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Clean Power

Published on February 2nd, 2013 | by Zachary Shahan

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Considering Solar? Of Course You Are…

February 2nd, 2013 by  


Home solar panels & cash via Shutterstock

We currently have close to 3,000 articles on CleanTechnica filed under the “Solar Power” category, more than any topic other than “Clean Power” (which is Solar Power’s parent category). But sometimes you can’t see the forest for the trees… and that includes us!

What am I talking about? I’m talking about the fact that I don’t think we’ve ever written a post on how to go about getting solar panels put on your roof!

It may seem obvious — close your eyes, dream about them, and then put them on your list to Santa (and, of course, make sure you are being nice, not naughty, throughout the year). Unfortunately, it actually takes a little more work than that. However, not too much more.

There happen to be many different ways of getting those cleantech superstars on your roof, but one or two of those options dominate the huge majority of installations:

  1. Paying a local solar installation company for the solar panels, and for putting them on your roof. (For many of us, this would also require taking out a loan from the bank.)
  2. Paying a solar service company to install a solar power system for a much smaller fee (or even nothing at all), and then leasing the system (or the electricity it produces) from that company for a couple decades to come. This option is dominating residential solar installations these days, primarily due to our aversion to spending a lot of money at once for anything (even if it saves us money in the long term), or in some cases an inability to do so.

Of course, there are other ways to go solar, such as: paying for a portion of a solar garden (if possible in your area), buying solar panels (or even finding free ones) and installing them yourself, using PACE financing (if it’s available in your area), or at least taking part in crowdfunding a solar project. But, as stated, the first two options I listed above are how almost everyone goes solar.

But one question remains — how do you find the best company?

That step has, for several years, put up a big block to going solar. There are many solar installers out there, and now many solar service companies, but which is the best? Well, a handful of companies have actually popped up to help people find the best deals in their locale.

If you’ve noticed (and how could you not?), we’ve partnered with one of those companies* (Cost of Solar, CostOfSolar.com) to feed people into that comparison shopping step more quickly and seamlessly. And also because we know Cost of Solar is doing a good job providing a great service to thousands of consumers interested in cutting their electric bills, saving money, helping prevent mass suicide of our species and other species, and other good stuff.

So get a solar system put in!

*Full disclosure: CleanTechnica does get a cut of the revenue earned from leads through the solar ads on this site. So, if you want to support CleanTechnica while going solar, you know how to do so! (It doesn’t effect the price of your solar system in any way.)


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About the Author

Zach is tryin' to help society help itself (and other species). He spends most of his time here on CleanTechnica as its director and chief editor. He's also the president of Important Media and the director/founder of EV Obsession and Solar Love. Zach is recognized globally as an electric vehicle, solar energy, and energy storage expert. He has presented about cleantech at conferences in India, the UAE, Ukraine, Poland, Germany, the Netherlands, the USA, and Canada. Zach has long-term investments in TSLA, FSLR, SPWR, SEDG, & ABB — after years of covering solar and EVs, he simply has a lot of faith in these particular companies and feels like they are good cleantech companies to invest in. But he offers no professional investment advice and would rather not be responsible for you losing money, so don't jump to conclusions.



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