Top 3 Best Solar Companies in Alaska (2023 Reviews)

In this guide to the best solar providers that service Alaska, you’ll learn:

  • What are the most reputable solar providers in Alaska?
  • How do you choose the best solar provider for your needs in Alaska?
  • Does DIY solar panel installation in Alaska really save you money?
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What Are Alaska’s Top 3 Solar Energy Companies?

Alaska has long been deemed the Last Frontier, and that designation is still fitting today in terms of solar energy. To date, the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) recognizes just five installers in Alaska, and the state is ranked nearly last in the country for its solar adoption rate.1

However, solar can still be worth it in Alaska. And choosing from even a small selection of solar panel installation companies can be intimidating, as clean energy is a sizable investment. We’ve researched all of the providers in the area for you and have determined that the below companies are the best options for Alaska property owners looking to convert to solar energy:

  • Arctic Solar Ventures: Outstanding Local Installer
  • Alaska Solar: Outstanding Local Installer
  • Renewable Energy Systems of Alaska: Outstanding Local Installer

You can gather more information about each of these installers in the drop-down menus that follow.

Badge icon

Arctic Solar Ventures

Outstanding Local Installer

Local Service

EcoWatch rating

Average cost

Pros

  • Outstanding customer service
  • Great warranty coverage
  • Includes battery installations

Cons

  • Limited brands of solar equipment available
  • Slightly limited service offerings
  • No leases or PPAs
Badge icon

Alaska Solar

Outstanding Local Installer

Local Service

EcoWatch rating

Average cost

Pros

  • Excellent reputation
  • Outstanding customer service
  • Includes battery installations

Cons

  • Slightly limited service offerings
  • Limited warranty coverage
  • No leases or PPAs
Badge icon

Renewable Energy Systems of Alaska

Outstanding Local Installer

Local Service

EcoWatch rating

Average cost

Pros

  • Expansive service area
  • Great warranty coverage
  • Offers products from leading manufacturers

Cons

  • No leases or PPAs
  • Less personalization than competitors offer

How Can You Save Money When Hiring A Solar Company In Alaska

The average cost to install a solar energy system in AK is just $14,460, which is about $10,000 cheaper than the national average. This is likely because a number of Alaskan solar companies only sell solar panels and don’t install them. As such, if you plan to have a contractor install your panels for you, it will likely cost more.

While this solar panel cost is well below the national average, many residents will still struggle to justify a $14,000 price tag. There are a few things you can do to make your solar conversion more affordable, including:

  • Taking advantage of the solar incentives available in your area
  • Choosing an installer that offers high-efficiency panels
  • Getting multiple free quotes

We’ll explain how these strategies help save you money in the sections below.

Take Advantage of Solar Benefit Programs

Taking advantage of solar incentives is one of the best ways to bring down your upfront conversion costs and maximize the value you get from your panels over time. Choosing a local company with years of local experience and good customer service often means you’ll get access to assistance navigating and taking the local perks available.

We’ll include some information on the solar benefit programs available to Alaska residents in the table below.

Solar Benefit Program Program Description
Federal Solar Investment Tax Credit (ITC) The federal tax credit is equal to 30% of your solar energy system cost, which includes the price of panels, inverters, batteries and more. In AK, this averages out to $4,338. That amount gets applied to your income tax burden for the year you install your panels, and you can carry over any unused credit (if you don’t owe enough on your taxes) for five years.
Net Metering Net energy metering is a policy that states that your utility company must credit you for all excess power your panels generate. Homeowners can overproduce and “bank” energy and then call on that energy at no cost if they ever need to pull energy from the electric grid. Net energy metering is a highly beneficial perk in AK, as it helps keep your utility bills low, even in the winter when sunlight is in short supply. All energy is credited at the retail rate, which is the best-case scenario.
Local Property Tax Exemption for Renewable Energy Systems This is a property tax exemption that prevents the added value from your solar panel system from pushing up your taxes.

You can get more information on these perks and other rebates and incentives by checking out our guide to solar benefit programs for Alaskan property owners.

Choose a High-Efficiency Panel Brand

Our second tip for saving money when choosing a solar provider is to pick one that offers high-efficiency panel brands. Different panels come with different efficiency ratings, which tells you how much of the sunlight that hits them will be converted into solar electricity. The higher the rating, the more power your panels will generate.

High-efficiency panels are a necessity if you want to maximize the value of your system and save money on your energy bills. They will produce more electricity, which helps offset your consumption and bank enough power through net energy metering to last through a good portion of the darkness in winter.

High-efficiency panels will often cost a bit more initially, but they’re worth the extra money, as they help maximize your long-term energy savings.

Some panel brands that work well in Alaska include:

  • Silfab
  • Canadian Solar
  • Qcells
  • REC

Get a Quote From Multiple Companies

Finally, we suggest getting a few free quotes from different companies for your solar PV system. Every installer in AK will likely quote you a different amount for your system, and the price can vary by hundreds or thousands of dollars based on the quality of the equipment, the warranty coverage and more.

We suggest getting at least three quotes and then deciding which company provides the best bang for your buck.

See Also: Calculate How Much You Can Save By Going Solar

Will Solar Increase Your Home Value In Alaska?

Yes, installing solar panels is expected to bump up your home value in AK. According to research conducted by Zillow, a solar array should make your home around 4.1% more valuable.4 In Alaska, where the typical home is worth around $337,000, that’s an estimated increase of $13,800.5

Solar adoption has been most progressive in larger cities, like Anchorage and Fairbanks, especially since most of the solar providers in the state focus their efforts on these two areas. Given the greater popularity there, you’re also likely to see the most value added to your home from your residential solar system in those cities.

Should Alaska Residents Hire a Professional Solar Installer Or DIY?

DIY solar system installation is somewhat popular in Alaska, and two of our top solar providers are solar equipment vendors that solely provide panels for DIY installation. Installing your panels yourself should average between $10,000 and $15,000 in AK, whereas a professional system will run closer to $20,000.

You will very likely save a substantial amount of money upfront installing your own panels, but we recommend against it for a few reasons, including:

  • DIY panels have a lower efficiency rating
  • DIY panels have less appealing warranty coverage
  • DIY PV panel installations are more prone to issues

We’ll explain the drawbacks of a DIY installation in Alaska in the sections below.

DIY Panels Aren’t As Efficient

The most compelling reason not to install your own solar system is that the panels available for DIYers aren’t as efficient. Most DIY brands hover between 15% and 18% efficiency, while professional brands reach up to nearly 23% and average above 20%. This seemingly small difference can mean massive variances in power production.

In Alaska, panel efficiency is everything. High-quality panels are much more likely to eliminate or significantly offset your electric bills and generate enough power to carry you through the winter using net energy metering.

Since the state has the third-highest electricity rates in the country at nearly double the national average, maximizing panel efficiency can lead to dramatic differences in your long-term savings.6

DIY Panels Don’t Have the Same Warranty Coverage

The panels available for DIY installations also don’t have the same warranty coverage. Most DIY brands have a ten- to 15-year warranty for the equipment, a ten-year warranty for the power production and no warranty for the labor.

You might pay more for professionally-installed panels, but the industry average for warranty coverage is much better. Most include a 25-year warranty for the equipment, 20 to 25 years of coverage for the energy production and ten years of coverage for the labor.

In our opinion, the power production and workmanship warranties are most important for Alaskans. The former helps maximize your energy savings over time, which is crucial in places like Alaska, where the energy rates are so high. The latter protects you against issues like roof leaks, which are more common given the annual snowfall is nearly triple the national average.7

Systems with warranties will usually cost more upfront, but they can often provide a greater return on investment over time and help avoid costly issues like roof leaks stemming from improper installation.

Issues Are More Common With DIY Installations

Finally, DIYers are more likely to make mistakes when making roof shingle penetrations and installing rooftop solar panels. Any issues with the installation process can lead to costly property damage that outweighs the savings you’d see by carrying out a DIY installation.

In our opinion, it’s worth it to hire a professional to complete the installation for you. You’ll get peace of mind that the system is installed properly, and you may also avoid expensive damage to your home over time.

What Should Alaska Residents Look For in a Solar Installer?

entire roof installed with solar panels

Even in an area like Alaska, where there are few solar providers to choose from, picking one to handle your solar project can be a challenge. To make things a bit easier, we recommend focusing on the below factors, which we believe are the most crucial to Alaska solar customers:

  • Panel brand selection
  • Price and payment options
  • Warranty coverage

We’ll explain why we think these are the most important factors to consider in the sections below.

Panel Brand Selection

The first thing we recommend prioritizing is the panel brand selection offered by each company you’re considering. We strongly suggest you only consider installers that carry high-efficiency, tier-one solar panels.

Given the high cost of electricity and the well-below-average sunlight availability in AK, a high panel efficiency is crucial in the area if you want to maximize your energy savings. Companies that carry brands like Maxeon, Tesla, REC, Qcells and other tier-one brands are much better suited to serve Alaska residents, in our opinion.

Experience in Alaska

The second thing we suggest looking for is longevity in the industry and experience with installations in Alaska. Thanks to recent advancements in solar technology and equipment price drops, the solar industry in Alaska is just starting to pick up. As a result, many of the companies popping up have minimal experience installing solar.

An experienced company — by years or installations — is more likely to understand your energy needs and size your system appropriately to save you money. A company with longevity is also more likely to stick around and honor your warranties, which is always a positive thing.

Warranty Coverage

Finally, we suggest choosing a company that offers good warranty coverage. Specifically, we recommend opting for a lengthy efficiency warranty and then prioritizing the workmanship warranty.

A power production guarantee will help ensure that your system continues to produce sufficient energy for your home and offset the above-average energy bills in AK. A labor warranty will help protect you from issues like roof leaks, which are a higher risk in Alaska, given how often and long your roof will be exposed to moisture from snow.

Methodology: How We Ranked Alaska’s Solar Companies

close-up shot of solar panels

Our number one goal is to provide you with recommendations for solar providers that lead you to long-term savings, satisfaction and a reduced carbon footprint. To achieve that goal, we rank companies in your area based on criteria that we believe are most important to customers in Alaska, specifically. Below are the weighted factors we use in AK:

  • Solar Products & Services (20%)
  • Solar Warranty & Customer Support (20%)
  • Availability (15%)
  • Experience (15%)
  • Qualifications, Reputation & Certifications (10%)
  • Price & Payment Options (10%)
  • Environmental, Social and Corporate Governance Factors (10%)

Our methodology is never affected by relationships we have in the solar industry, so you can always rest assured that our recommendations aren’t biased. We’ll explain why we prioritize and weight our rating factors in Alaska in the sections below.

Solar Products & Services

The first thing we look at when assessing a solar provider in Alaska is the selection and quality of the products it offers and the services it provides. Installers with high-quality, high-efficiency panels get ranked highest because panel efficiency is the most crucial thing to ensure your system saves you money in the low-light conditions of AK.

We also prioritize companies that provide additional energy efficiency and solar services, like energy audits, solar water heaters and more. The baseline industry average we use for comparison is panel and battery installations. We give extra points for off-grid and ground-mounted solar offerings, as these are quite popular in Alaska.

Since many of the solar providers in AK are solar equipment vendors only — and since we don’t recommend DIY installations — we give precedence to companies that offer full-service PV system installations.

Solar Warranty & Customer Support

Next, we look at the warranty included with your system and the likelihood that the company will respond to warranty claims. We believe the efficiency and workmanship warranties are most important. These will help ensure that your panels continue to offset the above-average energy prices and utility bills in Alaska and remain issue-free.

The industry average we use to compare companies includes:

  • 25 years of coverage for equipment
  • 20 to 25 years of coverage for panel efficiency
  • Ten years for labor

Availability

Next, since the popularity of solar in AK is just starting to grow and much of the state has a small population per square mile, we look at each company’s availability. Many installers in the area focus their efforts on Anchorage and Fairbanks, so we rank those higher that have wider service areas.

Experience in Alaska

Alaska property owners have some unique needs in terms of solar power systems. These include above-average panel efficiency to offset losses during the low-sun winters and warranty coverage for the labor to protect against roof leaks from the above-average snowfall.

Companies with more experience get ranked higher because they’re more likely to understand your energy needs and provide a solid installation that doesn’t leave you open to property damage.

Since solar is just starting to gain popularity in the state, most companies have minimal experience. Still, we prioritize those that have five or more years and give a perfect score in this category to those with ten or more.

Qualifications, Reputation & Certifications

Next, we look at a company’s qualifications and reputation as a whole. This helps us identify providers that are likely to offer professional and safe installations and that set themselves apart by going above and beyond in a budding solar market. Some things we look for include:

  • NABCEP certification (North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners)
  • A high rating on BBB and few customer complaints
  • Mostly 4-star and 5-star reviews on Google
  • Certification from LEED (Leaders in Energy and Environmental Design)
  • A lack of customer lawsuits and negative customer reviews

Price & Payment Options

Since going solar in AK is significantly more affordable than it is in nearly every other state, we don’t prioritize price as much as we would in other areas. However, since DIY installations are popular in the area — and much more affordable in most cases — we do consider the installation cost charged by each professional installer.

We also look at the payment options that a company offers, as this directly correlates to how accessible its products and services are. We think this is especially important in Alaska since the solar equipment vendors only accept cash, which is the least accessible payment option.

Environmental, Social & Corporate Governance Factors

Finally, we look at each company’s impact on the solar industry as a whole, which is just beginning to take root in Alaska. We also consider its effects on the communities it services, as this helps prioritize reputable installers that make a positive difference in their areas. Some things we look for include:

  • Sustainable business practices and a focus on environmental friendliness
  • A program for recycling old PV panels to reduce waste
  • Accessible payment options for low-income households
  • Charitable donations
  • Alliance with local solar nonprofits and organizations

FAQ: Best Solar Companies in Alaska

Below, we’ll provide responses to some of the questions we get most frequently from Alaska property owners looking for a reputable solar panel installation company.

Blog author image
Article author
Dan Simms is an experienced writer with a passion for renewable energy. As a solar and EV advocate, much of his work has focused on the potential of solar power and deregulated energy, but he also writes on related topics, like real estate and economics. In his free time — when he's not checking his own home's solar production — he enjoys outdoor activities like hiking, mountain biking, skiing and rock climbing.
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Expert reviewer
Karsten is an editor and energy specialist focused on environmental, social and cultural development. His work has been shared by sources including NPR, the World Economic Forum, Marketwatch and the SEIA, and he is certified in ESG with the CFA Institute. Before joining EcoWatch, Karsten worked in the solar energy sector, studying energy policy, climate tech and environmental education. A lover of music and the outdoors, Karsten might be found rock climbing, canoeing or writing songs when away from the workplace.

Comparing authorized solar partners

EcoWatch rating
Average cost
Pros
Cons
BBB Rating
Year founded
Service Area
Brands of Solar Equipment Offered
Warranty Coverage
  • 4.5
    • Outstanding customer service
    • Great warranty coverage
    • Includes battery installations
    • Limited brands of solar equipment available
    • Slightly limited service offerings
    • No leases or PPAs
    A+
    Outstanding Local Installer

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