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

  • Salem Solar Installation Cost: $12,549
  • 25-Year Savings: $10,144
  • Payback Period: 13.8 Years

See cost of a solar system near you:

EcoWatch Local Advisors

By EcoWatch Local Advisors

Updated 11/09/2022

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Average Cost of Solar Panels in Salem

We go over average solar pricing in Salem.

In Salem, solar panels cost about $3 per watt on average. The average Salem homeowner needs a 7.0-kilowatt system, which would cost about $12,549, or $9,286 after the federal solar tax credit of 30% is applied.

Bear in mind that the figures above are only estimates based on the average Salem homeowner. The price of a solar system for your home may look different depending on factors unique to you, like your household energy use and solar contractor. Despite the significant upfront cost, the average Salem homeowner can save around $12,000 on their energy bills over 20 years, which is one of the positives of solar.

To calculate your potential savings and connect with a local solar company, click the button below.

Solar savings over time in Salem

Year Return on Investment
1 years $-11,641
3 years $-9,825
5 years $-8,010
7 years $-6,195
9 years $-4,379
11 years $-2,564
13 years $-748
15 years $1,067
17 years $2,883
19 years $4,698
21 years $6,513
23 years $8,329
25 years $10,144

Top Solar Installers in Salem

When going solar, many homeowners decide to use a solar company since putting up a solar system yourself can be a challenging project. Also, companies with a high reputation that cost more upfront could actually save you money in the long term because of their warranties, repair services and expert design.

Working with a professional solar installer can help your solar project go smoothly. 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 Salem

Factors that Affect Solar Panel Costs in Salem

There are many criteria that can play into your solar panel installation cost, such as the size of your system, the equipment you choose, your financing options and the specific company that installs your solar panels.

Solar Equipment

One of the most important factors to consider when it comes to the cost of going solar 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 $2,550 per kilowatt in Salem. The kind of solar equipment you choose can increase or decrease your cost 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 over time on your energy bills. Additionally, add-on products, like solar batteries, can bring your total well above the Salem average.

Solar Financing Terms

Many homeowners find the average cost of solar in Salem to be too expensive, even if the investment pays off over time. Fortunately, almost every solar company in the area provides financing options. Solar loans drastically decrease upfront costs in most cases, but they also lead to higher prices over time due to interest. Though solar loans make going solar more accessible for Salem homeowners, they can also raise the total you pay for your system, depending on your interest rate. 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 remaining key cost factor you should consider is the installer you choose. Given the growing popularity of green energy solutions in Salem, you'll have plenty of options to choose from, but each comes at various price points for labor and equipment. The size of the company sometimes plays the most considerable role in the cost of installation. Larger national companies, like SunPro and Sunrun, often have lower prices because they have more resources and better pricing. Smaller local companies might be more costly, but they can sometimes have better customer service and more customization options, and the occasional sale or discount can bring their pricing lower to compete with bigger names.

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 $8,224 14.4 years
8 kW $2.60 $14,566 $11,250 14.1 years
10 kW $2.55 $17,850 $14,420 13.8 years
12 kW $2.50 $20,992 $17,732 13.6 years
14 kW $2.45 $23,990 $21,187 13.3 years
16 kW $2.40 $26,846 $24,785 13.0 years
18 kW $2.35 $29,560 $28,526 12.7 years
20 kW $2.29 $32,130 $32,410 12.4 years

How to Save on Solar Panels

Since the brand of solar panels and the company 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:

  • Warranty: If you care about the durability of your solar panel system, making sure your company offers a 25-year, all-inclusive warranty can give you some peace of mind.
  • Solar Panel Brands: Homeowners will have different preferences for panels depending on their roof configurations and how much efficiency they need. While there are many options for which brand of solar panel you can get, not every company will have access to the exact one you may want or need, so make sure you ask for their list of offerings before deciding.
  • Contract: When looking over 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 part breaking or if the company goes out of business.
  • Installation Process: When making the switch to solar power, it's crucial to maintain an open line of communication with your solar panel installer. Make sure you understand how the installation process works and the completion timeline.

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 Salem, PA Solar Cost FAQs

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

This is a hard question to answer exactly, because the cost depends on many factors. Generally speaking, it costs about $12,750 for a 5-kW system and $25,500 for a 10-kW system after the ITC is applied. It will be more expensive if you want other 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 less efficient solar panels.

Is it better to lease or buy solar panels in Salem?

Leasing solar panels can be an appealing choice, as it commonly 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 maximize your savings.

Can you sell solar power back to the grid in Salem?

Most states offer net metering programs of some kind. Through these, you can either receive compensation for the extra power your system produces or or receive credits to put toward future utility bills. Currently there are just three states that don't have any net metering laws: Alabama, Tennessee and South Dakota.

How often do you have to replace solar panels?

On average, solar panels can last about 25 to 30 years. Some even last up to 50 years, but their efficiency goes down by about 0.8% each year. You can choose to replace them sooner if you want to maintain a larger level of energy production.

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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