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Fact Sheet: Solar Energy Use in Ohio

Ohio's name originates from the Iroquois word for "great river," and the state is a crossroads for major U.S. rivers. Linking the Midwest and the East, the state is bordered by both the Ohio River and Lake Eerie, with several other rivers in between. Ohio is also home to the rugged and gorgeous Appalachian foothills in its' southeastern region. Because of these intersecting ecosystems which need protection, Ohio has a great deal to gain from investing in solar power. Today there are many solar incentives for homeowners interested in adopting a solar energy system.
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CC-PD-Mark, source: WikipediaWith one of the strongest net metering laws in the country, Ohio is well on its way to establishing a first rate solar energy industry. In 2013, Ohio's government invested $72 million in solar installations for home, business, and utility use. Ohio has also become a manufacturing hub for the solar industry, supplying a variety of solar power goods such as polysilicon for photovoltaic panels. This article will provide more information about Ohio's solar incentives to help you decide if a solar energy system is right for you.

Grid Connected Solar Power Systems in Ohio (2012)

  • Residential Solar Power Systems: 2.0 Megawatt
  • Non-Residential Solar Power Systems: 40.4 Megawatt
  • Utility: 5.9
  • Total: 48.3 Megawatt
  • Cumulative: 79.9 Megawatt

Ohio currently ranks 16th nationally in installed solar capacity with 91 MW of solar energy installed. This is enough solar energy to power 10,500 homes in the state.

Cost of Electricity in Ohio

  • Electricity Price: $0.12 per kWh
  • Average Electricity Bill: $159.00
  • Average Bill after Solar: $68

Homeowners in Ohio can cut their electricity bills by about two thirds through investing in solar power. Average monthly payments for a leased solar energy system are $48, resulting in about $43 in savings each month. Additionally, solar energy systems in Ohio require approximately 11.1 years to pay for themselves.

Solar Radiation

Average solar radiation in Ohio falls between 2 and 3 kilowatt per day. This amount represents an area of 1 square meter (10.76 square foot). With a yearly average of 175 sunny or partly sunny days in Columbus and 180 sunny days in Toledo, Ohio receives plenty of sunshine to power successful solar energy systems.

State Solar Incentives and Rebate Programs

  • State Solar Tax Credit: None
  • State Solar Rebate: None
  • Property Tax Exemption: 100% exempt
  • Sales Tax Exemption: 100% exempt

Though Ohio does not have a statewide solar rebate program, one of the state's largest utility company, American Electric (AEP), does provide a solar rebate. AEP customers with solar energy systems of at least 2kw are eligible for a solar power rebate of $1,500/kilowatt, up to a maximum of 50% of the cost of a $12,000 system. Ohio also has a fantastic net metering law that requires all utilities to offer net metering to residential customers.Compared to many other states' laws, Ohio's net metering law is particularly advantageous: homeowners can request a check for any credits accumulated over the course of a 12-month billing cycle. In addition to these solar incentives, the Federal Tax Credit also applies.

Solar Installers in Ohio

There are currently more than 188 solar installers throughout Ohio, employing 3,800 people. The state requires solar installers to have an electrical contractor's license. Find out more about the license of your solar installer on Ohio's website, or by calling (614) 644-2223.

Summary: Good Conditions for Solar Power Systems

Ohio has made a solid commitment to solar energy, and this commitment is steadily growing. Although the state could benefit from statewide solar tax credits and rebate programs, Ohio's many solar incentives, such as its excellent net metering law, can produce significant savings. To get started and calculate your costs and savings, please use our Solar Calculator , or contact solar installers in your area.

Fact Sheet Solar Energy Use in OhioSolar Energy Fact Sheet: Ohio, ©

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Written by: Oliver Behrla, Editor