Solar Panel Cost Guide in Watertown, MN (Jan 2023)

  • Watertown Solar Installation Cost: $14,174
  • 25-Year Savings: $19,638
  • Payback Period: 10.5 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 Watertown

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

The average cost of a solar system in Watertown is $3 per watt. Since a 7.1-kW system is needed to cover the energy usage of a typical home in Watertown, the average price of going solar will be about $14,174 before claiming the federal solar tax credit of 30%.

Remember that the numbers above are only averages. The price you'll end up paying for solar may vary based on your household energy consumption, the type of equipment you want to get, your solar contractor and more. But, once you've paid the initial cost of installation, the payback for most homeowners is usually rewarding, with a net average savings of about $18,000 over 20 years on energy bills.

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

Solar savings over time in Watertown

Year Return on Investment
1 years $-12,822
3 years $-10,117
5 years $-7,412
7 years $-4,707
9 years $-2,002
11 years $703
13 years $3,408
15 years $6,113
17 years $8,818
19 years $11,523
21 years $14,228
23 years $16,933
25 years $19,638

Top Solar Installers in Watertown

Putting up solar panels by yourself can be a difficult project, which is why getting a solar installation company is a good option for many homeowners. Also, companies with a good reputation that are more expensive upfront could actually save you money in the long term due to their warranties, repair services and expert design.

If you're looking for a solar installer in Watertown, the EcoWatch team has compiled 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 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

Best Social Impact

Palmetto Solar

★★★★★
4.0

  • Expansive service area
  • Makes charitable contributions
  • Certified B Corp
  • No leases or PPAs
  • Quality of installation may vary by location

See all of the solar companies in Watertown

Factors that Affect Solar Panel Costs in Watertown

There are several criteria that can affect your total installation cost, such as the size of your system, the equipment you choose, your financing options and the specific company that installs your solar system.

Solar Equipment

One of the most significant factors to consider when it comes to the cost of adopting solar energy 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 spend around $2,840 per kilowatt in Watertown. The type of solar panels and equipment you want is another factor that will largely influence costs. Solar panels that have higher efficiency, like monocrystalline panels, tend to come at a higher price. Furthermore, solar equipment is more than just the solar panels themselves. You'll also need to make decisions 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 for a solar system that's in your budget.

Solar Financing Terms

Most solar companies in Watertown provide solar loans, which reduce the initial cost of installing solar panels. When estimating your overall cost, you should also calculate the interest you'll pay if you decide on a solar loan. Also, paying a higher down payment can reduce the total interest paid over time.

Solar Panel Installation Company

A final factor to consider when trying to figure out the cost of solar for your home or business in Watertown is the company you choose to install your solar system. Similar to choosing a company to renovate your kitchen, for example, there are plenty of solar installers that provide a range of services at different costs. Additionally, some companies in Watertown have more knowledge about local solar incentives and can help you take advantage of additional rebates or tax exemptions. However, they may charge more for that service. 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 $2.95 $12,405 $16,067 10.9 years
8 kW $2.90 $16,222 $21,741 10.7 years
10 kW $2.84 $19,880 $27,574 10.5 years
12 kW $2.78 $23,379 $33,566 10.3 years
14 kW $2.73 $26,719 $39,717 10.1 years
16 kW $2.67 $29,900 $46,027 9.8 years
18 kW $2.61 $32,921 $52,496 9.6 years
20 kW $2.56 $35,784 $59,124 9.4 years

How to Save on Solar Panels

Since the type of solar panels and the installer you choose has an impact on your costs and your system's durability and efficiency, it's important to select the right ones for you. Here are some things to keep in mind to help with your decision:

  • Contract: It's important to read your solar installer's contract fully to understand what services they will provide, what the warranty covers and what you can expect about your solar system's energy production.
  • Installation Process: Get detailed information from your solar company about the installation process and what to expect, including when the site survey will be done and what the project timeline is.
  • Solar Panel Brands: Different companies will carry various brands and kinds of panels. If you know you want a specific brand, make sure the solar panel company you're considering has it.
  • 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 likely has a solid reputation and is qualified to do the job well. Another way you can look into your installer's reputation is by reading reviews.

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

★★★★★
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

Best Social Impact

Palmetto Solar

★★★★★
4.0

  • Expansive service area
  • Makes charitable contributions
  • Certified B Corp
  • No leases or PPAs
  • Quality of installation may vary by location

EcoWatch's Watertown, MN Solar Cost FAQs

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

This is a tough question to answer exactly, because the cost depends on many factors. Broadly speaking, it costs about $14,200 for a 5-kW system and $28,400 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 above-average energy usage. On the other hand, you can spend less if you want a smaller solar panel system or cheaper solar panels.

Can you get solar panels for free in Watertown?

You can't get solar panels for free in Watertown. However, you may still be able to install them on a lower budget. You can lease solar panels for a low upfront cost or, if you'd rather own your solar panels, you can finance them with a solar loan.

How will solar panels impact the value of my home?

Solar panels can increase the value of your home considerably as long as you buy or finance your panels and don't opt for 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 a solar system."

How often do you have to replace solar panels?

Even though the average lifespan of solar panels is 25 to 30 years, that doesn't mean they stop working completely at that time. What this means is their energy production will have decreased significantly after that point. You can opt to replace them after having 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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