Solar Panel Cost Guide in Santa Cruz, CA (Feb 2023)
- Santa Cruz Solar Installation Cost: $5,867
- 25-Year Savings: $20,464
- Payback Period: 5.6 Years
See cost of a solar system near you:
Please enter a valid 5-digit zip code!
Why you can trust EcoWatch
Top Solar Installers in Santa Cruz
When switching to solar energy, many homeowners choose to use a solar installer since DIY solar panel installation can be a time-consuming project. Companies can also offer access to various kinds of the best solar panels and help you pick which one will be right for you.
There are several licensed solar professionals that can help you install your solar panels. Here are our suggestions:
See all of the solar companies in Santa Cruz
Factors that Affect Solar Panel Costs in Santa Cruz
The cost of installing a solar system in Santa Cruz can vary by more than $10,000 from home to home. Your actual cost is dependent on several factors. The most significant one is your system size, and other factors include equipment choices, financing options and the solar installer you choose.
The size of the solar energy system you need to offset your energy usage, which is measured in kilowatts, is the most significant cost factor to consider. For every additional kilowatt you need, you can expect your total to increase by nearly $2,730. The brand of solar panels and equipment you want is another factor that will considerably impact costs. Solar panels that have higher efficiency, like monocrystalline panels, tend to come at a higher price. Further, 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 falls within your budget.
Solar Financing Terms
For some homeowners, paying for a solar system out of pocket can be a challenge. Solar loans are provided by most installers in Santa Cruz, which can lower, or in some cases eliminate, your upfront costs to make solar more affordable. Though solar loans make going solar more accessible for Santa Cruz homeowners, they can also increase the total you pay for your system, depending on your interest rate. If you put down a larger down payment, though, you can avoid paying as much in interest.
Solar Panel Installation Company
The final significant cost factor you should take into consideration is the installer you choose. Given the massive popularity of renewable energy solutions in Santa Cruz, you'll have plenty of options to choose from, but each comes at different price points for labor and equipment. Larger national companies generally have lower costs, but some local companies undercut them by offering sales and discounts. While the smaller companies might not have specific equipment options like Tesla Powerwall batteries or additional services like electric car 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||$39,491||5.8 years|
|8 kW||$2.78||$15,594||$52,961||5.7 years|
|10 kW||$2.73||$19,110||$66,583||5.6 years|
|12 kW||$2.68||$22,473||$80,359||5.5 years|
|14 kW||$2.62||$25,684||$94,287||5.4 years|
|16 kW||$2.57||$28,741||$108,368||5.2 years|
|18 kW||$2.51||$31,646||$122,602||5.1 years|
|20 kW||$2.46||$34,398||$136,989||5.0 years|
How to Save on Solar Panels
The solar installer you opt for will influence not only your total 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 keep in mind, such as:
- Solar Panel Brands: The type of solar panel you'd like to get plays a role in which company you should go with, since different companies have different panels.
- Installation Process: Homeowners should understand how exactly the installation process will go, as well as important factors like the project completion timeline.
- Contract: When looking through your solar installer's contract, ask questions about any terms you're not sure of and make sure you understand what happens in scenarios such as a system part breaking or the company going out of business.
- Warranty: Companies typically offer different kinds of warranties that cover different things. A 25-year, all-inclusive warranty is the gold standard.
EcoWatch's Santa Cruz, CA Solar Cost FAQs
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.