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Solar Panels in Delaware: Unlocking Cost Savings and Rebates

As a resident of Delaware, you may have noticed an increasing number of homes and businesses embracing solar energy. In fact, according to the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA), Delaware generated 4.2% of its electricity from solar energy in 2021. While this may seem like a modest figure, it‘s just the beginning of the state‘s ambitious renewable energy journey. With a goal to source 40% of its electricity from renewable sources by 2035, there has never been a better time to consider installing solar panels on your Delaware property.

In this comprehensive guide, we‘ll dive into the world of solar panels in Delaware, focusing on the costs, potential savings, and available rebates. By the end of this article, you‘ll have a clear understanding of whether solar energy is the right choice for your home or business.

The Current State of Solar Energy in Delaware

Delaware may be small in size, but it‘s making significant strides in solar energy adoption. As mentioned earlier, the First State generated 4.2% of its electricity from solar energy in 2021. This is equivalent to powering over 30,000 homes with clean, renewable energy. Delaware‘s Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) mandates that 40% of the state‘s electricity come from renewable sources by 2035, with a specific target of 10% from solar energy.

To meet these ambitious goals, the state government, utility companies, and private organizations have been working together to encourage the adoption of solar energy. This includes offering various incentives, rebates, and tax credits to make solar panels more accessible and affordable for Delaware residents.

Average Cost of Solar Panels in Delaware

One of the most important factors to consider when going solar is the cost. Fortunately, Delaware boasts some of the most competitive solar panel prices in the country. According to the SEIA, the average cost of solar panels in Delaware is around $2.65 per watt, which is lower than the national average. For a typical 6-kilowatt (kW) solar panel system, you can expect to pay approximately $15,900 before applying any incentives or rebates.

However, the actual cost of your solar panel system will depend on several factors, such as:

  1. Location: Solar panel prices can vary slightly depending on your location within Delaware. Factors like local permitting fees and labor costs can influence the final price.

  2. Panel Type: There are two main types of solar panels: monocrystalline and polycrystalline. Monocrystalline panels are more efficient but also more expensive, while polycrystalline panels are more affordable but slightly less efficient.

  3. Installer: The solar installer you choose can also impact the cost of your solar panel system. It‘s essential to get quotes from multiple installers and compare their prices, experience, and customer reviews.

To get a more accurate estimate of your solar panel costs, you‘ll need to calculate your household‘s energy usage. On average, Delaware residents consume about 932 kilowatt-hours (kWh) of electricity per month. To offset this usage with solar energy, you‘ll need a system that generates approximately 7.3 kW per hour, considering Delaware‘s average of 4.23 peak sun hours per day. A system of this size would cost around $19,345 before incentives.

Choosing a Solar Installer in Delaware

Selecting the right solar installer is crucial for ensuring the long-term performance and reliability of your solar panel system. When evaluating potential installers, consider the following criteria:

  1. Experience: Look for installers with several years of experience in the solar industry. Experienced installers are more likely to provide quality workmanship and have a track record of successful installations.

  2. Warranties: A reputable solar installer should offer comprehensive warranties on their workmanship, equipment, and performance. Look for installers that provide at least a 10-year workmanship warranty and a 25-year equipment warranty.

  3. Certifications: Ensure that your chosen installer has the necessary certifications, such as the North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP) certification. This demonstrates their commitment to industry standards and best practices.

Some of the top solar installers in Delaware include:

  1. Solar Energy World: With headquarters in Maryland and serving the East Coast, Solar Energy World is a leading installer in the region. They use their own certified technicians and offer an impressive 30-year warranty on installation and maintenance.

  2. SunnyMac, LLC: Located in Wilmington, DE, SunnyMac has over 14 years of experience in the solar industry. They hold NABCEP certification and provide a 25-year warranty on labor, installation, and maintenance.

When choosing a solar installer, be sure to request quotes from multiple companies and compare their offerings, prices, and customer reviews. Don‘t hesitate to ask questions and clarify any concerns you may have before making a decision.

Potential Savings from Solar Panels in Delaware

One of the most compelling reasons to invest in solar panels is the potential for long-term savings on your electricity bills. Delaware residents pay an average of $123.58 per month for electricity, amounting to $1,482.96 annually. By installing a solar panel system, you can significantly reduce or even eliminate your reliance on grid electricity.

To calculate the payback period for your solar panel investment, divide the total cost of your system by your annual electricity savings. Assuming a 6 kW system costing $15,900 (after applying the federal solar tax credit), and an annual electricity savings of $1,482.96, your payback period would be approximately 10.7 years.

After the payback period, your solar panels will continue to generate electricity for another 10-15 years, resulting in substantial savings. Over the 25-year lifespan of your solar panels, you could save between $13,791 and $21,206 on electricity costs, depending on factors like energy usage and utility rate increases.

Solar Panel Rebates, Credits, and Incentives in Delaware

In addition to the long-term savings on electricity bills, Delaware residents can take advantage of various rebates, credits, and incentives to make solar panels even more affordable. Some of the most notable incentives include:

  1. Federal Solar Tax Credit: Also known as the Investment Tax Credit (ITC), this federal incentive allows you to claim 30% of your solar panel installation costs as a credit on your income taxes. For a $15,900 system, this amounts to a tax credit of $4,770.

  2. Delaware Solar Rebate Program: The Delaware Green Energy Program offers rebates for solar panel installations based on system size. As of 2023, the rebate is $0.50 per watt, up to a maximum of $3,000 for residential systems.

  3. Net Metering: Delaware‘s net metering policy allows you to sell excess electricity generated by your solar panels back to the grid at the full retail rate. This can help offset your electricity costs and accelerate your payback period.

  4. Property Tax Exemption: In Delaware, the value added to your home by solar panel installation is exempt from property taxes. This means you won‘t pay higher property taxes due to the increased value of your home.

By taking advantage of these incentives, you can significantly reduce the upfront cost of your solar panel system and enjoy even greater long-term savings.

Factors to Consider Before Installing Solar Panels

Before making the decision to install solar panels on your Delaware property, there are several important factors to consider:

  1. Roof Orientation and Shading: To maximize your solar energy production, your roof should ideally face south and have minimal shading from trees or nearby buildings. If your roof is not optimal for solar, your installer may recommend alternative solutions like ground-mounted systems.

  2. Energy Efficiency Improvements: Before investing in solar panels, it‘s a good idea to make your home as energy-efficient as possible. This can include upgrading to energy-efficient appliances, improving insulation, and sealing air leaks. By reducing your overall energy usage, you can potentially install a smaller and more affordable solar panel system.

  3. Financing Options: While solar panels can lead to significant long-term savings, the upfront costs can be substantial. Fortunately, there are several financing options available, including solar loans, leases, and power purchase agreements (PPAs). Be sure to explore these options and choose the one that best fits your financial situation.


Solar panels offer Delaware residents a clean, renewable, and cost-effective way to power their homes and businesses. With competitive installation costs, generous incentives, and substantial long-term savings, there has never been a better time to go solar in the First State.

By carefully considering factors like your energy usage, roof orientation, and financing options, and choosing a reputable solar installer, you can confidently make the switch to solar energy. Not only will you be reducing your carbon footprint and contributing to Delaware‘s renewable energy goals, but you‘ll also be enjoying significant savings on your electricity bills for decades to come.

If you‘re ready to take the next step in your solar journey, we encourage you to reach out to local solar installers for quotes and consultations. With the right guidance and support, you can unlock the full potential of solar energy and join the growing community of Delaware residents embracing a cleaner, greener future.