We live in an age of constant progress and innovation. Part of this innovation is the move to electric and solar power to replace age-out, environmentally detrimental, and expensive energy alternatives.
A common perception is that personally switching to a more green-friendly solar power is expensive and not as cost-effective. Many states on the western side of the United States are leading the charge in changing to clean energy. This begs the question, are solar panels worth it in Pasco, Washington?
Cost of Electricity in Pasco, Washington
Pasco, Washington, has an average energy bill that is less than the national average. In regards to residential electricity consumption, the average cost in Pasco is 8.32 cents per kWh or kilowatt-hour.
This makes the electricity rate 2.46% less than the Washington average and 29.97% less than the national average of 11.88 cents. The Washington average price is 8.53 cents per kilowatt-hour, and the national average is 29.97 cents per kilowatt-hour.
Residential electricity usage in Washington averages at 1.037 kWh/month. This rate is 14.84% greater than the national average of 903kWh/month. However, the Washington average electric bill is $88, 17.76% less than the national average of $107 per month.
Average Solar Panel Costs in Pasco, Washington
Solar panel installation is typically priced per kilowatt of power. Some of the costs can seem daunting. However, most who switch to this clean energy receive solar incentives through federal tax credits (ITC) that help offset the cost of installation. Pasco has numerous solar companies.
Here is a quick breakdown of average solar costs.
- 3 kW – $7,590 ($5,617 after ITC)
- 4 kW – $10,120 ($7,489 after ITC)
- 5 kW – $12,650 ($9,361 after ITC)
- 6 kW – $15,180 ($11,233 after ITC)
- 7 kW – $17,710 ($13,105 after ITC)
- 8 kW – $20,240 (14,978 after ITC)
- 9 kW – $22,770 ($16,850 after ITC)
- 10 kW – $25,300 ($18,722 after ITC)
This makes the average market cost of a solar energy system about $12,650 in Pasco, Washington. This comes out to $2.53 per watt and an average 20-year savings of $14,363.
However, this does not include Washington state solar incentives that may be available.
Net Metering in WA State
Being solar-reliant does not mean that you are completely off the grid. However, there are still benefits of solar power. Net Metering makes it possible for you to send extra energy back to the grid. In return, you will receive credits on your electric bill. So, what does this mean?
This means if your solar panels are not producing a ton of electricity, for instance, if it is cloudy or nighttime, you can utilize these credits instead of paying for your electricity bill as you normally would through traditional grid power. This will cut down on the overall cost of your monthly utility bill.
Want to disconnect from the grid completely or have an emergency backup just in case something really (really) bad happens? Then you might be interested in having a solar battery backup system installed.
Solar Easement and Rights
Your incentives don’t stop with financial gain. Washington’s solar easement and solar rights laws protect your ability to use solar power successfully. These laws allow you to ensure your neighbors do not have anything prohibiting your solar panels from making the most out of the sunshine. Of course, this is to be done in a civilized manner.
The solar rights law protects the rights of Washington citizens to use solar energy. This means your local jurisdiction or HOA cannot prevent you from installing residential solar panels. So, do not let a strict HOA discourage you from using Pasco solar energy.
Purchasing Your Solar Panel System
Typically these federal tax credits apply to individuals who purchase their solar panels outright. However, there are still incentives that apply to those who finance the switch. After all, the total cost of a solar panel installation in Pasco, WA, can seem pretty hefty.
Above, we discussed some of the average costs of installing solar panels per kilowatt of power in Pasco. Those costs depict the total out-of-pocket cost to install solar panels of those respective powers.
There are several different payment options when it comes to acquiring solar power in Pasco. Here are a few.
The most obvious way to obtain solar panels in Pasco is to purchase the system outright. By buying it outright, you will end up maximizing your savings. However, this can cost thousands of dollars. Here are some pros and cons of this option.
- Own the system outright, with no payments or interest
- Qualify for federal and state incentives
- Own the increase to home value
- Potentially high costs upfront
- Maintenance and upkeep are up to the homeowner
Get a Loan Buy
As with most high-cost commodities in the United States, there are numerous loan options available to switch to clean energy. While this is the next best option regarding savings, keep in mind that the loan will not be tax-deductible unless the loan is classified as a home improvement loan.
By anyone’s book, this is a home improvement, so make sure to talk to your banker or loan officer before signing any paperwork. Here are some pros and cons of the loan buy option.
- Still eligible for federal and state tax incentives
- Fixed monthly costs
- Own the system
- It can be tax-deductible if classified as a home improvement
- Ability to qualify for a loan
- Maintenance is done by you
- Interest increases the total price paid
So, Do Solar Panels Work in Pasco, WA?
So what does all of this utility jargon mean for solar power in Pasco, Washington? If you take a close look at the numbers provided above, you will see that there are many benefits to switching to solar power. Almost all of these include a reduction in monthly utilities costs out of your pocket.
In the end, there are three reasons why someone would want solar panels. One is to decrease their monthly power costs. Two is to do their part in supporting an environmentally friendly planet. And Three is to have reliable emergency power just in case the electric grid goes down for an extended period of time. Either goal is completely acceptable.
Whether or not solar panels are worth it in Pasco, Washington, comes down to how you acquire them. The most obvious choice for maximizing savings with solar panels comes from buying them outright.
Other Factors to Consider
By buying the solar panels outright, you will own them immediately. Month after month, you will be closer to breaking even and then eventually maximizing the return from them. You will also reap the benefits of both federal and state incentives as well as the increase in the value of your home.
However, do not forget that these will be your possessions, meaning you are responsible for the maintenance and upkeep. Go ahead and factor in some maintenance costs, such as cleaning your solar panels, into your yearly budget to be safe.
If you are short on cash or are more interested in supporting an environmentally friendly planet, then maybe a loan will be the better choice for you.
Through these options, you will be able to accomplish your goal and still benefit from some electricity savings.
The answer is yes. Solar panels are worth it in Pasco, Washington. In fact, they are pretty much worth it anywhere you go. You will not lose money by using solar power over the lifespan of your solar panels. You will be also supporting a more energy-efficient planet.