Solar Panels Minnesota: A Guide From Wolf River Electric

March 22, 2023

As the discussion of renewable energy continues to dominate conversations, Minnesota homeowners and businesses are taking note.

Solar power is one of the most popular renewable resources available, and residents are increasingly turning to solar panels as a reliable source of clean energy.

Installing solar panel systems in your properties mitigates emissions and adds equity value to your home or business. If you're in Minnesota and interested in learning more about solar electricity solutions, this post is perfect.

We provide a comprehensive guide on solar panels in Minnesota to help you understand how this renewable energy works.

Why Solar Energy System Is Worth It In Minnesota

Solar Power is a Renewable Energy Source

Solar energy is a renewable resource, meaning it can be used repeatedly and will never run out. Unlike fossil fuels, which are finite resources that will eventually be depleted, solar energy can be used to produce electricity indefinitely.

Solar Energy is Clean and Environmentally Friendly

Solar energy is a clean energy source that does not produce pollution or greenhouse gases. Solar panels also have a very small carbon footprint, as they do not require mining or drilling to extract the materials needed to produce them.

Solar Power is Cost-Effective

Solar power is becoming increasingly cost-effective as technology improves and more people install solar panels. The cost of solar panels has fallen by more than 70% since 2010, making them an affordable option for homeowners and businesses alike. The cost of electricity generated by solar panels is now comparable to the cost of electricity from traditional sources such as coal and natural gas.

Solar Energy Increases Property Value

Installing solar panels on your property can increase its value by up to 4%. This increase is because solar panels add value to a property by reducing the owner’s future energy costs. Solar panels also make a property more attractive to potential buyers looking for an eco-friendly home.

Solar Energy Creates Jobs

The solar industry employs more than 242,000 people in the United States, with most of these jobs being in the installation and maintenance of solar panels. This number employed by solar companies is expected to grow in the coming years as the demand for solar power increases.

Types Of Solar Panels In Minnesota

  1. Monocrystalline Solar Panels

Monocrystalline Solar Panels are made from a single silicon crystal and are the most efficient. They include rooftop solar panels and have an efficiency rate of over 20%, enabling it to produce more energy from the same amount of sunlight as other types of solar panels. Monocrystalline solar panels are more expensive than polycrystalline solar panels but are also more durable and 25 years.

  1. Polycrystalline Solar Panels

Polycrystalline Solar Panels are made from many silicon crystals. They typically have an efficiency rate of around 15-20%, producing slightly less energy than monocrystalline solar panels with the same amount of sunlight. However, polycrystalline solar panels are usually more affordable than monocrystalline and can last up to 20 years.

  1. Thin Film Solar Panels

Thin Film Solar Panels are made from thin layers of semiconductor materials such as amorphous silicon, cadmium telluride, or copper indium gallium selenide. Thin film solar panels have an efficiency rate of around 10-15%, producing the least energy per square foot. For this reason, Thin film solar panels are less expensive and don’t last as long, with a lifespan of up to 12 years.

How Solar Panels Work

1. The sun’s radiation, in the form of sunlight, is absorbed by the photovoltaic (PV) cells contained within a solar panel.

2. As the photons from the light hit the PV cell, they are converted into electrons of direct current (DC) electricity.

3. These electrons then flow through metal conductors known as the cell's wiring grid, creating an electrical current.

4. The individual solar cells are wired together to form a panel or module to increase their efficiency and usefulness.

5. The direct current (DC) electricity generated from the solar PV system is fed into an inverter and converted into alternating current (AC) electricity.

6. This electricity can then be used to power appliances and other electrical equipment and exported back to the grid or stored in a solar battery storage system such as a Powerwall.

Tips To Know Which Solar Panels To Buy?

Solar panels are a long-term investment

Solar panels are a significant investment, and it’s important to do your research before making a purchase. Solar panels typically have a 25-30 years lifespan, so you want to be sure that you are buying a quality product that will last.

The size of your solar array

The size of your solar array will determine how much electricity you can generate. You will need to take into account the amount of sunlight that your home receives, as well as the square footage of your roof. A larger solar array will generate more electricity but will also cost more money upfront.

The warranty

When purchasing solar panels, paying attention to the warranty is important. Most manufacturers offer a 20-25 years warranty, but some offer longer warranties of up to 30 years. It’s important to read the fine print and understand what is covered under warranty before purchasing.

Installation costs

Installation costs can vary significantly depending on the company you use and the complexity of your solar project. It’s important to get quotes from multiple companies before making a decision. Some companies may offer financing options for the installation costs, so be sure to ask about that.

Rebates And Incentives In Minnesota For Solar System

i. Net Metering In Minnesota

Net metering programs allows solar customers to get credit on their electric bills. This means that when your solar panels produce more electricity than you use, the excess energy will be sent out to the power grid, and your electric company will give you credits that can be used later. This is especially helpful during the summer when solar energy systems are producing more electricity than people need.

ii. Federal Solar Tax Credit

The federal government gives a federal tax credit for installing a solar system. If you install one, you can subtract some of the cost from your taxes when you file at the end of the year. The amount you get depends on how much your solar panels cost and how much electricity it produces.

iii. Utility Incentives

Some utility companies in Minnesota also offer incentives for solar energy systems. Depending on the utility company, you will receive money or discounts to help pay for your solar system.

iv. Property Tax Exemptions

Putting in a solar energy system can increase your property taxes, but some states, including Minnesota, have laws that exempt you from paying more. That means you won't have to pay extra to install solar systems.

Total Electricity Solar Energy Generate In Minnesota

In Minnesota, solar panels can produce an average of 4 to 7 kilowatt-hours of energy per day in a peak sunlight hour during summer months - enough to power several light bulbs or devices simultaneously.

This amount of energy decreases in winter since the days are shorter, and there is less sunlight. Any solar installation is a great way for residents to save money on their electricity bills and help the environment at the same time.

In essence, solar panels are used to generate heat for buildings, hot water, and even air conditioning. To get the most out of your solar panel system, you should ensure it is installed in an area with plenty of direct sunlight and not too much shade.

Minnesota Solar Panel Calculator

Minnesota Solar Panel Calculator is a great tool to help you figure out if installing a solar system would be a good idea for your home. This calculator looks at the size of your roof, the amount of sunlight it gets, and other factors to tell you how much energy you can generate with solar panels.

The calculator also calculates the amount of money you could save each year by switching to solar energy. It can also tell you how much solar panel installation will cost and the average solar payback period.


How Much Energy Can I Get From Solar In Minnesota?

You will get about 1250 kWh of energy each year from 1 kW of solar panels installed in your home. On average, an 8 kW solar system is needed in Minnesota for a household to offset all electrical usage. The amount of energy produced by residential solar power systems will depend on the size, angle, and orientation of your panels.

Will Residential Solar Power System Cost Ever go Down?

Yes. The cost has decreased by more than 80% in the last two decades. Each year, solar panels are becoming slightly cheaper to buy solar panels, meaning it's still likely to drop.

Which Solar Panel Has The Highest Efficiency?

Monocrystalline solar panels are the most efficient type of solar panel available and offer the greatest energy output. Known as the most common residential solar installations, Monocrystalline generate more electricity from the same amount of sunlight than other types of solar panels and have the longest lifespan

What Are The Negative Effects Of Solar Panels?

Solar panel installation requires a significant upfront cost to set up, making them an expensive option for many homeowners. Besides, solar panels are space-consuming and can take up large areas of roof space, limiting their use in households with limited space.

How Much Do Solar Panels Cost In Minnesota?

Solar panels in Minnesota costs an average of $3.43/W. Added to the solar installers, the total cost of solar panel installations is quite high. However, with the availability of solar Rebates and solar incentives, Minnesota households can save a lot.

Final Thought: Install Solar Panels Now

It is more than obvious that when done right, the advantages that solar panels Minnesota can give you are truly priceless. Moving over to a renewable source of energy not just helps reduce your electricity bills but also ensures that you do your part for a better environment. And much like with any investment, it has the potential to make you richer in different ways.

Rise against the current oppressive system and replace your energy needs with a piece of renewable mind instead. Go green now!


I believe in making the impossible possible because there’s no fun in giving up. Travel, design, fashion and current trends in the field of industrial construction are topics that I enjoy writing about.

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