How Many Solar Panel Contractors Are There in the US?

solar panel contractor in the US

The solar industry in the United States has been expanding at an incredibly rapid pace, with an average annual growth rate of 24% over the last decade.

This expansion has not only contributed to the nation’s transition to renewable energy but has also had a significant impact on the economy, generating over $36 billion in private investments in 2022 alone.

Solar Industry Growth and Trends

Massive Growth Since 2000

Since the turn of the millennium, the U.S. has installed over 162 gigawatts (GW) of solar capacity, enough to power millions of American homes and businesses.

With technological advancements and increasing public awareness, solar energy has become an unstoppable force in the U.S. energy sector.

Solar as an Economic Engine

Remarkably, over 263,000 Americans are employed within the solar industry, making it a critical source of jobs.

These roles range from manufacturing and installation to sales and research, which have been instrumental in bolstering the nation’s economic vigor.

Growth in Solar is Led by Falling Prices

A key factor behind the tremendous uptick in solar installations is the fall of installation costs, which have dropped by more than 40% over the last decade.

This decrease has unlocked new markets and has led to a surge in the deployment of solar systems across the country.

Solar’s Share of New Capacity

Solar energy’s contribution to the U.S.’s new electricity capacity is nothing short of impressive.

Over the past four years, solar has added more generating capacity to the grid than any other source. In 2023 alone, a whopping 48% of all newly added electric capacity came from solar.

The U.S. Solar Industry is a 50-State Market

What was once a niche market in a handful of states has burgeoned into a 50-state affair. States like Texas, Florida, and New York have witnessed substantial growth, with over half of U.S. states now boasting at least 1 GW of installed solar capacity.

Prices Decline for Rooftop Solar

The residential solar market has observed a downward trend in prices. Still, significant challenges remain concerning soft costs. Efforts to mitigate local barriers to solar adoption are ongoing, striving to make rooftop solar more accessible and affordable for homeowners.

Storage is Increasingly Paired with Solar

A rising trend in the solar industry is the pairing of solar systems with battery storage, a practice anticipated to increase significantly over the next five years in both residential and utility-scale markets.

Residential Market Continues to Diversify

Buoyed by a broadening consumer base, the residential solar market is set for its 7th record year. California continues to be a prominent market, but substantial growth has also been realized in other states across the nation.

IRA to Help Drive Emerging Commercial Markets

The Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) is expected to catalyze growth in budding commercial markets through its policy provisions. This is likely to have a profound impact not only on dominant markets but also encourages potential growth in other states.

Community Solar Expansion

Community solar programs are developing at an impressive rate, with significant strides in states like Maine, Illinois, Maryland, and New Jersey. Such programs allow more households and businesses to tap into the benefits of solar energy.

Utility-Scale Segment Rebounds from Supply Challenges

After facing various supply chain hurdles in recent times, the utility-scale solar market has begun to see improvements. With a more stable module supply, forecasts for 2023 predict an increase in installed capacity.

Solar PV Growth Forecast

Despite a momentary slowdown in 2022, projections show a benchmark-breaking year for solar PV growth in 2023. The trend is bullish, with expectations of nearly tripling the cumulative deployment by 2028.

Inflation Reduction Act Boosts Solar Outlook

The solar industry’s outlook has significantly brightened due to the Inflation Reduction Act. The legislation’s tax incentives and promises of long-term certainty are poised to stimulate increased demand for solar and storage solutions.

New Manufacturing to Secure Supply Chain

There’s an ongoing renaissance in U.S. solar manufacturing, aiming to fortify the supply chain’s reliability and heighten investment in clean energy. This is a critical step toward ensuring a sustainable supply of solar panels and related technologies.

Need for Aggressive Growth to Reach Climate Goals

To achieve a 100% clean energy electricity system, aggressive growth in the solar industry is necessary. This calls for a blend of private sector innovation and steadily supportive public policy.

Solar Helps Fortune 500 Companies Save Money

It’s not just the environment that benefits; major corporations are increasingly investing in solar, leading to substantial cost savings. This has enormous implications for the industry and the broader clean energy transition.

Related Questions

In addition to understanding the broad growth and potential of solar energy in the U.S., people often have specific questions about the industry.

How much do solar panel installers make in the US?

Solar panel installers, or PV installers, on average make a competitive wage that varies based on location, experience, and the size of the company they work for.

What percent of US solar panels are made in China?

The majority of solar panels are manufactured in Asia, with a significant percentage coming from China. However, with the new push for domestic manufacturing, this number may change in the coming years.

Where are most US solar panels made?

While historically many of the solar panels used in the U.S. have been imported, there is a growing trend towards domestic manufacturing within the country.

What are the top 3 solar companies in the US?

The top solar companies often fluctuate, but some consistently leading companies include Sunrun, Tesla, and SunPower, based on market share and industry impact.

How many US companies make solar panels?

The number of U.S. companies that manufacture solar panels is on the rise, especially following incentives for domestic production.

While precise data on the number of solar panel contractors in the U.S. was not directly addressed in the summary, it’s evident from the information provided that the number is substantial and growing. This rise is buoyed by the increased ease of entering the market and the expanding demand for solar energy solutions across the nation.