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Best 5 Solar Companies in Athens, GA

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

With Athens' clear skies and little rainfall, it's a great area for homeowners and businesses looking to harness the added sunlight. With all the options to choose from in this vibrant community, you might feel overwhelmed searching for a good installer. In this guide, we'll show you Athens' best solar installers and offer suggestions for your company choice, so you can find the ideal one for your household.

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
Most Reputable
4.4
  • Offers high-efficiency panels and storage options
  • Provides unique in-house financing options
  • Recognized as one of the most reputable solar companies
Best Solar Panel Installation
4.4
  • Offers 7 panel brand options
  • 25-year workmanship warranty
  • Offers battery options

Top Athens Solar Companies

Southern View Energy Logo

Southern View Energy

4.5/5
Based on 17 customer reviews.

Services Offered

Grid-Tied Solar System Ev Charger Off-Grid Solar Systems Consultation Commercial Panels Permit Assistance Skilled Repairs Residential Panels Battery Storage

Highlights

  • Informative resources
  • Free quotes
  • Reliable customer support
5289 Mountain Center Plaza #2, Lula, GA 678-833-5191 southernviewenergy.com
Solar Sun World LLC Logo

Solar Sun World

4.1/5
Based on 15 customer reviews.

Services Offered

Financing Assistance Commercial Panels Residential Panels

Highlights

  • Informative resources
  • Clear pricing policy
  • Reliable customer support
779 Harmony Rd, Eatonton, GA 706-318-0784 solarsunworld.com
ADT Solar Logo

ADT Solar

3.6/5
Based on 157 customer reviews.

Services Offered

Solar Panel Upgrades Tesla Powerwall Battery Storage Commercial Panels Financing Assistance Consultation Residential Panels

Highlights

  • Clear pricing policy
  • Informative resources
  • Free quotes
295 Maltbie St, Lawrenceville, GA 470-300-0299 adtsolar.com
Aelia Power Logo

Aelia Power

4.7/5
Based on 34 customer reviews.

Services Offered

Full-Service Residential Panels Maintenance Commercial Panels Financing Assistance

Highlights

  • Informative resources
  • Free quotes
  • Reliable customer support
One Glenlake Pkwy Ne Suite 650, Atlanta, GA 470-524-7081 aeliapower.com

More Local Solar Companies

Better Tomorrow Solar

User Reviews: 4.7/5 

1074 Memorial Dr SE
Atlanta, GA 30316

Big Peach Solar Systems

User Reviews: 4.7/5 

42 Decatur St. SE
Atlanta, GA 30303

Solar Sale USA

User Reviews: 4.5/5 

1201 W Peachtree St NW suite 2300
Atlanta, GA 30309

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

Ranking Methodology

Our team used the following criteria to assess the best Athens solar companies.

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Facts about Athens
Average Max Temp: 71°F
Solar Payback Period: 8.8 years
Average Daily Sunlight: 61%
Homes Powered by Solar: 9,859
Average Annual Energy Bill: $1,584
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 provides several advantages that will enhance your home for years to come.

  • Reduced carbon footprint: Using clean solar power lowers your dependence on fossil fuels, which release greenhouse gases that damage the environment.
  • Lowered energy bills: Solar panels allow you to generate your own energy to power your home, minimizing your periodic electricity costs. Going off-grid can eliminate your bills completely.
  • Better energy independence: Adding a battery storage system lets you have reliable energy during storms and grid outages.

What Solar Incentives Are Available to Athens Homeowners?

Georgia homeowners who decide on solar could qualify for special financing, rebates, tax credits and reimbursements. Here are just a few of the area's incentive offerings.

Incentive Type: Sales Tax Incentive

Incentive Amount:

100% exemption

Incentive Type: Rebate Program

Website: georgiapower.com

Incentive Amount:

Single Family
Central AC Replacement: $50
Air/Duct Sealing: $300
Attic Insulation: $250
Heat Recovery Water Heater with Heat Pump: $250
Heat Pump Water Heater: $250
Solar Water Heater: $250
Home Energy Assessment: $150
Smart Thermostat: $75
Heat Pump conversion: $250

Multifamily
Central AC Replacement: $25
Air/Duct Sealing: $150
Attic Insulation: $125
Heat Recovery Water Heater with Heat Pump: $250
Heat Pump Water Heater: $250
Solar Water Heater: $250
Home Energy Assessment: $75
Smart Thermostat: $38
Heat Pump conversion: $125

Incentive Type: Loan Program

Website: cgemc.com

Incentive Type: Rebate Program

Website: jacksonemc.com

Incentive Amount:

PV: $450/kW-DC

Incentive Type: Loan Program

Website: waltonemc.com

Incentive Amount:

$25,000

Incentive Type: Rebate Program

Website: waltonemc.com

Incentive Amount:

Existing Homes
Water Heater: $200/unit
Heat Pump: $200/unit
Heat Pump Water Heater: $200/home
Waste Heat Recovery System: $200/home

New Homes
Underground Wiring Refund: Up to $500
Water Heater: $200/unit
Heat Pump Water Heater: $200/home
Waste Heat Recovery System: $200/home

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 Athens

Choosing a company is the first step toward an effective and cost-efficient solar energy system. Consider each of these aspects in your contractor search.

Licensing and Training

Georgia doesn't have contractors' licenses specific to solar energy, but the law does require solar installers to be licensed electrical contractors. The Georgia Secretary of State manages business filings and licenses. Solar installers can also obtain accreditations from trade groups and standards organizations. The top ones in the industry come from the North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners. Most company websites will prominently display earned credentials, but you should also ask your estimator for more information.

Cost of Solar Panels in Athens

Different solar panel types look and perform differently. Monocrystalline panels cost more than other options, but they generate the most power. Polycrystalline panels provide a lower price point but produce less power. Thin-film panels work well for small projects like RVs and sheds, but they're not ideal for larger installations due to their low performance.

If you want to charge an electric car or use your solar power in dark weather, you can pay extra for add-ons. By selecting the right components, you can make your system more efficient and user-friendly. Not every solar company offers these additional features, so look for a provider that installs them if it's important for you.

Generally speaking, it costs about $18,700 for a five-kilowatt solar array in Athens. This table lists more specific costs for different solar panel types and system components in your area.

Solar Panel Cost Average Cost
Solar Monocrystalline $1,128
Solar Polycrystalline $879
Thin-Film $514
Solar Battery $722
Solar Home EV Charger $2,706

Financing Solar Energy in Athens

There are various ways to pay for a new solar system, and the right one will minimize your overhead. A few of the most common options include cash payments, power purchase agreements (PPAs), leases, and loans. Though it involves a large up-front payment, cash is the most cost-effective choice because it qualifies you for solar incentives and doesn't accrue interest. Solar loans are the runner-up option. As with a car or home loan, you'll pay a monthly rate towards system ownership, including interest. You can still apply for cost-saving solar incentives, and depending on your lender, you could put as little as $0 down. Solar leases involve paying a set monthly rate to use rooftop panels. A PPA (Power Purchase Agreement) allows you to pay a monthly rate determined by the energy you use, as with an electric bill. We typically don’t recommend these two choices because you won't own the panels and cannot use solar incentives. Look for installers that offer two or more payment plans to find the right fit for your budget.

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

The IRS allows you to claim a 26% federal tax credit on the full cost of the solar system, so long as you purchase it before 2032. Local governments and utilities might also offer their own financing programs, incentives, and rebates that could save you more money.

Solar System Capacity Estimated Payback period
1 kW 1.8 years
2 kW 3.5 years
5 kW 8.8 years
10 kW 17.7 years

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Frequently Asked Questions About Solar in Athens

How much money could I save by going solar in Athens?

Most Athens homeowners spend about $1,584 on energy each year. Your costs could drop by $1,010.09 for each kilowatt you generate after you pay off a solar array.

Is solar energy common in Athens?

Yes, solar energy is becoming increasingly popular in Athens. Some homes already generate solar power on-site or through utility grids, and they're fortified by a state solar economy with 4798 jobs and counting.

Should I expect a boost in my property value after switching to solar energy?

Yes, solar panels will increase your property value. According to the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), for every dollar you reduce on energy bills, your home value rises by $20. So, if your panels save you $600 per year on energy costs, your property could appreciate $12,000.

What if I live in a heavily-wooded or rainy

Even if your property has high tree cover, you could still take advantage of solar energy. Your technician will enhance your system's performance by selecting the proper site for panels, installing a battery backup system, cleaning them regularly, and positioning them to capture the most sunlight throughout the year. This way, you can keep solar energy longer and use it as necessary.

What care do my solar panels need, and how often do they need it?

To protect your solar system's efficiency, inspections and cleanings every six months are usually enough. In dry or dusty seasons, your panels might need cleanings every few months. Your installer can recommend a maintenance schedule. Its team could also handle the cleaning for you.

How long does it take to pay back a solar loan in Athens?

Most Athens homeowners pay back a solar loan in 13.0 years. You can shorten the payback period by paying off extra loan principal each month.

What are the signs I shouldn't use a particular solar company for my job?

While many online reviews are positive, even the most recommended solar companies might have complaints. You should know these early warning signs for the best chances of an exemplary job:
  • Pressuring you into signing a contract
  • Being evasive about warranties, cost, credentials and training and references
  • Limited or no customization
  • Rushing through the site assessment
  • Limited customer feedback

How are a solar lease and PPA different?

Choosing a leasing option means your solar installer will handle panel maintenance while you make fixed monthly payments. PPAs differ slightly because you pay based on the electricity you produce.

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

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

Sources