We're here to help you determine whether a solar power system is worth it in Buffalo, South Dakota. We'll also answer your questions about how it works and which solar providers and installers are available. See the topics below:
Cost of Solar Panels in Buffalo, SD
The figures below show the total cost of solar power in Buffalo and the estimated payback or break-even period. The numbers below assumes you want to buy the system outright. You can also get a loan, lease the system, or set up a “power purchase agreement” (PPA). Learn more about payment options.
Residential 5 kW system
Estimated system cost: $20,950
(-) Federal tax credit: 30% with no maximum
Final cost after tax credits: $14,665
Est. energy savings per year: $919
Time to recover costs: 15 years 11 months
30-year savings: $12,905
Commercial 50 kW system
Estimated system cost: $193,500
(-) Federal tax credit: 30% with no maximum
Final cost after tax credits: $135,450
Est. energy savings per year: $9,193
Time to recover costs: 14 years 9 months
30-year savings: $140,349
- Federal tax credits: Residential Renewable Energy Tax Credit
- System pricing based on $/watt from the most recent NREL quarterly report.
State discounts are not calculated due to complex pricing, frequent change, and individual variations such as the property taxes on your home or business. Overall, financial incentives in most of South Dakota are mediocre, so expect to pay slightly less vs. the above. All partner solar power companies will help you determine which incentives you qualify for. You may either request a quote by clicking above or try checking for state solar incentives on DSIRE.org's site here.
Solar Power Companies in Buffalo, SD
The following companies do solar power installation and financing in South Dakota.
No solar providers found in South Dakota. Check back soon or request a quote and we'll try to find someone to help.
While you can install your own solar panels, it's definitely not easy. We strongly recommend working with a professional solar power installer. If you have professional construction and roofing experience feel free to read more about DIY systems.
Should You Get Solar in Buffalo?
Obviously only you can decide, but we've collected the following pros and cons for getting solar at a Buffalo home or business:
- 30% federal incentive extended to 2019
- Average grid electricity costs ($0.11 per kilowatt-hour) make solar viable
- Quickly-rising electricity costs (+22% in the last 5 years)
- Higher-than-average electrity usage (981 kWh per month) means more opportunities for savings
- Moderate sunshine (5.6% above average)
- Mediocre state financial incentives (#35 out of 50)
- Poor policy scores: interconnection (C) | net metering (F)
Is solar worth it in Buffalo, SD? Considering all of the above, we think so for most people. Solar is 7.8% less cost effective than the rest of the nation and will pay itself back in around 15 years 11 months for a home buyer. We like to see return times (without state incentives) under 20 years.
- Electricity costs, rates of change, and usage from EIA.gov
- Subsidies analyzed by DecisionData from state websites
- State policy scores come from freeingthegrid.org
- Sun data assumes equal zip code weight based on NREL data
Solar Power Savings by Month in Buffalo
A 5kW system will save someone in Buffalo up to $76.47 on an average month. That's significant given the average South Dakota power bill of $108.68 per month. Here’s a monthly breakdown:
|Month||Available kW / m2 / day||Max savings / month|
Data based on 1 zip in Buffalo, SD. Data reliability is rated excellent.
We estimate savings with a system that is very efficient at 19% of energy captured with a standard 5% total system loss. System loss comes from both the unavoidable (system age, electrical dissipation in wiring and connections, etc.) and the avoidable (shade from trees, dust, etc.) Do note that the system will b e slightly less efficient as it ages, too.
For example, July is the highest-sun month in Buffalo with an average of 6.66 kW per meter per day. An efficient 5 kW system will cover about 25 square meters depending on the roof. So, the following is the savings calculation for July in Buffalo:
6.66 kW/m2 * 25m2 = 166.45 kW/day available
166.45 * 19% efficiency = 31.63 kW/day captured
31.63 kW * 95% system retention = 30.04 kW/day usable
30.04 kW * South Dakota average of $0.11 per kW * 30 days = up to $102.45 in savings in an average July.
These assumptions are very good for the average home in Buffalo, but nothing beats the accuracy of getting your own quote.
Solar panel costs and savings: More info on how much solar costs and the factors that can influence your price.
Kilowatts and kilowatt hours: What are kilowatts and how do electric companies charge you?