Do home solar panels make sense in Brentwood, California?

Summary:

The median price of a 6 kilowatt home solar system in Brentwood is about  $10,099.
That 6 kW system would generate about  $1,974 worth of electricity every year.
In 2019, you can qualify for a  30% federal tax credit. In California, there are additional solar rebates available.
There are at least  20,813 homes in Buffalo with solar panels.
Learn more

Table of Contents:



How much do solar panels cost in Brentwood, CA?

The average cost per watt of residential solar in California is $4/watt. For comparison, the national average is $3.70/watt.

Cost per watt is the total installed cost of a system, including taxes, divided by the size of the system in watts (DC). It includes the cost of hardware plus installation costs. Cost per watt is always the gross cost, before incentives. This means, at a minimum, you can take 30% off the price of the system in 2019 because of federal tax incentives.

The cost of a solar panel system for your house in Brentwood will depend on how much electricity you want to generate, which affects the size of the system you’ll need. The following is an example price estimate for a home solar panel system in Brentwood, with an electricity generation estimate based on the local climate and the following assumptions:

• 554 kWh is the amount of electricity that the average California home uses every month.
• 3.70 kilowatts is the size of the system you’ll need to generate 100% of this electricity from solar panels.
• 9 to 14 panels is what that translates to (depending on panel efficiency, which commonly ranges from 260 watts to 400 watts)
• Panels oriented due south and mounted on a shade-free roof at a 30° angle.

Gross system price$14,427This is the price of your system plus taxes but before incentives, based on an average cost of solar in your state of $4 per watt.
Federal tax credit of 30%$4,328The most important solar incentive in the nation, the federal solar tax credit, gives homeowners 30% off the cost of their system in 2019. It drops to 26% next year. Read more
Net system price:$10,099

This estimate is based on averages but your home, of course, may be different. For a personalized estimate, grab a copy of your utility bill and use our calculator to plug in the numbers for your home.



Can you save money with solar panels in Brentwood, CA?

Every year, that hypothetical Brentwood home solar system described above would produce about $1,974 worth of electricity. This is based on the California state average price of electricity of $0.18/kWh and the average local climate.

But that’s just a home with average electricity usage. You might need more or fewer solar panels, depending on how much electricity you want to generate. Also, shade matters a lot. If you have trees or buildings throwing shadows on your roof, that could reduce your solar production by a lot.



Houses in Brentwood with solar panels

According to our data from various local agencies, there are at least 3,689 homes in Brentwood that have solar panels installed. This means a lot of your neighbors have looked into solar and decided that it’s a smart choice for them. If you add up the total generating capacity of these solar panel systems, you get a total of 20,394 kilowatts of solar electricity that is being sent into your local electricity grid.

If you’re trying to decide if solar is right for you, this is good news. Having a lot of solar homes means that you will have more local contractors to choose from. You can also feel more confident about going solar, because many of your neighbors in Brentwood have already decided that solar is a smart choice for them.



Solar photovoltaic panels turn sunlight into electricity, and the more sunlight you have, the better. That doesn’t mean that you need to live in the desert for solar panels to produce a lot of power. The amount of sunlight that a location gets is influenced by how far south it is, but also by its climate. If you live somewhere with few cloudy days, you might generate more solar electricity than a rainy city that is further south.



Brentwood solar energy potential

If you want to know how much sunlight is available in your city for solar electricity generation, you need to know the Direct Normal Irradiance (DNI). DNI not only takes into account the hours of sunlight, but other variables such as cloud cover, airborne particulates (which cause haze), and precipitation.

The DNI for Brentwood is 6.65, which means that it has excellent solar potential.

6.65

In Brentwood, you’ll generate a lot of solar electricity throughout the year, which helps to shorten the amount of time is takes for a solar panel system to pay for itself.

In the continental United States, DNI ranges from about 3.0 to 8.5 kWh/m2/day. In the most northern parts of Alaska, the DNI reaches a low of 0.5.

A higher DNI means more sunshine and more electricity generation by solar panels, but solar can be viable even with a lower DNI. For example, Germany has widespread solar PV, but a DNI of only about 2.5.

This DNI data comes from GEOS geostationary satellite data and NREL climate models.

Brentwood
US low
US high

In some climates, you’ll see a big difference in sunlight and solar electricity generation from summer to winter. These charts show you what to expect in Brentwood.

Solar Energy by Month (DNI)


The graph below estimates how much a 6 kilowatt south-facing solar panel system would generate in Brentwood.

Power Generation by Month (kWh)


A home solar energy system in Brentwood will have very little seasonal variation in power generation. A solar panel system in the peak month would produce 146% more electricity compared to the darkest month in winter. This is a very small difference between winter and summer solar energy generation versus most other location in the United States. This is good thing if you don’t have net metering, because it means that you will tend to send less excess electricity into the grid.



Brentwood, CA solar companies

This is a list of solar home installations we know about within the city limits of Brentwood, CA.

# of homes refers to the number of installations by the installer in the Brentwood area that we have a record of. It’s possible that the installer has done more installations in the local area.
Total kW installed is the cumulative solar generation capacity of all the residential installations by the installer in Brentwood.
Year of the most recent install is the most recent record of work done by the installer in Brentwood. This lets you know if the company is active in the area, or hasn’t done work in some time (or even gone out of business).
Installer# of homesTotal kW installedYear of most recent install
1ST LIGHT ENERGY15982016
1ST LIGHT SOLAR ENERGY5212014
A & B ELECTRIC172013
A 1 SUN, INC.152011
A1 SOLAR POWER241192016
AAA ELECTRIC2142011
ACRO ELECTRIC182012
ACRO ENERGY8532011
ACRO ENERGY TECHNOLOGIES2192013
ADVANCED SOLAR ELECTRIC262009
AKEENA4192010
ALL BAY SOLAR132015
ALL ON ELECTRIC543862016
ALLY ELECTRIC & SOLAR162014
AMBASSADOR ENERGY182010
AMERICAN HOME CRAFT112009
AMERICAN SOLAR DIRECT332122016
APPLIED ELECTRICAL152014
ARAM SOLAR5302012
BAY AREA ENERGY SOLUTIONS162017
BAY AREA SOLAR SOLUTIONS5232014
BEULTER CORP262011
BLUE RAVEN SOLAR182015
BTA SOLAR172007
BYERS ENTERPRISES172016
CA HOME SOLAR162015
CALIFORNIA GREEN DESIGNS1152013
CALIFORNIA SOLAR ENGINEERING122008
CALIFORNIA SOLAR PARTNERS3212015
CALIFORNIA SOLAR SYSTEMS3162013
CANOPY ENERGY262016
CAPITAL CITY SOLAR192016
CENTURY ROOF & SOLAR2102008
CLEAN SOLAR172010
COLDWELL SOLAR2192013
COMPLETE SOLAR5462016
COMPLETE SOLAR SOLUTION15832016
D-ELECTRIC2172016
D.R BROWN COMPANY DBA SOLAR UNIVERSE3182015
DEETS ELECTRICAL SERVICE142008
DEK ELECTRIC152015
DEL SOL ENERGY142015
DEL SOL NRG6412017
DEL SOL NRG INC352412016
DIABLO SOLAR SERVICES INC.142009
DIABLO INTEGRATED CONSTRUCTION & SOLAR142015
DIABLO SOLAR172015
DIABLO SOLAR SERVICES503282016
ECHOFIRST INC492013
ECO FRIENDLY REMODELING162016
ECOPLEXUS1382011
ELEMENT POWER SYSTEMS301732017
ELITE SOLAR152014
ELM CONTRACTOR112004
ENERGY EFFICIENCY SOLAR DBA ACRO ENERGY172013
ENERGY REMODELING4182016
ENVER ENERGY IMPROVEMENT292016
ENVER SOLAR6252015
FERREL CUSTOM DESIGN POOLS & SPAS1142008
FIDELITY HOME ENERGY11432017
FLAGG BUILDING IMPROVEMENTS2112011
FRALICK HOMES10632015
FREE ENERGY SYSTEM3182016
FRESCHI SERVICE EXPERTS142016
FUTURE ENERGY122011
FUTURE ENERGY CORP421712016
GAIAM ENERGY112002
GAYLER CONSRUCTION15252014
GCI SOLAR8442016
GOLDEN GATE ELECTRIC132015
GOLDEN STATE POWER152012
GREEN AIR4262016
GREEN AIR HEATING & AIR CONDITIONING1132016
GREEN ENERGY STARS292016
GREEN LIGHT CONSTRUCTION SERVICE172015
GREEN NRG2122016
GREEN POWER INSTALLER INC3152015
GREEN STOCK SOLAR2222015
GREEN WOLF ELECTRIC & SOLAR132015
GRID ALTERNATIVES222008
HELIOPOWER142007
HIGH DEDINITION SOLAR11262016
HIGH DEFINITION SOLAR122017
HONEYS AIR & SOLAR5262015
HOOKED ON SOLAR172016
HORIZON SOLAR POWER4212016
HOUSING CONSTRUCTION INCORPORATION152016
IDEAL SOLAR CONSTRUCTION COMPANY142014
IDEAL SOLAR SOLUTIONS4332016
IES RESIDENTIAL172012
INDEPENDENCE POWER272007
INFINITY ENERGY201482016
JAJ ROOFING2262016
KRP ENERGY122014
KURIOS ENEREGY162016
LENNAR122014
LEON AND LEON CONSTRUCTION172016
LEONARD ROOFING122015
LEONARD'S ROOFING INC7142015
LIGHT ENERGY SYSTEMS362009
MARIN SOLAR162005
MARINE ELECTRICAL SERVICES182001
MEANDAL ELECTRIC INC2112014
MICHAEL & SUN SOLAR, INC162016
MOORE SOLAR & GREEN CONSTRUCTION192009
MOTHER NATURE CONSTRUCTION3142015
N2 ELECTRIC132012
NEXT ENERGY311512016
NEXTENERGY SOLAR5312011
NEXUS ENERGY SYSTEMS4182017
NOR CAL HOME IMPROVEMENTS252014
NORTHBAY ENERGY SERVICES, INC1352006
NRG CLEAN POWER292016
NRG HOME SOLAR122015
OCR SOLAR & ROOFING182008
ONE ROOF ENERGY172014
OPEN ENERGY122008
OSULLIVAN GREEN SOLAR152015
PACIFIC RIM10512014
PACIFIC RIM CONSTRUCTION132010
PARAMOUNT ENERGY SOLUTIONS2112013
PAUL GYSELS CONSTRUCTION182012
PEAK POWER SOLUTIONS2132016
PERMACITY CONSTRUCTION CO282016
PETERSENDEAN1821,1532017
POWER INDEPENDENCE ELECTRIC211172007
PREMIER POWER INC2392009
PREMIER POWER RENEWABLE ENERGY142004
PRIME ELECTRICAL SERVICE1102015
QUALITY FIRST HOME IMPROVEMENT162016
QUICK SYSTEMS13712016
RCI SOLAR1172015
REAL GOODS ENERGY TECH4182013
REAL GOODS INC152011
REC SOLAR14692014
REGRID1182007
RENEWABLE ELECTRIC2162014
RENEWABLE TECHNOLOGIES222003
REPOWER4262016
REVOLVE SOLAR CA282014
RGS/REAL GOODS41982014
ROCHLIN CORP182012
ROCKRIDGE RENEWABLES INC1112015
RODD ELECTRIC152013
RODDA ELECTRIC312302016
SAVE A LOT SOLAR152016
SELF201322017
SEMPER SOLARIS11632016
SKY POWER SYSTEMS14862016
SKYWAY ELECTRIC192014
SLINGSHOT POWER3112015
SMART ENERGY3112015
SMART ENERGY SOLAR4312015
SOL R US ELECTRICAL ENGINEERING6612017
SOLAR COMPANY633862016
SOLAR DEPOT1122003
SOLAR HARMONICS5342016
SOLAR HOME162014
SOLAR NETWORK INC152011
SOLAR REVOLUTION1172015
SOLAR SERVICE CENTER2112015
SOLAR TECHNOLOGIES10522016
SOLAR UNIVERSE1661,0252016
SOLAR WORLD132012
SOLARCITY13797,6632016
SOLARIUM ENERGY182014
SOLARON5432015
SOLARSYSTEMS INC162016
SOLCIUS292015
SONRAY CONSTRUCTION242013
SPECTRUM SOLAR WINDS8492016
SPG SOLAR192009
SUN CHARIOT SOLAR CORP152010
SUN FIRST132016
SUN KISS SOLAR2162015
SUN TIME ENERGY172016
SUNBURST SOLAR ENERGY142011
SUNGATE ENERGY15292014
SUNGEVITY904912016
SUNLIT SYSTEMS3112004
SUNLOGIC2122010
SUNPOWER2274372017
SUNRUN734632017
SUNSTREET ENERGY GROUP13262014
SUNTIME ENERGY262016
SUNTREK INDUSTRIES132007
SUPER SOLAR132010
SYNERGY 768 INC.4432017
SYNERGY CONSERVATION SOLUTIONS362013
SYNTOL PLUMBING ELECTRICAL HEATING & AIR2132016
SYNTROL SOLAR3202014
SYNTROL PLUMBING2132017
T & M SOLAR3372015
TAKEO S NOBORI152014
TAYLOR ENERGY172014
TESLA653712017
THE SOLAR CO182016
TOMSTAR CONTROLS142001
TRILLA ASSOCIATES122004
UNLEASH SOLAR162010
V DEVELOPMENT DBA CAPITAL BUILDERS152010
VACA VALLEY ROOFING10202008
VELOCITY SOLAR POWER142016
VERENGO331872015
VILLARA CORPORATION1102016
VISION INSTALLATION442112015
VISION SOLAR16762016
VIVINT1327782017
WEST COAST EXTERIORS112015
WEST COAST SOLAR2271,7182017
WESTERN SIERRA2202016
YOUR ENERGY SOLUTIONS10582016

Solar panel lease companies in Brentwood

If you’re thinking about going with a solar lease or PPA, you should first read our guide to solar financing to make sure that you understand the pros and cons of a lease or PPA versus purchasing a system outright. In most cases, you will come out on top by buying your solar panels, even if that means taking out a loan.

That said, leases/PPAs continue to be popular, and they can be a good choice in some cases. There are several national solar installers that offer leases/PPAs, but not all of them operate in every state. Here’s a breakdown of some of the major solar installers that offer these types of contracts, and whether they operate in your state:

CompanyOperates in California ?
SungevityYES
SunnovaYES
SunrunYES
Vivint SolarYES

Looking for solar panel cleaning companies in Brentwood?

If you’re thinking about paying a company to clean your solar panels, think again. Trying to get the maximum number of watts out of your solar array by keeping your panels squeaky clean isn’t worth it if you’re paying $100 or more per visit from a cleaning company. In fact, rain is sufficient to keep solar panels clean for most people. If you live in a dry and dusty area or frequently find bird poop or leaves on your panels, invest in some inexpensive equipment to take care of cleaning yourself. Read our guide to solar panel maintenance, which includes tips on solar panel cleaning and a some recommended cleaning equipment.

Contact solar companies in Brentwood

Want to work with one of these companies? We screen companies to make sure that you work with qualified installers. Use our service to get multiple quotes from quality Brentwood solar contractors.

Get quotes from solar installers in Brentwood



Average California electricity prices


Right now in California, the average price of residential electricity is about 18.31 cents per kilowatt hour. In comparison, the average price of electricity in the United States is about 13.34 cents per kWh.

This means that you are paying 37% more for electricity than the national average. That’s pretty expensive.

Higher than average prices like this are a good argument for going solar.

Regardless of what your electricity prices are, by adding solar panels to your house and generating your own electricity, you’re locking in your cost of electricity for as long as your system is working, which will protect you from future rate increases by your utility. Given that many panels come with 25 year warranties, this is an investment that can last a long time.

Keep in mind that the price of electricity varies by utility, sometimes by a lot. The table below lists the average price of electricity for utilities in California state. For current rates, check with your utility.

Company# CustomersAvg Price (¢/kWh)
Aha Macav Power Service898.18
Anza Electric Coop Inc4,33817.93
Bear Valley Electric Service22,47027.71
City of Alameda30,81118.07
City of Anaheim - (CA)111,34716.52
City & County of San Francisco23817.00
City of Azusa14,66713.33
City of Banning - (CA)10,98520.18
City of Burbank Water and Power46,21516.51
City of Colton - (CA)16,66116.16
City of Corona - (CA)98615.59
City of Glendale - (CA)74,78319.96
City of Healdsburg - (CA)4,82317.13
City of Lodi - (CA)21,94017.48
City of Moreno Valley - (CA)5,57620.03
City of Lompoc - (CA)13,16515.55
City of Palo Alto - (CA)25,57914.28
City of Pasadena - (CA)55,76318.23
City of Redding - (CA)37,87816.76
City of Riverside - (CA)97,34716.12
City of Roseville - (CA)52,18115.54
City of Santa Clara - (CA)46,85912.27
City of Shasta Lake - (CA)4,16617.36
City of Ukiah - (CA)6,44913.62
City of Vernon7311.85
Imperial Irrigation District132,63212.93
Lassen Municipal Utility District9,03215.70
Los Angeles Department of Water & Power1,329,96816.65
Liberty Utilities42,32313.79
Merced Irrigation District7,41816.02
Modesto Irrigation District97,93517.81
PacifiCorp35,70413.88
Pacific Gas & Electric Co.3,998,18721.18
Sacramento Municipal Util Dist552,67814.06
San Diego Gas & Electric Co1,280,26422.09
Southern California Edison Co4,362,15016.60
Pittsburg Power Company34822.60
Plumas-Sierra Rural Elec Coop6,60618.58
Surprise Valley Electrification2,8258.79
Truckee Donner P U D12,23715.60
Turlock Irrigation District73,39316.01
Valley Electric Assn, Inc1213.11

Historical California electricity prices, 2008 to 2017


The average price of residential electricity in California, over the past ten years, is 15.86 cents per Kilowatt hour. This is 31% more than than the US average price of 12.07 cents per kWh. Because your state historically has had high electricity prices, there’s a good chance that prices will continue to be high in the future. This is a good argument for going solar.

Why is this important to know? Depending on the size of your system, owning home solar reduces or eliminates the effect of electricity price increases.


Historical California electricity prices (cents per kilowatt hour)

CA prices
US prices
2008200920102011201220132014201520162017
CA prices13.81¢14.74¢14.75¢14.78¢15.34¢16.23¢16.25¢16.99¢17.39¢18.31¢
US prices11.26¢11.51¢11.54¢11.72¢11.88¢12.13¢12.52¢12.65¢12.55¢12.89¢


By looking at the trend in electricity prices over the past decade, you can get a better idea of whether high or low prices in your state are a recent change, or part of a long term trend. Because solar panels last a really long time (most come with 25 year power warranties), going solar protects you from future changes in electricity price. Basically, by paying for a system now, you can lock in your cost of electricity for two or even three decades.



Environmental report for California electricity

Depending on the type of fuel they use, power plants produce differing amounts of air pollution. This is measured as units of pollution per megawatt hour (mWh) of electricity.

For every mWh of electricity generated, California power plants produce on average:

  • 216 kilograms of CO2, which is 53% less than the US average of 459 kg.
  • 7 grams of SO2, which is 98% less than the US average of 411 g.
  • 332 grams of NOx, which is 11% less than the US average of 373 g.

In the power generation estimate listed above, The Solar Nerd calculator determined that an unshaded, south-facing 6 kilowatt PV system would generate about 10,782 kWh in an average year.

This means that putting a 6 kW solar panel system on your house would prevent 2,329 kilograms of CO2, 75 grams of SO2, and 3,580 grams of NOx from being emitted into the atmosphere.

The carbon offset of these solar panels would be about equivalent to planting 135 trees every year! (One deciduous tree left to grow for 10 years offsets 17.2 kg of CO2, according to the EPA.)

CA state average electricity emissions
CA
US
Glossary:
CO2 is carbon dioxide and is a primary greenhouse gas.
SO2 is sulphur dioxide. It damages the human respiratory system and contributes to acid rain.
NOx refers to nitrogen oxides, which contribute to smog, acid rain, and lung damage.


Calculate your home solar incentives for Brentwood

Use our calculator to determine the financial payback of a home solar systemand to get a solar performance estimate customized to your home, including federal, state, and local incentives.



Ready to go solar in Brentwood?

Use our free service to find qualified solar contractors and get multiple quotes on a solar panel installation in Buffalo.

Home solar quotes in Brentwood
Sources:
This report was prepared with data from the good people at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory Data, the US Energy Information Administration, and the Environmental Protection Agency.