Top 5 Best Solar Companies in Pennsylvania (2023 Reviews)

In this guide to Pennsylvania’s top solar companies, we’ll answer your questions including:

  • What are the best solar installers in Pennsylvania?
  • Is DIY solar installation better than a professional installation in Pennsylvania?
  • What factors are important to look for in a Pennsylvania solar installer?
Find local solar quotes
Get Quote
Connect with approved solar installers in your area.

What Are Pennsylvania’s Top 5 Solar Energy Companies?

The Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) notes that there are over 180 solar panel installation companies that service the Pennsylvania area.1 While a booming local solar industry and plenty of installer options are great, it also means you’ll have your work cut out for you if you want to choose the best provider for your specific needs.

We’ve analyzed and reviewed all of the top solar installers in the Keystone State based on the most important criteria for Pennsylvanian homeowners to help you narrow down your options. Below is a list of our top five picks.

You can get more information on each of these installers below.

Badge icon

YellowLite

Solar Veteran

Regional Service

EcoWatch rating

Average cost

Pros

  • Representatives are experts on local policies
  • Offers products from leading manufacturers
  • Full-service home energy solutions

Cons

  • No leases or PPAs
  • Relatively short workmanship warranty
Badge icon

Paradise Energy Solutions

Solar Veteran

Regional Service

EcoWatch rating

Average cost

Pros

  • Outstanding customer service
  • Many years of experience
  • Offers products from leading manufacturers
  • Slightly limited service offerings

Cons

  • Great warranty coverage
  • No leases or PPAs
Badge icon

SunPower

Best National Provider

Nationwide Service

EcoWatch rating

Average cost

Read full review now

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
Badge icon

Solar SME

Outstanding Regional Installer

Regional Service

EcoWatch rating

Average cost

Pros

  • Great warranty coverage
  • Comprehensive service offerings
  • Offers products from leading manufacturers

Cons

  • Some reported communication issues
Badge icon

Public Service Solar

Outstanding Regional Installer

Regional Service

EcoWatch rating

Average cost

Pros

  • Outstanding customer service
  • Representatives are experts on local policies

Cons

  • Limited service area
  • Slightly limited service offerings

How to Save Money When Hiring a Solar Company in Pennsylvania

pennsylvania's best solar installers

On average, the cost for Pennsylvanians to go solar is around $21,675, before any incentives. After the federal solar tax credit, that number can drop to around $15,173. These totals are based on Pennsylvania’s average price per watt of $2.55 and assume you’ll need the 8.5 kilowatt (kW) system that most other residents require to offset electric bills.

This total is below the national average — which is $23,940 before the tax credit or $16,758 after — so Pennsylvania homeowners get more bang for their buck when converting to clean energy. However, it’s still expensive, so like most residents, you may be looking for ways to keep prices down. Below we list a few tips to reduce costs when choosing an installer in Pennsylvania and explain why these tips can help.

  • Choose an experienced company that can help you take advantage of local benefit programs.
  • Choose an installer that has high-efficiency panels.

Take Advantage of Local Benefit Programs

One of the reasons we recommend experienced companies — and specifically installers that have operated in Pennsylvania for some time — is because they are more often knowledgeable about available incentives. Pennsylvania is home to federal, state and local incentives, and a company that is familiar with these will likely save you hundreds or even thousands of dollars.

Below is a list of the available solar incentives in Pennsylvania. You can ask your installer about available benefit programs to gauge how likely the company is to save you money.

Incentive Description
Federal Solar Investment Tax Credit (ITC) This is one of the most appealing perks available in Pennsylvania. It’s a credit provided by the federal government to your tax liability for 30% of your entire system value. In Pennsylvania, the credit averages around $6,503 for panels and inverters alone; batteries can significantly drive up the credit amount.
Solar Renewable Energy Certificates (SRECs) SRECs are credits you earn for all the energy you produce with your panels. After you earn those credits, you can sell them on the local SREC market for a profit. These help you pay off your panels more quickly and maximize long-term savings.
Net Metering (NEM) This policy is mandated for all investor-owned utilities (IOUs) in Pennsylvania. It guarantees that you get bill credits for all excess energy your panels generate. You send that energy to the grid and can use the credits you earn to pay down future electricity bills. Best of all, the credit rate in Pennsylvania is the full retail value per kilowatt-hour (kWh), which is the best-case scenario. Specific policies vary by utility company.
City of Philadelphia Solar Rebate Philly residents can get up to $0.20 back per watt installed, which comes out to an average of $1,700 for most Pennsylvania systems.
Philly Permit Rebates Philly residents can also get reimbursed for all permit fees associated with installing PV equipment. The cashback amount is relatively low, but it can still save a few hundred dollars in some cases.

Choose Panels With a High Efficiency Rating

Next, we recommend choosing an installer that offers high-efficiency solar panels. Since the weather in parts of Pennsylvania can be cloudy more often than in other states, efficient panels are a must-have if you want to offset your utility bills. Cloud coverage can drop production by up to 90%, and a high efficiency rating will help keep production up in all conditions.

Companies that provide Maxeon panels are the best suited for Pennsylvania residents, as these are the highest efficiency panels in the industry. Other good options include Panasonic, REC, Tesla, Silfab, Canadian Solar, Q-Cells and Trina Solar. Tesla solar roof shingles are up there as well, although they are quite expensive.

The highest-quality solar panels often cost more, but they’re likely to save you money by offsetting more of your utility bills over time in Pennsylvania.

Will Solar Increase Your Home Value in Pennsylvania?

Yes! Installing solar panels should increase your home value by around 4.1%, which is huge in Pennsylvania.5 The average property value in the Keystone State is around $270,000, so your panels will provide an average increase of around $11,070.6 Considering the typical system after the ITC in Pennsylvania costs just over $15,000, this makes PV equipment well worth the investment.

Since solar energy systems tend to provide a fractional bump, more expensive areas in Pennsylvania will naturally see greater benefits from solar conversion. The below cities in the area are some of the most expensive in the state, which means the return on investment (ROI) from solar should also be the highest:

  • Villanova
  • Gladwyne
  • Haverford
  • New Hope
  • Philadelphia
  • Fort Washington

Should Pennsylvania Residents Hire a Professional Solar Installer or DIY?

It’s often tempting for Pennsylvania residents to consider a DIY solar installation, as the average cost is well below what you’d pay for professional installation. Unfortunately, it’s not always a good idea to attempt a solar installation yourself. Below, we explain why.

  • DIY panels have a lower efficiency, which may not be suitable for the low-sun conditions in parts of Pennsylvania.
  • DIY solar installations leave your roof at higher risk of leaking, which is an issue given the above-average rainfall in Pennsylvania.
  • Professional systems have better warranty coverage to keep your equipment protected from the sometimes harsh conditions in Pennsylvania.

Panel Efficiency is Lower in DIY Kits

First and foremost, you should carefully consider the panel’s efficiency. DIY panels almost always have a lower efficiency rating than professionally installed options. Efficiency is important in Pennsylvania, especially on the western side of the state where residents are prone to more cloud coverage.

It’s true, DIY installation would be cheaper than having a professional do the work for you. However, using high-efficiency panels will almost always offset more of your energy bills, which could end up saving you more over time. This is especially true in a climate like Pennsylvania’s.

Roof Leaks Are More Common With DIY Installations

A leaking roof is one of the most common problems with solar installations. Most professional companies include workmanship warranties that provide some peace of mind that you’re unlikely to have issues stemming from improper installation techniques.

Professionals with years of experience are far less likely to make errors in the installation process than inexperienced DIYers. That means that installing your own panels will leave you more prone to roof leaks. Unfortunately, roof leaking is more of an issue in Pennsylvania, which receives above-average rainfall and snowfall each year.

Again, installing your own panels will save you money on installation costs. However, if you make any mistakes and cause damage to your property, you could end up spending more repairing your roof or water damage than you’d save on installation upfront

Warranty Coverage is Less Appealing With DIY Panels

Finally, DIY panels don’t include much in the way of warranties. Most come with coverage for between one and five years for manufacturer defects, but they often lack efficiency warranties and never come with workmanship coverage. Professional installers often include coverage for all three and for much longer — up to 25 or 30 years in many cases.

Solar warranties provide peace of mind that your panels will continue to produce energy and remain safe through the thunderstorms, snowstorms, tornadoes and other harsh weather that can frequent Pennsylvania. Efficiency warranties, specifically, can help guarantee that you see a higher return on investment in the long run.

What Should Pennsylvanians Look For in a Solar Installer?

There are a few things you should look for in Pennsylvania when choosing a solar installer to help maximize your savings and keep upfront costs down.

  • High-efficiency panel brands
  • Extensive warranty coverage
  • Good customer satisfaction and response times

Panel Brands Available

As we’ve mentioned, parts of Pennsylvania — notably the western side of the state — can see cloudier weather, so sunlight availability can be relatively low in those areas. To take full advantage of the sun that is available, we recommend you choose a company that provides efficient panels.

Given the state’s weather conditions, companies that offer Maxeon panels are the best options in Pennsylvania. These provide the most energy production of any brand on the market, so they’ll give the highest return on investment, even in low-sun conditions. However, any brand that has over 20% efficiency should suffice.

Ample Warranty Coverage

Pennsylvania residents contend with the potential for harsh weather, including rainfall that is well above average. Warranties that protect your system from damage — from things like fallen tree limbs and blown debris — are a great option.

More importantly, we recommend you choose an installer that provides efficiency and workmanship warranties. Efficiency guarantees help to ensure your panels will continue to save you money on utility bills for years in Pennsylvania.

Workmanship coverage is also great, as it can provide peace of mind that the above-average precipitation won’t lead to solar roof leaks and property damage.

Customer Service and Communication

Pennsylvania is home to over 180 solar installation companies, and with the recent surge in demand, many of them are struggling to keep up with the number of solar projects.7 Some companies provide below-average customer service as a result, which you want to avoid.

Poor customer service can not only lead to a bad experience when converting to solar power, but it can also mean slow response times to warranty claims or even no response at all.

To avoid this, we recommend reading through some positive and negative customer reviews for any installer you’re considering. That will give you a snapshot of what you can expect throughout the installation process and beyond.

Methodology: How We Ranked Pennsylvania’s Solar Installers

best solar companies in pennsylvania

We look at many factors when reviewing solar companies to find the best in your area, then weigh those factors based on the impact each will have on your experience and the industry as a whole.

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

In our opinion, one of the most crucial factors for PA residents looking to convert to solar is the services offered to them by a provider.

Pennsylvanians see an average of just 179 days of sunshine per year, which is well below the national average of 205. A lack of available sunshine means lower levels of solar production, which means your potential for savings will be lower than in most other states.

A good way to maximize your long-term savings and reduce your payback period is to install high-efficiency solar panels. We prioritize companies that specialize in high-quality panel brands, as they’re more likely to deliver a system that’s worth your money.

Qualifications, Certifications and Reputation

The Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) reports that there are over 160 solar installation companies that serve PA. While there are many options available to you, not all providers bring the same quality of service to the table. Plus, in an area like PA with high demand, there are companies that pop up just to turn a profit and are less than reputable.

We prioritize companies that have industry certifications and qualifications, including certification from the North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP), B-Corp certification and more. These companies are far more likely to cut through the noise of 160+ installers and provide an overall better experience for you.

Experience

In a state where new companies and fly-by-night installers are prevalent, we give precedence to installers that have years of experience. We look specifically for experience in Pennsylvania, as this helps ensure your installer is well-versed in local laws and regulations.

Warranty Coverage

Pennsylvanians are no strangers to extreme weather. Remnants of hurricanes and tropical storms are not uncommon in the area, nor are above-average amounts of rainfall and snowfall each year.

When you pay tens of thousands of dollars for your equipment, you’ll naturally want to make sure your system is protected from damage and the elements to which it will be exposed. Companies that have robust and lengthy warranty coverage are best in PA, so we rank them higher.

Solar Financing Options

The average solar energy system in PA will cost around $15,173 after the federal tax credit is considered, or over $21,500 before the credit. Since paying this amount upfront in cash is unattainable for many PA residents, we prioritize companies that offer robust financing options.

We look first for good solar loan programs that have low-interest rates, reasonable terms and low or no down payment requirements. These will be most accessible to Pennsylvanians. We also consider lease and PPA options, although we generally recommend against those.

Availability

Not all of the solar installers in PA will serve the entire state. Some only service specific regions of Pennsylvania, while others focus on singular major cities and surrounding areas. Naturally, companies with a wider service range will appeal to more people, so we consider availability when ranking companies.

Social & Environmental Impact

Since we’re a website focused on environmental friendliness and the advancement of the clean energy movement in PA, we give precedence to companies that have a positive environmental impact.

We rank companies higher if they do what they can to make solar more accessible, couple panel installations with other energy-efficiency home improvements and align themselves with other eco-friendly associations and organizations, like the Philadelphia Solar Energy Association or the PA Solar Center.

Read More About Going Solar in Pennsylvania

FAQ: Best Solar Companies in Pennsylvania

The EcoWatch team gets questions all the time about solar from Pennsylvania residents. Below are the questions we see from the area most frequently, 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.

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.
Reviewer image
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.

Comparing authorized solar partners

EcoWatch rating
Average cost
Pros
Cons
BBB Rating
Year founded
Service Area
Brands of Solar Equipment Offered
Warranty Coverage
  • 4.0
    • Representatives are experts on local policies
    • Offers products from leading manufacturers
    • Full-service home energy solutions
    • No leases or PPAs
    • Relatively short workmanship warranty
    A+
    Solar Veteran

Having trouble deciding? Click below and use our process to receive multiple quotes instead:

Get My Solar Quote