Sunrun Solar Review: Costs, Quality, Services & More (2023)

Sunrun Solar Review: Costs, Quality, Services & More (2023)

Here’s what we’ll cover in this article on Sunrun Solar:

  • Is Sunrun Solar a legit company? 
  • What does the installation process look like with Sunrun Solar?
  • Is Sunrun Solar expensive?
  • What do customers have to say about Sunrun Solar?
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Sunrun, Inc. is one of the largest national solar installers in the U.S., with services spanning 21 states and Puerto Rico. The company focuses its efforts on solar leases, which offer immediate savings in exchange for lower long-term savings. Unfortunately, it doesn’t have a great reputation for customer service.

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Best for Leasing

Regional Service

EcoWatch rating

Average cost


  • Regional
  • Many financing options


  • Some reported issues with customer service
  • Some reported issues with door-to-door sales

What Should You Know About Sunrun Solar?

Sunrun was founded in 2007 in San Francisco, California. It has prioritized leases for many years, although it also accepts cash purchases, facilitates solar loans through third-party lenders and offers power purchase agreements (PPAs).

The company offers a good range of solar services, including panel installations, solar batteries — specifically the company’s own BrightBox Home Battery Storage and Tesla Powerwalls — and electric vehicle (EV) charger installations.

Recently, Sunrun teamed up with Ford to offer customers the opportunity for backup power pulled from the Ford F-150 Lightning EV in the case of power outages.

Sunrun Solar Fast Facts
Year Started 2007
Service Areas 21 states (AZ, CA, CO, CT, FL, HI, IL, MA, MD, NH, NJ, NM, NV, NY, PA, RI, SC, TX, VA, VT, WI) plus Puerto Rico and Washington, D.C.
Services Offered Solar panel, solar battery and EV charger installations
Types of Solar Equipment Offered LONGi, Costco, Tesla, LG, Solar Edge
Certifications SEIA (Solar Energy Industries Association), NABCEP, Better Business Bureau

Is Sunrun Solar a Good Solar Company?

Sunrun is a decent company for customers looking for a solar equipment lease, but generally, we recommend choosing a different installer for most homeowners.

It has a history of poor customer service and slow response times to warranty claims for financed or purchased systems. Additionally, the company has faced some class action lawsuits for its deceptive marketing tactics.1,2

With all of that said, Sunrun has been in business for around 15 years, and it has technicians on its installation teams that are certified by NABCEP (North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners). The financed installations are on the expensive side, likely in an effort to push customers toward leases instead.

Sunrun Solar Services and Installation

Sunrun is a one-stop shop for photovoltaic (PV) equipment, providing panels, batteries, EV chargers and creative backup power options. In the sections below, we’ll explain why the customer experience and service offered by this company aren’t ideal and why we generally recommend going with a different installer.

Sunrun Solar Installation Experience

The process of going solar with Sunrun is similar to what you can expect from most other providers in terms of what’s required. We’ll detail the installation process below and include some information on where Sunrun tends to fall short compared to other solar panel installation companies.

  1. You provide your information to Sunrun and request more information about going solar with the company. Most customers do this online at
  2. A sales representative should connect with you within 24 to 48 hours. They will ask you some questions about your home and your energy consumption, including what appliances and heating and cooling equipment use electricity. They will also ask for a recent electric bill to verify your average monthly energy consumption.
  3. Your salesperson might schedule an in-person inspection to get roof measurements, although Sunrun doesn’t always do this. In our opinion, this is cause for concern, as a physical property inspection should be done to avoid issues with the installation down the road. Especially if you need a new roof.
  4. Next, you’ll receive a detailed solar quote with all the information about your system, your estimated production and more. This will also include cost information for the entire installation before and after solar incentives and rebates, when and how payments are to be made and more.
  5. Once you agree to the proposal, Sunrun will begin pulling permits for the work.
  6. Sunrun will schedule the installation once permits are in order, and the installation will commence.
  7. Following the installation, Sunrun will schedule final inspections to close out your permits and schedule an inspection with your electric company to get your panels and inverter connected to the grid for interconnection and net metering if it’s available from your utility company.
  8. Unfortunately, after the installation, reputable solar installers will continue to provide quick responses and good customer service in the case of warranty claims. Sunrun is known not to have good customer service after the installation is completed, so you could be left hanging with underperforming panels or other issues.

The below video gives an in-depth look at the installation process.

Sunrun Solar Customer Service

Sunrun has a history of poor customer service, likely because of the company’s massive size. Many customers have left the installer bad reviews due to nonresponsiveness, issues with warranty claims and below-average customer service all around.

Because of these reports, we recommend choosing a different installer if you want your solar company to be communicative and invested in your project and satisfaction.

Sunrun Solar Costs and Financing

It’s difficult to give an estimated dollar amount for a Sunrun solar energy system because prices vary among states and projects. In general, Sunrun’s prices for financed solar systems are slightly above average. The current U.S. average solar panel system ranges between $15,000 and $33,000, so you can expect your prices to be somewhere in that range (or higher) based on big your system is.

Sunrun prioritizes solar leases, so the deals offered for leases are the most appealing, at least on the surface. Its leases require no money down and come with outstanding warranty coverage. The company offers two types of leases:

  • Monthly leases: With a monthly lease, you pay a fixed monthly fee to rent your equipment, and you get to use all of the power your panels generate to offset your utility bills.
  • Full leases: A full lease has you pay for 25 years of energy consumption upfront, but then you pay no monthly fee to use the energy from your panels during the lease term.

It’s important to understand that both types of leases are less beneficial for you as the homeowner than buying your panels outright or financing them. We’ll discuss the reason for this in the following section.

Financing Options Through Sunrun Solar

Sunrun offers four different solar plans for its customers.

  • Monthly lease: This option requires the least money down but also provides the least overall value. Sunrun retains ownership of the panels and you make monthly payments to purchase the clean energy they generate. The payments are guaranteed to be less than what your utility payment would be, but the savings are not as great as they would be if you purchased the panels.
  • Full lease: In a full lease, the customer pays Sunrun an upfront fee to rent the panels for around 25 years (the term of the lease can vary). Sunrun retains ownership of the PV equipment. This saves a customer more money than a monthly lease, but it’s still significantly less than if a customer purchased panels.
  • Monthly loan: Customers can receive a solar loan from a third party to fund the purchase of solar equipment. These loans require monthly payments and typically have a payback period of between 5 and 10 years. In a monthly loan, a customer still owns the system outright, which adds to their property value, allows them to claim the solar tax credit and provides greater long-term energy savings than a lease. However, they will pay interest on the loan, making the system more expensive.
  • Full purchase: A full purchase is the most recommended method of investing in solar power. When customers purchase panels, they buy the system designed by Sunrun outright. Immediately, the solar panels add property value and the homeowner is eligible for the solar tax credit. Over time, homeowners will see a larger return on investment when paying in cash.

tips for choosing solar financing with sunrun

When it comes to which purchasing option is best, there is no single winner. It depends on several factors. The best way to figure out which purchase option is best for you is to understand the pros and cons of all. Check out our solar financing guide to help you decide.

Sunrun Solar Panel Warranty

Sunrun offers the “Sunrun Guarantee” for all of its systems, whether they’re leased, purchased or financed.

The guarantee includes an all-inclusive 10-year warranty that covers system malfunction, system damage, roof penetrations and the labor through a workmanship warranty. This coverage is quite good, and the equipment also holds the manufacturer’s warranty (typically 25 years) for defects.

Sunrun sweetens the pot for customers interested in leasing their equipment in an effort to entice customers to use this financing option. The added coverage for leases includes free maintenance and any necessary repairs, as well as insurance coverage on the equipment.

Sunrun Customer Reviews

sunrun solar installationAs mentioned above, Sunrun doesn’t have a great reputation when it comes to customer service, follow-up during the installation process or responding to warranty claims. Many of the reviews online are overwhelmingly negative and call out the company for unresponsiveness and poor service.

Some customers are pleased with the experience they have with Sunrun, although the general consensus is that this is a substandard company for quality of service and reliability.

Positive Sunrun Solar Reviews

Many of the company’s positive reviews mention affordability and peace of mind from the warranty coverage, although these are usually in relation to leases. Below are some of the positive reviews we found from Sunrun customers online.

“My husband had been researching solar panels for awhile. Due to the heat wave during summer time in the valley. Running the ac & pool pump raised our bill to $700. Now with Sunrun, we are under $250 summer time & winter time lower. He decided on Sunrun. Our appointment went well without [being] pressured into signing up. No money up front. The company updated our electric panel, no cost to us. The panels were put up in one day. We are connected with LADWP. It has been a couple of years with this company. If I have any questions their customer service is very knowledgeable. When we had a strong earthquake a while back I called them about my concern they checked our panels online & found no issues.”

Carmen M. via Yelp

“It has been a painless and seamless experience working with Sunrun, their online customer agents are knowledgeable, quick and courteous.

Also it took 24h to setup our first appointment to go over the design and financial part of the deal, then they were able to setup the site evaluation on a Saturday without any issue. And the best part is we have now a solution that will cover all our power needs for less than what we’ve been paying to LADWP! Great job Sunrun!!!”

Jonathan D. via Yelp

Negative Sunrun Solar Reviews

Unfortunately, the large majority of the reviews for Sunrun online are negative on most platforms, including Yelp, Google Reviews and Better Business Bureau. Most negative reviews are related to poor customer service, long installation timelines and poor communication after the contracts are signed.

Below are two such reviews to give you an idea of what you could encounter if you choose Sunrun.

“This company is a nightmare. Due to 2 years of billing issues and wrong documents submitted to Edison by Sunrun showing that I generate “0” power monthly, I now owe Edison tons of money that I did not even know I was being billed for.

Sunrun doesn’t answer calls and takes forever to respond and refuses to pay the full costs of their error with Edison leaving me on the hook for it. I will be pursuing the next steps to resolve this. RUN, it just is not worth it.”

Princess A. via Yelp

“I wish I could give negative stars. DO NOT USE THIS COMPANY for solar panels. You would think they would be reliable and in top of their customer service game but it is quite the opposite. They are very responsive up until you sign the contracts and then it’s nearly impossible to get a customer service rep to call or email you back. Then when you try to get help via the company web chat they are very unprofessional and do not provide any solutions to your concerns. So again learn from me and the other reviews, stay away from this company at COSTCO.”

Christina R. via Yelp

Sunrun vs Other Leading Solar Providers

Since we generally don’t suggest choosing Sunrun to handle your solar conversion, we’d be remiss if we didn’t mention some other providers that we’re more comfortable recommending. The chart below compares Sunrun with two other top solar installers in the country.

Sunrun is a massive national installation company, so if you’re considering going with this installer, you might want to think about other national providers as well. Below are links to some of our in-depth reviews comparing Sunrun to some of our top provider picks that are similarly sized and offer similar services.

Methodology: How Did We Review Sunrun Solar?

To stay impartial, our solar experts evaluate hundreds of solar providers in our database based on the same range of criteria and assign scores to each category. The result is what makes up our “EcoWatch Rating.” The main factors we assessed include:

  • Experience (15%): Companies with less than 10 years of experience are docked in this category. Most with less than five were deemed not eligible for ranking.
  • Availability (15%): Providers with larger service areas score higher.
  • Reputation (15%): We analyze reviews and trends on Google reviews, the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and similar review sites and assign scores accordingly.
  • Warranty coverage (15%): Companies offering longer, more comprehensive warranties performed better in this category.
  • Ease of purchase (20%): Companies with the most transparent, economical and practical financing options scored highest in this category.
  • Solar services (20%): Providers with more comprehensive service offerings perform better in this category. We also assess the quality of the products that the provider installs.

For a more in-depth look, visit our solar rankings methodology page.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ): Sunrun Solar

Below, we’ll answer some of the most common questions we see about Sunrun from customers across the country.

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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
Kristina Zagame is a journalist, editor and content writer with expertise in solar and other energy-related topics. Before joining EcoWatch, Kristina was a TV news reporter and producer, covering a wide variety of topics including West Coast wildfires and hurricane relief efforts. Kristina’s reporting has taken her all over the U.S., as well as to Puerto Rico and Chile.

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