Solar Panel License vs. Certification

solar panel license

In order for a solar company to legally install solar panels, they’ll need to obtain a solar license or certification. While homeowners can install solar panels themselves, many states require professional, licensed, or certified installation companies to perform the installation.

Installing solar panels without the necessary knowledge, experience, or technical competency can leave people with technology that doesn’t work or is generally unsafe.

With solar energy becoming more readily available for the average household, solar companies need proper certifications now more than ever– but what’s the difference between a solar panel installation license and solar panel certification?

What is a Solar Panel License?

A solar contractor license is a legal license initially developed to allow contractors to install solar panels for solar water heaters. Initially created in the 1980s, several states and territories around the country require all solar contracting companies to have solar contractor licenses to install solar panels of all kinds.

What is a Solar Panel Installation Certification?

The North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners offers solar panel installation certification programs, which are voluntary, experience-oriented courses explicitly designed to provide contractors with nationally-recognized certification for installing photovoltaic solar panels. 

The program works similarly to any experience-based licensing program but is not government funded. Houston solar installers with NABCEP Solar Certification must retake their certification exam once every three years. 

Solar Panel License – The Main Difference

A few things set solar panel licenses apart from solar panel certifications, the first being that licenses are government-issued. Like other state-provided licenses, a solar panel installation license may have different requirements based on state. However, the NABCEP certification has a clear set of requirements that all residential and commercial solar companies must adhere to so they can stay certified.

Solar Panel License – States that Require Certification

Many states require solar licenses for commercial and private solar installation, but there are also a few states that require certification as well, including:

  • Alabama
  • Arizona
  • California
  • Connecticut
  • Delaware
  • Florida
  • Hawaii 
  • Idaho
  • Louisiana
  • Missouri
  • New York
  • Pennsylvania
  • Vermont
  • Virginia

Solar Panel License and Certifications – Why get Certified?

Although the state does not require solar licenses or certifications for installations, the best solar companies in Texas will still benefit from investing in a solar license or certification simply because it adds hours of experience to any technician’s repertoire. 

Please contact us today to learn more about solar panel licensing and certification.

(832) 402-6835