Best Solar Companies in Illinois

Choosing the right solar installer in Illinois can feel overwhelming. There are so many questions to answer before making the decision, you can spend hours researching. That’s why we’ve simplified it for you.

Our guide highlights Illinois’s top-rated solar companies, combining Solar Power Systems expert insights with feedback from locals who’ve made the switch.

No need to surf the web looking for information crumbs to have the big picture. Years in business, reviews from real customers, online reputation, panel brands, warranty, social media overview, and more – we have it all. The hard work is done to help you make the right decision.

We prioritize companies committed to long-term service and reliability. Here’s our list of Illinois’s most trusted solar installers:

Showing all 9 locations
suncollectors.solar 1200 628
66.4 mi

Sun Collectors review

The Sun Collectors are who we are. Our company specializes in photovoltaic (PV) or solar energy systems for residential, commercial, and agricultural uses. We also work read more…
thesolarpanther.com 1200 628
66.5 mi

Solar Panther review

Peoria, Illinois is served across Central Illinois by Solar Panther, which has its headquarters there and offers residential and commercial customers the installation of solar panels read more…

legacysolarpower.com 1200 628
66.9 mi

SunPower by Legacy Solar review

Bloomington, Illinois’ SunPower by Legacy Solar offers complete solar and alternative energy installation services for homes, businesses, and farms. Customers throughout Illinois, Southeast Iowa, and Northern read more…

dayandnightsolar.com 1200 628
70.9 mi

Day & Night Solar review - Illinois - Edwardsville

Solar is the only way to go. Redefining your connection with energy is Day & Night Solar. Control your energy expenses right away! Our goal is read more…

ticktockenergy.com 1200 628
75.1 mi

Tick Tock Energy review - Illinois - Effingham

Tick Tock Energy offers support to businesses and people that want to manage their energy. We assist you in lowering utility expenses by maximizing energy efficiency, read more…

route66solar.com 1200 628
77.5 mi

Route 66 Solar review

A full-service solar energy provider, Route 66 Solar offers installation, upkeep, and financing services for solar panels to both residential and business clients. The business specializes read more…

efsenergy.com 1200 628
85.8 mi

EFS Energy review

St. Louis-based EFS Energy installs solar panels across the Midwest. Our primary goal is to see our clients become self-sufficient in their energy needs via the read more…

straightupsolar.com 1200 628
85.8 mi

StraightUp Solar review

StraightUp Solar is rewarded with our Expert Choice badge, serving an exclusive area of fewer than 2 states. With a foundation dating back to 2005 and read more…

mysummitsolar.com 1200 628
143.7 mi

Summit Solar review - Illinois - Joliet

We leverage our combined 14 years of renewable energy knowledge to provide straightforward solutions that homes can use to save money and the environment. Homes may read more…


How Much Do Solar Panels Cost in Illinois?

As of April 2024, the average solar panel system costs $3.13/W including installation in Illinois. For a 5 kW installation, this comes out to about $15,649 before incentives, though prices range from $13,302 to $17,996After the federal tax credit, the average price drops by 30%.

The average solar cost by system size in Illinois:

System SizeSystem CostSystem Cost (after ITC)
3 kW$9,390$6,573
4 kW$12,519$8,764
5 kW$15,649$10,955
6 kW$18,779$13,145
7 kW$21,909$15,336
8 kW$25,039$17,527
9 kW$28,169$19,718
10 kW$31,299$21,909

These prices do not include the federal ITC or Illinois state incentives, which will lower the cost by at least a few thousand dollars. Larger solar panel systems cost more money, so doubling the system size effectively doubles the price.

If you pay for your system with cash, you’ll save about $44,600 over 20 years on electricity costs with a 5 kW system in Illinois. Financing options are also available if you can’t pay upfront. Some companies offer $0-down loans, allowing you to start saving on day one if your loan payments are less than your current electric bills.

Illinois Solar Incentives and Rebates

Best solar incentives and rebates available in Illinois:

  1. Residential Clean Energy Tax Credit: This incentive, formerly known as the federal investment tax credit (ITC), can reduce your solar panel system’s cost by 30%. The average cost for a 5 kW solar panel system in Illinois is around $15,649. Once you factor in the 30% credit, the cost comes down to $10,954.
  2. Illinois Shines Program: This program provides a one-time payment for every MWh your solar panel system is expected to produce over 15 years. The amount you earn for each SREC depends on your utility company and the size of your solar panel system.
  3. Illinois Solar for All Program: This program requires no up-front cost for lower-income solar customers and ensures you won’t pay more than half the value you receive from your solar energy system each month.
  4. Smart Inverter or Distributed Generation Rebate: This rebate provides an upfront rebate worth $300/kW of solar or $300/kWh of storage installed.

These incentives can significantly reduce the cost of installing a solar panel system in Illinois, making it a worthwhile investment.

Is It Worth Going Solar in Illinois?

Going solar in Illinois is worth it for most homeowners. The state ranks 15th in solar friendliness, and the rapid growth of solar adoption means you’ll likely save money by converting to clean energy. On average, Illinois residents pay around $25,800 for solar panels before incentives, and homeowners save approximately $21,699 after the system pays for itself. Installation costs are lower than the national average, making solar adoption a great investment for most Illinoisans.


ILLINOIS Infographics SPS

How Much Can Solar Panels Save Me in Illinois?

Finding out how much you can save on solar in Illinois is not a straightforward answer. It depends on several factors, including the solar billing of your utility company, the size of a potential solar system on your roof, and your household’s energy consumption. While most solar installers will try to cover all your electricity needs, the actual savings will depend on your home’s unique conditions. To get a personal estimate of how much you could potentially save by going solar, fill out a simple form on our website, use Google’s Project Sunroof solar savings calculator, or consult with a couple of local solar installation companies for a personalized savings calculation.


Popular Myths About Solar Panels Busted 5


Solar Financing Explained

You can pay for solar panels in a couple of ways:

  • Cash
  • Installer solar loans
  • Personal loans
  • Cash-out refinance or HELOC
  • Solar Leases or Power Purchase Agreements (PPA)

First, there is a cash purchase, which in most cases provides the best price and long-term savings, but the upfront payment is not always what you can afford. If you want to own your solar panels and don’t have about $15,000 to $20,000 in the bank, you’ll have to choose solar panel financing. 

You can consider a personal loan, a home equity line of credit, or a solar loan offered by the solar company. However, keep in mind that these loans come with interest and additional fees. Solar loans often are tied to dealer fees, which can increase the total cost of your solar system by 20% or more in exchange for a lower interest rate. To ensure you get the best possible deal, it is wise to compare the dealer fees and interest rates offered by different installers. This way, you can make an informed decision based on the most favorable terms available. 

Some companies offer solar leases or PPAs that require zero upfront cost. But in such case, you don’t own solar panels and you are not eligible for any solar rebates or the federal tax credit. And, because you have to pay the solar company monthly, your total solar savings will be lower. Ask for detailed savings calculations from a solar installer to decide on the best option. In most cases, you will still be paying less for electricity. 


Frequently Asked Questions

How We Rank Solar Installers

Our main goal is to provide homeowners like you with top-rated solar companies you can trust. Our solar experts analyzed thousands of local and nationwide installers to get to the bottom of who is best in a specific location. The solar company ranking methodology is based on gathering input from homeowner surveys, consulting with industry experts, and extensive research into the solar energy market. Here are the things we believe are the most important to consider when choosing a solar company.
In short, here’s how we pick top installers:
– Company that has been in business for over five years as it indicates stability, reliability, and successful installations.
– Local solar companies over big national ones covering multiple areas as they can provide better personal attention and know more about the solar needs and regulations in their area.
– Companies with hands-on experience and a wealth of projects under their belt are more likely to deliver efficient and timely installations that cater to specific customer needs.
– Companies that handle their own installations instead of outsourcing to subcontractors ensure a higher caliber of work and nurture a culture of excellence and accountability in service.
– Select a company that has a good overall reputation and reviews on sites like SolarReviews, BBB, Google Maps, and Yelp.
– The company is licensed, insured, and holds relevant certifications such as NABCEP certification.
– Companies that offer a wide selection of high-quality solar panels and related products and work with reputable brands.
– Companies that provide flexible financing options such as solar loans, leases, or power purchase agreements.
– Installers that provide substantial workmanship warranties and system performance guarantees.

Read more:
Our Methodology

What Made Us Choose Sources for Expert Score?
How We Classify Solar Installers: What Matters Most?

What to Look for In a Solar Company

To ensure that you partner with a great provider that can meet your needs of going solar, look for the following:
– Make sure the solar installer has industry-standard certifications, such as those from the North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP), indicating that they meet the gold standard in renewable energy installations. Also, verify if they are licensed, bonded, and insured for residential solar projects in your area. If subcontractors are involved, check their credentials as well.
– Prioritize installers with a proven track record in solar installations, ideally with at least 5+ years of experience. Ask about the number of systems they’ve installed and their project portfolio. A competent installer should openly discuss the solar panels, inverters, and batteries they use if they help to take advantage of local solar incentives and rebates, and warranty coverage specifics.
– Your installer should be forthcoming about the installation process and answer any questions you might have, like “How many solar panels will I need? Why?”, “Can you give me a detailed cost breakdown based on my energy consumption?”, “What solar panel brands do you install? Why?”, etc.. They should also be transparent about their use of subcontractors, detailing their roles and how their work will be supervised.
– A preliminary evaluation of your roof’s condition is the groundwork. The installer should advise on necessary repairs to ensure it’s ready for solar panel installation and clarify responsibilities for any potential roof damage during the process. Discuss aesthetic concerns, such as the placement of solar panels around roof vents or the possibility of relocating vents for a more visually appealing setup.
– Check the installer’s reputation through online reviews and testimonials. They should be able to connect you with past customers willing to share their experiences. Personal recommendations from friends or neighbors who’ve gone solar can also be invaluable.
– Solar installation costs can vary widely, so obtaining multiple quotes is advisable. Experienced installers will adjust their offers to your home’s specifics—size, energy needs, etc. For an objective cost comparison, calculate the price per watt of the proposed system, giving you a standardized basis to evaluate different quotes.

Should You Choose a Local Solar Installer or a Big National Company?

Always choose a local solar company over a big national corporation. Small local companies that operate in a distinct local area are better than multi-state and national solar companies and large corporations. It’s the small local companies who get the best reviews on our website, and it’s the national multistate companies who get very poor reviews. Why so, you may ask? 
Solar is a local service business, for the most part, and it is extremely difficult to run a solar company and offer good customer service to many locations from a central office. 
Local ones have a community connection, they know better the incentives and regulations in the area, and they simply care more about you than large businesses trying to get into your pocket and overprice you. While multi-state solar companies might try to convince you by financial stability and “quality of installations across different locations”, try to choose a local company that meets all your criteria.

What Does a Solar Installation Look Like?

Here’s how a solar system installation will look like once the design for your solar system is approved:
– First, a solar installer should estimate your energy needs, and analyze your annual and monthly electricity consumption, which you can find on utility bills measured in kilowatt-hours (kWh). Such calculations will help to understand potential savings, payback period, and the system size you need.
– A home energy audit is something every experienced solar company would do to understand the size and output needed.
– Next question on the list: are your house’s roof conditions good enough for installation? A solar installer should carefully inspect the roof and ensure its conditions and orientation are good to go, how and where to better place solar panels and wire the system.
– Next, they will design the system and show you how it’s going to look. 
You will usually need a permit to install solar panels from your local authorities, and the solar provider should handle all the paperwork.
– The entire process might take up to 3 months depending on the state and local regulations, while the system installation is usually up to 3 days (might take longer depending on roof conditions and system complexity).
– The installation crew should always clean up and remove any debris, leaving your house in good condition.
– When the system is installed, it should be checked and approved by local municipality inspection. 
– If you’re connecting your system to the grid, it has to be wired to your local utility system. You’ll apply for connection through your utility company, which will also want to inspect your system to ensure it’s following utility guidelines. Some installers may help you with this step, so always ask. Once you have all the permits, your system will be up and running, powering your home with solar.


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Andriy Ryzhyy
Andriy Ryzhyy

Andriy is a content creator and product manager with experience in digital marketing automation and renewable energy sources. Holding a Master’s degree in Linguistics, he worked as a research assistant at the University of Ottawa, focusing on applying the Optimality Theory framework to information retrieval.

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