Solar Panel Cost Guide in Altoona, PA (Dec 2022)

  • Altoona Solar Installation Cost: $12,334
  • 25-Year Savings: $18,580
  • Payback Period: 10.0 Years

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EcoWatch Local Advisors

By EcoWatch Local Advisors

Updated 11/09/2022

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Average Cost of Solar Panels in Altoona

Find out what the average cost of a solar system is in Altoona.

In Altoona, solar panels cost about $3 per watt on average. Using this figure, a typical 6.9 would cost about $12,334 before the 30% federal solar tax credit is applied.

Bear in mind that the figures above are only estimates based on the average energy use of Altoona homeowners. The price of a solar system for your home may be different depending on factors unique to your situation, like your household energy use and solar contractor. Despite the significant initial cost, the average Altoona homeowner can save around $17,000 on their power bills over 20 years, which is one of the perks of solar.

Click the button below to get connected to a highly rated solar installer in your area for a personalized quote.

Solar savings over time in Altoona

Year Return on Investment
1 years $-11,098
3 years $-8,625
5 years $-6,152
7 years $-3,678
9 years $-1,205
11 years $1,268
13 years $3,741
15 years $6,214
17 years $8,687
19 years $11,160
21 years $13,633
23 years $16,107
25 years $18,580

Top Solar Installers in Altoona

DIY solar panel installation is a possibility, but it's an undertaking that can use up a lot of your time and energy. Using a solar panel installer can make your switch to solar power much easier. Plus, if you'd like to maximize your investment in solar, opting for a solar company can help with that too. Different providers can offer warranties, expertise on how to install solar panels and sometimes even information on local incentives and net metering programs.

Working with a vetted solar installer can help you make the most of your investment in solar. Here are our recommendations:

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 Regional Coverage

Momentum Solar

★★★★★
4.5

  • Great warranty coverage
  • Representatives are experts on local policies
  • Concierge service ensures steady communication
  • Slightly limited service offerings

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 Altoona

Factors that Affect Solar Panel Costs in Altoona

Although the average cost of a solar system in Altoona is $12,334, your actual cost may be above or below the average. There are several factors that can have a sizable impact on the cost of a solar system installation. Below are some of the more crucial things to take into consideration.

Solar Equipment

System size, which is measured in kilowatts, is one of the largest factors that determines the overall cost of installing solar panels. Because of that, it's a priority to accurately gauge the size of the solar energy system needed for your home by figuring out your typical energy use. Some solar brands — like Maxeon from SunPower — cost more upfront but also tend to offer better efficiency. In a city like Altoona, where sunlight isn't as abundant, efficiency can quickly pay off. In addition, 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

If paying for a solar system out of pocket is too expensive, solar loans are a popular route because they lower your upfront costs and let you pay for your system over five to seven years on average. You'll have to consider the long-term cost of loans, including the amount of interest you'll pay over the length of the loan. If you're only able to get a high-interest loan, then your total can be hundreds or even thousands of dollars above the equipment and labor cost. Making a larger down payment or securing a solar loan with a low interest rate could reduce your costs considerably.

Solar Panel Installation Company

A final factor to keep in mind when trying to evaluate the cost of solar for your home or business in Altoona is the company you hire to install your solar system. As with choosing a company to install new cabinets, for example, you'll have many options for solar installers that offer a range of services at different price points. Additionally, some companies in Altoona know more about local solar incentives and can help you make good use of additional rebates or tax exemptions. Though, 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 $2.65 $11,138 $15,688 10.4 years
8 kW $2.60 $14,566 $21,203 10.2 years
10 kW $2.55 $17,850 $26,861 10.0 years
12 kW $2.50 $20,992 $32,661 9.8 years
14 kW $2.45 $23,990 $38,605 9.6 years
16 kW $2.40 $26,846 $44,691 9.4 years
18 kW $2.35 $29,560 $50,920 9.2 years
20 kW $2.29 $32,130 $57,291 9.0 years

How to Save on Solar Panels

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

  • Warranty: Warranties that cover replacement parts and repairs over a couple decades are the gold standard in the business, and offering such a warranty is one indication of a quality company.
  • Contract: Though reading through a contract can be tedious, it's important to do it thoroughly so you can be sure you understand how much the equipment and services will cost and how part repairs and replacements will be handled.
  • Solar Panel Brands: Each solar panel brand and type has varying levels of quality, longevity and efficiency. They will come at different costs as well. The company you choose impacts which solar panel brands you have access to.
  • Reputation: Solar system installers that have great reviews from their customers and that have been in business for many years most likely provide high-quality solar panel installation and expertise.

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 Regional Coverage

Momentum Solar

★★★★★
4.5

  • Great warranty coverage
  • Representatives are experts on local policies
  • Concierge service ensures steady communication
  • Slightly limited service offerings

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 Altoona, PA Solar Cost FAQs

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

This is a tough question to answer exactly, because the cost depends on a few different factors. Broadly speaking, it costs about $12,750 for a 5-kW system and $25,500 for a 10-kW system after the ITC is applied. You can expect to pay more if you want extra solar equipment or higher quality panels, or if you have above-average energy consumption. Conversely, you can spend less if you opt for a smaller solar panel system or cheaper solar panels.

Should I lease or buy solar panels in Altoona?

Leasing solar panels can be an appealing choice, because it often 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 way to go if you want to get the most savings.

How will solar panels impact the value of my home?

Buying or financing solar panels for your home can increase the value of your property by about 4%, according to research done by Zillow. The average home value in Altoona is currently $100,786, which means you could be looking at a value of about $4,132 more than houses without a solar system. The exact figures will vary, but most experts agree that installing solar panels in Altoona is a rewarding investment.

What solar power system size is right for my home?

The exact number of solar panels you need depends on your household energy consumption and the amount of sunlight your roof gets. You can look at your energy bills for the past year to get an idea of the solar system size you'll need. The average household has to install between 20 and 35 panels to cover their typical energy usage.

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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