Solar Panel Cost Guide in Atherton, CA (Nov 2022)

  • Atherton Solar Installation Cost: $5,867
  • 25-Year Savings: $20,464
  • Payback Period: 5.6 Years

See cost of a solar system near you:

EcoWatch Local Advisors

By EcoWatch Local Advisors

Updated 11/09/2022

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Average Cost of Solar Panels in Atherton

See how much it might cost to go solar in Atherton.

The average cost of a solar panel system in Atherton is $3 per watt. The average Atherton homeowner needs a 3.1-kilowatt system, which would cost about $5,867, or $4,342 after the federal solar tax credit of 30% is applied.

The prices above are just estimates to give you an idea of the cost of a solar energy system. The actual cost of installing solar panels can vary quite a bit based on multiple factors, such as how many panels you need, your energy usage and what solar installer you go with. With typical savings of about $33,000 on power bills over 20 years, many homeowners in Atherton find investing in solar has a decent ROI.

To see your potential savings and connect with a local solar company, click the button below.

Solar savings over time in Atherton

Year Return on Investment
1 years $-4,814
3 years $-2,707
5 years $-601
7 years $1,506
9 years $3,612
11 years $5,719
13 years $7,825
15 years $9,932
17 years $12,038
19 years $14,145
21 years $16,251
23 years $18,358
25 years $20,464

Top Solar Installers in Atherton

Although it's possible to install solar panels yourself, it takes extra time and knowledge. Because of that, most homeowners choose a solar panel installer. Another upside of using a solar company is that they can help you make the most of your investment by reducing your future costs of repairs and replacements because of warranties and informing you of local incentives you can take advantage of.

If you're searching for a solar company in Atherton, we've organized a list of our top suggestions here:

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 Atherton

Factors that Affect Solar Panel Costs in Atherton

There are a number of factors that can determine your solar panel installation cost, such as the size of your system, the equipment you choose, your financing options and the specific company that does the installation.

Solar Equipment

The size of the solar panel system you need to offset your energy usage is the most important cost factor to consider. For every additional kilowatt you need, you can expect your total to increase by nearly $2,730. The type of solar panels and equipment you choose is another factor that will significantly impact costs. Solar panels that have higher efficiency, like monocrystalline panels, tend to be more expensive. Furthermore, 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 searching for a solar system that's in your budget.

Solar Financing Terms

If paying for a solar system out of pocket is too expensive, solar loans are a solid option because they decrease your upfront costs and let you pay for your system over a term of, on average, between five and seven years. It's a good idea to factor the interest you'll pay in your final cost estimate. If you can afford to pay a larger down payment, you can reduce your total costs and the amount of time it'll take to pay off the loan.

Solar Panel Installation Company

The solar panel installer you pick will affect your total cost to go solar. Different companies will charge different amounts for the equipment and labor. 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 come at a higher cost. It's best to do some research and go with the company that has the products, warranties and services you're looking for and also fit into 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 $39,560 5.8 years
8 kW $2.78 $15,594 $53,052 5.7 years
10 kW $2.73 $19,110 $66,698 5.6 years
12 kW $2.68 $22,473 $80,496 5.5 years
14 kW $2.62 $25,684 $94,447 5.3 years
16 kW $2.57 $28,741 $108,551 5.2 years
18 kW $2.51 $31,646 $122,808 5.1 years
20 kW $2.46 $34,398 $137,218 5.0 years

How to Save on Solar Panels

The solar installer you choose will influence not only your overall costs, but also the types of solar panel brands, warranties, and other equipment you can get. When choosing a solar company, there are some important things you should consider, such as:

  • Warranty: If you care about the endurance of your solar energy system, ensuring your company offers a 25-year, all-inclusive warranty can give you some peace of mind.
  • Reputation: The North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP) is a respected certification organization for sustainable energy professionals. If your solar panel installer is NABCEP-certified, it most likely has a solid reputation and is qualified to get the job done well. Another way you can verify your installer's reputation is by reading reviews.
  • Solar Panel Brands: Not all solar companies offer the same brands of solar panels, so the brand and type of panel you want can play a big role in the company you opt for.
  • Contract: When reading over your solar installer's contract, ask for clarification about any terms you're not sure of and be sure you understand what happens in scenarios such as a system part breaking or if the company goes out of business.

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 Atherton, CA Solar Cost FAQs

How much does it cost to install solar panels in Atherton?

This is a hard question to answer exactly, because the cost depends on a few different factors. Generally speaking, it costs about $13,650 for a 5-kW system and $27,300 for a 10-kW system after the ITC is applied. You can expect to pay more if you want other solar equipment or higher quality panels, or if you have higher-than-average energy needs. On the flip side, you can spend less if you want a smaller solar panel system or less expensive solar panels.

What other factors should I consider aside from cost when buying solar panels?

The initial cost is a very important factor to consider, but whether it's the most important for you depends on why you decided to go solar. In areas where rooftop space is limited, efficiency can trump the cost. Other factors that are important to keep in mind are the quality and durability of your solar panels.

Does Atherton have a net metering program?

Most states have net metering programs of some kind. Through these, you can get paid for the extra power your system generates or or receive credits to put toward future electricity bills. Currently there are just three states that don't have any net metering laws: Alabama, Tennessee and South Dakota.

How often do you have to replace solar panels?

On average, the lifespan of solar panels is about 25 to 30 years. Some even last up to 50 years, but their efficiency goes down by about 0.8% each year. You can choose to replace them sooner if you want to maintain a larger amount of energy production.

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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