Best Solar Energy Companies of 2023

Find a Solar Energy partner near you.

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    A growing number of homeowners are looking into solar energy as a way to save money or reduce their carbon footprint. Residential solar panel costs are decreasing, and solar companies offer multiple financing options — these include outright purchases, loans, leases and power purchase agreements.

    Our research team compared 24 popular solar energy companies and chose our six top picks based on warranties offered, financing options, panel selection, availability and other factors, including ratings and reviews on our site. Our picks may be Authorized Partners who compensate us — this does not affect our recommendations or evaluations but may impact the order in which companies appear.

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    SunPower logoSunPowerSunlux logoSunluxSunrun logoSunrunElevation Solar logoElevation SolarTesla Energy logoTesla EnergyPalmetto Solar logoPalmetto Solar
    # of reviews1,9575272,5531054641
    Our pick for Easy process Prepaid energy Quick installation Customer service Panel design Community impact
    Warranty type 25-year system warranty 25-year product and performance warranty Varies by package Minimum 25-year product and labor warranty 25-year system warranty 25-year product and performance warranty
    Financing options Cash, loan or lease Cash, lease, prepay or loan Cash, loan or lease Not disclosed Cash, loan or lease Cash, loan, lease or PPA
    Read Reviews Read Reviews Read Reviews Read Reviews Read Reviews Read Reviews
    All information accurate as of time of publication.

    Compare our top 6 solar energy company picks

    Our pick for ease of process SunPower
    • CA user rating:4.3
    • Financing plans available: Cash, loan or lease
    • Warranty: 25-year system warranty
    • Availability: Nationwide

    SunPower is a solar technology provider with products available in all 50 states. It offers Maxeon solar cells and both in-house and third-party installation for ground- and roof-mounted panels. It also has low-profile and solar roofing tile options. The company or its partners determine whether you need to replace your roof before an installation, and it offers solar usage monitoring for its systems.

    SunPower performs free, in-person consultations for those considering going solar. It also offers in-house financing and help with permitting as well as solar battery servicing and energy auditing to determine how much power you regularly use.
    Happy SunPower customers on ConsumerAffairs frequently mention the company’s helpful service staff and the ease of its processes. One homeowner from California said about their experience: “The solar company has been excellent. I’ve had a very good experience through the entire sales and installation process. They were very high on service, customer contact, problem resolution and proactiveness.”
    Our pick for prepaid energy Sunlux
    • CA user rating:4.5
    • Financing plans available: Cash, lease, prepaid and loan options
    • Warranty: 25-year product and performance warranty
    • Availability: Southern California and Central Texas

    Sunlux is a solar installer that exclusively services Southern California and Central Texas. It has flexible financing options, including prepaid energy — with this option, you can pay one utility bill to lock in a fixed rate when you first install your solar system, and then you don’t have to pay for your solar energy over the next 25 years.

    Sunlux offers a performance guarantee for 25 years. Once you receive permitting and Sunlux installs your system, the company will take care of submitting the information for your PTO (permission to operate) to your local utility. It will also take care of any necessary roof repairs or replacements before installing your system, whether it’s for commercial or residential use.
    Sunlux customers who rate the company highly on our site often mention clear communication and transparency. “My experience with Sunlux was different than any other quote before. There's clear disclosure with Sunlux. They explained even the equipment, which is unusual for a sales representative to go into detail about the tech specs as well as financing and potential hidden fees,” one reviewer from California said about their experience.
    Our pick for quick installations Sunrun
    • CA user rating:3.6
    • Financing plans available: Cash, loan and lease options
    • Warranty: Varies by package
    • Availability: 20 states, Washington, D.C., and Puerto Rico

    Sunrun is a solar installer that operates in several states in the Southwest, Northeast and Midwest, as well as in Florida, Puerto Rico and Washington, D.C. Its Brightbox system, a solar battery storage system it calls “a holistic service that puts the power in your hands,” works with both Tesla Powerwall and LG Chem lithium-ion batteries.

    Sunrun offers online solar consultations for interested homeowners. As of publishing, the company’s available discounts include $0 down for some financing and loan plans. It also offers cleaning and maintenance services and in-house financing, and it has options for community solar.
    People on ConsumerAffairs seem to appreciate Sunrun’s timeliness and professionalism. “They were courteous and informative about the process. And so far, they were all good. They went into full detail about how they would go about checking the roof out and installing, about whether I would have problems with the roof or about leaks, and how the process went forth with them installing everything on the roof,” said one Sunrun reviewer from California.

    They continued: “Angelo told me that acquiring the permit would take until December or maybe even January, but they came out a couple of weeks ago and it's already up and done. They got there 8:00 in the morning, and they said it would probably take them until 2:00, but they were finished by 12:00.”

    Our pick for customer service Elevation Solar
    • CA user rating:4.4
    • Financing plans available: Not disclosed
    • Warranty: Minimum 25-year product and labor warranties
    • Availability: California, Nevada, Arizona and Texas

    Elevation Solar is a solar installer that services four states in the Southwest. It offers low-profile panels and solar panel roofing tiles, and the company provides solar panel repair and maintenance as well as battery services. Its systems use either Tesla Powerwall or Generac PWRcell batteries.

    With Elevation’s roof-mounted panels, you can monitor your energy usage with the Curb monitoring app. Elevation also offers a free consultation, and it completes every step of the process in-house, including both installation and follow-up customer service.
    Reviewers on our site who were pleased with their experience with Elevation Solar often mention the kind and helpful staff. “We have had our solar about 2 years and electricity bill is down 85%. Elevation did the job on time, no surprises. They helped us get approval for more panels. The workers were polite, cleaned up and careful of our property. I highly recommend them,” a reviewer from Nevada said about their experience.
    Our pick for panel design Tesla Energy
    • CA user rating:3.6
    • Financing plans available: Cash, loan and lease options
    • Warranty: 25-year system warranty
    • Availability: California, Arizona, Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Jersey and New Mexico

    Tesla manufactures its own panels, and its Powerwall backup allows you to store solar energy and save it for later. Its panels are made of sleek black anodized aluminum and have a 25-year performance guarantee. You can have Tesla solar panels installed in the ground or on your roof, and the company can help you find any solar incentives you qualify for.

    Tesla has a price-match guarantee for its solar panels, and it offers virtual and in-person consultations to determine solar eligibility and need. You can monitor your energy usage on your mobile device, and the company offers options for community solar and low-profile solar panels.
    Happy customers on ConsumerAffairs praise Tesla for its communication and smooth processes. “The Tesla installation process was amazing. The onboarding process explaining how the system worked was great. The electrician explained [everything] very well. We are very happy customers. We will be referring Tesla energy to all of our friends and colleagues,” said one reviewer from California.
    Our pick for community impact Palmetto Solar
    • CA user rating:Not enough reviews
    • Financing plans available: Cash, loan, lease and PPA options
    • Warranty: 25-year product and performance warranty
    • Availability: 23 states

    Palmetto offers rooftop and ground-mounted installations of Q-Cell solar panels, and it can help you find solar incentives you qualify for in your area. It can also identify and initiate any minor roof repairs and replacement you need to go solar. Like the other picks on our list, Palmetto offers low-profile panels and solar panel roofing tiles.

    Palmetto provides both in-person and virtual solar consultations. Its “Get Solar, Give Solar” program, an initiative to provide clean energy to underserved communities, was launched in 2021. The company has pledged $5 million to invest in Solar Sister, a woman-owned entrepreneur program dedicated to making solar energy more accessible.
    There are no Palmetto reviews on ConsumerAffairs as of publishing.

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    Find a Solar Energy partner near you.

      Should I go solar?

      Going solar isn’t for everyone, but it can benefit large portions of the population. When you’re purchasing a solar energy system, the most important qualifying factor is homeownership. If you’re a homeowner, you can evaluate your candidacy by talking directly with solar panel installation companies and doing some basic research on your property and your state’s laws, limitations and incentives.

      » READ MORE: Are solar panels worth it?

      Is my house a good candidate for solar?

      If you’re trying to determine whether your house is a good candidate for solar, you can look into these three components on your own before contacting a solar company:

      1. Your electricity usage
      2. Your home's sun exposure
      3. Your roof's size, orientation and condition

      How much electricity you use is a huge factor in going solar. If your home is already energy efficient, a solar energy system may not make sense over the long term. Your property also needs to get enough sun, and you need enough roof space for the panels to be installed effectively.

      The condition of your roof also matters; solar panels can last for 25 years or more, so they’re best on a roof that won’t need replacing midway through the energy system’s life.

      » READ MORE: 7 steps to going solar

      Pros and cons of going solar

      With several individual factors at play, the benefits of going solar vary on a case-by-case basis. In general, however, the pros and cons remain true for most installations


      • Reduced electricity bills
      • Increased property value
      • Lower carbon footprint
      • Possibility of operating off-grid
      • Long product life and warranty periods


      • Large investment costs
      • Not a one-size-fits-all solution
      • Some aesthetic concerns
      • Possibility of bad contract or installation

      The primary benefit of going solar is the reduced cost of electricity. Most homeowners see significant financial benefits when they switch from utility-powered electricity to solar energy. Homes with solar also attract both environmentally and financially conscious buyers, so they tend to sell faster and for more money than others.

      In terms of solar energy disadvantages, most can be avoided by working with a reputable company. While shoddy installations and bad financing rates can cause a drop in solar panel value, most professionally installed systems experience few issues and pay for themselves before long.

      » Still deciding? READ MORE: Solar energy pros and cons


      How does solar energy work?

      In simple terms, modern solar energy systems work by harnessing the power of the sun and converting it into usable electricity. With solar panels interconnected to the utility grid, homeowners in areas with net metering programs can get credit for excess electricity production on monthly bills.

      How much does a solar installation cost?

      The total price of a solar system can vary quite a bit based on system size and local availability, but most homeowners in the U.S. can expect to pay between $14,000 and $18,000 for an average 6-kW system. While this may seem like a lot of money, you have to consider the price of solar versus the cost of utility electricity. In most cases, the cost of solar panels will be lower than that of utility energy over an extended period of time.

      How does the federal solar tax credit work?

      The federal solar investment tax credit (ITC) can reduce your total solar installation costs by up to 30%. Applied against your federal income tax liability, the solar ITC represents a dollar-for-dollar reduction in avoided tax payments. For example, if your solar energy system costs $18,000, you may be eligible for a federal income tax credit of up to $5,400.

      How many solar panels do I need?

      The number of solar panels you need for your installation depends on the amount of electricity you’re hoping to produce and the type of panels you use. A typical American home requires about 19 solar panels to match its energy consumption, but many homeowners choose to size up their systems for protection against increased electricity use on the property.


      To choose our top picks for solar energy companies, we started with 24 popular providers (including those not yet featured on our site). We compared several key features, including:

      • Financing options: All our top picks provide at least one alternative to outright purchase — this may include options for solar loans, solar leases or solar PPAs.
      • Range of services: We prioritized companies that offer a broad range of services, including permitting and incentives help, energy auditing, usage monitoring, cleaning and maintenance.
      • Availability: Although many solar companies are regionally focused, we made sure to include options in our top picks that service a broader area.

      Among the top picks that have reviews on our site as of publishing, all have an average CA user rating of at least 3.6 stars out of 5.

      ConsumerAffairs writers primarily rely on government data, industry experts, and original research from other reputable publications to inform their work. To learn more about the content on our site, visit our FAQ page. Specific sources for this article include:
      1. National Renewable Energy Laboratory, “H1 2021 Solar Industry Update.” Accessed Dec. 5, 2022.

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