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Best 5 Solar Companies in Durham, NC

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

The Durham community is committed to preserving its natural resources and practicing eco-friendly lifestyles. That includes embracing alternative energy sources like solar. While going solar comes with upfront costs, local homeowners could ultimately save $920 per kilowatt on their electric bills. A professional technician can help you select the best panels to maximize your savings. Discover Durham's best solar companies and learn crucial decision-making tips on this page.

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

Top Durham Solar Companies

Southern Energy Management Logo

Southern Energy Management

4.6/5
Based on 159 customer reviews.

Services Offered

Commercial Panels Skilled Repairs Maintenance Solar Roof Assessment Tesla Powerwall Consultation Battery Storage Residential Panels

Highlights

  • Informative resources
  • Reliable customer support
  • Clear pricing policy
5908 Triangle Dr, Raleigh, NC 919-367-1381 southern-energy.com
Jim's Solarguard Logo

Jim's Solarguard

4.3/5
Based on 120 customer reviews.

Services Offered

Commercial Panels Residential Panels

Highlights

  • Family-operated business
  • Reliable customer support
  • Free quotes
700 E Geer St, Durham, NC 919-682-2876 jimssolarfilm.com
Yes Solar Solutions Logo

Yes Solar Solutions

4.6/5
Based on 247 customer reviews.

Services Offered

Solar Carports Maintenance Commercial Panels Ev Charger Residential Panels Tesla Powerwall Battery Storage

Highlights

  • Reliable customer support
  • Prompt service delivery
  • Family-operated business
202 North Dixon Avenue, Cary, NC 919-459-4155 yessolarsolutions.com
Noon Solar Logo

Noon Solar

4.7/5
Based on 50 customer reviews.

Services Offered

Consultation Residential Panels Full-Service Solar Panel Upgrades Maintenance

Highlights

  • Informative resources
  • Free quotes
  • Reliable customer support
3915 Beryl Rd, Raleigh, NC 919-215-9662 noonsolar.org

More Local Solar Companies

NC Solar Now

User Reviews: 5/5 

2509 Atlantic Ave
Raleigh, NC 27604

Emerald Energy

User Reviews: 4.7/5 

3201 Wellington Ct Suite, 103
103, NC 27615

8MSolar

User Reviews: 4.7/5 

5112 Departure Dr
Raleigh, NC 27616

Top Tier Solar Solutions

User Reviews: 4.5/5 

5305 Raynor Rd
Garner, NC 27529

Carolina Connections Solar Energy - North Carolina Installation & Sales

User Reviews: 4.5/5 

422 Huffman Mill Rd #105
Burlington, NC 27215

Gate City Solar Co

User Reviews: 4.7/5 

204 Muirs Chapel Rd
Greensboro, NC 27410

AIS Solar

User Reviews: 4.6/5 

115 Pomona Dr
Greensboro, NC 27407

Balex Electrical Company, LLC

User Reviews: 4.6/5 

7347 W Friendly Ave Suite J
Greensboro, NC 27409

Renu Energy Solutions

User Reviews: 4.3/5 

115 E Main St Suite E
Jamestown, NC 27282

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

Ranking Methodology

We evaluated a multitude of Durham solar companies, using the following criteria to determine the best:

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Facts about Durham
Average Max Temp: 69°F
Solar Payback Period: 10.4 years
Average Daily Sunlight: 58%
Homes Powered by Solar: 35,584
Average Annual Energy Bill: $1,388
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 several advantages that will enhance your home for years to come.

  • Better energy independence: Solar systems with battery backups function through power outages and emergencies, and you won't have to rely on your power company for your safety and well-being.
  • Reduced carbon footprint: Embracing solar is a surefire way to reduce your carbon footprint and home fossil fuel dependency.
  • Lowered energy bills: You can avoid the expensive cost of grid-tied power by producing some electricity right where you use it.

What Solar Incentives Are Available to Durham Homeowners?

Governments and utilities often reward homeowners for embracing solar. Here are some of the tax credits, rebates, or other programs you could qualify for.

Incentive Type: Rebate Program

Website: duke-energy.com

Incentive Amount:

Residential: $0.60/W-AC
Nonresidential: $0.50/W-AC
Nonprofit: $0.75/W-AC

Incentive Type: Property Tax Incentive

Incentive Amount:

Residential systems: 100% of the appraised value
All other systems: 80% of the appraised value

Incentive Type: Property Tax Incentive

Incentive Amount:

No more than conventional equipment

Incentive Type: Rebate Program

Website: energyunited.com

Incentive Amount:

Heat Pumps (15 SEER): $150/unit
Heat Pumps (16 SEER): $300/unit

Incentive Type: Rebate Program

Website: duke-energy.com

Incentive Amount:

Central Air Conditioning or Heat Pump: $300 - $400 + $50 with added smart thermostat
Geothermal Heat Pump: $400 + $50 with added smart thermostat
Heat Pump Water Heater: $350
Attic Insulation or Attic Air Sealing: $250
Duct Sealing: $100
Variable-Speed Pool Pumps: $300

Incentive Type: Performance-Based Incentive

Website: ncgreenpower.org

Incentive Amount:

Varies by technology and system size
PV larger than 5 kW: must enter bid process
Wind up to 10 kW: $0.09/kWh
Wind larger than 10 kW: must enter bid process

Incentive Type: Loan Program

Incentive Type: Green Building Incentive

Incentive Amount:

Authorized by legislation for green buildings. Actual permit process to be determined by local government.

Incentive Type: Rebate Program

Website: duke-energy.com

Incentive Amount:

Central A/C or Heat Pump: $300 - $400 + 50 with smart thermostat
Geothermal Heat Pumps: $400 + 50 with smart thermostat
Heat Pump Water Heater: $350
Attic Insulation & Air Sealing: $250
Duct Sealing: $100
Pool Pump: $300

Incentive Type: Loan Program

Website: pemc.coop

Incentive Amount:

$10,000

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 Durham

The more informed your company investigation is, the better your solar panels will ultimately work. Consider all of these aspects in your company search.

Licensing and Training

A licensed electrical contractor in North Carolina may oversee home solar photovoltaic installations in North Carolina if they have the appropriate classification from the North Carolina State Board of Examiners of Electrical Contractors. Solar providers can also earn accreditations from trade groups and standards organizations. The most prestigious 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 Durham

Your solar panels' type will impact how much power 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 efficiency. Not every solar company includes these add-ons, so look for a contractor that installs them if it's essential for you.

You can expect to pay about $17,550 on average for a five-kilowatt solar energy system in Durham. Check the table in this section to get an idea of what amount Durham solar companies might quote for your specific system.

Solar Panel Cost Average Cost
Solar Monocrystalline $1,065
Solar Polycrystalline $831
Thin-Film $486
Solar Battery $682
Solar Home EV Charger $2,557

Financing Solar Energy in Durham

There are numerous ways to pay for new solar panels, and the right one will reduce your expenses. A few of the most common options include loans, cash payments, leases, and power purchase agreements (PPAs). Though it requires 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 next best option. As with a home or auto loan, you'll pay a monthly rate towards system ownership, including interest. You can still apply for valuable 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) lets you pay a monthly rate determined by the energy you use, similar to an electric bill. We generally don’t recommend these two choices because you won't own the system 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 Durham.

You are eligible for a 26% federal tax credit for new solar power systems until the year 2032. Municipal and state governments and utility companies might also offer discounts, rebates, and specialized financing options that could save you more.

Solar System Capacity Estimated Payback period
1 kW 2.1 years
2 kW 4.2 years
5 kW 10.4 years
10 kW 20.8 years

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Frequently Asked Questions About Solar in Durham

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

On average, Durham homeowners pay around $1,388 per year on power bills. Once you repay your solar array, you could save $922.39 for every kilowatt you produce.

Is solar energy readily available in Durham?

Yes, solar energy is spreading quickly in Durham. Some homes already use solar power on-site or through utility grids, and they're supported by a state solar economy with 6617 workers and counting.

Should I expect a boost in my property value after installing solar panels?

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.

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

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

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

To determine your home's solar readiness, there's no substitute for a comprehensive estimate from a local solar installer. However, you can use the PVWatts tool for a simple solar viability prediction based on public data, including panel efficiency, system size, tree cover, and local weather and topography.

What upkeep do my solar panels need, and how frequently do they need it?

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

How does "net metering" work, and do I need to participate?

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

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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