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Best 5 Solar Companies in San Marcos, CA

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Written By Max Peterson|Last Updated: February 05, 2024

San Marcos residents are purposeful about conserving resources and living greener lifestyles. That includes using alternative energy sources like solar. With all the options to choose from in this urban jungle, you might feel overwhelmed searching for an excellent company. On this page, we'll showcase San Marcos' most reputable solar companies and share valuable advice for your solar journey.

Best High-Efficiency System
4.8
  • Builds custom, high-efficiency solar systems suited to each home
  • Extensive coverage area throughout the country
  • Offers energy storage and EV charger add-ons
Best Solar Panel Leasing
4.4
  • Provides system monitoring
  • Offers diverse financing options for various budgets
  • Provides EV and solar battery solutions
Best Solar Panel Installation
4.4
  • Offers 7 panel brand options
  • 25-year workmanship warranty
  • Offers battery options

Top San Marcos Solar Companies

Baker Home Energy Logo

Baker Home Energy

5/5
Based on 1,193 customer reviews.

Services Offered

Skilled RepairsCleaning And MaintenanceFinancing AssistancePanel InstallationBattery Storage

Highlights

  • Reliable customer support
  • Clear pricing policy
  • Informative resources
2120 Harmony Grove Rd, Escondido, CA 877-409-0341 bakerhomeenergy.com
Eminent Energy Logo

Eminent Energy

4.7/5
Based on 143 customer reviews.

Services Offered

Panel InstallationPermit Assistance

Highlights

  • Clear pricing policy
  • Reliable customer support
  • Informative resources
251 N City Dr #128f, San Marcos, CA 858-524-9435 eminentenergy.org
SolarHub - Best Price & 30 YR Roof Warranty Logo

SolarHub - Best Price & 30 YR Roof Warranty

4.7/5
Based on 22 customer reviews.

Services Offered

Panel InstallationConsultationPermit AssistanceBattery Storage

Highlights

  • Clear pricing policy
  • Free quotes
  • Informative resources
918 Iron Horse Dr, San Marcos, CA 858-472-1567 homesolarhub.com
San Diego County Solar Logo

San Diego County Solar

4.7/5
Based on 76 customer reviews.

Services Offered

Permit AssistanceConsultationBattery StorageGrid-Tied Solar SystemFinancing AssistanceSystem DecommissioningSkilled RepairsCleaning And MaintenancePanel Installation

Highlights

  • Clear pricing policy
  • Reliable customer support
  • Informative resources
5145 Avenida Encinas Ste. A, Carlsbad, CA 760-230-2220 sandiegocountysolar.com

More Local Solar Companies

Cosmic Solar and Roofing

User Reviews: 4.6/5 

943 Poinsettia Ave STE 401
Vista, CA 92081

SolHome

User Reviews: 4.6/5 

1285 Simpson Way
Escondido, CA 92029

Carlsbad Solar

User Reviews: 4.6/5 

3525 Highland Dr
Carlsbad, CA 92008

180 Solar Power

User Reviews: 4.5/5 

334 W 3rd Ave
Escondido, CA 92025

Magic Solar San Diego

User Reviews: 4.5/5 

4140 Oceanside Blvd # 159
Oceanside, CA 92056

G C Electric Solar

User Reviews: 4.5/5 

934 S Andreasen Dr Suite E
Escondido, CA 92029

Palomar Solar and Roofing

User Reviews: 4.4/5 

1526 Sterling Ct
Escondido, CA 92029

Green Earth Electric

User Reviews: 4.7/5 

2772 Roosevelt St
Carlsbad, CA 92008

Stellar Solar

User Reviews: 4.6/5 

265 Via Del Monte
Oceanside, CA 92058

To share feedback or ask a question about this article, send a note to our Reviews Team at reviewsteam@thisoldhousereviews.com.

Ranking Methodology

We reviewed dozens of San Marcos solar companies, using the following criteria to determine the finest:

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Facts about San Marcos
Average Max Temp:72°F
Solar Payback Period:6.8 years
Average Daily Sunlight:73%
Homes Powered by Solar:17,997
Average Annual Energy Bill:$1,659
Solar Power per Capita Percentile:48.0%

Expert Tips By

This Old House empowers homeowners with the knowledge and tools they need to tackle various projects and navigate the complexities of homeownership.

Benefits of Solar Energy

Solar energy has multiple advantages that will enhance your home for years to come.

  • Reduced carbon footprint: Embracing solar is a surefire way to decrease your carbon footprint and home fossil fuel dependency.
  • Better energy independence: Adding a battery backup lets you have trustworthy energy during grid outages and storms.
  • Lowered energy bills: Solar panels let you generate your own energy to power your home, reducing your monthly electricity costs. Going off-grid can eliminate your bills completely.

What Solar Incentives Are Available to San Marcos Homeowners?

California homeowners who go solar could qualify for reimbursements, special financing, rebates and tax credits. Here are just a few of the area's incentive programs.

Incentive Type: Property Tax Incentive

Website: boe.ca.gov

Incentive Amount:

100% of system value; 75% of system value exemption for dual-use equipment

Incentive Type: PACE Financing

Website: wrcog.us

Incentive Amount:

Eligible products can be financed for up to 25 years, depending on the useful life of the eligible product.
Minimum financing: $5,000
The financing may not exceed fifteen percent (15%) of the market value of the property, up to the first seven hundred thousand dollars ($700,000) of the property’s market value, and ten percent (10%) of the remaining value of the Property above seven hundred thousand dollars ($700,000) minus any PACE assessment on the propertyThe total amount of any annual property taxes and assessments shall not exceed five percent (5%) of the property's fair market value, determined at the time program financing is approved.

Incentive Type: PACE Financing

Incentive Amount:

Locally determined

Incentive Type: Rebate Program

Website: selfgenca.com

Incentive Amount:

For projects 30 kW or larger, 50% of incentive will be received up-front; 50% will be received based on actual kWh production over the first 5 years. For projects under 30kW, 100% of the incentive will be paid up front.
Incentives will step down over time. See below for incentive amounts.

Incentive Type: Feed-in Tariff

Website: cpuc.ca.gov

Incentive Type: Feed-in Tariff

Website: ladwp.com

Incentive Amount:

$0.17/kWh adjusted by a time of delivery multiplier
Base price will step down over time as certain MW goals are met

Incentive Type: Rebate Program

Website: gosolarcalifornia.ca.gov

Incentive Amount:

Step 1 Incentive Rates (contact utility to determine current incentive levels):
Single Family Residential Incentives:
Systems that displace natural gas: $29.85 per estimated therm displaced
Systems that displace electricity or propane: Funding has been exhausted
Commercial/Multifamily Incentives:
Systems that displace natural gas: $20.19 per estimated therm displaced
Systems that displace electricity or propane: $0.42 per estimated kWh displaced *** Note, funding has been exhausted in this category for SCE and PG&E
Solar Pool heating: $5.00 per estimated therm displaced

Incentive Type: Personal Tax Credit

Website: ecowatch.com

Incentive Amount:

30% federal tax credit for systems placed in service after 12/31/2021 and before 01/01/2033. Good for: solar water heat, solar photovoltaics, biomass, geothermal heat pumps, wind (small), fuel cells using renewable fuels.

How To Choose the Best Solar Company in San Marcos

Choosing a company is the first step toward a well-oiled and valuable solar energy system. Consider each of these criteria in your service provider search.

Licensing and Training

California requires solar companies to hold licenses for each type of equipment they install, which can include solar water heaters, photovoltaic (PV) systems, boilers, pool heaters, and HVAC. Contractors must take a highly comprehensive educational series, gain four years of experience as an apprentice or journeyman, and pass written exams to secure a license. Check for private accreditations from the North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP), one of the solar sector's most credible trade groups. Its program includes certifications for both solar photovoltaic and water heating installers.

Cost of Solar Panels in San Marcos

Your photovoltaic panels' model will influence how much electricity you can produce. Monocrystalline panels perform the best but cost the most. Polycrystalline panels offer you a budget panel with a traditional design, but at the cost of less power generation. Thin-film panels have a low cost and are excellent for non-traditional roofs, but aren't recommended for large home installations.

You can also add battery backups and electric vehicle (EV) chargers. These will increase your total project price, but they can increase your solar system's performance. Not all solar providers offer these extras, so look for a company that installs them if it's crucial for you.

If you're a resident of San Marcos and want a five-kilowatt solar energy system, you could plan to spend about $17,350 for materials and labor. See more information on specific component and panel costs in the table.

Solar Panel CostAverage Cost
Solar Monocrystalline$1,226
Solar Polycrystalline$956
Thin-Film$559
Solar Battery$784
Solar Home EV Charger$2,942

Financing Solar Energy in San Marcos

There are various ways to pay for a new solar system, and the right one will help you decrease overhead. A few of the most common options include power purchase agreements (PPAs), cash payments, loans, and leases. We suggest making a cash payment or securing a solar loan for the highest return on investment (ROI). Cash payments require a hefty sum up-front, but you’ll pay the least long-term by avoiding interest. You’ll also have full ownership of your system and can apply for solar incentives to reduce your total costs. Solar loans are another solid option if you don’t want to make a big initial investment. You can pay for your system in installments while still enjoying energy bill savings and solar incentives. However, you’ll spend more in total due to accruing interest. Solar leases involve paying a set monthly rate to use rooftop panels. A PPA (Power Purchase Agreement) lets you pay a monthly rate based only on the energy you use, like an electric bill. We usually don’t recommend these two options because you won't own the panels and are disqualified from using solar incentives. Ask each company you're vetting about the payment plans it offers. A representative can help you determine the most suitable option for your budget.

The table below lists the average payback periods for different capacities of solar systems in San Marcos.

You can claim a 26% federal tax credit from the IRS for new residential solar systems purchased before 2032. Additionally, utilities and local governments may have their own financing plans and rebates that could reduce your total cost even more.

Solar System CapacityEstimated Payback period
1 kW1.4 years
2 kW2.7 years
5 kW6.8 years
10 kW13.7 years

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Frequently Asked Questions About Solar in San Marcos

How much money could I save by going solar in San Marcos?

Most San Marcos homeowners spend about $1,659 on energy each year. Your costs could drop by $1,637.07 for each kilowatt you generate after you pay off a solar array.

How common is solar energy in San Marcos?

Yes, solar energy is on the rise in San Marcos. Some homes already generate solar power on-site or through utility grids, and they're fortified by a state solar economy with 74255 workers and counting.

Will solar panels increase my San Marcos home price?

Yes, new solar systems lead to higher property values according to the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL.) Homeowners could project a $20 property value increase for each dollar they save on energy. Therefore, $600 in energy savings could increase your home's value by $12,000.

What can I do to estimate my home's solar viability?

To determine your home's solar readiness, nothing substitutes for a comprehensive quote from a local solar contractor. However, you can use the PVWatts tool for a simple solar viability estimate based on public data, including system size, tree cover, local weather and topography, and panel efficiency.

How long does the solar installation process take?

Your solar job's duration will depend on its size and complexity, as well as San Marcos' permit and inspection procedures. It could take several weeks to a couple of months on average.

What is the average payback period for San Marcos solar panels?

Most San Marcos homeowners pay back a solar loan in 7.4 years. You can shorten the payback period by paying off extra loan principal each month.

How are a solar lease and PPA different?

Choosing a lease means your solar provider will handle panel maintenance while you make fixed monthly payments. Power Purchase Agreements differ slightly because you pay for just the electricity you produce.

You don't own the panels with either option, though you can choose to "buy out" of the contract for a fee.

Should I get quotes from multiple San Marcos solar companies?

It's prudent to collect three or more estimates before committing to a single solar provider. This lets you evaluate product quality, warranty options, customer feedback, and pricing. It also helps you gauge a contractor's knowledge, responsiveness and reliability, all of which are positive signs.

To share feedback or ask a question about this article, send a note to our Reviews Team at reviewsteam@thisoldhousereviews.com.

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