What Should You Pay For Solar In South Carolina?

Find Out For Your Home Based On Recent Installations In Your ZIP

Solar power in South Carolina

Last fact checked on January 24, 2020 by Catherine Lane

We ranked South Carolina as the 10th most rewarding state in the nation for installing solar panels on your home, along with having the quickest payback period for solar. The state’s 25% tax credit plus the 26% federal tax credit makes going solar an incredible investment for homeowners. Plus, South Carolina receives excellent sun exposure so your solar system will produce more energy than it would in other states. 

Utilities in the state also offer rebates and incentives to install solar. Depending on what incentives your utility offers, you could have a payback period as little as 4 years!

With all of these opportunities for savings, it would be crazy to not install solar panels on your home. 


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Solar power in South Carolina

South Carolina solar power facts


Average cost of a 5kw solar power system in 2020
Price shown before incentives

6 Years 11 Months

Average payback time


Average lifetime savings
Price shown after repayments of capital


levelized cost of solar energy


If you don't get solar
The forecast average utility price over the next 25 years


Annual power production

Cash flow graph based on cash purchase of a 13.89kW system

This 13.89kW system would offset 100% of your energy usage if your typical monthly bill in South Carolina is $252, however your situation may vary so try our solar calculator to get a result tailored to you.

Solar companies in South Carolina that provide pricing through the Solar-Estimate marketplace


Best solar offers currently available in South Carolina

Solar calculator and quote comparison tool

Compare solar quotes from the top solar companies in South Carolina

How much do solar panels cost in South Carolina

$2.82 per watt

Cash purchased solar system
Before 26% solar tax credit

$3.02 per watt

Financed solar system
Before 26% solar tax credit

17.7¢ cents/kWh

Av. 15 year term, 2.5% price escalator

What are the pros and cons of buying solar panels for your home in South Carolina

The pros of installing solar panels in South Carolina are the fantastic incentives. A combination of net metering, the state tax credit, and the federal tax credit makes installing solar power a no-brainer.

SolarPowerRocks provides a great breakdown of solar incentives and policy for each state within the US.

There isn’t much in the way of downsides for installing solar in South Carolina. The time to switch to solar is now while all the incentives are available!

Enter your details to calculate the potential costs and savings you will see when you install solar panels for your home.


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Best brands of solar panels

To find the best brands of solar panels you can use America's most trusted solar panel comparison and reviews website, SolarReviews.

However, reviews of solar panels can be a bit meaningless because most consumer owners have not had any issues and so while solar company reviews are very important when choosing solar installers they are of less use when choosing solar panels.

For more information to help you make an informed decision about this topic, I would recommend this article about buying solar panels.


Unlock live pricing on the best solar panel brands!


How much electricity will solar panels produce in South Carolina

Solar panels produce different amounts of energy in different locations.

Around the Columbia area solar panels installed on a south facing 24 degree pitch roof will typically produce:

1,350kWh per year per 1kw of peak DC (direct current) capacity

For more information about how your location, roof direction and roof tilt affects solar power production use the solar panels calculator and enter your zipcode below.


See how much electricity your solar panels could produce

I want to buy a solar panel kit and install it myself

What rebates, solar tax credits and other solar incentives are available in South Carolina?

State solar tax credit

South Carolina has a great statewide solar tax credit

The credit is equal to 25% of the cost of a system. However, you can only apply a maximum credit of $3,500 per year to your taxes. You can claim the remaining portion of the tax credit that exceeds $3,500 per year in future tax years. 

For example, let’s say your solar system cost $20,000. Your tax credit would be equal to $5,000. You can apply $3,500 of credit to your taxes for the first year. The remaining $1,500 of the credit will be applied to your taxes the following year.



Net metering in South Carolina

Net metering laws in South Carolina require your utility to give you credit for excess solar generation that is sent to the grid. Due to recent changes, utilities do not have to offer you the full retail rate for your excess electricity. Although, some utilities, like Duke Energy, still credit the full retail rate. 



Duke Energy Solar Rebate

Duke Energy customers can take advantage of their solar rebate program. Participants in the program receive $1 per watt installed. 

For a typical 5kW residential system, you could earn up to $5,000. 

As of January 2020 the program is full, but you can still apply to be on the waitlist. 



Santee Cooper Rooftop Solar Rebate Program

Santee Cooper offers their customers a great solar rebate. The incentives range, depending on when you install your system and cover from $600 per kilowatt (kW) to $1,200 per kW of solar installed. This means that the Santee Cooper rebate only covers systems up to 6 kW in size. 

The rate tiers are shown in the following table:

Solar rooftop participants Rebates
1-150 $1,200 per kW
151-200 $900 per kW
201+ $600 per kW

The sooner you apply to the program, the better chance you have for receiving a higher incentive.

South Carolina Solar Calculator

Regardless of what you want to know about the economics of installing solar panels for your home or business in South Carolina we have a solar calculator that can show you exactly the information your require.



What you can find out about installing solar panels in South Carolina using our full monthly solar calculator

This solar calculator requires you to input your address, utility company, your average monthly power spend - It tells you:

If you want to see all of the above but also see live pricing, the three best solar deals available in your city and get binding quotes from each of these solar companies then use this South Carolina solar panels calculator. This calculator requires you to also input your name and contact details because most of our 200+ installer partners will only authorize the sharing of their live solar pricing where we have validated that you are a real homeowner with a home in their service area. We respect the privacy of your data and only share your contact details with the solar companies you ask us to get binding quotes from.


Unlock live pricing in your state!


Solar calculator

Going solar in South Carolina

Check out all of the ways energy providers of South Carolina can help you be more energy efficient and save money.

The following programs are available:
Incentive Name Eligibility Type
Residential Renewable Energy Tax Credit Federal Personal Tax Credit
Solar Energy State Tax Credit State Personal Tax Credit
Net Metering State Net Metering
Santee Cooper - Rooftop Solar Rebate Program Utility Rebate Program
Duke Energy Solar Rebate (Expired) Utility Rebate Program
Santee Cooper Renewable Energy Resource Loan Utility Loan Program
Find your local rebates and incentives

Your city may have further incentives to offer. Please keep in mind that the best source of up-to-date information on incentives are the solar installers who specialize in your area.