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Colorado Solar Information

Colorado isn’t a bad state for solar. There’s always enough sunshine to cover your basic energy needs or at least to reduce your monthly electricity bill. The 26% Federal Solar Tax Credit as well as some local incentives will make your solar installation even more profitable.
  • #7
    Colorado ranks #7 in the USA for savings from installing solar panels
  • 7359.61 kWh
    Annual AC energy output of a 4 kW solar system installed in Colorado
  • 6.19 kWh
    Solar Radiation (kWh / m2 / day)
  • 12 ¢ /kWh
    The cost of electricity today in Intermountain Rural Electric Association
  • 25 ¢ /kWh
    If you don't go solar. The forecast average utility price over the next 25 years

Colorado Solar Facts

  • $1.33
    Average cost of a 4kw solar power system in 2019.
  • 3 years
    Average system payback period.
  • $53,780.60
    Average lifetime savings.
  • 4 ¢ /kWh
    Levelized cost of solar energy.
  • 4 kW
    Recommended system size.
  • Solar Power System Cost in Colorado
  • $1.33 per watt
  • $4,774.25 total
  • 3 years

Colorado is famous for its mountains and ski resorts, so one may not associate the state as being favorable for adopting solar. However, Colorado one of the sunniest states in the country, getting more sunshine throughout the year than even California. Today, solar power is thriving in Colorado due to its great state support, solar rebates and, of course, the number of sun hours that area gets.

Colorado Solar Facts

  • Colorado was the very first state in the history of the USA to pass a Renewable Energy Portfolio Standard (RPS) in 2004 by statewide voting.
  • The state mandates that by the year 2020 30% of its energy should come from renewable sources.
  • Colorado is projected to generate over 2.6 MW of solar energy in the next 5 years, which is enough to power nearly 1700 homes.
  • As of today, Colorado’s solar investments are over $3.5 billion.
  • Solar power system prices have dropped by 64% in the past 5 years.

The Cost of Solar Panels in Colorado

As of September 2019, the state’s average cost of solar panels per watt is $3.66/W. This makes a typical out-of-pocket price of installation of the 5kW solar panel system to range from $14,000 to $17,000 before Federal Tax Credit or any state incentives or rebates.

Colorado Solar Tax Credits

The Federal Investment Tax Credit – is also known as the Investment Tax Credit (ITC) program. It gives you an opportunity to deduct 30% of the entire cost of the solar equipment and its installation on your federal income taxes and has no cap on its value.

Sales Tax Exemption - everyone who installs a photovoltaic system on their property in Colorado is exempt from all associated sales taxes on that solar equipment.

Property Tax Exemption - It is been proven that solar panels add value to the house they are installed on. However, the residents of Colorado are exempt from the higher property taxes on the increased value of the house due to solar system installation.

Colorado Solar Incentives and Rebates

Net Metering Program – Net Metering lets you get a credit on your monthly bill for extra solar power your PV system generates. Colorado has one of the best Net Metering programs in the nation, with the option to not only give you back energy credits on your next bill but also paying you at the end of the year for all extra energy you were able to contribute to the grid.

EnergySmart Colorado – This utility company offers rebates for new solar installations for residents in Eagle Valley, Roaring Fork Valley, and Summit County. Depending on where you live, rebates are anywhere from $400 to $3,000.

Holy Cross Energy – Holy Cross offers a per-kilowatt rebate for its customers to decrease the price of going solar. The rebate is $750 for the first 6 kW and is a little less for bigger systems. The average saving on a 6kW system is $4,500 with this incredible incentive.

Pros and Cons of Buying Solar Panels in Colorado


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    Relatively short payback period

    The length of time that is needed to pay off the initial price of the purchase and the installation of a solar power system is known as the solar payback period. Increased utility rates, lower solar equipment costs, and solid solar programs and incentives make it much easier to achieve a shorter payback period. Nationwide, the average solar payback period is just below 8 years. Currently, Colorado's typical payback period is just under 9 years.
  • +

    After the payback period, solar power is nearly free

    In Colorado, utility companies do not charge you a connection fee to plug in your solar power system. It means that once your solar energy system is paid off, the electricity it produces will be free for you to use.
  • +

    Great savings on a monthly electric bill

    You begin generating your own electricity once you install a solar energy system in your home. Solar adoption will help you be less dependent on your local utilities and their high utility rates, which are extremely affected by inflation. The financial benefits of going solar will be evident on your monthly electric bill from day one, even if you are still paying for your PV system.
  • +

    Helping the environment since solar energy is clean, sustainable, and renewable

    In addition to saving you money every month, solar power is a clean, renewable and sustainable source of energy. Sunlight is plentiful and free to collect without damaging the environment. Moreover, installing a solar system of average size will save 208 trees each year. Using solar energy instead of coal and gas will reduce our carbon footprint by greatly decreasing air and water pollution.
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    Support from the government and the state

    Colorado is one of the states with the best solar state programs and incentives. Moreover, The Federal Investment Tax Credit is still available and save you 30% on the entire solar purchase and installation. As a result of this economic assistance, individuals see the cost of their solar equipment dropped by thousands of dollars.
  • +

    Very low maintenance

    Solar panels have no moving parts so, ultimately, with their use, there is no wear and tear. As a result, when operating, solar panels are silent. The only maintenance they need is the occasional cleaning to maintain them free from dust and dirt.
  • +

    Excellent warranty protection

    Nowadays, the majority of solar panels come with two forms of warranties: performance guarantee and extended product guarantee. The 25-year performance warranty guarantees at least 25 years of optimal energy production. Extended warranties ensure that faulty equipment, breakage or any performance deficit that may occur will be repaired.
  • +

    Increase in the property value

    The newest studies by several real estate companies have shown that adding solar panels on your home's roof certainly increases the value of the property. Typically, the installation of a solar system will increase your home value by 4.1%. In addition, not only do homes with photovoltaic systems sell at greater rates, but they also sell quicker than homes without solar systems.


  • -

    The possible high initial cost

    Purchasing a PV system can certainly create somewhat high expenses. Not only do you have to buy solar panels when you decide to go to solar, but you also have to pay for all the solar equipment and accessories, as well as the system installation. Nevertheless, the original cost can be considerably reduced with the availability of federal and state solar programs, local utilities incentives and rebates. Most importantly, going solar will save you money from day one on your electric bill.
  • -

    Must have a large, open area for installation.

    You will need about 500 sq. feet of space on the roof to install an average 5kW solar panel system. For the photovoltaic system to operate efficiently that area must be clear from any tree shade or shade from other structures. For some homeowners, this requirement can become an issue. Luckily, the solar panels can also be installed on the ground if they have full access to sunlight.
  • -

    Must be a property owner to install

    Nowadays, solar power systems can mostly be installed for homeowners with excellent credit and/or good profit. For renters, low-income individuals, or individuals without a job, solar advantages are not yet available.

Is It Worth Going Solar in Colorado?

Besides obvious advantages of solar power, living in Colorado adds an additional benefit to this list. Colorado has one of the best Net Metering in the country and offers great state incentives, tax breaks and rebates on solar. Colorado is also famous for its 300 days of sunshine a year, which makes the state one of the sunniest in the USA. With this much sun energy and significant financial assistance, the only way to go is solar.

Tell us how much you are spending on electricity and we’ll calcalute how much you can save if you go solar
According to Intermountain Rural Electric Association, we received the cost of kWH in your area and calculated energy consumption based on an average electricity bill for 3 months.
I am claiming the 26% Federal Tax Credit (ends 2020) i

When you install your solar system, 26% of your project expenses apply toward a credit to offset any taxes you owe that year. This federal tax credit is a major incentive to go solar, but it is being phased out by 2022.

Most people are eligible to claim this credit (you must owe federal taxes to be eligible).

System size

  • Mini
  • Small
  • Medium
  • Large
We recommended
3.59 kW medium system size
Provides up to 80% of electricity consumption
$1.33 per watt
Average system cost
  • image rec 3
    12 x 315 watt
    solar panels
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  • image rec 3
    12 x 300 watt
  • +
  • image rec 3
    1 x 3 800 watt
$90.78/ month
Estimated savings on your average quarterly bill
  • $4,774.25
    Estimated system cost
    Excludes 26% Federal Tax Credit.
    This price does not include the installation cost.
  • 3 years
    Average system payback period
  • $53,780.60
    Estimated utility savings

Example of 4 kW system calculation in Minnesota for electricity bill $100

  • 12 ¢ /kWh
    The cost of electricity today in Intermountain Rural Electric Association
  • 25 ¢ /kWh
    If you don't get solar. The forecast average utility price over the next 25 years
  • 4 ¢ /kWh
    levelized cost of solar energy

Relevant product for your system

Entry-level solar panels x 12
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Entry-level microinverter x 12
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Entry-level inverter x 1
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Canadian Solar 315W Solar Panel 120 cell CS3K-320MS Monocrystalline Black - A1 Solar Store
Cell number 120 cell
DC/Charger Volt Compatible 12v, 24v, 48v
Price per Watt $0.52
Rated Power Output 315 W
Voltage (VOC) 40.1V
Cell Type Monocrystalline
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LONGi 320W Solar Panel 120 cell LR6-60HPH Modules - A1 Solar Store
Cell number 120 cell
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Price per Watt $0.48
Rated Power Output 320 W
Voltage (VOC) 40.6 V
Cell Type Monocrystalline
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Panasonic HIT 330W Solar Panel 96 cell VBHN330SA17 Monocrystalline Black - A1 Solar Store
Cell number 96 cell
DC/Charger Volt Compatible 12v, 24v, 48v
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Rated Power Output 330 W
Voltage (VOC) 69.7V
Cell Type Monocrystalline
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Mission Solar 385W 72 cell Solar Panel MSE385SR9Sl P-type mono-crystalline silicon
Cell number 72 cell
DC/Charger Volt Compatible 12v, 24v, 48v
Price per Watt $0.7
Rated Power Output 385 W
Voltage (VOC) 48.53 V
Cell Type Monocrystalline