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Going Green in Yolo County, CA

Key Facts

  • As of 2023, the average cost to install solar panels in Yolo county ranges from $2.43 to $3.29 per watt
  • Solar energy systems are exempt from property taxes in Yolo County until January 1st 2025
  • Solar panels typically pay off within 8 – 12 years depending on how much energy they generate.

Going Green in Yolo County

Yolo County experiences an average of 265 sunny days per year, almost 30% higher than the national average, making it a good pick for solar installations. The county has an estimated population of 216,986 as of July 1, 2021.

How much do Solar Panels cost in Yolo County, CA?

As of 2023, the average cost of installing solar panels in Yolo county, CA ranges from $2.43 to $3.29 per watt. This typically comes down to between $12,155 and $16,445.

However, this net cost can decrease by thousands of dollars once the 30% federal investment tax credit (ITC) and other solar incentives have been deducted.

Energy System Size Solar Panel Cost Cost After Credit
3 kW $8,580 $6,349
4 kW $11,440 $8,466
5 kW $14,300 $10,582
6 kW $17,160 $12,698
7 kW $20,020 $14,815
8 kW $22,880 $16,931
9 kW $25,740 $19,048
10 kW $28,600 $21,164

Although we provided the average cost for solar panels above, there are other factors that may affect the price. The table below provides a breakdown of how much solar installations might cost based on the type of panel and wattage rating.

Average Cost Breakdown for Solar Installation in Yolo County
Cost Per Watt
Monocrystalline Solar Panels $1 - $1.50 per watt
Polycrystalline Solar Panels $0.90 - $1 per watt
Thin Film Solar Panels $1 - $1.50 per watt
Other Costs
Solar Batteries
Cost of Racking $.25 - $.50 per watt.
Installation and soft Costs $2.50 - $4.50 per watt

Are Solar Panels Exempt from Property Taxes in Yolo County?

Yes. California's Active Solar Energy Tax Exclusion makes it possible for homeowners to install solar panels without worrying about their property taxes increasing.

An active solar energy system is one that collects, stores, or distributes solar energy using solar devices that are thermally isolated from human habitation or any other area where the energy is used.

An active solar energy system can be used for any of the following; space conditioning, domestic, recreational, therapeutic, or service water heating, electricity generation, process heat generation, and solar mechanical energy.

Note: Solar pool heaters, hot tub heaters, passive energy systems, and wind energy systems are not included in an active solar energy system.

Through January 1, 2025, this incentive shields homeowners from any effects on their property taxes. The quickest way to find property records in Yolo county, California is to reach out to the Yolo County Assessor's Office.

Contact Address

625 Court Street Room #104

Woodland, CA 95695

Telephone: (530) 666-8135 | Fax: (530) 666-8213

How Long Does it Take for Solar Panels to Pay for themselves in Yolo County?

Solar panels typically pay for themselves within 9-12 years. The more energy your solar system generates the faster it will pay for itself. An average of 20 to 25 solar panels can produce enough electricity to power the majority of homes. Solar panels typically produce between 250 and 400 watts of power.

Do You Need a Handyman or a Solar Installer in Yolo County?

Yes. Hiring a certified Handyman or professional Solar Installer with experience installing high-quality solar panels and systems is recommended by the U.S. Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy. The Contractors State License Board (CSLB) regulates all contractors in California.

And the following are some of the 73 licenses available to contractors in California; "A" – General Engineering contractors, "B" – General Building contractors, C-4, C-10, C-36, C-46, C-5. Here’s a quick note in each of these licenses;

"A" – General Engineering contractors

General Engineering contractors are authorized to install solar energy systems in Yolo County, California.

"B" – General Building contractors

Since a solar energy system involves the use of two unrelated building trades or crafts, general building contractors are permitted to install solar energy systems under the definition of B&P Code section 7057.

C-4 Boiler, Hot-Water Heating, and Steam Fitting contractors

Contractors qualified to work on the boiler, hot-water heating, and steam fitting projects can also work on solar heating equipment related to systems covered by this classification.

C-10 Electrical contractors

Any solar projects that produce, transmit, transform, or use electrical energy in any way for any purpose may be carried out by electrical contractors.

C-36 Plumbing contractors

Any project involving the use of solar equipment to warm water or other fluids to the appropriate temperature may be carried out by plumbers.

C-46 Solar contractors

Thermal and photovoltaic solar energy systems are installed, modified, maintained, and repaired by solar contractors. Except when necessary to install a solar thermal or photovoltaic energy system, a licensee in this classification is not permitted to engage in or perform building or construction trades, crafts, or skills.

C-53 Swimming Pool contractors

Solar heating can be installed in swimming pool projects by swimming pool contractors.

How can I Sell Solar Energy in Yolo County?

Residential or commercial users who produce their own electricity using solar panels or photovoltaic systems can export any excess energy back to the grid thanks to a mechanism called net metering (or NEM).

An off-grid system typically operates independently, whereas an on-grid system is linked to the primary utility grid and incorporates the net metering policy.

Net metering gives system owners the chance to increase their income by selling the extra electricity they produce to the grid and by using the grid to make up for any shortfalls. If the amount of energy produced exceeds the amount of energy used, the owner is paid for the surplus.

When energy production exceeds consumption, it is imported from the utility grid, and the owner only pays the difference between the two.

NetMetering 3.0

NEM 3.0 is a net metering policy that was approved by the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) on December 15, 2022. It lowered the average export rate in California from $0.30 per kWh to $0.08 per kWh starting on April 15, 2023.

By adopting Net Metering 3.0 (NEM), homeowners get to benefit from a 75% reduction in payments for any excess solar energy production that is sent to the grid.

Are Tesla Solar Panels Available in Yolo County, California?

Yes, Tesla Solar Panels are available in Yolo County, California. Tesla solar panels cost an average of $2,000 per kwh. Tesla solar panels come in four different sizes, with prices ranging from $9,600 to $48,352. Tesla offers installation in Yolo County, California, either directly or through its Certified Installer Program, which includes some of the best local and regional installation businesses in the country.

One of the benefits of working with a local Tesla certified installer is that Tesla offers a 25-year performance warranty on all Tesla solar panels. Tesla also offers a full 10-year warranty for every part of a solar system, including solar batteries, inverters, and any roof leaks or mounting issues. Generally, Tesla solar panels have maximum efficiency ratings of between 19.3% to 20.6%.

Do Solar Panels Increase a Home Value in Yolo County?

Yes. By immediately lowering or eliminating your electric bill and increasing the tax-exempt value of your home, a solar panel installation can offer Yolo County homeowners a relatively quick ROI. According to Zillow, the added value of homes increased by 4.1% in terms of price per square foot.

Some factors that influence how much value your home gets from installing solar panels include:

  • Your home’s location

The Solar Energy Technologies Office claims that for your solar panels to operate at their peak efficiency, location is crucial. Ideally, your roof should face south, have a slope of between 15 and 40 degrees, and have enough room for the panels. Large shade trees that are close to your roof can also reduce the system's efficiency and, ultimately, your ability to save money.

  • How much output the system provides

Solar panels can be classified as either monocrystalline, polycrystalline, or thin film. The efficiencies and lifespans of each type of panel vary. An average of 20 to 25 solar panels can produce enough electricity to power the majority of homes. Solar panels typically produce between 250 and 400 watts of power.

  • The age of the system

Efficiency and cost are increasing as solar technology develops. For instance, the Solar Energy Industries Association claims that the cost of installing solar panels today is about half of what it was in 2010. Each type of panel has a different lifespan, ranging from 14 to 35 years.

  • The system’s replacement value (insurance)

If you own solar panels, your homeowner's insurance will likely need to go up since they are considered an improvement to your home. Your insurance provider will decide whether you need to have a separate policy for your panels or an extension of your existing dwelling policy.

When solar panels are installed on your roof, many insurers will view them as an integral part of your house. Depending on what it covers, such as repairs or replacement, the policy's cost will change.

How to Find Solar Companies Near Me in Yolo County, California?

There are hundreds of solar installers in Yolo County, California. Here are some tips to consider when choosing the best solar company for your installation:

  • Local California Reputation & Reviews

It's advisable to choose a business that is a current member of the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) or other trade organizations. Being a member of these organizations is a strong indication of a company's professionalism, skill, standing, and dependability. Also, ensure that you read the customer reviews on the company’s website & social media pages.

  • Solar Pricing and Financing

Thanks to California's statewide solar incentives, you can now lower the up-front costs for your solar systems. You should choose a solar company that provides various solar financing options and has a track record of navigating California's numerous statewide incentive programs.

  • Services Offered in California

One thing to remember is that various solar companies might provide slightly different services. We recommend that you seek out a business that offers everything from initial consultation to panel installation, installing solar batteries and EV chargers to filling out applications for financial incentives.

  • Warranty Coverage

We advise choosing an installer who can provide a strong warranty. The best solar installers will always provide workmanship, performance, and roofing warranties for 25 years.

  • Californian’s Company Experience

The more experience a solar company has, the better. However, we advise choosing a company with at least 10 years of experience. A company's track record and customer recommendations are strong indicators that it's a good company to work with.

  • Brand Quality

Pay close attention to the specific panel technology offered in the solar companies. Also, ensure that the company you choose to work with is authorized to sell and install the exact brand of solar panel or battery you have in mind.

Yolo County Statistics

Yolo County has an estimated population of 216,986 as of July 1, 2021. There are over 81,259 housing units, and the average number of persons per household is 2.77. The Median value of owner-occupied housing units between 2017-2021 is $476,000, bringing the total percentage of owner-occupied housing units to 51.7%

The county has a Median gross rent of $1,475 between 2017-2021. A total of 1,229 Building permits were issued in 2021. The median selected monthly owner costs with and without a mortgage in Yolo County between 2017-2021 are $2,337, and $652 respectively. 80.9% of people still live in the same house as a year ago.