Sunrun Vs. Momentum Solar: Which Company Is Better? (2022)
Here’s what we’ll cover in this solar provider comparison:
- Is Sunrun or Momentum Solar better overall?
- Is Sunrun cheaper than Momentum Solar?
- Does Sunrun or Momentum Solar have better warranties?
- And much more
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- Great warranty coverage
- Concierge service ensures steady communication
- Representatives are experts on local policies
- Slightly limited service offerings
- Only available in 11 states
- Solar Panels
- Solar Batteries
Overview: Sunrun Vs. Momentum Solar
Along with companies like ADT Solar and Blue Raven, Sunrun and Momentum Solar are among the largest solar companies in the U.S. Both have large coverage areas that include numerous states. Since these companies are so prevalent, we think it’s important to compare them, as many homeowners will likely be considering one or both to install their solar systems.
|Company||Brand Is Best For||Price||Warranty Coverage||States Served||BBB Rating||Payment Options||Solar Services Offered|
|Sunrun||Leases and affordability||$$||10 years for a roof leak, 25 years for performance, and the solar panel manufacturer’s warranty||20 states plus Washington, D.C., and Puerto Rico||A-||Cash, loan, lease, PPA||Solar panels, solar battery storage, EV chargers, solar system monitoring|
|Momentum Solar||Positive customer experience and overall quality||$$$||25 years for equipment and workmanship, plus the manufacturer’s warranty||10 states||A+||Cash, loan, lease, PPA||Solar panels, solar energy storage|
Sunrun was founded in 2007 and has grown immensely since then. It’s expanded its service area to cover 20 states plus Puerto Rico and Washington, D.C. In 2020 it purchased Vivint Solar, increasing its footprint even further.
Sunrun has championed the solar leasing model, which appeals to customers but is less beneficial in the long run than a purchase. Sunrun touts leases by offering incredible warranty coverage and free maintenance for all leased solar power systems.
Sunrun’s size and business model that has it outsourcing system installations have led to some issues providing good customer support. It struggles to maintain positive customer reviews.
Momentum Solar Overview
Momentum Solar serves about half as many states as Sunrun, although its service area still spreads from the East Coast to the West. It’s been serving solar customers since 2009 and has a far better reputation for customer service than Sunrun.
One thing that sets Momentum Solar apart from other regional and national installers is its concierge service. You’ll be dealing with just one dedicated project manager, which helps reduce communication issues and confusion throughout the process.
Representatives are also trained in local solar incentives and can help you take advantage of perks like the federal tax credit and local rebates.
Cost Comparison: Sunrun Vs. Momentum Solar
Solar energy systems average nearly $25,000 before any incentives are considered, which is quite an investment. Many solar customers don’t realize that their choice of the installer can bring the total system cost up or down by thousands of dollars. Below, we’ll discuss how Sunrun and Momentum Solar compare in terms of pricing.
Costs And Financing Options
Each solar installer carries a specific selection of solar equipment brands, including options for solar panels, inverters, and microinverters, and, in many cases, solar batteries.
Companies that offer high-quality and high-efficiency equipment — like Tesla batteries and SunPower panels — will naturally cost more. Better equipment means higher pricing in most cases.
Every company can also charge different prices for labor. Companies that outsource labor — like Sunrun — can often find the most affordable rate for your project to bring your total down.
Companies that use in-house installation teams tend to be more expensive (but often provide better service).
The financing options offered by each company can also affect your up-front and long-term pricing.
Which Company is Cheapest, Sunrun or Momentum Solar?
Sunrun comes in below average when it comes to cost. It also accepts all financing options to keep photovoltaic systems accessible to all customers. These options include:
- Cash purchases
- Solar loans
- Solar leases
- Power purchase agreements (PPAs)
Momentum Solar is around average in pricing, so it’s a bit more costly than Sunrun. However, as we’ll discuss later, the warranty coverage and solar products offered are superior, so the quality is higher overall. Momentum also accepts all of the payment options mentioned above.
Our Pick for Best by Cost – Momentum
If you’re looking for the cheapest option between these two providers, Sunrun is the way to go. However, while Sunrun maintains lower costs, Momentum Solar provides superior quality, so we’d choose Momentum if you’re looking for the most bang for your buck.
Warranties Offered: Sunrun Vs. Momentum Solar
Solar warranties are important to consider when choosing your installer because they can dictate what kind of post-installation experience you’ll have. No one wants to run into issues with their equipment not working, but if you do, solid warranty coverage will help provide peace of mind.
Sunrun offers a 10- to 25-year warranty for equipment and 25 years of coverage for power production if you purchase panels. If you lease instead, you’ll get 25 years of comprehensive coverage for equipment, workmanship, energy production, and, incredibly, roof leak protection.
Momentum Solar provides the same warranty coverage regardless of your payment method. It covers the equipment and workmanship for 25 years, and you get the manufacturer’s warranty as well, which is usually 10 to 25 years.
Our Pick for Best Warranties – Momentum
Sunrun has better warranty coverage, but only if you lease your panels. If you’re looking to purchase or finance your system, Momentum Solar is the way to go.
Additionally, Sunrun has a history of putting off warranty claims and service, so we’d say Momentum is a better option overall for warranty coverage.
Coverage Area: Sunrun Vs. Momentum Solar
A company’s service area should really be the first thing you consider because you can save research time by eliminating installers that don’t serve your area.
Larger service areas mean a better chance a company can serve you, although larger companies also tend to have less appealing customer service.
Sunrun serves Puerto Rico and Washington D.C., plus the following 20 states:
- New Hampshire
- New Jersey
- New Mexico
- New York
- Rhode Island
- South Carolina
Momentum Solar covers the following 10 states:
- New Jersey
- New York
Our Pick for Best Coverage Area – Sunrun
Sunrun services twice as many states as Momentum Solar, so it comes out ahead in terms of areas covered.
Solar Panel Performance: Sunrun Vs. Momentum Solar
Sunrun installs solar panels made by LONGi and Costco, inverters made by Enphase, and Brightbox batteries (which were developed in-house) as well as, in many areas, Tesla Powerwalls. It’s also starting to offer low-profile solar roof shingles from Tesla Solar.
The inverter and battery options are top-of-the-line. The panels are tier-one, but they aren’t as efficient or desirable as products from companies like SunPower, LG, and Panasonic.
Momentum Solar offers a more customizable approach to solar panel installations. Rather than limiting its product line, it can include just about any solar equipment brand you want for your home.
Momentum’s approach means you can get best-in-class panels that provide the highest efficiency and the most savings on electric bills from your utility company — like Maxeon panels from SunPower and Tesla Powerwalls — or more affordable options if that suits you better.
Our Pick for Best Panel Performance – Momentum
In terms of performance, Momentum Solar outshines Sunrun. It offers a massive array of products based on what you want for your home, so you can customize your system’s efficiency based on your energy needs and installation cost based on what appeals more to you.
Customer Experience: Sunrun Vs. Momentum Solar
Many solar customers get hung up on system specifications and energy efficiency when choosing an installer. However, it’s also important to consider the kind of customer experience you’ll get with each provider.
Below, we’ll discuss the customer service you can expect from both Sunrun and Momentum Solar and provide some customer reviews that give a snapshot of the quality of service offered.
What Customers Say About Sunrun
Unfortunately, Sunrun has a long history of poor customer service. Customers commonly complain about:
- Misleading sales tactics
- Delays in the installation process
- Delays in connecting the system to the grid
- Poor communication throughout the entire installation process
- Issues with getting warranty claims addressed
The negative reviews outnumber the positive ones, and it seems clear that the size of the company often gets in the way of providing quality service.
That being said, there are positive reviews as well, and it seems like the luck of the draw determines what project manager is assigned to your solar project and how efficiently they operate and communicate.
Below are some telling reviews we found online for Sunrun:
“My father was taken advantage of and tricked into signing with Vivint solar which is now Sunrun. The panels haven’t worked for almost a year and no one has addressed the issue. I’ve asked more than once to remove the panels as my father is gone, and they refuse. Meanwhile, my bill is super high. This company has hung up the phone on me more than once, transferred me around, and refuses to help or remove the panels.” — Lopez S. via Better Business Bureau (BBB)
“This company is very professional. They explain to you about the solar program and they give you the opportunity to ask questions if you want to learn more. My first solar installation had stopped performing, so I called customer care and they prorated my system and gave me back an incentive for the problem. I am very satisfied with this agency and I would recommend them to anyone that is interested in purchasing solar.” — Regina M. via BBB
If you’re interested in hearing more about the customer complaints regarding Sunrun, you can check out this news broadcast about issues with the installer:
What Customers Say About Momentum Solar
Momentum Solar certainly has its fair share of negative reviews as well, but it has a far better reputation for customer service. It seems clear that the company’s concierge service goes a long way toward keeping customers happy.
Still, some of the negative reviews bring up issues that do recur. These include:
- Aggressive sales tactics
- Issues with canceling contracts
- A lack of communication within the company
Below are some reviews we found online for Momentum that should give you an idea of what kind of service the company routinely provides.
“They will not stop calling me even though we have told them that we have a contract with another solar company. Over 30 phone calls in a two-week span. We had a meeting with one of their salespeople at our house who showed up unprepared with no research done on our house. I have called them back twice in as many days to tell them to stop.” — Christopher S. via BBB
“Salesman Marc is very professional. The site assessment was thorough. Partial roof replacement was suggested. We waited a long 5 months for the materials. After that, it took only one day to replace the roof and another day to install the panels. Workers seemed efficient and cleaned around the house after the installation. We are happy with the process. Now it’s time to enjoy green energy. Thank you, Momentum Solar!” — Jim Fang via Google Reviews
Our Pick for Best Customer Experience – Momentum
Neither Sunrun nor Momentum Solar is the best solar company for customer service. However, Momentum Solar has a better reputation for providing positive customer experiences. Its concierge service also helps provide good communication and personalization for every customer.
Final Verdict: Sunrun Vs. Momentum Solar
Overall, we have to go with Momentum Solar over Sunrun, which has a history of poor customer service and delayed repairs when problems pop up. Sunrun’s leasing-first business model is also less beneficial for solar customers than Momentum’s purchase-first strategy.
Our Top Pick: Momentum Solar
We recommend Momentum Solar over Sunrun for most customers. Unless you’re specifically looking for a solar lease for low monthly payments, Momentum Solar provides better customer service, more efficient equipment, and more comprehensive warranty coverage.