There are different types of companies around solar, and it is important to know the distinction between the various types of companies around the solar industry. Knowing the difference between the different types of solar companies can save you time, money, and provide a better experience on your road to going green.
Solar Panel Manufacturers: These companies manufacture the solar panels that are used to capture sunlight. Most solar panel manufacturers do not provide solar panel installation services or financing services. A few solar panel manufacturers that you may recognize are First Solar, SunPower, Canadian Solar, LONGi Solar, and Hanwha QCELLS.
Solar Inverter Manufacturers: These companies manufacture the solar inverters that convert direct current (DC) electricity into alternating current (AC) electricity. AC electricity is the type of electricity that can power the appliances in your home and office. The three most common grid-tied inverter manufacturers are Enphase, SolarEdge, and SMA Solar Technology.
Energy Storage System (ESS) Manufacturers: These companies develop batteries and energy backup solutions that can be coupled with a solar energy system. Battery backup truly allows a homeowner to experience the benefits of solar, and these manufacturers not only develop a battery; they typically develop management tools to track electricity production.
Solar Financers: Solar energy can help save you a lot of money, but it can also be costly. These companies help provide financing when you’re looking to purchase your solar energy system. They typically partner with solar dealers and solar installers to help make solar accessible.
Solar Leasing Companies: Some companies want to take advantage of the benefits of solar by borrowing the space on your rooftop. Solar leasing companies own the solar panels and receive monthly payments from the property owner. In exchange, the property owner receives all of the energy that the solar energy system produces.
Vertically-Integrated Solar Companies: They handle every step of the solar process from how the panels are produced to how to the sale, financing, and installation of a solar energy system. These companies are large players like Tesla and SunPower.
Solar lead generation companies: These companies put their emphasis on generating leads and sales for other types of companies within the solar power industry. For the solar industry, the commonly known companies are, EnergySage and SolarReviews. Whose goal is to match prospective solar prospects with bids from multiple solar companies.
Solar Dealers: These companies have permission to sell certain manufacturers’ solar products and services on behalf of the company. Some solar dealers are exclusive to a specific solar company.
Solar Installers: When you’re considering installing a solar panel system on your home or commercial building, these are the companies that will come out to your property and fit the solar energy system on your rooftop, solar farm, or carport. Most solar installers are local companies that primarily focus on a particular service area.
Solar Brokers: These companies have partnered with other solar companies to do the shopping for you. They are a single point of contact who will provide you with multiple bids vs. a lead generation company that will sell your contact information to multiple solar companies. Some solar brokers have their own in-house solar installation team.