Solar power in San Francisco, California
As a resident of San Francisco you most likely purchase your power from Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E).
What solar incentives do PG&E offer in my city?
Homeowners who go solar in SF are eligible for net metering, which allows them to export their surplus power to the grid in return for bill credits. This makes it easy to eliminate your electric bills.
The federal solar tax credit
If you have a taxable income, part of the cost of installing solar can be claimed as a deduction to federal taxes. This incentive isn't always upfront as it depends on when you do your taxes for the year.
What if my tax liability is less than the cost of my system?
You may elect to receive the full incentive spread out over several tax periods.
Net Metering Broken Down
When your solar system produces more energy than what is being used in your home, the excess is sent to the grid and PG&E must credit each kWh at the retail power rate.
You use your net metering credits to cancel out the cost of energy drawn from the grid at times your solar system couldn't service the electric demand of your home.
What if my solar system exports more energy than my home consumes from the grid?
If you have remaining credit at the end of the month each kWh is still valued at the retail rate and is carried to the next month.
At the end of the year if any credit remains each kWh will be valued at the avoided-cost rate (3¢-4¢) per kWh and deposited into your account.
NEM-2 Changes and how it affects my investment?
Since PG&E is an investor owned utility, new net metering customers must switch to a time-of-use plan. The worst part of this is that it includes non-bypassable charges of about 2 cents per kWh for energy your draws from the grid.
Luckily these new changes only reduce returns from installing solar by about 10%.
The average cost of installing residential solar panels in San Francisco,
California in 2020 is
$2.72 per watt. The average system size
in the US is 6 kilowatts, which means the average price of a solar system
in San Francisco, CA
(after claiming 26% tax credit and other rebates)
The 26% federal solar tax credit explained
If you have a federal income tax liability, 26% of the cost of your solar system can be claimed as a deduction to your taxes. This incentive is claimed when you do your taxes. In order to receive the tax credit quicker it's best to do your taxes as soon as possible after installation.What if my tax liability is less than 26% of my systems cost
There is the option to claim this incentive over several years if your tax liability is less than 26% of the system cost.
How much will solar panels on my home save me?
The answer to this question depends on your electricity usage. Generally speaking the greater your power usage the greater the potential savings from installing solar.
The average monthly usage in California is only 573kWh per month however, you are most likely using a lot more than this since this average includes condos and small apartments.
The San Francisco solar panel savings calculator below will convert your monthly power spend into power usage (in kWh's) and then work out exactly how many solar panels you need to offset your usage, how much they will cost based on the prices of local solar companies and the amount you will save. Our California solar savings calculator can do this because it contains a database of the electric rates charged by Pacific Gas & Electric Co
How much can solar panels save you in San Francisco
What does the cost of a real solar system look like?
Facts about installing a 6.37kW solar system in San Francisco, CA
This system would offset 100% of your energy usage if your typical monthly bill is $188, however your situation may vary so try our San Francisco solar calculator to get a result tailored to you.
Net cost of system
4 Years 9 Months
Average payback time
Annual power production
Levelized cost of solar energy
If you don't get solar
Cash flow graph based on cash purchase of this 6.37kW system
Life-time savings on this system over the next 25 years
(Prices shown after repayments of capital)
Solar companies in San Francisco, CA that provide pricing through the Solar-Estimate marketplace.
Average total cost of solar panel installation in San Francisco
After 26% solar tax credit
After 26% solar tax credit
Find out what system size you need for your home
Going solar in California
Check out all of the ways energy providers of California can help you be more energy efficient and save money.
The following programs are available:
|Residential Renewable Energy Tax Credit||Federal||Personal Tax Credit|
|Property Tax Exclusion for Solar Energy Systems||State||Property Tax Incentive|
|Sonoma County - Energy Independence Program||Local||PACE Financing|
|NEM 2.0||State||Net Metering|
|California Solar Initiative - Single-Family Affordable Solar Housing (SASH) Program||State||Low-Income Program|
|Self-Generation Incentive Program||State||Battery Rebate|
|City of San Francisco - Low-Income Solar Energy Incentive Program||City||Low-Income Program|
|LADWP - Net Metering||Utility||Net Metering|
|City of San Francisco - Solar Energy Incentive Program||Local||Rebate Program|
Find your local rebates and incentives
Please keep in mind that the best source of up-to-date information on incentives are the solar installers who specialize in your area.