Solar Panel Cost Guide in Reading, PA (2024 Update)

  • Reading Solar Installation Cost: $16,528
  • 25-Year Savings: $13,243
  • Payback Period: 16.5 Years

See cost of a solar system near you:

By EcoWatch Local Advisors

Data Analysis: James Savino

Ranking Methodology: Karsten Neumeister

Updated May 20, 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 Reading

Let’s have a look at the average cost of solar panels in Reading.

Currently, the national average cost of solar panels is $2.66 per watt. However, in Reading, the typical cost of a solar system is 4 per watt.Using this figure, a typical 6.7-kW system would cost about $16,528 before the 0 federal solar tax credit is applied.

The prices above are just estimates to give you an idea of the cost of solar panels. The true cost of making the switch to solar can vary depending on a few factors, such as how many panels you need, your energy usage and what company you go with.Despite the large initial cost, the average Reading homeowner can save about $14,000 on their energy bills over 20 years, which is one of the perks of solar.

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

Solar savings over time in Reading

YearReturn on Investment
1 years$-15,285
3 years$-12,799
5 years$-10,313
7 years$-7,827
9 years$-5,341
11 years$-2,855
13 years$-369
15 years$2,117
17 years$4,603
19 years$7,089
21 years$9,575
23 years$12,061
25 years$14,547

Top Solar Installers in Reading

Although it's possible to install solar panels yourself, it requires extra energy and know-how. Because of that, most homeowners choose to go with a solar panel installer. Local solar installation companies can also help you maximize your return on investment by walking you through any local incentives you can take advantage of and by offering warranties and repairs.

Working with a vetted solar company can make going solar easier. Here are our recommendations:

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 for Leasing

Sunrun

★★★★★
4.0
  • Expansive service area
  • Many financing options
  • Some reported issues with customer service
  • Some reported issues with door-to-door sales

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 Reading

Factors that Affect Solar Panel Costs in Reading

For many Reading homeowners, the decision to install solar panels rests on cost. However, the range of solar installation costs can be quite wide in Reading, 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 power your household uses, the larger your system will likely need to be. You can expect to pay about $3,550 per kilowatt in Reading.The brand and kind of equipment you want for your solar system can raise or lower the price quite significantly. If you prefer a brand name like Tesla or SunPower, these often come at a higher price than other brands. Efficiency also matters. Whether you’re opting for high efficiency because you have a small roof or just want maximum energy production, you will be looking at a higher equipment cost, but this can typically lead to greater savings over time. Plus, if you want add-ons like an electric vehicle charger or solar batteries, this will also increase the cost.

Solar Financing Terms

Most solar companies in Reading provide solar loans, which reduce the initial cost of installing solar.It’s wise to add the interest you’ll pay in your final cost estimate. If you can afford to pay a larger down payment, you can reduce your total costs and how long it’ll take to pay off the loan.

Solar Panel Installation Company

The solar company you opt for to handle your switch to green energy can have an effect on your total costs. There are about 3 solar panel companies in Reading, and each can charge different amounts for labor and equipment.Additionally, some companies in Reading are more knowledgeable about local solar incentives and can help you learn about additional rebates or tax exemptions. However, they may charge more for walking you through the whole process. Even if they cost more upfront, they could help you save more money in the long run.

Solar Panel Cost Data by System Size

System sizeCost per system wattSolar system cost25-Year savingsPayback period
6 kW$3.69$15,506$7,15017.1 years
8 kW$3.62$20,278$9,93116.8 years
10 kW$3.55$24,850$12,91116.5 years
12 kW$3.48$29,224$16,08916.1 years
14 kW$3.41$33,398$19,46615.8 years
16 kW$3.34$37,374$23,04215.5 years
18 kW$3.27$41,152$26,81715.1 years
20 kW$3.19$44,730$30,79114.8 years

How to Save on Solar Panels

Since the brand of solar panels and the installation company you choose greatly influences your costs and your system’s durability and efficiency, it’s important to pick the right ones for you. Here are some tips to keep in mind to help with your decision:

  • Warranty: Warranties that provide coverage for panel repairs and maintenance over a couple decades are the best you can get in the business, and offering such a warranty is one indication of a quality company.
  • Solar Panel Brands: Different companies will offer various brands and models of panels. If you prefer a specific brand, make sure the solar installer you’re considering has it.
  • Contract: When reading through your solar company’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.
  • Installation Process: One of the most important things to understand when adopting solar power is the installation process itself. Be sure to clarify any details you should know with your solar company, such as what permits you should secure and how long the project will take.

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 for Leasing

Sunrun

★★★★★
4.0
  • Expansive service area
  • Many financing options
  • Some reported issues with customer service
  • Some reported issues with door-to-door sales

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 Reading, PA Solar Cost FAQs

What is the average cost of installing solar panels in Reading?

This is a difficult question to answer precisely, because the cost depends on a variety of factors. Generally speaking, it costs about $17,750 for a 5-kW system and $35,500 for a 10-kW system after the ITC is applied. You can expect to pay more if you want additional solar equipment or more efficient panels, or if you have higher-than-average energy consumption. On the other hand, you can spend less if you opt for a smaller solar panel system or less efficient solar panels.

Is cost the most important thing to keep in mind when buying solar panels?

The initial cost is a very important factor to consider, but whether it’s the most important for you depends on your reasons for going solar. In places where rooftop space is limited, efficiency can trump the cost. Other factors that are important to consider are the quality and durability of your solar panels.

Do solar panels increase how much your home is worth?

Installing solar panels on your home can increase the value of your property by about 4%, according to research done by Zillow. The average home value in Reading is currently $227,341, so you can expect a value of about $9,321 more than houses without a solar system. The exact figures will vary, but most experts agree that installing solar panels in Reading is a worthwhile 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 average daily sunlight your roof gets. You can take a 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.