still get some benefit, but it may be less effective, and you might not get the maximum savings.
  • Your roof should be unshaded between 10am and 4pm. While some early or late shading from other buildings or trees is OK, during the peak period for daylight you want the panels to be out of any shade.
  • You need a fair bit of space. Solar panels typically take up two square metres each, so the size of your roof matters.
  • Your roof needs to be in good condition. Make sure you’ve had an inspection carried out to ensure your roof isn’t damaged, as this could affect the installation. If you have old tiles, it may be worth getting them replaced before your panels are installed.
  • It’s best to have a diagonal roof to catch the most rays. If you want to install panels on a flat roof it could cost more, as you may need fixings to hold the panels in place.
  • Understanding The Solar Investment Tax Credit

    As we alluded to earlier, the ITC has been an overall boon to the expansion and health of the solar industry. As of 2021, the ITC reduces the cost of installing solar panels by 26%, and its a large reason the solar industry has consistently experienced a 42% annual growth rate for the past decade.

    Unfortunately, the residential ITC is set to completely expire by 2024, with the ramp down already happening now. Thankfully, solar panel installations costs overall have decreased during the life of the ITC, but the solar panel industry is still preparing for a slowdown in installations in the short-term future. Therefore, if there was any time to consider solar panels for your home, the time is now. The discount is only going to decrease.

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    Calculating How Much Solar Panels Will Cost For Your Specific Home Given Its Location And Electricity Use

    Our solar panel calculator is the easiest way to determine the costs and savings of a solar panel installation for your specific home.

    All you need is your address and the value of your monthly electric bill, and our solar calculator will determine your local utility companys electricity rates and how much power you use in order to tell you:

    • How many solar panels you need to power your home
    • How much your solar panels will cost
    • How much your solar panels will save you

    Solar Panel Cost By Manufacturer

    How Much Do Solar Panels Really Cost?

    Another way to break down solar panel price data is by the panel brand. The following table was made using data from the EnergySage Marketplace and tracks the average cost of 6 kW and 10 kW solar panel systems by the brand of solar panel used in the installation project.

    Table: cost of solar panels by panel manufacturer


    NOTE: These ranges are system prices BEFORE the 26 percent federal tax credit for solar.

    The price you pay for a solar panel brand is reflective of panel quality to a degree. For example, systems using SunPower panels see the highest average prices , and SunPower is known for producing well-made, high-efficiency products.

    Interestingly, there arent that many outliers when it comes to brand pricing, and most manufacturers generally see similar cost ranges. Its important to keep in mind that when comparing system prices based on panel brands, there are so many factors aside from just panel manufacturer that impact the final system price like installer experience, location, racking equipment, inverter brand, and more.

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    Increase Your Property Value With Solar

    Reducing your carbon footprint is just the beginning of the benefits you get by going solar. Adding rooftop solar to your home can actually increase the value of your home, especially with todays energy-conscious buyers. Buyers today are sophisticated when it comes to considering alternative energy sources, and having a solar power energy system already installed and working to power a home is a big plus to many buyers.

    Thin Film Solar Panels

    Thin film panels are the least efficient of all solar panel varieties, but they are incredibly flexible and can often be installed without professional help.

    You should expect to pay between $1$1.50 per watt depending on the manufacturer. Another huge benefit of thin film panels is that they have an incredibly high heat tolerance. The average life expectancy for these three popular solar panel varieties is as follows.

    Tracking $500$3,000 each

    Fixed mounts keep each panel in a static location whereas adjustable mounts can be manually adjusted based on the suns location. Tracking mounts are the most expensive type because they follow the trajectory of the sun throughout the day to maximize photon ray uptake.

    Here are the average cost ranges of different sizes of solar panel systems based on a low-range figure for polycrystalline costing $0.70 per watt and a high-range figure for monocrystalline and thin film costing the maximum $1.50 per watt.

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