Top 6 Best Solar Companies in New York [2022 Reviews]

In this guide to New York’s best solar companies, we’ll answer your questions including:

  • What are the best solar companies in New York?
  • What should you look for in a New York solar company?
  • How do you save money on solar panels in New York?
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What Are New York’s Top 6 Solar Energy Companies?

Because New York has one of the highest electricity prices in the U.S., many residents have begun switching to renewable solar energy. There are over 640 solar companies in the Empire State.1

It may surprise you to learn New York has more solar companies than Texas, the No. 2 state in the country for solar.2 Progressive leadership has laid the foundation for a market that encourages solar’s growth in New York, and many of the most trusted installers want to capitalize on it.

There may be an abundance of solar installers in your area, but not all of them are created equal. That is why the solar experts at EcoWatch scoured customer reviews and dove deep into the history of New York’s most notable solar companies to help you choose the right installer for your home.

Because there are so many solar providers in the state of New York, it can be difficult to find the best solar installer for your home. Instead of spending hours on the internet sifting through countless companies, get free quotes or check out our recommended New York solar installation companies in the drop-downs below.

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SunPower

Best National Provider

Nationwide Service

EcoWatch rating

Average cost

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Pros

  • Most efficient panels on the market
  • National coverage
  • Cradle to Cradle sustainability certification
  • Great warranty coverage

Cons

  • Expensive
  • Customer service varies by local dealer
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SUNation Solar Systems

Solar Veteran

Local Service

EcoWatch rating

Average cost

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Pros

  • Offers products from leading manufacturers
  • Representatives are experts on local policies
  • Outstanding customer service

Cons

  • Limited service area
  • No leases or PPAs
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Trinity Solar

Solar Veteran

Regional Service

EcoWatch rating

Average cost

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Pros

  • Many financing options
  • Family-owned and -operated
  • Makes charitable contributions

Cons

  • Limited service area
  • Relatively short workmanship warranty
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EmPower Solar

Outstanding Local Installer

Local Service

EcoWatch rating

Average cost

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Pros

  • Offers products from leading manufacturers
  • Slightly limited service offerings
  • Excellent reputation

Cons

  • Limited information available on website
  • No leases or PPAs
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Momentum Solar

Best Regional Coverage

Regional Service

EcoWatch rating

Average cost

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Pros

  • Great warranty coverage
  • Concierge service ensures steady communication
  • Representatives are experts on local policies

Cons

  • Slightly limited service offerings
  • Only available in 11 states
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Kasselman Solar

Outstanding Local Installer

Local Service

EcoWatch rating

Average cost

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Pros

  • Offers products from leading manufacturers
  • Great warranty coverage
  • Representatives are experts on local policies

Cons

  • Expensive
  • No leases or PPAs

How to Save Money When Hiring a Solar Company in New York

At about $2.95 per watt, the price to go solar in New York is more than the national average of $2.66 per watt. This means the average New York homeowner will pay between $14,767 to $29,533 before the federal solar tax credit is applied. Solar panels can be expensive, but there are plenty of ways in which homeowners can save money on a new solar system.

New York Solar Incentives and Tax Credits

There are several tax incentives and rebate programs that help offset the cost of solar panel systems. You can talk to your solar installer and utility company to learn more about New York solar incentives, but here’s a quick snapshot:

Solar Incentives in NY Description of Solar Incentive Program
New York Solar Tax Credit The state of New York will credit up to 25% or $5,000 of your solar system, whichever is lower.
NY-Sun Megawatt Block Incentive A local rebate program that gives money back for every kilowatt installed. Rates vary.
New York Solar Sales Tax Exemption The state of New York waives state sales tax on solar equipment and installation, which can save homeowners thousands of dollars.
New York Net Metering Policies New York’s net metering program credits excess energy towards future energy bills.
Federal Solar Tax Credit (ITC) The U.S. solar incentive tax credit will credit homeowners 30% of the total cost of your solar system.

Choose the Right Solar System Size

Even the best solar panels won’t cover your energy bills if you don’t have a system large enough to generate sufficient energy, but you shouldn’t pay for a system that is too large, either. Instead, make sure you purchase a solar system designed to cover your monthly energy usage.

The average home in New York requires a 6.5-kilowatt solar system to completely offset energy costs.

At that size, a solar system will run about $14,190 after the ITC has been applied, which may be more manageable than a $20,673 10-kilowatt solar system. You can talk to your solar provider to figure out the right solar system size for your home.

New York Community Solar Programs

Because the average cost of electricity in New York is so high, more residents should be able to benefit from solar energy. As a result, several community solar programs have become available in New York. There are community solar projects across the state — from Long Island to upstate New York.5

New York is actually one of the top states — if not the top state, according to Governor Kathy Hochul — for community solar.6 This means you can find a solar project to help save you money on your electric bill without having to pay the high upfront cost of solar panels.

Will Solar Increase Your Home Value in New York?

Solar panels can save you money on your utility bills each month, but not all solar owners know their solar system will also increase the value of their home. Zillow completed a study and found that the average home will see a value increase of 4.1% after solar panel installation.7

Considering that the average home in New York is around $781,622, most homeowners stand to see a value increase of up to $32,046.8

The potential increase in your home’s value could help account for what you pay upfront for your solar panels, which is another reason going solar is a good investment in New York.

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Should New York Residents Hire a Professional Solar Installer or DIY?

Solar panel installation can be expensive, so if you have considered DIY solar installation to save on costs, you aren’t alone. Although installing your own panels may seem tempting, know it could cost you thousands of dollars down the road. Below, we’ll list the top reasons why you should leave your solar panel installation to the professionals, rather than DIY.

  • Ensure solar panel protection with workmanship warranties
  • Have a stress-free and efficient installation
  • Ensure quality installation of your panels

Get Protection with Workmanship Warranties

All of our top New York solar installers offer some sort of warranty, and many of them give you a workmanship warranty on top of the product and performance warranties provided by the manufacturer. Should your solar panels or roof become damaged during installation, the workmanship warranty will cover the cost to fix it.

If you install your panels yourself, you’ll miss out on essential protection. Without a workmanship warranty, even if you still have the product and performance warranties from your panel’s manufacturer, your coverage may not be honored if the manufacturer claims the damage was due to installation.

Have a Stress-Free and Efficient Installation

Solar panel installation is a large undertaking, and if you are not prepared, it could take days, weeks or even months to get your solar system up and running. Plus, you will need to gather permits, sign paperwork and pass a home inspection before you get permission to operate your panels.

The best solar companies take care of all the paperwork and permits for you. In many cases, it takes professional solar panel companies just one day to install your system.

Ensure Quality Installation

If you want your solar panels to operate at maximum efficiency to offset your high New York energy costs, then the quality of your installation is incredibly important. Solar contractors are specially trained to install solar panels so that both your roof and the panels remain undamaged. This also ensures your panels are securely fastened to your roof and do not come off during a severe storm.

A professional installer will make sure that the following are in order:

  • Your solar panel configuration is designed for maximum energy production
  • Your solar panels are properly wired to the inverter
  • Panels are safely and securely attached to your roof
  • Structural integrity of your roof and home remain intact

What Should New York Residents Look For in a Solar Installer?

close-up shot of solar panels

Everyone’s needs are different when it comes to solar, so what may be the best company for your neighbor might not be right for you. As you review the factors below, emphasize what will meet your home’s energy needs as you consider the best company for your solar installation.

  • Services offered
  • Installation process
  • Solar pricing and financing
  • Industry affiliations
  • Types of panels
  • Warranties

Services Offered

Due to the unique range of needs of home and business owners in New York, a variety of solar installers focus on different services. Most solar installers, such as Momentum Solar, will only offer solar panel installation and battery backup services, but the best companies like Kasselman and Trinity Solar have post-installation monitoring, electric vehicle charging installation, energy efficiency upgrades and more.

Some local installers, such as SUNnation, even have community solar projects in New York that you can opt into by paying a monthly fee. The more services a company offers, the better as homeowners can then work with that company again on future projects.

Installation Process

Before you sign any paperwork, make sure you’re confident in knowing how the installation process will work. Permitting and interconnection can vary from city to city, so it’s best to be sure you and your installer are familiar with the process. Some companies, such as Kasselman Solar, excel at pre- and post-installation communication, while others — such as EmPower — may not have as clear of a process.

Regardless, some questions you may want to ask solar providers as you gather quotes include:

  • When can you schedule my solar panel installation?
  • How many days will my solar installation take?
  • What is my utility company’s net metering policy?

Solar Pricing and Financing

Solar energy systems are a great investment, but one that takes planning and time to mature. Think about whether you might need special financing options if your budget is tight. Any of the top solar companies in New York should be able to assist you in applying for the federal solar tax credit, but specific financing options and flexibility will vary from provider to provider.

Price is a major factor for many homeowners, so if the most expensive SunPower Maxeon solar panels are not financially feasible, you can opt for more budget-friendly options from EmPower or Trinity Solar.

Industry Affiliations

We generally recommend hiring a company that maintains industry credentials, such as membership in the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA), a B Corp certification or affiliation with other professional associations. Memberships and certifications are a great indicator of the company’s professionalism, workmanship, reputation and reliability.

Many of the companies on our list have received some sort of award for quality solar installations, and SUNation and Kasselman Solar have both proven to be excellent, award-winning solar installers.

Types of Panels

Some types of solar panels are better than others, and each company will offer a slightly different product portfolio. Small homes in more dense cities will likely need high-efficiency solar panels, while homes with more space might opt for a sleek design.

It can’t hurt to ask what brands of panels your company has available, and why they might recommend each. Certifications from some of the best solar panel brands like Panasonic, Tesla or SunPower might also be a good indicator of legitimacy.

Warranty

Finally, we recommend finding an installer that offers a good warranty. Solar panels are durable pieces of technology, but severe New York weather and heavy snow can damage them. The best warranties will last 25 years and cover the equipment, workmanship and performance of your solar system.

We see some of the best warranties from SunPower, Momentum and Kasselman Solar, but each of the other solar providers on our list does offer a good 25-year warranty.

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Methodology: How We Ranked New York’s Solar Companies

solar panel units on a big building

When we rank our top solar companies, we start by identifying the factors that matter most to our readers to ensure you find a trustworthy, reliable and environmentally responsible solar company. We’ve listed those factors as categories below. We then weigh these factors against the industry benchmark and give each installer a score out of 5 stars.

Our goal is to deliver unbiased reports and honest reviews, thus, our methodology is not affected by commercial partnerships and is specifically tailored to New York homes.

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

Solar Services

A company earns a perfect score in this category if it offers: in-house installations, energy storage systems (solar batteries) and home efficiency audits or upgrades. A company can earn bonus points if it offers additional services that we don’t consider essential, including electric vehicle chargers, solar panel system monitoring, home thermostats, etc. The industry standard that we measure against is solar panel and backup battery installations only.

All of our top New York installers meet the industry standards for solar services, but Kasselman Solar and SUNation Solar both excel in this category by offering more than just solar installation. With both companies, you can get electrical upgrades, EV charges and of course, critical solar system maintenance.

Qualifications, Reputation & Certifications

A company earns a perfect score in this category if it: has NABCEP-certified employees, has a minimum of 4 stars over its last 100 reviews on Google, earns an A+ with the BBB and 4 or more stars on Glassdoor to reflect employee satisfaction. We give bonus points for additional certifications, such as LEED or with the Building Performance Institute (BPI). We flag a company for further review if it has any track record of lawsuits or customer rights violations.

An A+ BBB rating is superior, and every company on our list except EmPower Solar — which has an honorable A rating — has earned this exceptional score. Momentum Solar has an A+ rating from the BBB, but it also only has 3.4 out of 5 stars from its customers, which may indicate that it does have some issues.

We also see that some companies, such as Kasselman and EmPower, have received Quality Installers awards from the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority, which shows each is committed to solar industry excellence.

Solar Warranty & Customer Support

A company earns a perfect score in this category if it offers 25-year warranties that cover performance, product and workmanship. The industry standard that we measure companies against is 25-year product and performance warranties, along with a 10-year workmanship warranty. We also look closely into the track record of the post-installation support each company provides in terms of honoring its warranties.

Every company on our list offers some sort of 25-year industry-standard warranty. However, some companies offer stronger customer support than others. With Momentum Solar, you are assigned a dedicated point of contact that will keep you informed on your solar project every step of the way, and SUNation boasts over 1,000 positive online reviews. Both are shown to have excellent customer service.

Trinity Solar and SunPower are both larger installers that may have trouble with post-installation communication. SunPower often relies on third-party contractors for installation, so your customer support will likely vary depending on who installs your panels.

Solar Financing Options

A company earns a perfect score in this category if it offers multiple financing options, including in-house options in addition to partner organizations. As many solar companies choose not to offer leases and PPAs in the interest of consumer well-being, we do not dock points for companies that don’t offer them.

All of the solar companies on our list offer some sort of flexible financing option, but SunPower excels in this category. Since 2020, SunPower has helped homeowners finance more than $1 billion in residential solar and storage through its partnership with Technology Credit Union.

Experience in New York

A company earns a perfect score in this category if it has 10+ years of experience installing solar. The industry standard that we measure against is at least five years of experience. Experience in the solar industry is one important factor, but experience installing solar in the state of New York is another.

SunPower may have been in the solar industry since 1985, but other companies also have extensive solar experience in New York. EmPower Solar, for instance, has been serving New Yorkers since 2003 and SUNation has nearly 15 years of experience installing solar in the Empire State.

Availability

A company earns a perfect score in this category if it offers services in the majority of New York homes. Though several of our top solar companies — such as SunPower and Kasselman Solar — service the entire state, EmPower Solar and SUNation have smaller service areas. That is not to say that these smaller companies cannot compete with larger corporations, but it does limit these companies’ abilities to serve more New York residents.

Environmental, Social & Corporate Governance Factors

A company earns a perfect score in this category if it offers public data disclosure, addresses end-of-life (EoL) products or processes and demonstrates a commitment to uplifting the communities that it serves. Because Momentum Solar is currently faced with a class action lawsuit, its score in this category remains undetermined.

EcoWatch Preferred Partners

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Read More About Going Solar in New York

FAQ: Best Solar Companies in New York

At EcoWatch, we’re happy to get questions about the process and costs of getting rooftop solar from New York residents. Below are some of the questions we see most often, along with our responses. If you have specific questions that aren’t answered here, reach out to our team of solar experts at solar@ecowatch.com.

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Alora Rands, Home Improvement Expert
Article author
Based in the Minneapolis area, Alora is an avid writer of both fiction and non-fiction. Alora has a bachelor's degree in psychology and a master's degree in child, family and school psychology, but she has always had a love for biology and environmental studies. Before joining EcoWatch, Alora spent her days working with children with disabilities and nights as a freelance writer of commercial, blog and technical content. When she is not at the workplace, Alora can be found hiking with her dogs, chasing sunsets with her camera or plotting her next novel.
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Tori Addison
Expert reviewer
Tori is an editor, writer, rock climber and travel enthusiast. A native New Yorker, she graduated from the College of Saint Rose with a degree in communications and journalism. Before joining EcoWatch, Tori helped to oversee communication strategies for the City of Philadelphia. Her experience also includes communications work in the nonprofit and academic sectors. A journalist by trade, she started her career covering political, environmental and social issues in New York's Hudson Valley. In her spare time, Tori can be found in the mountains climbing boulders, traveling to new cities or at one of Philadelphia's many music venues.