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What effects the cost and payback of a solar system?

The cost and payback of a solar power system is dependent on a number of factors, including:

a. The cost of manufacturing panels
b. The international availability of silicon
c. The cost of inverters
d. The installation cost
e. Availability of product
f.  Quality of the components
g. The fluctuating international currency
h. Federal and state rebates (if any) available towards the cost of the system
i. The cost of electricity and feed in tariff rates

The economies of scale in the manufacturing of components together with the above factors impact the final cost and payback to the consumer.

Over the past few years Government solar rebates have decreased. To offset this, the price of solar panels and inverters has reduced as manufacturing volumes increased and economic of scale benefits are passed on. For example, in 2008 a panel cost around $6 per watt = $1500 for a 250W panel, while the same panel in in 2016 $2 per watt and in early 2019 around $1.50 - $1.80 per watt depending on the offered inverter solutions and the individual installation challenges.