Solar Panel Cost Guide in Cedar Rapids, IA (2024 Update)

  • Cedar Rapids Solar Installation Cost: $27,274
  • 25-Year Savings: $29,748
  • Payback Period: 14.0 Years

See cost of a solar system near you:

By EcoWatch Local Advisors

Data Analysis: James Savino

Ranking Methodology: Karsten Neumeister

Updated June 24, 2024

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 Cedar Rapids

Here’s how much it might cost to make the switch to solar in Cedar Rapids.

The national average cost of solar panels is $2.66 per watt, but in Cedar Rapids it’s 4 per watt.Using this figure, a typical 9.7-kW system would cost about $27,274 before the 0 federal solar tax credit is applied.

Keep in mind that the numbers above are only averages. The price you’ll end up paying for solar may look quite different based on your household energy use, the type of solar system you choose, your solar contractor and more.Even with the significant upfront cost, the average Cedar Rapids homeowner can save about $19,000 on their electricity bills over 20 years, which is one of the advantages of solar.

For a free quote from a local solar company that has been pre-vetted by EcoWatch, click the button below.

Solar savings over time in Cedar Rapids

YearReturn on Investment
1 years$-25,584
3 years$-22,203
5 years$-18,822
7 years$-15,441
9 years$-12,060
11 years$-8,680
13 years$-5,299
15 years$-1,918
17 years$1,463
19 years$4,844
21 years$8,224
23 years$11,605
25 years$14,986

Top Solar Installers in Cedar Rapids

Installing solar panels yourself can be a challenging task, which is why getting a solar installer is a good option for many homeowners. The expertise that solar installers provide can be valuable as well, particularly if you aren’t sure what brand of solar equipment you need.

If you’d like to go solar but still aren’t sure which solar company to go with, here are our suggestions for providers in Cedar Rapids:

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 Technology

Tesla Energy

★★★★★
3.2
  • 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 Cedar Rapids

Factors that Affect Solar Panel Costs in Cedar Rapids

Cost is often one of the most important factors for homeowners wanting to invest in solar. There are a few key factors that will push your cost above or below the average in Cedar Rapids: solar equipment and system size, financing options and the solar installation company you choose. We’ll cover each of these briefly below.

Solar Equipment

One of the most significant factors to consider when it comes to the cost of installing solar panels is the size of the solar system, which is measured in kilowatts (kW). The more electricity your household consumes, the larger your system will likely need to be. You can expect to spend about $4,010 per kilowatt in Cedar Rapids.The type of solar equipment you choose can bring your price up or down by thousands or even tens of thousands of dollars. If you opt for the most efficient solar panel brands, you’ll end up paying more upfront than if you opted for the most affordable panels. On the other hand, higher efficiency could save you more in the long run on your electric bills. In addition, add-on products, like solar batteries, can bump up your total well above the Cedar Rapids average.

Solar Financing Terms

Solar panels can save you money on power bills over many years, but they can also be a significant investment. That’s why many Cedar Rapids homeowners decide to finance their solar panel systems to make going solar more affordable.It’s wise to factor the interest you’ll pay in your final cost estimate. If you can afford to put more money down upfront, you can reduce your total costs and the amount of time it’ll take to pay back the loan.

Solar Panel Installation Company

Finally, the company you get to install your solar panel system can impact how much it costs. Cedar Rapids’s solar companies all have different labor costs and add varying upcharges to equipment. The size of the company sometimes plays the most significant role in the installation costs. Larger national companies, like SunPro and Sunrun, often have lower pricing because they have access to greater resources and better pricing. Smaller local companies might be more costly, but they can sometimes have better customer service and more customization options, and the occasional sale or discount can bring their pricing lower to compete with bigger names.

Solar Panel Cost Data by System Size

System sizeCost per system wattSolar system cost25-Year savingsPayback period
6 kW$4.17$17,516$12,48714.6 years
8 kW$4.09$22,905$17,09914.3 years
10 kW$4.01$28,070$21,93514.0 years
12 kW$3.93$33,010$26,99613.8 years
14 kW$3.85$37,726$32,28113.5 years
16 kW$3.77$42,217$37,79113.2 years
18 kW$3.69$46,484$43,52612.9 years
20 kW$3.61$50,526$49,48412.6 years

How to Save on Solar Panels

The company that does your system installation will affect the warranties and brands available to you, and it will also have an impact on your total cost. Since choosing a company can be a challenge, we have some tips to help you, such as:

  • Warranty: If you care about the longevity of your solar energy system, verifying that your installer offers a 25-year, all-inclusive warranty can give you some peace of mind.
  • Installation Process: One of the most important things to understand when adopting solar energy is the installation process itself. Be sure to clarify any details you need to know with your solar company, such as what permits you should secure and what the project timeline is.
  • Reputation: Your solar installer should have a good reputation as a company and have verifiable expertise in the field. Two ways to check this are to look for whether a company has technicians that hold a certification from the North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP) and if it has good reviews from past customers.
  • Contract: Look through the contract terms closely to make sure you understand how much it will cost, completion timeline rebates 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 Technology

Tesla Energy

★★★★★
3.2
  • 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 Cedar Rapids, IA Solar Cost FAQs

What is the average cost of installing solar panels in Cedar Rapids?

The average cost of solar panels in Cedar Rapids is about $20,050 for a 5-kW system and $40,100 for a 10-kW system before the ITC, but the real cost will depend on stuff like the model of solar panels you want, what size system you need and how much energy you consume.

Should I lease or buy solar panels in Cedar Rapids?

Leasing solar panels can be an attractive choice, because it commonly comes with low or $0 upfront payments. The drawback 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 tax rebates and credits and your home value won’t increase. Buying solar panels is a better option if you want to maximize your savings.

How will solar panels impact my property value?

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

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 uses 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 house 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.