Select the right contractor before installing your renewable energy system. This decision is one of the most important ones you can make when building a new energy system.
PLEASE NOTE: PG&E received numerous reports of telemarketing and solar scams. The scams are happening throughout all of California. The scams attempt to generate sales through dishonest methods. View the alert to learn more. Download Consumer Alert (PDF, 94 KB).
Qualified, licensed contractors save you time and money. Your contractor can:
Learn the steps for choosing the right contractor to install your renewable energy system.
Find solar energy contractors in the Go Solar California database of solar installers, contractors and retailers in California. Visit Database of Solar Installers, Contractors, and Retailers in California. The site enables you to search for contractors by your ZIP Code. Filter results by the average cost per watt to learn how much other customers pay.
Find solar water heating contractors. Visit the CSI-Thermal Contractor Database to find contractors who can install systems in your area. Visit Find a Solar Water Heating Contractor.
Your contractor must have an active A, B, C-10 or C-46 license. A C-4 or C-36 license is needed for solar water heating installations. When you meet the contractor for the first time, confirm that they are authorized. Ask to view their Contractors’ State License Board (CSLB) "pocket license" and a photo ID.
Contact the CSLB to verify the contractor’s authorization. Visit Contractors State License Board. You can also call 1-800-321-2752.
Contractors can visit your home and view your past energy usage and future energy needs. The two most important figures that potential solar contractors can provide are:
Hire contractors who are in good standing and qualified to do the work. Get answers to the following questions before selecting a contractor:
It pays to be thorough and organized. Take advantage of our helpful bid comparison worksheets. Compare what each contractor is offering, and choose from three bids.
View the solar energy worksheet. Download Solar Contractor Bid Comparison Form (PDF, 168 KB).
View the solar water heating worksheet. Download Solar Water Heating Bid Comparison Form (PDF, 802 KB).
The following additional advice can help you select the winning bid:
Read your energy system installation contract before signing. View and review all warranties and maintenance agreements. Ensure that you receive the final price quote in writing. Only sign the contract after fully understanding the terms and total costs involved.
Never pay a down payment of more than 10 percent of the contract price or $1,000 (whichever amount is the least). This regulation is determined by California state law. Don’t make the final payment until the system is fully installed and operating properly.
Get an estimate of the required system size and price, based on your home with our solar calculator.
Make going solar easier and effective with our step-by-step checklist.