Solar Panel Cost Guide in State College, PA (Feb 2023)
- State College Solar Installation Cost: $12,513
- 25-Year Savings: $11,874
- Payback Period: 12.8 Years
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Top Solar Installers in State College
Although it's possible to install solar panels yourself, it requires extra effort and expertise. That's one of the reasons the majority of homeowners choose a solar panel installer. The expertise that solar installers offer can be invaluable as well, especially if you don't quite know what kind of solar equipment you need.
There are a number of licensed solar professionals that can install solar panels for you. Here are our suggestions:
See all of the solar companies in State College
Factors that Affect Solar Panel Costs in State College
Cost is typically one of the most important factors for homeowners who want to invest in solar. There are a few major factors that affect your total cost in State College: solar equipment and system size, financing options and the solar installation company you choose. We'll cover each of these briefly below.
When it comes to estimating the cost of a solar system in State College, one of the most important factors is the size of the system you need. Solar systems are sized by kilowatts (kW) and are chiefly based on your home's energy consumption, which you can gauge by looking at past power bills. Your total cost can increase by around $2,550 for each additional kilowatt you need. Some solar brands — like Maxeon from SunPower — are more expensive upfront but also tend to offer better efficiency. In a city like State College, where sunlight isn't as abundant, efficiency can quickly pay off. Plus, if you have a small roof or you don't have a lot of space for your panels, higher efficiency options will be more impactful. Additional equipment like electric vehicle chargers and solar batteries will also increase the cost.
Solar Financing Terms
Many homeowners find the average cost of solar in State College to be prohibitively steep, even if the investment pays off over time. Fortunately, nearly every solar installer in the area provides financing options. Solar loans substantially decrease upfront costs in most cases, but they also result in a higher cost over time due to interest. It's wise to include the interest you'll pay in your final cost estimate. If you can afford to put more money down upfront, you can reduce your total costs and the amount of time it'll take to pay back the loan.
Solar Panel Installation Company
The solar panel installation company you select will play a role in your total cost to adopt solar power. Different companies will charge different amounts for the equipment and labor. Larger national companies usually have lower costs, but some local companies compete with them by promoting sales and discounts. While the smaller companies might not have access to specific equipment options like Tesla Powerwall batteries or additional services like electric vehicle charger installation, they might be cheaper overall.
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||$9,739||13.3 years|
|8 kW||$2.60||$14,566||$13,271||13.1 years|
|10 kW||$2.55||$17,850||$16,946||12.8 years|
|12 kW||$2.50||$20,992||$20,763||12.6 years|
|14 kW||$2.45||$23,990||$24,724||12.3 years|
|16 kW||$2.40||$26,846||$28,827||12.1 years|
|18 kW||$2.35||$29,560||$33,073||11.8 years|
|20 kW||$2.29||$32,130||$37,461||11.5 years|
How to Save on Solar Panels
Since the kind of solar panels and the installer you choose greatly impacts your costs and your system's efficiency, production, and durability, it's important to select the right ones for you. Here are some things to keep in mind to help with your decision:
- Warranty: Warranties that provide coverage for panel repairs and maintenance over a long period of time such as 25 years are the gold standard in the business, and offering such a warranty is one indication of a good company.
- Contract: Before you sign a contract with a solar company, be sure to read it through completely so you understand the terms. Also, ask questions if you're unsure about some of the terms, such as what the warranty covers and what services you can expect from them.
- Reputation: Companies that have been in business for many years likely have a high reputation. This is important because it ensures that it will not only see your solar installation through, but will also provide adequate aftercare and customer service, such as part repairs and replacements.
- Solar Panel Brands: Each solar panel brand and kind has varying levels of quality, durability and energy efficiency. They will come at different price points as well. The company you choose has an impact on which solar panel brands you have access to.
EcoWatch's State College, PA Solar Cost FAQs
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.