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Best 5 Solar Companies in Cottage Grove, MN

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

Cottage Grove homeowners are lucky to live in abundant sunlight, both to bask in and use for energy. 1,269 homes in the area already employ a solar PV or water heating system. Expert installers will therefore have the precise experience you need to jump on the solar bandwagon with confidence. In this article, we'll show you Cottage Grove's best solar companies and offer tips for your company choice, so you can find the ideal one for your residence.

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

Top Cottage Grove Solar Companies

TruNorth Solar Logo

TruNorth Solar

4.6/5
Based on 45 customer reviews.

Services Offered

Panel InstallationGrid-Tied Solar System

Highlights

  • Informative resources
  • Clear pricing policy
3735 Dunlap St N, Arden Hills, MN 612-888-9599 trunorthsolar.com
Everlight Solar Logo

Everlight Solar

4.9/5
Based on 411 customer reviews.

Services Offered

Panel InstallationPermit AssistanceConsultation

Highlights

  • Prompt service delivery
  • Clear pricing policy
  • Informative resources
7369 Hwy 13 W, Savage, MN 612-355-1269 everlightsolar.com
US Solar - United States Solar Corporation Logo

US Solar - United States Solar Corporation

4.4/5
Based on 115 customer reviews.

Services Offered

Panel InstallationCommunity Solar Projects

Highlights

  • Clear pricing policy
  • Reliable customer support
  • Informative resources
100 N 6th St #410b, Minneapolis, MN 612-260-2230 us-solar.com
Cedar Creek Energy - Solar Company Minnesota Logo

Cedar Creek Energy - Solar Company Minnesota

4.7/5
Based on 64 customer reviews.

Services Offered

Battery StoragePanel InstallationConsultationTesla PowerwallCommunity Solar ProjectsFinancing AssistanceCleaning And Maintenance

Highlights

  • Free quotes
  • Informative resources
  • Reliable customer support
3155 104th Ln Ne, Blaine, MN 763-432-5261 cedarcreekenergy.com

More Local Solar Companies

Apadana Solar Technologies

User Reviews: 4.4/5 

3401 Nevada Ave N
New Hope, MN 55427

SolarPod

User Reviews: 4.5/5 

2915 133rd St W
Shakopee, MN 55379

Wolf River Electric Company

User Reviews: 5/5 

101 Isanti Parkway Northeast Suite G
Isanti, MN 55040

Solar Connection

User Reviews: 4.5/5 

6254 34th Ave NW a
Rochester, MN 55901

Kuntz Electric, Inc.

User Reviews: 4.4/5 

6254 34th Ave NW a
Rochester, MN 55901

Everlight Solar

User Reviews: 3.8/5 

10501 Winnetka Ave N Suite 170
Brooklyn Park, MN 55445

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 has carefully researched dozens of solar installers near Cottage Grove, emphasizing the following criteria:

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Facts about Cottage Grove
Average Max Temp:53°F
Solar Payback Period:11.6 years
Average Daily Sunlight:51%
Homes Powered by Solar:1,268
Average Annual Energy Bill:$1,279
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 offers numerous advantages that will enhance your home for years to come.

  • Reduced carbon footprint: Solar is one of the universe's most abundant clean energy sources, meaning you can reduce or eliminate your home's dependence on non-renewable sources.
  • Lowered energy bills: Solar panels allow you to generate your own energy to power your home, lowering your regular electricity costs. Going off-grid can eliminate your bills completely.
  • Better energy independence: Solar systems with energy storage function through power outages and emergencies, and you won't have to rely on your power company for your safety and well-being.

What Solar Incentives Are Available to Cottage Grove Homeowners?

Governments and power companies often incentivize homeowners for adopting solar. Here are some of the rebates, tax credits or other programs you could qualify for.

Incentive Type: Performance-Based Incentive

Website: xcelenergy.com

Incentive Amount:

Systems 0.5 kW - 25 kW: $0.005/kWh
Medium-sized Systems 25.1-500 kW: $0.0375/kWh
Large Systems (>500kW): Determined through competitive bid

Incentive Type: Sales Tax Incentive

Incentive Amount:

100% exemption

Incentive Type: Property Tax Incentive

Incentive Amount:

Solar: 100% exemption from real property taxes
Wind: 100% exemption from real and personal property taxes

Incentive Type: Sales Tax Incentive

Incentive Amount:

100% of sales tax

Incentive Type: Rebate Program

Website: xcelenergy.com

Incentive Amount:

Refrigerator/Freezer Recycling: $50
Natural Gas Furnace Existing Home: $200-$400
Natural Gas Furnace New Construction: $100-$200
Natural Gas Hot Water Boiler: $100-$400
ECM Furnace: $100
Central AC: $150-$450
Tank Water Heater: $75-$500
Tankless Water Heater: $250
Attic/Wall Insulation: 30% of project cost
Air Sealing: $150-$200
Furnaces: $200-$425
Boilers: $125-$400
ECM Motor Furnace Fan: $125
Programmable Thermostat: $10
Heat Pumps: $175-$475
Water Heating: $100-$250
Clothes Washer: $10
Refrigerator: $15
Ground Source Heat Pump: $150/ton

Incentive Type: Rebate Program

Website: bpu.org

Incentive Amount:

Dishwasher: $35
Clothes Washer: $35
Electric Clothes Dryer: $35
Refrigerator: $35
Freezer: $35
Dehumidifier: $20
Room/Window A/C: $35
High Efficiency Electric Water Heater: $35
Central A/C Tune-Up: $35
Central A/C: $200-$350
Mini Split/Ductless A/C: $250
ECM Replacement Motor: $100
Furnaces: $200-$375
Heat Pump Water Heater: $250
Air Source Heat Pump: $250
Geothermal Heat Pump: $100/ton

Incentive Type: Grant Program

Website: xcelenergy.com

Incentive Amount:

Varies

Incentive Type: Loan Program

Website: connexusenergy.com

Incentive Amount:

$7,500
OR
$20,000

Incentive Type: Rebate Program

Website: energywisemn.com

Incentive Amount:

Varies by measure and member cooperative offering.

Incentive Type: Loan Program

Website: mncee.org

Incentive Amount:

$20,000

Incentive Type: Loan Program

Website: mnhousing.gov

Incentive Amount:

$15,000. Applicants may be eligible for higher loan and term amounts depending on income

Incentive Type: Performance-Based Incentive

Website: mn.gov

Incentive Amount:

1.5¢/kWh
1.0¢/kWh for certain hydro facilities in need of repair

Incentive Type: Rebate Program

Website: dakotaelectric.com

Incentive Amount:

LEDs: up to $2/bulb
LED Yard Light: $30/fixture
Clothes Dryer: $25
Central AC/Heat Pump Tune-Up: $25
Central A/C Installation: $280- $330 depending on SEER rating
Air-Source Heat Pump Installation: $480- $630 depending on SEER rating
Ductless Air-Source Heat Pump: $300 - $500
Geothermal Heat Pump: $400/ton
Electric Thermal Storage Heat: $50/kW
Electric Water Heater: Up to $400
Heat Pump Water Heater: up to $400
Refrigerator: $75
Freezer: $75
Refrigerator/Freezer Recycling: $75
ECM Furnace Motor: $100
Pool Pump Variable Speed Motor: $200
Air-Source Heat Pump Pool Heater: $400
Solar Panel Installation: $0.50/watt of installed solar, not to exceed $4,000
Load Management: Varies

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 Cottage Grove

The more informed your provider search is, the better your solar system will ultimately work. Here are some essential aspects to consider while searching for a solar installer.

Licensing and Training

To install a new photovoltaic system in Minnesota, a contractor must have an electrical contractors' or electricians' license from the Department of Labor and Industry, along with a residential building or remodeling contractors' license in some cases. If their work is regulated by the state's Mechanical Code, they must have a $25,000 minimum bond with the Department of Labor and Industry. You should also visit a company's website to learn about its private credentials. Two of the most respected are the Solar Heating Installer and PV Installation Professional certificates, backed 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 Cottage Grove

Your solar panels' type will influence how much electricity 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 accessories, such as battery storage and electric vehicle (EV) chargers, will add to your overall costs. However, they might make your solar system more efficient and convenient to use. Not all solar contractors offer these add-ons, so look for a provider that installs them if it's a priority for you.

If you're a resident of Cottage Grove and want a five-kilowatt solar energy system, you could expect to pay about $20,150 for parts and installation. Find more information on specific component and panel costs in the table.

Solar Panel CostAverage Cost
Solar Monocrystalline$1,119
Solar Polycrystalline$872
Thin-Film$510
Solar Battery$716
Solar Home EV Charger$2,685

Financing Solar Energy in Cottage Grove

Solar contractors offer multiple different financing options to increase your savings and lower your costs. Though some providers offer unique payment plans, the most common are solar leases, power purchase agreements (PPAs), solar loans 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 save you from 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 car or home loan, you'll pay a set monthly rate with potentially $0 down. Solar leases allow you to pay a monthly fee to rent your panels, while a PPA lets you pay a variable rate based on only the energy you use. We generally don't recommend these options since you will not have ownership of your system and are disqualified from solar incentives, but they might be appropriate in particular circumstances. Ask each business you're considering about the payment plans it offers. A team member can help you determine the most suitable option for your financial situation.

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

The IRS allows you to claim a 26% federal tax credit on your new solar panels, so long as you purchase it before 2032. City and state governments and utilities might also offer their own rebates, incentives, and financing programs that could save you more money.

Solar System CapacityEstimated Payback period
1 kW2.3 years
2 kW4.6 years
5 kW11.6 years
10 kW23.1 years

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Frequently Asked Questions About Solar in Cottage Grove

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

Most Cottage Grove homeowners spend about $1,279 on energy each year. Your costs could drop by $970.40 for each kilowatt you generate after you pay off a solar array.

How widespread is solar energy in Cottage Grove?

Yes, solar energy is becoming increasingly popular in Cottage Grove. Some homes already benefit from solar power on-site or through utility grids, and they're backed by a state solar economy with 4335 workers and counting.

Should I expect a property value increase after going solar?

Yes, new solar systems mean 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 if I live in a dark or heavily-wooded

Solar panels could still operate in cloudy conditions. Your technician will position your panels to absorb the most sunlight possible. They might also recommend a backup battery to keep your system performing at its best.

Is solar installation a fast job?

There's no universal answer for how long a solar project might take. Ultimately, it depends on system size, panel style, the necessary prework, local weather, and the permitting and inspection process. Most homeowners can be solar-ready within a couple of months from their initial estimate visit.

What's the average solar system size in Cottage Grove?

A typical Cottage Grove solar home has a 7.2-kW panel array, but you might need a smaller system if your energy needs are higher. Solar contractors will consider your property's energy consumption and roof shading to determine the appropriate system for you.

How are traditional solar loans and PPAs different?

A PPA is an agreement between you and your contractor. They set up, own, and care for the panels, and you buy the generated electricity from them for 10–25 years. There will usually be options to buy out early to own your system and extend the agreement.

In contrast, solar loans can come from local banks, the government, installer and specialty lenders. You'll need to pass a credit check to qualify for most of them. While the upfront costs are higher, and you'll be responsible for upkeep, you'll also have full ownership rights and can apply for many more incentives.

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

Sources