Illinois is a great state for solar energy and now is the perfect time to install solar panels on your home!
Solar Energy Solutions is the leading local solar installer in Illinois with nearly 2 decades of experience. We wrote this guide to help you learn everything you need to know about Illinois solar panel installation so you can take control back from your utility company and become your own power supplier.
Reasons to Install Home Solar Panels
Installing solar panels for your home in Illinois has many benefits.
- Independence – Reduce your reliance on your utility company and be in control of your own electricity supply.
- Backup Power – Install solar panels with battery storage to avoid power outages and keep your lights on when the electric grid goes down.
- Security – Prepare for anticipated problems with the main electric grid like rate increases, unstable power supply, and blackouts by going solar now.
- Savings – Cut your electricity costs and save money on your bills every month.
- Tax Breaks – Get a 30% federal tax credit when you install home solar panels in 2024!
- Incentives – Solar panels qualify for incentives like net metering and solar renewable energy credits.
Is Solar Worth It in IL: Cost vs Savings
The first question most homeowners ask before installing solar panels is: are they really worth it? It’s a fair question—solar panels are an investment and you want to make sure you’re going to get a good return before you commit.
Solar panel installation costs can vary significantly from one home to the next, even for houses in the same neighborhood. But most Illinois homeowners can expect to pay around $3.44 a watt for home solar panels, before accounting for the 30% federal solar tax credit, which is close to the national average.
The amount of time it takes to recoup your investment—your solar payback period—can also vary from one home to another. Depending on the size of your solar panel system and the amount you spend on electricity, you could break even in as little as 5 years. Even if it takes a bit longer to recover your initial investment, your solar panels will pay for themselves in time. Given that they last for 25-30+ years, you will have many years to make money on your investment after you break even.
The Added Value of Energy Security
It’s important to consider non-financial benefits like energy security when considering home solar panels. As severe weather and increased demand for electricity put more and more strain on the electric grid, electricity access will become less reliable. By installing solar panels and solar battery storage, you can guarantee your power supply in all conditions, no matter what happens to the main electric grid. It’s hard to put a price on that kind of peace of mind.
Incentives for Illinois Solar Panel Installation in 2024
The best solar incentives available in Illinois are the solar tax credit and net metering.
Solar Tax Credit
The solar tax credit reduces your federal tax liability by 30% of your total solar installation costs, bringing down the upfront cost of solar panels. Solar panels and batteries are eligible for the tax credit!
Net metering is a billing agreement between you and your utility company. It allows you to send the excess electricity your solar panels produce to the electric grid in exchange for a credit to your account, which you can use when you need to buy power from the electric grid (at night, for example). Ameren and ComEd offer net metering in Illinois at the full retail rate of electricity.
Solar Renewable Energy Credits (SRECs)
Illinois is one of the few states that offers SRECs, through Illinois Shines. You earn one SREC for every 1,000 kWh of electricity your solar panels generate, which can be sold to local power companies. Power companies in Illinois are required to generate a percentage of the power they sell from renewable sources, and buying SRECs allows them to count the electricity your solar panels generate toward their goal.
Solar Panel Installation Process: What to Expect
Installing solar panels is a straightforward process, especially when you go solar with us. Having been in business since 2006, we’ve had many years to perfect our solar installation process. Here’s what to expect during your Illinois solar panel installation:
- Consultation – We will analyze your energy bills, discuss your financing options, and answer any questions you have about home solar panels.
- Custom Proposal – We will send you a custom proposal and estimate for your solar energy system.
- System Design & Engineering – Our solar experts will design a custom solar power system tailored to your home and energy needs.
- Permitting – We will handle all the permitting requirements for your solar installation and ensure your system complies with local building codes.
- Installation – Our in-house solar technicians will install your solar energy system. We have 7 NABCEP-certified solar installers on our team and follow the highest standards for installing solar panels to protect your roof and ensure long-lasting performance.
- Grid Interconnection – We will manage the grid interconnection process with your utility company so you can participate in net metering.
- Ongoing Support – If you need assistance with your solar system after it’s installed, we are always here to help!