You decided to take a leap of faith and decided to go solar, but do you know How Long Does It Take To Install Solar Panels?
The time it takes to install your solar panels can vary anywhere from one month to up to three months depending on a number of factors.
Why does it take a long time?
The main reason why it takes between 1 to 3 months is that there are many steps you need to follow in order to get those solar panels installed, from finding the right solar installer, getting the required permit, installation and connecting to the grid, it will take time to accomplish all those steps.
Factors that impact solar installation times
You won’t have solar panels on your property the day after signing a contract. The time it takes before you’re up and running with solar power largely depends on five factors:
- Your solar installation company
- Local permitting and inspection processes
- Size and type of solar panel system
- Property characteristics
- The utility company and interconnection
Steps and time estimation on solar panels installation
In order to understand how long it will take to install your solar panels, I am going to explain the steps you need to take and the estimated time.
Step one: Selecting your solar panel’s installer
This is the first step and the most important one, you need to take your time and select a competent solar installer.
You need to select a good and reputable company to install your solar panels, you can find people in your local area that have solar panels and ask for their opinion or you can search on yellow pages or just google them.
Contact 3 to 5 companies, and ask questions, here is the list of questions you can ask, pick the company you like the most and sign a contract with them.
This process should take between 1 to 2 weeks.
Step two: Inspecting your house
After agreeing on a contract with your solar installer, they will send someone to inspect your house if it is suitable for solar panel installation.
They will analyze your roof and verify if it is capable of supporting solar panels and the general inspection of the electric installation in your house.
The inspection itself will take one day, but how long it will take for your installer to inspect your house? it depends on the availability of a person who can inspect your house.
In my experience, this process will take between a week and two weeks to be completed.
Step three: Sizing your system
After inspecting your house, the installer will need to calculate how many solar panels are needed, the size of the inverter, cables for wiring, circuit breakers, etc.
Most solar installers have pre-made templates for sizing, so this process should take less than a week.
Estimated time 7 days.
Step 4: Obtaining permits
Before you install solar panels on your house you will need to seek permits, this work will be done by your solar installation.
This process will depend a lot on the experience of the solar install and the contact they have within your local government, if the company is very experienced they know how things get done, it will be faster, also it depends much on the availability of the local officials who are responsible for the approval.
This process will take between a week and one month.
Step five: Getting grants and rebates
Installing solar panels is not cheap, most governments offer grants, rebates, or taxi credits as incentives to push people towards solar energy, you need to make sure that you take advantage of them. The good news is that this process can be done when seeking permits so the time of completion is counted within step 4.
Step 6: Solar panels installation
After getting approval, the next step is to actually install solar panels at your house, usually, this process takes one day if you have batteries it might take two days since a solar system with batteries is more complicated to install.
Estimated time 1 or 2 days.
Step 7: Grid connection
If you want to connect your solar panel system to the grid, the solar panel installer will have to contact your utility company and they will schedule a day when they can perform the activity.
Connecting to the grid should take a day, but it depends on the availability of your local utility company representatives, this process can take up to 7 days.
Step 8: Commissioning and inspection
After finishing everything and testing, the local government will send someone, most of the time from a third party company to commission the solar panel system, this is to make sure that the system meets local electric and fire codes.
This process will take one day, but sending a request for commissioning to actually do it, will take several days depending on the availability of the officials.
From my experience, this process will take between 1 to two weeks.
As I elaborated, you can see that it will take between 1 month to 3 months to install solar panels in your house, sometimes it can take longer. Does it worth the wait? absolutely, when you start using solar energy in your home, you will forget all the troubles.