Solar Panel Cost Guide in Champaign City, IL (Jan 2023)

  • Champaign City Solar Installation Cost: $12,058
  • 25-Year Savings: $10,106
  • Payback Period: 13.6 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 Champaign City

Here's how much it might cost to switch to solar power in Champaign City.

The average cost of a solar system in Champaign City is $3 per watt. To cover the typical energy needs of the average home in Champaign City, most homeowners require a 6.3-kilowatt system. Using the figure above, a solar installation costs around $12,058, or $8,923 after the federal solar tax credit of 30% is applied.

The true cost of your system can be higher or lower than the average in Champaign City based on a variety of factors, such as the model of solar panels you choose and the solar company you hire. For many homeowners, the upfront investment in solar panels is worth paying. On average Champaign City homeowners see about $13,000 in savings on energy bills over 20 years.

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

Solar savings over time in Champaign City

Year Return on Investment
1 years $-11,172
3 years $-9,399
5 years $-7,625
7 years $-5,852
9 years $-4,079
11 years $-2,306
13 years $-533
15 years $1,240
17 years $3,014
19 years $4,787
21 years $6,560
23 years $8,333
25 years $10,106

Top Solar Installers in Champaign City

Do-it-yourself solar panel installation is a way to cut costs, but it's an undertaking that can use up a lot of your time and energy. Hiring an installer can make switching to solar power much easier. Also, companies with an outstanding reputation that are more expensive upfront could actually save you money in the long run because of their warranties, repair services and expert design.

If you'd like to go solar but still aren't sure which solar system installer to go with, here are our suggestions for providers 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 Solar Financing

Blue Raven Solar

★★★★★
4.5

  • Industry-leading in-house financing
  • Competitive pricing
  • Excellent reputation
  • Doesn't offer solar batteries (coming 2022)

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 Champaign City

Factors that Affect Solar Panel Costs in Champaign City

For many Champaign City homeowners, the decision to install a solar energy system rests on cost. However, the range of solar installation costs can be quite wide in Champaign City, with typical prices between $20,000 to $40,000. There are various factors that significantly influence the price you'll pay, which we'll go over below.

Solar Equipment

One of the most important 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 energy your household uses, the larger your system will likely need to be. You can expect to pay about $2,730 per kilowatt in Champaign City. Some solar brands — like Maxeon from SunPower — are more expensive upfront but also tend to offer better efficiency. In a city like Champaign City, where sunlight is relatively abundant, efficiency can quickly pay off. Plus, if you have a small roof or limited space for your panels, higher efficiency options will be a better option. Additional equipment like electric vehicle chargers and solar batteries will also increase the cost.

Solar Financing Terms

For some homeowners, paying for a solar system out of pocket can be difficult. Solar loans are provided by most installers in Champaign City, which can bring down, or in some cases eliminate, your upfront costs to make solar more affordable. Even though solar loans make adopting solar energy more accessible for Champaign City homeowners, they can also raise the total you pay for your system due to interest. If you put down a larger down payment, though, you can cut back on how much interest you have to pay.

Solar Panel Installation Company

The solar installer you select will affect your total cost to go solar. Different companies will bill different amounts for the equipment and labor. Additionally, some companies in Champaign City are more knowledgeable about local solar incentives and can help you make good use of additional rebates or tax exemptions. Though, they may charge more for walking you through the whole process. Even if they cost more upfront, they could end up saving you more money in the long run.

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 $9,143 14.2 years
8 kW $2.78 $15,594 $12,497 13.9 years
10 kW $2.73 $19,110 $16,003 13.6 years
12 kW $2.68 $22,473 $19,662 13.3 years
14 kW $2.62 $25,684 $23,474 13.1 years
16 kW $2.57 $28,741 $27,439 12.8 years
18 kW $2.51 $31,646 $31,557 12.5 years
20 kW $2.46 $34,398 $35,828 12.2 years

How to Save on Solar Panels

There are many companies available in Champaign City, and some homeowners feel overwhelmed considering their options. Selecting the right company for you can be difficult, so here are some tips to help you decide:

  • Installation Process: Homeowners should make sure they know how exactly the installation process will go, as well as important factors like the project timeline.
  • Warranty: Many companies offer different kinds of warranties that provide different kinds of coverage. A 25-year, all-inclusive warranty is the gold standard.
  • Contract: When looking through your solar installer's contract, ask questions about any terms you're not sure of and be sure you understand what happens in scenarios like a system part breaking or the company going out of business.
  • Solar Panel Brands: Different companies carry different brands and kinds of panels. If you want a specific brand, make sure the solar company you're considering has it.

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 Solar Financing

Blue Raven Solar

★★★★★
4.5

  • Industry-leading in-house financing
  • Competitive pricing
  • Excellent reputation
  • Doesn't offer solar batteries (coming 2022)

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 Champaign City, IL Solar Cost FAQs

What is the average cost of installing solar panels in Champaign City?

The average cost of solar panels in Champaign City 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 things like 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 Champaign City?

Leasing solar panels can be an option if you can't afford to pay upfront or get a solar loan, but since you don't own the system, you can't take advantage of many solar incentives. Also your home value won't increase, so you'll have less savings over time. If you can afford to buy a solar system upfront, then buying is the better option if you want the most financial benefits from going solar.

Is switching to solar power worth it?

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

How often do you have to replace solar panels?

Although the average lifespan of solar panels is 25 to 30 years, that doesn't mean they should be disposed of at that time. What this means is how much energy they produce will have decreased significantly after that point. You can replace them once you've had them for that long or you can continue to use them at a lower efficiency.

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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