How Much Do Solar Panels Cost in Illinois? (2024) – MarketWatch

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Illinois Solar Panel Costs

Solar panel installations have an average cost of $3.61 per watt in Illinois, which is higher than the national average price of $2.85 per watt. Below are the estimated prices you can expect when purchasing home solar systems ranging from 5 kW to 10 kW.

You can also use our solar calculator to estimate the typical cost of a solar system based on your ZIP code.

Solar Incentives in Illinois

Illinois offers several incentive programs for homeowners with solar panels, including a property tax exemption, Renewable Energy Certificates (REC) and a favorable net metering policy. You also qualify for a cash rebate if you are a ComEd utility customer. Chicago homeowners who want to go solar will benefit from the opportunity to expedite their permitting process.

Illinois also offers incentives for other home upgrades, such as energy efficiency measures and EV charging stations. You can read more about these programs on the Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency (DSIRE) website.

Best Solar Installation Companies in Illinois

Based on our research and review, the following five companies are our picks for the best solar installers in Illinois.

Are Solar Panels Worth It In Illinois?

Based on our research, we think solar panels are worth the investment in Illinois. The state has multiple incentive programs for solar panels, which can improve your return on investment. Here is a quick estimate of the savings and payback period achieved by a 5 kW solar system:

  • You can expect to generate more than 7,000 kWh of energy per year on a property with generous sunlight.
  • Illinois residents pay an average electricity rate of 15.13 cents per kWh.
  • At that rate, a solar output of 7,000 kWh per year could save you $1,059 in energy costs.
  • You also receive 7 SRECs for the 7,000 kWh generated. If you can sell each SREC for $70 each, you get an extra $490.
  • Adding the utility bill savings and SRECs, you gain $1,549 per year. You can save even more by participating in net metering to offset any grid usage at night.

A 5 kW solar system has a typical price of $18,050 in Illinois. The cost drops to $12,635 with the federal solar investment tax credit. If you save $1,549 in energy bills per year, your payback period would be around 8.2 years.

ComEd customers also enjoy a rebate of $300 per kW of installed capacity or a $1,500 rebate for a 5 kW system. In addition to incentive savings, solar panels can offset your home’s fossil fuel usage, and if you add a solar battery, can protect against power blackouts.

The best solar panels can last for more than 25 years, and the leading manufacturers now offer 25- to 40-year product warranties. This means your solar panels will perform for over a decade after you reach the average payback period in Illinois.

Leonardo David is an electromechanical engineer, MBA, energy consultant and technical writer. His energy-efficiency and solar consulting experience covers sectors including banking, textile manufacturing, plastics processing, pharmaceutics, education, food processing, real estate and retail. He has also been writing articles about energy and engineering topics since 2015.

Tori Addison is an editor with over five years of experience in the digital marketing industry. Her includes communications and marketing work in the nonprofit, governmental and academic sectors. A journalist by trade, she started her career covering politics and news in New York’s Hudson Valley. Her work included coverage of local and state budgets, federal financial regulations and health care legislation.

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