Benefits and Costs

A Future Investment

 

Unlike traditional electric power, solar photovoltaic (PV) power comes with a high initial investment and reduced monthly charges thereafter. This means that buying a PV system is an investment in the future.

 

A number of factors will determine your eventual costs and savings, from the future price of electricity to how long your system operates. Connecticut residents pay an average of 20 cents per kilowatt-hour for electricity from utilities. Combining the Connecticut rebate and net metering with federal tax incentives and tax-deductible low-interest financing could mean cost savings over the life of your PV system, especially if electricity prices keep climbing. Consult a tax advisor regarding potential tax savings.

 

Why Go Solar?

Solar PV systems:

  • are reliable, pollution-free, and use a renewable source of energy.
  • help preserve the Earth's finite fossil fuel resources and reduce air pollution.
  • allow owners to add an energy-producing improvement to their property and over time to recover the cost of the system through reduced electric bills.
  • make owners less vulnerable to future increases in the price of electricity.

 

Solar PV System Costs

The average cost of a residential solar PV system in Connecticut is $6 to $8 per installed watt. The average system size installed under CCEF’s rebate program is 7.2 kW and costs between $43,200 and $57,600 with an estimated payback of 8 to 12 years. The CCEF rebate amount will depend on the design efficiency of your system. The rebate generally pays for about 20% of the installation cost.

 

Estimated price per kW is based on the actual average price per kW installed under the CCEF Solar PV Rebate Program in calendar year 2010. Actual price per installation can vary due to installation conditions and other factors.

 

In addition to the CCEF rebate, a homeowner may claim a 30% federal tax credit for qualified expenditures for the installation of their solar PV system. For more information about state and federal incentives visit www.dsireusa.org.

 

A CCEF Approved Contractor can help you calculate the payback and return on investment for your PV system. You can also use the solar estimator at www.findsolar.com or the Clean Power Estimator (see below) to estimate system size and costs for your needs.

 

CCEF Rebate Amounts

CCEF’s solar PV rebate is based on the design efficiency of your system. Your contractor will calculate how much electricity your PV system will produce as compared with an equivalent system under ideal conditions. This calculation is based on your site and equipment. We will then apply a “design factor” to the dollars-per-watt basis to calculate the rebate amount. The ideal conditions that will maximize your rebate are:

  • An inverter that is 94% efficient or better
  • No shading on the site
  • PV panels facing solar south (plus or minus 20 degrees)
  • PV panels tilted at a 35-degree angle

The following incentive levels apply to all Solar PV Rebate Program applications received on and after July 1, 2009.

 

Residential Solar PV Rebate Program 

$1.75 for the first 5kW
$1.25 for the next 5kW 

Clean Power Estimator

The Clean Power Estimator provides residential and commercial customers with a personalized estimate of the benefits of a clean energy system. The program takes into consideration customer-specific information in order to provide the best estimate of a given system's costs and benefits. This information includes the estimated cost of the particular system under consideration, the customer's location, electric rate schedules, and other customer information. Click here to try the Clean Power Estimator.