Solar Panel Cost Guide in Altadena, CA (Jan 2023)

  • Altadena Solar Installation Cost: $5,446
  • 25-Year Savings: $15,957
  • Payback Period: 6.4 Years

See cost of a solar system near you:

By EcoWatch Local Advisors

Data Analysis: James Savino

Ranking Methodology: Karsten Neumeister

Updated January 20, 2023

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We work with a panel of solar experts to create unbiased reviews that empower you to make the right choice for your home. No other site has covered renewables as long as us, which means we have more data and insider information than other sites. Our rankings are never affected by revenue or partnerships.

Average Cost of Solar Panels in Altadena

We go over average solar pricing in Altadena.

Currently, the national average cost of solar panels is $2.66 per watt. However, in Altadena, the average cost of solar panels is $3 per watt. To account for the typical energy usage of the average home in Altadena, most homeowners require a 2.9-kilowatt system. Using the per-watt figure above, a solar installation costs about $5,446, or $4,030 after the federal solar tax credit of 30% is applied.

Keep in mind that the figures above are only estimates based on the average Altadena homeowner. The cost of a solar system for your home may be different depending on factors unique to your situation, like your household energy use and solar contractor. With typical savings of about $29,000 on electricity bills over 20 years, many homeowners in Altadena find installing solar panels has a decent ROI.

You can click the button below to get connected with a top solar installer in Altadena for a quote for your home.

Solar savings over time in Altadena

Year Return on Investment
1 years $-4,590
3 years $-2,878
5 years $-1,166
7 years $547
9 years $2,259
11 years $3,971
13 years $5,683
15 years $7,396
17 years $9,108
19 years $10,820
21 years $12,533
23 years $14,245
25 years $15,957

Top Solar Installers in Altadena

Many homeowners decide to use a solar installation company since trying to install solar panels by yourself can be time-consuming. Solar installers offer key benefits that can help you get the most out of your investment, like warranties, monitoring and free repairs.

You can work with a local solar installer to get a free quote on how much your investment in solar could cost for your home. Here are some near you:

Best National Provider

SunPower

★★★★★
5.0

  • Most efficient panels on the market
  • National coverage
  • Cradle to Cradle sustainability certification
  • Great warranty coverage
  • Expensive
  • Customer service varies by local dealer

Best Regional Coverage

Momentum Solar

★★★★★
4.5

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

Best Technology

Tesla Energy

★★★★★
4.5

  • Price-match guarantee
  • Sleek, efficient, and durable solar panels
  • Best solar battery on the market
  • Some reported issues with customer service
  • Customer service varies by local dealer

See all of the solar companies in Altadena

Factors that Affect Solar Panel Costs in Altadena

The cost of installing a solar system in Altadena can vary by more than $10,000 from home to home. Your actual cost depends on several factors. The biggest one is your system size, and other factors include the equipment you choose, financing options and the solar company you choose.

Solar Equipment

The cost of solar panel systems varies by thousands of dollars due to a few different factors. One of the major factors is the system size, which is measured in kilowatts (kW). Solar power systems that have greater efficiency or power generation need better technology and/or more equipment, both of which can raise costs. For each additional kilowatt you need, your cost can go up by about $2,730. The brand of solar panels and equipment you want is another factor that will largely impact costs. Solar panels that are more efficient, like monocrystalline panels, tend to come at a higher price. Plus, solar equipment goes beyond just the solar panels themselves. You'll also need to think about the kind of racks used to mount the panels, inverters, solar batteries, etc. It's important to take all of this into consideration when looking into a solar system that's in your budget.

Solar Financing Terms

If paying for solar panels in cash is difficult, solar loans are a solid option because they cut back your upfront costs and let you pay for your system over a term of, on average, between five and seven years. You'll have to consider the long-term cost of financing options, including the total interest you'll pay over the length of the loan. If you're only able to get a high-interest loan, then your total can be hundreds or even thousands of dollars above the equipment and labor cost. Making a larger down payment or securing a solar loan with a low APR could reduce your costs significantly.

Solar Panel Installation Company

The solar company you hire to handle your switch to clean energy can play a role in your total costs. There are about 3 solar installation companies in Altadena, and each can charge different amounts for labor and equipment. Companies that only sell products with high efficiency and therefore a higher price point — like Maxeon solar panels from SunPower or Tesla Powerwall batteries — so choosing those installers will generally cost more. It's best to do some research and find a company that offers the products, warranties and services you want and also fits within your budget.

Solar Panel Cost Data by System Size

System size Cost per system watt Solar system cost 25-Year savings Payback period
6 kW $2.84 $11,925 $33,150 6.6 years
8 kW $2.78 $15,594 $44,506 6.5 years
10 kW $2.73 $19,110 $56,015 6.4 years
12 kW $2.68 $22,473 $67,677 6.2 years
14 kW $2.62 $25,684 $79,491 6.1 years
16 kW $2.57 $28,741 $91,459 6.0 years
18 kW $2.51 $31,646 $103,579 5.9 years
20 kW $2.46 $34,398 $115,852 5.7 years

How to Save on Solar Panels

Since the model of solar panels and the company you choose considerably impacts your costs and your system's durability and efficiency, it's important to select the right ones for you. Here are some things to keep in mind to help with your decision:

  • Installation Process: An important thing to understand when adopting solar energy is the installation process itself. Be sure to align on any details you need to know with your solar installer, such as what permits you should acquire and what the project timeline is.
  • Solar Panel Brands: Not all solar installers have the same brands of solar panels, so the brand and type of panel you want can play a significant role in the company you go with.
  • Warranty: A comprehensive, 25-year warranty can help keep your solar panels running for years to come and save you money on part replacement and repairs.
  • Contract: Look through the contract terms thoroughly to make sure you understand the overall cost, project completion timeline incentives and warranties.

Best National Provider

SunPower

★★★★★
5.0

  • Most efficient panels on the market
  • National coverage
  • Cradle to Cradle sustainability certification
  • Great warranty coverage
  • Expensive
  • Customer service varies by local dealer

Best Regional Coverage

Momentum Solar

★★★★★
4.5

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

Best Technology

Tesla Energy

★★★★★
4.5

  • Price-match guarantee
  • Sleek, efficient, and durable solar panels
  • Best solar battery on the market
  • Some reported issues with customer service
  • Customer service varies by local dealer

EcoWatch's Altadena, CA Solar Cost FAQs

What is the average cost of installing solar panels in Altadena?

The average cost of solar panels in Altadena is about $13,650 for a 5-kW system and $27,300 for a 10-kW system before the ITC, but the actual cost will depend on stuff such as the model of solar panels you want, what size system you need and how much energy you use.

Should I lease or buy solar panels in Altadena?

Leasing solar panels can be an attractive choice, as it commonly comes with low or $0 upfront payments. The downside is that you won't be able to save as much. If you lease, you don't own the system, so you can't claim any incentives and your home value won't increase. Buying solar panels is a better option if you want to maximize your savings.

Is switching to solar power worth it?

Solar panels can be a fruitful investment for many homeowners, but they might not be worth it for everyone. If your home doesn't get enough sunlight and/or your electricity bills are already fairly low, solar panels might not be for you.

How many solar panels do I need to power my home?

To figure out how many solar panels you need, you need to know how much energy your home needs and how much sunlight your home gets. For a general estimate, however, since each panel can usually produce about 250 to 400 watt-hours per hour, the average home will need 20 to 35 panels.

Our goal is to reach as many people as we can with sensible solutions like solar energy. Our team of full-time local researchers collects solar price and installation data for every city in America then compiles it to create these digestible city guides. If you want to read our solar expert's opinion on the top solar companies featured here, follow this link.

Company research was conducted by Melissa Smith and Karsten Neumeister. Local data analysis was conducted by James Savino. See something we missed or could do better? Email the editor.

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