Solar Energy Cost
Find out what solar power costs - generally, that is if you don't do it yourself.
The advantages of solar power are many. On this page we will explain some of the biggest benefits of solar energy and how you can save money over other forms of energy such as oil, coal, natural gas and more, as well as help the environment.
The cost of solar energy varies greatly with your solar energy needs and depends on a number of factors, such as materials cost, the installation cost, maintenance cost, and even the energy savings you will be getting out of the solar system. Another consideration when determining solar power cost should be the added value to your home.
Of course, since your on this website, you are probably at least considering the do-it-yourself approach - which will save you a considerable amount of money and reduce your overall solar power cost to only a fraction of what you would pay a professional solar company to do it. You can learn more about making your own solar power panels by clicking here to go to the Make Solar Panels section of our website.
Traditional Solar Power Costs
Solar Cost Per Watt
If you're paying a pro to install it, solar power costs about $10-$14 per watt installed, although you may be eligible for state rebates and incentives.
Doing it yourself could cost about $4-$7 per watt which would bring your solar energy cost way down..
When determining the cost of your solar energy system, the size of your house is less relevant than the amount of power you use per month. Check your utility bill to see your monthly usage and judge for yourself if you'll need a big or small system. You can learn more about how to determine the amount of energy needed to run your home by clicking here to go to the Energy Audit section of our website.
Average Cost of Converting Your Home To Solar
A good sized robust solar electric system will cost about $20- $30,000 for a single family house.
If you are looking to entirely replace grid-based electricity with solar energy the cost will probably be closer to approximately $30-40,000 for a single family house.
This includes everything from the cost of solar panels, inverter, wiring, installation and all other photovoltaic components.
However, we have seen solar systems cost up to $60,000 and more for a single family home, so some comparison shopping would definitely be beneficial.
Solar system investments with solar power costs such as the ones described above would typically take about 5-10 years to recoup your initial investment. After that, your energy is free.
Cost of Solar Power For Smaller Remote Applications
If you were powering a remote cabin in the woods, it would cost you less at about $7-12,000. Since you wouldn't be hooking up to the grid, your solar energy cost would be less. You can learn more about these types of solar energy systems by clicking here to go to the Off Grid Solar Power section of our website.
Hot Water Heating Solar Energy Cost
A solar thermal water heating system can reduce your monthly hot water heating bill drastically (between 50 - 100%) and will cost you about $4000 - $5000. You can typically make your money back in 2-3 years.
Solar Heated Swimming Pool Costs
To heat your swimming pool with solar power, you would have to spend about $200-$500 to buy a prefabricated solar pool heating kit, which isn't very difficult to install.
As you can see, the initial cost of solar energy can be quite high when having it done by a professional, however the benefits you receive thereafter can be very worth it in the end. If you continue to live in your house past 5-10 years, you are literally paying yourself to live, thus entirely off-setting your solar power costs.
Yes, it's expensive, but the pay off will come.
Fortunately, this website and many like it have been set up to help speed up the process of recouping your initial solar energy investment by showing you how to do it yourself.
So don't be afraid of the traditional $20 - $40,000 solar energy cost range.
When you do it yourself, it's more like $5 - $10,000 and $4 - $7 per watt ...but a lot more work.
Click here to go back to the How Solar Power Works section in the exact spot you left off (or just click your browsers back button).