Solar energy panels convert energy from the sun into electricity, saving users utility costs and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Our partners at We researched the best solar energy companies in Santa Barbara to help you decide whether to invest in this environmentally friendly, renewable source of power.
Residents who use solar energy to power their homes have the support of the City of Santa Barbara, which gets about 30% of its electricity from renewable sources including the sun.
If you are considering solar energy in Santa Barbara, it’s important to work with a reputable solar energy company that is licensed in the State of California. The Contractors State License Board regulates contractors installing, maintaining and repairing solar energy systems in Santa Barbara.
Solar energy companies offer free consultations to explain products, purchasing options, savings and warranty. Set up meetings with several licensed, well-reviewed solar energy companies to get estimates.
Types of solar panels
There are three main types of solar panels in Santa Barbara. The type you choose should be based on your property and budget.
Type of solar panel
Made from silicon; highest efficiency and power capacity; dark in appearance; most expensive
Property owners with limited space who want to maximize energy savings
Made from silicon; lower efficiency and cost than monocrystalline; blue in appearance
Budget-conscious property owners with lots of space
Made from a variety of materials; lowest energy efficiency and cost; thin and low-profile; can appear black or blue
Property owners with a large roof that can’t handle the weight of traditional solar equipment; RV/boat owners using a portable solar energy system
How much do solar panels cost in Santa Barbara?
Solar panel cost is more affordable than ever. The average cost of solar panels in Santa Barbara is $15,000 - $20,000 before financial incentives, including a federal tax credit and California incentives. The higher the power capacity, the higher the cost of the system. The system size necessary for your home solar energy setup will depend on how much energy you use, your roof’s sunlight exposure and the efficiency of the solar panels.
You can purchase solar panels in Santa Barbara using cash or a loan from a solar energy company. You can also lease solar equipment and use the energy it produces or sign a power purchase agreement, which is similar to a lease, except you pay for the power the system produces.
Solar panel systems require little maintenance in their life span, which can be 25 years or longer. Whether you purchase solar equipment, lease it or have a power purchase agreement, your solar energy company should provide a performance guarantee and assistance in the event you need repairs or service.
Zenernet’s go-solar experience includes an education-focused consultation, upfront pricing, high-quality solar panels and hardware and 25-year warranty. The company has a number of financing options and uses a network of experienced, local installers. Customers like Zenernet’s no-pressure approach and its friendly, knowledgeable representatives.
SunPower’s products include the world’s first 400-watt residential solar panels, which provide more power using less equipment. This company includes a 25-year complete system warranty, including performance, labor and parts. Customers say SunPower makes it simple to transition to solar power whether you purchase or lease.
Over 255,000 customers use Sunrun to power their homes with renewable energy. Purchase your system by paying in full or with low monthly payments, or lease it monthly. The company guarantees daily system monitoring, comprehensive insurance and free maintenance and repairs. Overall, customers are happy with their Sunrun systems and their electricity savings.
Sunlux, founded in 2015, gives customers in Santa Barbara the option to purchase, finance or lease solar equipment, which includes warranty up to 25 years and lifetime support. You won’t sacrifice your home’s curb appeal with this company’s subtle, sleek, all-black panels. Customers give Sunlux mostly five-star reviews, expressing total satisfaction with the company’s service and products.
Sungevity designs home solar systems that come with flexible financing plans, including cash purchase, solar loan, system lease and power purchase agreement. System performance is guaranteed for 20 years. Customers like how Sungenvity makes it easy to track solar energy system performance in real time online or on your phone.