Solar Calculator – Solar payback calculations for photovoltaics

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  • Solar Power for Electricity and Heating
  • Be Independent and Cut Your Energy Bill
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Solar Calculator- What do I get out of the Solar Calculator

If you want to find out the prospected payback of photovoltaics mounted on your roof or on the ground, use our free solar calculator!

Determining the Power Yield

First of all you are required to enter the Zip code of your area.It will be used to determine the amount of solar radiation that is received by the photovoltaics at your project site. The value varies throughout the US, as Los Angeles enjoys more sunlight hours than Boston and thus has a higher solar radiation value. The amount of direct solar radiation which can be received by the solar panels also depends on your roofs tilt and the geographic direction it is facing. The Solar Calculator also considers this effect and we can tell you – it makes a significant difference to your payback.

When do photovoltaics pay off?

How well photovoltaic systems will pay off depends a lot on the state you are living in. The Solar Calculator takes into account the general installation prices your state, the average retail power prices, and the rebates and incentives offered by your state. The Solar Calculator proves that photovoltaics pay off best, when having high power supply prices and well measured state incentives. The best performing income returns shown in the Solar-Calculator are delivered from systems in California, Richmond, Vermont and Oregon.


The federal government and several state governments are offering a set of financial rebates for photovoltaics. The Solar Calculator shows the available rebates and automatically deducts these rebates from the amount to invest.

Determining invest costs with the Solar Calculator

The Solar Calculator uses average installing prices throughout the US to compute your anticipated investment. For California more detailed prices are available so that economies of scale can be taken into account.

Feed in Tariff Incentives

Several states are offering attractive feed in tariff incentives. The power yield the photovoltaics produce will for example be compensated by a state-owned utility company. Incentive rates for solar power vary from 4.4 to 33.35 Cents / kWh. The Solar Calculator uses the exact incentive rate, which your state is offering, to determine the feed in tariff (FIT) payments.

Net Metering

Some states have chosen to provide a scheme that is called net-metering. Here the generated power of your photovoltaics will be credited to your power bill. The exact net metering procedures vary from state to state. The Solar Calculator considers the net metering schemes of all states offering net metering to every state citizen, who is installing photovoltaics.

The Solar Calculator will add the amount credited to your power bill to the power bill savings from your system. Payment for excess generation will be in shown in the Solar Calculator as "Net Excess Credits".

Solar Payback and Rate of Return

The accumulated solar payback is determined from the Power Bill Savings, the Net Excess Credits and the feed in tariff payments, if available. The Solar Calculator will let you know the average annual payments of the sources of income, as well as the Total Payback in the estimated life time for your photovoltaics.

The Solar Calculator also computes the internal rate of return for your project. Therefore our tool assumes you to finance your project from equity capital.

Get free quotes with the Solar Calculator

As you can derive from the Solar Calculator, in many US states investing into photovoltaics is a very valuable project. Going solar seems to be a valuable investment to you? If so, please use our Solar Calculator to enquire some free and qualified quotes.