Solar Panel Cost Guide in California, MO (Sep 2022)

  • California Solar Installation Cost: $13,072
  • 25-Year Savings: $19,544
  • Payback Period: 10.0 Years

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EcoWatch Local Advisors

By EcoWatch Local Advisors

Updated 9/16/2022

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Average Cost of Solar Panels in California

We break down average solar pricing in California.

Although the national average of solar panels is $2.66 per watt, solar panels in California generally cost about $3. Since a 7.2-kW system is needed to cover the energy costs of a typical home in California, the average price of going solar will be about $13,072 before claiming the federal solar tax credit of 30%.

These figures are only estimates, and how much solar costs for you will look different based on your energy needs and what company you choose to go with. For most homeowners, the upfront cost of solar power is worth paying. On average California homeowners see about $17,000 in savings on utility bills over 20 years.

To get a free quote from a pre-vetted solar installer in California, you can click the button below.

Solar savings over time in California

Year Return on Investment
1 years $-11,767
3 years $-9,158
5 years $-6,549
7 years $-3,939
9 years $-1,330
11 years $1,279
13 years $3,889
15 years $6,498
17 years $9,107
19 years $11,716
21 years $14,326
23 years $16,935
25 years $19,544

Top Solar Installers in California

When making the switch to solar, many homeowners opt to use a solar company since DIY solar panel installation can be a difficult project. Plus, if you're unsure what kind of solar panels and equipment you need, a solar installer can help you find the right equipment for you after a site survey and consultation.

If you're on the hunt for a solar company in California, we've 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 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

The Green Panel

★★★★★
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 California

Factors that Affect Solar Panel Costs in California

The cost of installing a solar system in California can vary by more than $10,000 from home to home. Your actual cost depends on several factors. The biggest one is the size of the system your home needs, and other factors include equipment choices, financing options and the solar installer you choose.

Solar Equipment Size

The size of the system you need is one of the largest factors that influences the overall cost of going solar. For that reason, it's important to accurately ascertain the size of the solar energy system needed for your home by figuring out your average energy use. The kind 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, more efficient panels could save you more in the long run on your electric bills. Additionally, extra products, such as solar batteries, can bring your total well above the California average.

Solar Financing Terms

Most solar installers in California offer 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 opt for a solar loan. Also, paying a higher down payment can reduce the total interest paid over time.

Solar Panel Installation Company

A final consideration when trying to figure out the cost of solar for your home or business in California is the company you hire to install your solar panel system. Similar to choosing a company to renovate your kitchen, for instance, there's no shortage of solar installers that provide a range of services at different costs. You may see national solar installers that have lower prices due to their bigger brand name and access to bulk pricing, or you might see small, local installation companies offering deals or specials to compete with those larger companies.

Solar Panel Cost Data by System Size

System size Cost per system watt Solar system cost 25-Year savings Payback period
6 kW $2.69 $11,313 $15,842 10.4 years
8 kW $2.64 $14,794 $21,412 10.2 years
10 kW $2.59 $18,130 $27,128 10.0 years
12 kW $2.54 $21,321 $32,989 9.8 years
14 kW $2.49 $24,367 $38,994 9.6 years
16 kW $2.43 $27,268 $45,145 9.4 years
18 kW $2.38 $30,023 $51,441 9.2 years
20 kW $2.33 $32,634 $57,882 9.0 years

Solar Incentives in California

Name Empire District Electric - Solar PV Rebates
Website Visit here
More Info Click here

Name Solar Property Tax Exemption
Incentive Amount 100% exemption
More Info Click here

Name Co-Mo Electric Cooperative - Energy Efficiency Rebate Program
Website Visit here
More Info Click here

Name Wabash Valley Power Association (28 Member Cooperatives) - Residential Energy Efficiency Program
Website Visit here
More Info Click here

Name Ameren Missouri (Electric) - Residential Heating and Cooling Energy Efficiency Rebate Program
Website Visit here
More Info Click here

Name Local Option - Clean Energy Development Boards
More Info Click here

Name Residential Renewable Energy Tax Credit
Website Visit here
More Info Click here

How to Save on Solar Panels

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

  • Warranty: A high-quality company rises above other companies by providing the gold standard warranty — a 25-year, all-inclusive warranty covering parts, labor and performance.
  • Reputation: Long-running companies likely have a good reputation. This is important because it ensures that it will not only see your solar project through, but will also provide quality aftercare and customer service, such as part repairs and replacements.
  • Contract: When looking over your solar installer's contract, ask for clarification about any terms you're not sure of and be sure you understand what happens in scenarios such as a system component breaking or if the company goes out of business.
  • Solar Panel Brands: Each solar panel brand and model has varying levels of quality, longevity and efficiency. They will come at different price points as well. The company you choose affects which solar panel brands you have access to.

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

The Green Panel

★★★★★
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 California, MO Solar Cost FAQs

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

The average cost of solar panels in California is about $12,950 for a 5-kW system and $25,900 for a 10-kW system before the ITC, but the actual cost will depend on things such as the type of solar panels you want, what size system you need and how much energy you consume.

Can you get solar panels for free in California?

Solar panels aren't free in California, but there are some options that can make getting them more affordable, such as leasing solar panels or getting a solar loan. There may also be local programs or incentives that can further reduce the cost.

Do solar panels increase your property value?

Solar panels can increase your property's value 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 solar panels."

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

To figure out how many solar panels you need, you need to know how much energy your home needs and how much sunlight your home gets. For a general estimate, however, since each panel can generally produce about 250 to 400 watt-hours per hour, the average household 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.

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