Best Solar Panel Installation Companies in Wyoming – CNET

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Wyoming has been the top coal-producing state for decades and is the second-largest net energy supplier. Coal has been a cornerstone of Wyoming’s economy for a long time, complicating the switch to renewable energy. Nearly a fifth of the state’s electricity generation came from wind power in 2021, but what about solar power? And even if solar doesn’t make up much of Wyoming’s power supply, does it make sense to power your home with it? 

Rooftop solar panel installations in Wyoming have a ways to go. Wyoming ranks 44th (out of 51) in the US for solar energy production, according to data from the Solar Energy Industries Association. Wyoming also has some of the cheapest electricity rates in the country, whereas solar panel system installation is an expensive affair

There are no state-level incentives aside from retail-rate net metering, and the biggest draw to going solar in the Cowboy State is the major clean energy tax credit bolstered by the Inflation Reduction Act.

With lower electricity rates and the lack of state government support for solar, is it worthwhile to go solar in Wyoming? Here’s what you need to know, starting with the best solar installers operating in the state.

National solar panel companies in Wyoming 

Wyoming’s solar industry is quite small, with only 10 solar companies in the state, according to SEIA. And the majority of them are smaller local businesses. Solar is an expensive investment, so try to get as many quotes as you can from different installers to get the best price possible.

SunPower Solar

Best solar panels

If you’re looking for top-of-the-line solar panels, SunPower is your best choice. But don’t write it off if you’re looking for a less flashy installation that will get the job done. This year it started installing Qcells panels, which should make an installation from the longest-tenured company on our list available to more people.

Tesla Solar

Most affordable

Tesla’s solar branch seems to be the least loved of Elon Musk’s ventures. Even Tesla’s Solar Roof seems to get more love.

If price is the thing you won’t budge on, consider Tesla. By all accounts, Tesla installs quality panels and makes the closest thing there is to a household name in solar storage: the Powerwall.

Where you might miss out is customer service. Discussion online seems to suggest Tesla’s service is a bit of a gamble.

Local solar panel companies in Wyoming

Since most solar companies in Wyoming are local businesses, you might have better luck going with a local company in your area. Here are a few to consider. 

Creative Energies is a residential and commercial solar installer with locations in Wyoming, Utah and Idaho. The company has more than 20 years of experience in the business and installs grid-tied, off-grid and hybrid solar systems. If you choose Creative Energies as your installer, you can either pay cash or finance your panels.

Installing solar since 2006, Premier Electric is a Wyoming-based solar installer and electrical contractor that installs residential, commercial and ranch solar systems. Premier Electric offers on-grid, off-grid and hybrid solar solutions.

Price Solar & Electric is a solar installer and electrical contractor operating in Wyoming and parts of Montana. The company specializes in residential, commercial and RV solar installations. Solar panels with Price Solar & Electric come with a 25-year warranty. Your system can be on-grid, off-grid or hybrid.

How to determine which solar company in Wyoming is best for me

There are a couple variables to consider when choosing to draw up a contract with a solar company in Wyoming — but first you need to make sure that a solar panel system is even the right option for you.

“In Wyoming, it’s important to think through your individual situation because we do have fairly low electric rates, some of the lowest in the country,” said Shannon Anderson, a staff attorney and organizer with the Powder River Basin Resource Council, a clean energy nonprofit. “You should right-size the system for your needs specifically.”

With that being said, here are some tips to help you find a reputable installer:

  • Understand federal, state and local solar incentives. Make sure your installer can accurately explain how tax credits and incentives work.
  • Read online reviews from multiple sources. Google and Yelp are a good place to start.
  • Get recommendations from neighbors who have solar installed.
  • Check an installer’s licensing and certifications. Look for installers who are certified by NABCEP
  • Compare multiple solar quotes.
  • Ask your installer all your questions, even the difficult ones.
  • Assess your potential savings cost and your solar payback period. Your installer should be able to explain this to you.

Average cost of solar panels in Wyoming

The answer to “how much does solar cost?” will always be: It depends.

Solar is a site-dependent purchase, meaning it depends on your individual property and energy needs. The main factors affecting the cost of solar panels are the system size, type of panels and your household energy usage. And if you choose to install a solar battery, your installation will get even more expensive.

Because solar prices are so subjective, finding reliable state-level data is a bit difficult. However, prices for solar have fallen 53% over the past decade, according to SEIA

Here’s a look at the average nationwide cost of solar, according to data from

Average cost of solar panels across the United States

Typical system size (kW) Price per watt Total installed cost Cost after 30% federal tax credit
National Average 8.6 $3.67 $31,558 $22,091

Here’s the average total price, cost per watt and typical system size for a solar panel system in your state, according to data from The prices shown don’t account for tax credits or state incentives which could lower the cost of your installation. Certain states don’t have any FindEnergy solar data and are grayed out on the map.

Wyoming solar panel incentives and rebates

Many states offer incentive programs to help make solar more accessible and further the push toward renewable energy. Wyoming isn’t one of those states. Anderson said Wyoming’s lack of state solar incentives correlates to its lack of renewable portfolio standards, which require power companies to supply a specific amount of their electricity from renewable sources. 

“What it really has to do with is the state’s reliance on traditional energy like fossil fuels, coal, oil and gas. We have significant budget reliance on those types of energy,” Anderson said. “And with that, there’s a lot of support from the state legislature for fossil fuels, and they see solar as a threat to Wyoming’s ‘bread and butter.’ It’s always been a challenge to deal with.”

The closest thing Wyoming has to a state-level solar incentive is net metering, the process of selling excess electricity from your solar panels to the power grid. Anderson said Wyoming’s net metering is a retail rate bill credit, month-to-month rollover until the end of the year. Then, there’s a payout of any excess credits at an avoided cost rate filed by the utility companies. 

“The important thing to know in Wyoming is that we still do have one-for-one net metering, and that means you’re able to obtain a credit on your bill for the excess generation that you’re able to export to the grid, which is great,” said Anderson. “There’s been several attempts to roll that back at the state legislature over the years, but they’ve all been defeated.”

Wyoming residents can also take advantage of federal solar incentive programs. Through the residential clean energy credit, you’ll receive a federal tax credit of 30% off the total cost of your solar system. This includes labor. There’s also the Rural Energy for America Program, which provides grant funding and financing options toward renewable energy systems for commercial farmers and small rural business owners. 

“If you’re an agricultural organization, like a farmer or rancher, you’re able to get these incentives,” Anderson said. “And it’s a fairly sizable contribution to the overall system cost, which is really helpful for if you’re looking to do a commercial install in Wyoming.”

Here’s a look at the solar incentives available in Wyoming. 

Wyoming solar incentives

Program Description
Residential clean energy credit This is a federal tax incentive allowing you to claim 30% of the total cost of your solar system back in tax credits.
Net metering Wyoming has a state-regulated net metering policy allowing you to sell your solar energy to the power grid.
Rural Energy for America Program This is a federal program for commercial agricultural producers and small rural businesses, providing grant funding and financing options for renewable energy systems.

How to pay for solar panels in Wyoming

With such a serious investment, it’s good to know all your options. Be sure to weigh your choices and pick a method that works best for your financial situation. Here are a few ways you can pay for your solar panels.

Cash: If you’ve got the funds, paying cash upfront is the best way to go. There won’t be any high interest rates or financing fees to worry about, and you’ll always be eligible for tax incentives and rebates. Or if you think you might go solar in the future, consider saving up in a high-yield savings account. This can help you save more money over time.

Solar loan: If you need to finance your solar panels, most solar companies will offer you a solar loan. This loan will either be through the solar company themselves or a third-party lender. Keep in mind that a solar loan might come with some high interest rates and associated fees. 

Other types of loans: A solar loan isn’t your only solar financing option. You could take out a personal loan with your bank or consider opening a home equity line of credit. However, a HELOC does come with some risks involved. If you aren’t able to pay what you owe, you could lose your home. With any loan, whether from a lender or a solar company, be sure to shop around and compare rates and terms.

Lease or power purchase agreement: Don’t want to own your solar panels? You don’t have to. You can either enter a lease or a power purchase agreement. If you decide to lease, you’ll pay for the use of a system owned by a solar company. If you enter a power purchase agreement, you’ll pay for generated electricity from a company-owned solar system at a fixed rate. The fixed rate is usually lower than the retail electricity rate from your local utility company.

Read more: Just looking for an emergency backup? Check out portable solar panels and solar generators

Installation factors to keep in mind

Here are a few installation factors to keep in mind as you decide if solar is right for you:

Condition of your roof: Not every roof is suitable for solar panels. Things like roof damage, age, pitch, angle and tree cover can impact the efficiency of your solar panels. Solar panels perform best on south-facing roofs angled between 15 and 40 degrees, according to the US Department of Energy. A reputable solar installer will perform a property inspection before installing solar panels. 

Insurance coverage: Check with your homeowners insurance agency to see if they cover rooftop solar panels. If they do, consider adding them to your policy.

Location: The more peak sunlight hours your area has, the better your solar panels will perform. Wyoming is one of the sunniest states in the US, with an average of 3.9 to 4.9 hours of peak sunlight per day.

Homeowners association regulations: Since solar panels change the look of your home, your HOA might have certain rules around solar panels. Check with your HOA before installing solar. 

Financing options: If you can’t pay cash upfront, there are other options available to pay for your solar panels. Solar loans, personal loans, solar leases and power purchase agreements are a few options to consider. Since solar is such a big investment, it’s important to do your research and find the best payment option that works for your situation. 

Wyoming’s coal industry pushes solar aside

As a state known for its beautiful rural landscapes and its famous national park, one would assume Wyoming to be a “pro solar” state. However, that doesn’t seem to be the case. Solar in Wyoming is complicated. The main reason is Wyoming’s long history of coal production. 

Wyoming has been the top coal-producing state in the US since 1986, according to the Energy Information Administration. Coal production in Wyoming really took off in the 1990s and has since become a major industry, with coal production peaking in 2008, said Anderson. Fifteen years ago, Wyoming produced around 450 million tons of coal a year. Since then, Wyoming’s coal production has continued to drop dramatically, producing only around 200 million tons per year in recent years. 

A large portion of Wyoming coal is sent to energize power plants across the country.

“Wyoming coal is almost exclusively used for power generation because the quality of the coal isn’t good enough to make steel and other uses like Appalachian coal is,” said Anderson. “And so we send our coal on trains to power plants across the country.”

However, with other states adopting renewable portfolio standards (laws stating that power companies must supply a certain amount of their electricity from renewable sources) and the retirement of coal-fired power plants, the demand for coal has dropped drastically, Anderson said. Solar energy in particular is seen as a threat to Wyoming’s coal-based energy economy, she said.

“The demand for Wyoming coal has gone down significantly,” said Anderson. “Policymakers here in the state understand these larger trends and see renewable energy as a threat to our existing coal industry, and have tried to protect coal in different ways because of the jobs and economic development associated with the coal industry, but also the revenue.”

Despite the politics around renewable energy in Wyoming, you still have the option to install solar on your property.

How we found the best solar companies

Our methodology

The companies we listed above as “the best” are curated from CNET’s best solar companies list. Companies making the best list are scored on the equipment, warranties and customer service they offer. Then, we make sure these recommendations are available in your state. You can read a full breakdown of how we review solar companies here.

Companies listed under the local installers were chosen in a less rigorous way. We chose them because they offered something unique or notable to customers in the state, they seemed well-regarded by internet reviewers or because they were one of the few installers we could find information on in the state.

Whether we’ve completed a full review on a company or not, it’s always a good idea to get multiple quotes from different installers before choosing a company.

Wyoming solar power FAQs

How long do solar panels last?

The lifespan of a solar panel is normally between 20 to 30 years. Factors affecting the lifespan of a solar panel are type of panel, climate, quality of installation and maintenance. 

Should I get a solar battery?

A solar battery is helpful to have during power outages, periods of solar panel inefficiency (night or cloudy weather) and for establishing energy independence. If you plan to go off-grid, you’ll likely need multiple solar batteries.  

Be aware that a solar battery can be just as big of an investment as your solar panels. The average cost of a solar battery is between $12,000 to $22,000, according to the US Department of Energy

Does Wyoming have solar incentives?

Wyoming doesn’t offer any state-level solar incentives. However, homeowners can still take advantage of net metering and federal incentives. The residential clean energy credit is a federal tax credit allowing homeowners to claim 30% of the total cost of their solar system back on their taxes.

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