Solar Panel Cost Guide in San Clemente, CA (Jan 2023)

  • San Clemente Solar Installation Cost: $5,504
  • 25-Year Savings: $17,536
  • Payback Period: 6.0 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

Why you can trust EcoWatch

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 San Clemente

See how much it might cost to make the switch to solar in San Clemente.

The national average cost of solar panels is $2.66 per watt, but in San Clemente it's $3 per watt. The average San Clemente homeowner needs a 2.9-kilowatt system, which would cost about $5,504, or $4,073 after the federal solar tax credit of 30% is applied.

These figures are only estimates, and your own solar costs will most likely look different based on factors unique to your home and what company you go with. For most homeowners, the upfront cost of solar is worth paying. On average homeowners in San Clemente see about $30,000 in savings on utility bills over 20 years.

You can click the button below to get connected with a pre-vetted solar company in San Clemente that can help you get a more accurate cost estimate for your home.

Solar savings over time in San Clemente

Year Return on Investment
1 years $-4,582
3 years $-2,739
5 years $-896
7 years $948
9 years $2,791
11 years $4,634
13 years $6,477
15 years $8,320
17 years $10,164
19 years $12,007
21 years $13,850
23 years $15,693
25 years $17,536

Top Solar Installers in San Clemente

Many homeowners choose to use a solar installer since trying to put up solar panels yourself can be a labor-intensive endeavor. The expertise that solar companies offer can be valuable as well, particularly if you don't quite know what brand of solar equipment you need.

You can get a free quote from a local solar installer on the cost of solar panels 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 San Clemente

Factors that Affect Solar Panel Costs in San Clemente

Cost is often one of the most important factors for homeowners wanting to invest in solar. There are a few major factors that affect your total cost in San Clemente: solar equipment and system size, financing options and the solar installation company you choose. We'll cover each of these briefly below.

Solar Equipment

System size, which is measured in kilowatts, is one of the largest factors that affects the overall cost of installing solar panels. For that reason, it's crucial to accurately assess the size of the solar energy system needed for your home by figuring out your energy needs. The model of solar panels and equipment you choose is another factor that will largely impact costs. Solar panels that are more efficient, like monocrystalline panels, tend to cost more. Further, solar equipment is more than just the solar panels themselves. You'll also need to decide on 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 falls within your budget.

Solar Financing Terms

For some homeowners, paying for solar out of pocket can be financially overwhelming. Solar loans are available from most installers in San Clemente, which can lower, or in some cases totally eliminate, your upfront costs to make solar more accessible. Though solar loans make switching to solar energy more accessible for San Clemente homeowners, they can also raise the total you pay for your system, depending on your interest rate. If you make a larger down payment, though, you can avoid paying as much in interest.

Solar Panel Installation Company

The solar installer you choose to handle your switch to clean energy can play a part in your total costs. There are about 3 solar panel companies in San Clemente, and each can charge different amounts for labor and equipment. Larger national companies generally have lower costs, but some local companies undercut them by promoting sales and discounts. While the smaller companies might not have specific equipment options like Tesla Powerwall batteries or add-on services like electric vehicle charger installation, they might be cheaper overall.

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 $36,005 6.2 years
8 kW $2.78 $15,594 $48,312 6.1 years
10 kW $2.73 $19,110 $60,773 6.0 years
12 kW $2.68 $22,473 $73,386 5.9 years
14 kW $2.62 $25,684 $86,152 5.7 years
16 kW $2.57 $28,741 $99,071 5.6 years
18 kW $2.51 $31,646 $112,142 5.5 years
20 kW $2.46 $34,398 $125,367 5.4 years

How to Save on Solar Panels

The solar company you go with will be a major factor in determining not only your total costs, but also the kinds of solar panel brands, warranties, and other equipment you can get. When choosing a solar company, there are a few important things you should take into account, including:

  • Contract: Review the contract terms closely to make sure you understand the cost breakdown, project timeline incentives and warranties.
  • Solar Panel Brands: Each solar panel brand and kind offers varying levels of quality, durability and efficiency. They will come at different price points as well. The company you choose plays a role in which solar panel brands you have access to.
  • Reputation: Your solar installer should have a sound reputation as a company and have proven expertise in the field. A couple of ways to check this are to look for whether a company has technicians certified by the North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP) and if it has positive reviews from previous customers.
  • Warranty: A comprehensive, 25-year warranty can help keep your solar system running for a long time and save you money on part replacement and repairs.

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 San Clemente, CA Solar Cost FAQs

What is the average cost of installing solar panels in San Clemente?

The average cost of solar panels in San Clemente 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 kind of solar panels you want, what size system you need and how much energy you consume.

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

The upfront cost is a crucial factor to consider, but whether it's the most important for you depends on why you decided to go solar. In cities where rooftop space is limited, efficiency can trump the cost. Other factors that are important to take into account are the quality and durability of your solar panels.

Do solar panels increase your property value?

Solar panels can increase your property's value significantly as long as you buy or finance your panels and don't choose a solar lease or power purchase agreement (PPA). According to research done by Zillow, the average home value increases by about 4.1% after installing solar panels."

How many solar panels should I get to power my home?

The exact number of solar panels you need depends on your household energy usage and the amount of sunlight your roof gets. You can take a look at your energy bills for the past year to get an idea of the solar system size you'll need. The average household has to buy between 20 and 35 panels to cover their typical energy usage.

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.

Follow us