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America s Best Solar Energy Companies

Solar Energy has gone from a fringe interest of the environmentally aware, to a viable option in new home construction and renovation. More businesses and government entities are also turning towards solar to power self-contained systems to promote energy reserves on site. Here are the best 15 US solar energy companies today. Some of them are very new, and some have been working with solar technology and construction for well over 30 years.

15 Best U.S. Solar Energy Companies

1. Verengo Solar – This one has become one of the top 3 residential solar installing companies in the US just based on market share. It has done so well that there is rumor it is now inviting buyers. Focused on the residential market, Verengo Solar reportedly installed over 12,000 solar units in residences since it opened for business. It is considered to be very friendly to those just beginning to explore solar lifestyles, but also scores well with business and commercial accounts too.

2. SolarCity – Next on the list is another of the largest residential solar installation companies in the US. What really makes SolarCity a standout in the industry is it also has its own manufacturing division. While they mostly work with residences, they also can provide for government and non-profit purchase, leasing and PPA programs as they can manufacture their panels to fit the order. Their installation and financing abilities also help to make SolarCity one of the best companies to choose to get started with solar in your home or business.

3. Sungevity – This company really makes the grade for being the pioneers in the US industry in solar leasing. They offer leasing and financing, but they are not dependent on each other. The effect of this model is it allowed for Sungevity to expand to offer solar options in underserved areas by promoting satellite distribution and installation companies under their brand logo. Their leasing has been a hit with residential, PPA and business entities; plus their other services have made them a strong and steady presence in the traditional market, including government and non-profit needs.

4. SunPower – This company has the distinction of being a worldwide leader in solar cell and module manufacturing, as well as a leading installer of solar equipment. It is a US based company, and their primary focus was on developing the residential market. While focused on home solar use, SunPower also has a very strong commercial arm, which places them in the top 3 of the providers and installers in the 48 states for business and government use. Their product line covers everything from small DIY projects, to home conversions, new construction and corporate installations too.

5. Sunrun – Sunrun is a relative newcomer to the industry, incorporating in 2007. They currently only serve 11 states, but within those states they have now become one of the largest solar installers. They don t do any manufacturing, but they are leasing and installation specialists. Their contracts are evenly divided over residential, commercial and government contracts. They also are one of the first choices for PPA customers and those just beginning to explore solar power.

6. RGS Energy – RGS Energy is a division of Real Goods Solar. Real Goods Solar is the 5 th largest US residential solar installation company. Their RGS Energy division is their latest innovation to bring their products to more residences, businesses and other PPA customers. They offer both leasing and financing. RGS has been serving customers for over 35 years and are considered one of the pioneers in making solar energy a viable alternative for private homes and businesses.

7. OneRoof Energy – One of the newer companies on the market, OneRoof Energy. this company was founded in 2011. They neither make nor sell solar modules, panels or components; they are a bespoke lease agent for other companies. The bonus for their companies is this has allowed them to carve out a niche in leased services and components that let companies and residential customers take the best advantage of industry discounts. They can also bring to an under-served area solar access through their negotiated access.

8. PetersenDean – PetersenDean started in 1984 and have been one of the primary leaders and innovators in the US solar energy market since. They combine roofing services with solar installation. The solar component is a relatively new addition to their divisions, but their longstanding history in the roofing marker has given them the edge on what different markets need to make solar energy viable. They have a high residential service percentage, but also do commercial work and government contracts too.

9. Vivint Solar – Right on the heels of PetersenDean is Vivint Solar. They don t have a roofing division but have divisions devoted to home security and automation. Like PetersenDean they have launched into the solar market by making the best use of their knowledge of residential and commercial needs. As of 2013, they were ranked 2 nd in the nation as a provider of solar installation. They do installation and lease products, sell components but do no manufacturing of their own. They serve residential, business and government agencies through direct sales, leasing and PPA agreements.

10. Horizon Solar Power – Horizon is an unusual addition to this list as they are mostly centered on the Southern California area. This area does represent one of the highest ratios of solar energy use in the nation. To that end, they are a leading provider of residential solutions. Their focus is on solar inclusion in rehabs, and in new construction. With their unique price agreements with solar module and component manufacturers, they are also the leading provider of discount panels to residential customers.

11. Solar World USA – SolarWorld is a solar pioneer, one of the world’s largest solar-technology producers and the largest U.S. solar panel manufacturer for 40 years. In its technology, manufacturing, performance, service and environmental track record, the company is a solar industry leader.

12. Solar Universe – Headquartered in California, Solar Universe has been providing locally owned and operated solar to neighborhoods across the country since 2008 through their locally owned and operated franchise network. They ve developed a unique solar franchise network which brings energy savings to consumers and businesses through our network of locally owned and operated franchises.

13. First Solar – First Solar is the global leader in photovoltaic (PV) solar energy solutions. First Solar has developed, financed, engineered, constructed, and currently operates many of the world’s largest grid-connected PV power plants in existence. By integrating technologies, services and expertise across the entire solar value chain, First Solar delivers bankable PV energy solutions that enable a world powered by reliable and affordable solar electricity.

14. Trinity Solar – Trinity Solar is the leading designer and integrator of solar electric systems in the Northeast. Their mission is to provide high-performing, cost-effective, environmentally responsible solutions to address the energy needs of our customers. Trinity has installed over 7,000 solar power systems, grown to over 350 employees, has become the largest solar provider in the Northeast, and is now one of the top ten solar providers in the nation.

15. Suniva Suniva is the leading American manufacturer of high-efficiency, cost-competitive PV solar cells and modules. The company is known worldwide for its high-quality solar products, patented low-cost manufacturing technology, and long-term reliable performance. Our ground-breaking manufacturing process ensures the combination of high power and exceptional value in every product we make, while our research milestones continue to set the standard in the global PV marketplace.

The common thread with all of these US solar energy companies is they have recognized that there are more places solar can be applied than thought before. The new leasing and discount programs make it easier for residences and businesses to incorporate solar energy in their constructions. Rather than think that houses need to be all solar, there is more drive to put solar assistance in place for existing fossil fuel systems.

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How much does a solar system cost these days? #cost #of #solar, #solar #pv, #system #cost, #price, #savings, #solar #quote


How much does a solar system cost these days?

To Top | Article Highlights

The cost of a solar power system installed on your roof top has reduced significantly over the years, and even more so in recent years, as more and more homeowners turn to solar, the demand increased and prompted many companies to manufacture and distribute solar components at a high quality, but at a much reduced rate due to the increased competition.

Here is a chart that demonstrates that price reduction:

It is quite clear from the chart how big the price cut was, and that’s for a complete system without reducing the cost for the customer after applying the incentives and tax breaks homeowners gets from their respective states.

While these vary from state to state, in many of them, it is now so lucrative, that solar powered homes make a lot of sense .

Check your Solar Costs by using our FREE Solar Calculator. it’s that easy!

To further demonstrate the costs or rather, the reduction of cost for the systems, here is a chart that shows how the cost of the component has been used in a residential solar power installation reduced.

Amazingly enough, the chart shows a reduction of rates from quarter to quarter (!) as of 2014, not years.

To know your savings, you will need..

Solar power systems are different from one location to the next. To figure out exactly how much electricity you can save, installation companies need to know the following:
Where do you live? – Each state has different solar policies thus changing the savings from one location to the next.
Is there shade on your roof? – Obviously to go solar, you will need the help of the sun, and the more, the better.
What type of roof do you have? – Some are easier than others to install on.
What direction is your roof facing? – A key factor for the system to maximize its potential.
What is your current electric bill? – The more you pay, the more you will save with solar .

Here is a great video detailing the cost of solar PV system breakdown:

The California Case Study

Let’s take a look at a typical 5KW system installation and savings of a Los Angeles home in California .

This is just to demonstrate your savings. It is obviously very different from home to home and we recommend connecting with solar installers for the most accurate quotes on costs and savings.

An average cost for 5KW of system will cost you around $20K to install. (Panels, labor, connections etc.). This is just our starting point. Now we need to subtract the incentives and solar federal tax breaks as follows: Subtract the rebate you’ll receive for each KW, which is totaled at $3750.

Now we need to subtract the federal solar tax credit at an amazing 30% to reduce the bill by another $4875 dollars. That brings your total savings to $8625 dollars !

So, all of a sudden, a $20K investment turns to $11,375. That is almost half of the original cost, and that’s big.

Again, each state has a different policy and each municipal, has different incentives like rebate program. For example, the LADWP (Los Angeles Department of Water and Power) rebate program is much different than the SMUD (Sacramento Municipal Utility District) rebate program.

T o get the most accurate quote, and see exactly how much you can save, click here and get a quote from a qualified solar installer.

One of the main reasons people tend to not get very excited about the prospect of installing a solar energy system to their home is their perception of the costs involved.

[blue[The truth is, over the long term, a solar energy system will pay for itself. and will actually generate you money in the form of lower utility bills, tax incentives, and selling back a proportion of the energy you produce but do not use to utilities companies.[/blue]

How much you stand to make depends upon where in the US you live, how much sunshine you typically see, and how electricity costs you. Naturally, the more money you pay for your energy supply, the more money you will save when you switch to solar .

The costs involved depends upon what kind of system you install. You can even have solar panels installed for free by allowing a solar energy company to lease your roof space off you so they can install their panels there.

They sell the electricity the panels generate back to you at a cost that’s typically much lower than mains electricity. but you will not receive the tax breaks and long-term benefits available to you if you go down this route.

How much electricity do you use?

If you do buy your own panels, then you will need to buy enough to make your switch to solar worthwhile, and you make it worthwhile by calculating how much electricity you use .

You really need 1 kW worth of solar panels for every $50 you pay in electricity every month, so if you pay $200 for your electricity per month, you are going to need a 4 kW solar panel system.

Each solar panel is worth around 250 to 300 W, so for a 2 kW system you will need eight panels, and for a 4 kW system, you will need sixteen. You will need to make sure you have sufficient roof space to install the system that you require.

Check out your options

As you may imagine, there are plenty of different manufacturers of solar panels. all having different standards of the efficiency of the panels they produce, with different costs as well.

When you come to install a solar system, unless you decide to do it yourself, the company you choose to perform an installation will provide the panels for you, and will advise you on your options.

A 4 kW solar panel system will cost you between $10,000 and $11,500 to install. If you want to up the juice a little bit, a 5 kW system will cost between $12,500 and $14,000 to install. Don’t forget, it’s not just the panels you are buying – there’s the wiring into your home electricity system as well, plus the cost of the installation itself .

You can find out more about the cost of a solar panel system here. You can also choose to finance the residential energy system, and go solar with zero down payment via solar leasing or Power Purchase Agreement (PPA), which is another great way to start save without having to pay for the system in full upfront.

Typically, as soon as you have your system up and running, you will receive tax breaks in line with about 30 percent of the cost of your installation. Most solar panel systems pay for themselves within 8 to 10 years of installation via lower utility bills and tax breaks.

Don’t forget, it’s not just the financial cost you have to take into consideration – there’s the continual cost in terms of damage to the environment if you continue to rely heavily on fossil fuels.

Go solar and you’ll be saving the planet, and your wallet

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