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Best 5 Solar Companies in Germantown, MD

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

Germantown homeowners are increasingly using solar panels to produce their electricity and heat their water. With all the options to choose from in this concrete jungle, you might feel swamped searching for the right provider. In this guide, we'll show you Germantown's best solar providers and offer tips for your company choice, so you can find the perfect one for your home.

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

Top Germantown Solar Companies

Free State Solar Co Logo

Free State Solar Co

4.7/5
Based on 47 customer reviews.

Services Offered

Consultation Skilled Repairs Maintenance Residential Panels Commercial Panels Off-Grid Solar Systems

Highlights

  • Reliable customer support
  • Clear pricing policy
  • Free quotes
11140 Rockville Pike, Rockville, MD 240-847-3032 solar-maryland.com
Sky NRG Solar Inc. Logo

Sky NRG Solar

4.6/5
Based on 46 customer reviews.

Services Offered

Residential Panels Permit Assistance Battery Storage Commercial Panels Consultation

Highlights

  • Clear pricing policy
  • Reliable customer support
  • Free quotes
12020 Sunrise Valley Dr #100, Reston, VA 703-935-2350 skynrgsolar.com
Prospect Solar LLC Logo

Prospect Solar

4.3/5
Based on 22 customer reviews.

Services Offered

Battery Storage Consultation Maintenance Residential Panels Financing Assistance Commercial Panels

Highlights

  • Free quotes
  • Reliable customer support
22570 Markey Ct Suite #102, Sterling, VA 703-444-2447 prospectsolar.com
GreenBrilliance Logo

GreenBrilliance

4.5/5
Based on 273 customer reviews.

Services Offered

Commercial Panels Residential Panels Maintenance Consultation Battery Storage Financing Assistance

Highlights

  • Free quotes
  • Clear pricing policy
  • Informative resources
13655 Dulles Technology Dr Suite 130, Herndon, VA 703-657-0090 greenbrilliance.com

More Local Solar Companies

Sustainable Energy Systems LLC

User Reviews: 3.9/5 

4509 Metropolitan Ct unit h
Frederick, MD 21704

FREDERICK SOLAR CO

User Reviews: 4.6/5 

915 Toll House Ave
Frederick, MD 21701

Solar Solution

User Reviews: 4.5/5 

4700 14th St NW
Washington, DC 20011

Greenway home improvment

User Reviews: 4.7/5 

11325 Random Hills Rd suit 360-A145
Fairfax, VA 22030

SmartRoof - Roofing and Solar

User Reviews: 4.7/5 

1629 K St NW #300
Washington, DC 20006

EDGE Energy

User Reviews: 4.5/5 

6854 Distribution Dr
Beltsville, MD 20705

Advanced Solar

User Reviews: 4.6/5 

3321 75th Ave suite f
Landover, MD 20785

Alexandria Boutique Solar Experts

User Reviews: 4.7/5 

230 N Royal St
Alexandria, VA 22314

Suntuity Solar

User Reviews: 4.5/5 

4351-4395 Nicole Dr #4371
Lanham, MD 20706

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 Germantown solar companies.

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Facts about Germantown
Average Max Temp: 63°F
Solar Payback Period: 14.3 years
Average Daily Sunlight: 54%
Homes Powered by Solar: 1,883
Average Annual Energy Bill: $1,343
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 numerous advantages that will enhance your home for years to come.

  • Reduced carbon footprint: Utilizing solar is a surefire way to minimize your carbon footprint and home fossil fuel dependency.
  • Better energy independence: Solar systems with battery storage work through power outages and emergencies, and you won't have to depend on the grid for your safety and comfort.
  • Lower utility costs: Sourcing some or all of your own energy will cut power costs long-term.

What Solar Incentives Are Available to Germantown Homeowners?

Maryland's public agencies and power companies offer multiple solar incentives to help minimize your solar system costs. Below is a breakdown of applicable solar programs where you live.

Incentive Type: Rebate Program

Website: energy.maryland.gov

Incentive Amount:

PV: $1,000/project (flat per installation/household incentive)
SWH: $500/project (flat per installation/household incentive)
New GHC: $3,000/project
GHC Replacement: $500/project

Incentive Type: Solar Renewable Energy Credit Program

Website: psc.state.md.us

Incentive Amount:

Varies based on market conditions

Incentive Type: Sales Tax Incentive

Incentive Amount:

100% exemption from sales and use tax

Incentive Type: Property Tax Incentive

Incentive Amount:

100% real property tax exemption for solar and wind energy property

Incentive Type: Rebate Program

Website: energy.maryland.gov

Incentive Amount:

Stick Burning Stove: $500
Pellet Burning Stove: $700

Incentive Type: Sales Tax Incentive

Incentive Amount:

100% exemption

Incentive Type: Property Tax Incentive

Incentive Amount:

Varies

Incentive Type: Property Tax Incentive

Incentive Amount:

Varies by jurisdiction; credit may be available for up to 3 years.

Incentive Type: Rebate Program

Website: energy.maryland.gov

Incentive Amount:

Residential: $4,000/kW of normalized capacity at 11 m/s
Community: $1000/kW - $4000/kW, depending on the system capacity

Incentive Type: Rebate Program

Website: pepco.com

Incentive Amount:

Lighting Get instant, in-store discounts on select ENERGY STAR certified lighting.
LED Bulbs: Up to $3 per bulb
LED Fixtures: $8 per fixture
Appliances
Clothes Dryer: $50
Clothes Washer: $75 - $100
Hybrid Water Heater: $500
Pool Pump: $150 - $400
Refrigerator: $100
Smart Thermostat: $100
Dehumidifier: $30
HVAC
Air-Source Heat Pump: $400 (Tier 1) - $650 (Tier 2)
Central A/C: $300 (Tier 1) - $500 (Tier 2)
Geothermal Heat Pump: $1,500
ECM Furnace Motor: $50 - $100
Home Energy Check up: Free
Recycling
Refrigerator or Freezer: $50
Room A/C or Dehumidifier: $25

Incentive Type: Rebate Program

Website: firstenergycorp.com

Incentive Amount:

Appliances
Refrigerator/Freezer Recycling: $50
Lighting
LED Fixtures: Up to $8/unit
LED Bulbs: Up to $5/bulb
Occupancy Sensors: Up to $7/unit
HVAC & Other
Air-to-Air Heat Pump: $400 - $650
Central A/C: $300 - $500
Ductless Mini-Split Heat Pump: $250 (Tier 2); $400 (Multi Zone)
Geothermal Heat Pump: $1,500
Packaged Terminal Heat Pump: $125
Packaged Terminal Air Conditioner: $125
Furnace Fans: $100
Smart Thermostat: $100
Circulating Pump: $30
Variable-Speed Pool Pump: $400
Two Speed Pool Pump: $150
Home Performance Audit: 75% of home improvements cost, up to $7,500
Quick Home Energy Checkup: Up to $75 in Energy-Saving Products

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 Germantown

Choosing a company is the first step toward a well-oiled and cost-efficient solar energy system. Make your choice based on the following important considerations.

Licensing and Training

A Maryland solar PV installation team must include a Home Improvement Commission-licensed contractor and a master electrician with at least seven years of experience. The contractor installs the panels, while the master electrician pulls permits and hooks the system up to the grid. If you're installing a solar water heater, your contracting team must include a master plumber for permits and utility connections. You should also visit a company's website to learn about its private certifications. Two of the most recognized are the Solar Heating Installer and PV Installation Professional certificates, awarded by the North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP). Some companies don't publish this information online, so you should also ask your estimator about them.

Cost of Solar Panels in Germantown

Your solar panels' type will affect how much energy you can generate. 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.

Additional system add-ons, such as electric vehicle (EV) chargers and battery storage, will increase your overall costs. However, they might make your solar system more efficient and convenient to use. Not all solar contractors provide these optional components, so look for a provider that sells them if it's essential for you.

You can plan to spend about $17,700 on average for a five-kilowatt solar energy system in Germantown. Use the table in this section to get an idea of the amount Germantown solar companies might quote for your specific system.

Solar Panel Cost Average Cost
Solar Monocrystalline $1,322
Solar Polycrystalline $1,031
Thin-Film $603
Solar Battery $846
Solar Home EV Charger $3,173

Financing Solar Energy in Germantown

Choosing the best financing option will influence your overall solar system cost and possible savings. Common payment options include power purchase agreements, loans, leases, and cash payments. Most solar experts recommend a cash payment or using a solar loan. Cash payments require a large up-front sum, but they help you avoid paying interest, grant you system ownership, and qualify you for cost-saving incentives. Solar loans have the same benefits, though you'll pay more in total due to interest and fees. Like a home or auto loan, you'll pay a set monthly rate with potentially $0 down. Solar leases let you use your panels for a fixed monthly rate, while PPAs let you pay just for the energy you use, similar to an electric bill. Both options disqualify you for solar incentives and do not provide you system ownership. Solar experts generally don't recommend them, but they might be suitable in some cases. Look for companies that offer multiple payment plans to find the right fit for your pocket.

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

A 26% federal tax credit applies to new residential solar equipment purchased through 2032. Extra incentives may be available through city and state governments, usually in the form of rebates and special financing programs.

Solar System Capacity Estimated Payback period
1 kW 2.9 years
2 kW 5.7 years
5 kW 14.3 years
10 kW 28.6 years

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Frequently Asked Questions About Solar in Germantown

How much energy and money could I save per year by switching to solar?

On average, Germantown homeowners shell out roughly $1,343 per year on power bills. Once you repay your solar array, you could reduce your costs by $707.63 for every kilowatt you produce.

Is solar energy easily accessible in Germantown?

Yes, solar energy is becoming increasingly popular in Germantown. Some homes already benefit from solar power on-site or through utility grids, and they're fortified by a state solar economy with 4854 workers and counting.

Will a solar PV system boost my Germantown home worth?

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.

Could I still use solar power if I live in a wooded, rainy, or dark area?

A solar system could still work in cloudy conditions. Your installer will position your panels to capture the most sunlight possible. They might also recommend a back-up power source to keep your system performing at its best.

What's the average solar system size in Germantown?

A typical Germantown solar home has a 5.6-kW panel array, but you might need a larger system if your energy needs are higher. Solar experts will evaluate your property's power usage and roof shading to suggest the right system for you.

What is the average payback period for Germantown solar panels?

Most Germantown homeowners pay back a solar loan in 17.5 years. You can shorten the payback period by paying off extra loan principal each month.

What is "net metering," and how does it work?

Most utilities and states provide net metering programs, and some mandate homeowners to join. Once you register, you can get a check or bill credit for any surplus electricity you generate and send to the grid. Generally, power companies reimburse solar homeowners at an "avoided-cost" or wholesale rate.

How are a solar lease and PPA different?

Choosing a lease means your solar company will handle panel maintenance while you make fixed monthly payments. Power Purchase Agreements 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 "buy 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