How Much Does an Off-Grid Solar System Cost? (2024 Guide)

By Jessica Wimmer Updated January 23, 2024

Typical costs range from $20,000 to $100,000 based on design.

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The national average cost of an off-grid system is $55,000*, though your investment could range from $20,000 to $100,000 based on your system design and energy needs. Going off-grid reduces your energy usage, lowers your carbon footprint, and enables you to live more independently. However, it requires a substantial up-front investment.

Learn what you’ll need to start your off-grid solar system and how much the required components cost below.

*Unless otherwise noted, all cost data is based on figures from EnergySage and Fixr.



What Is an Off-Grid Solar System?

Most people who choose solar panels as their energy source remain grid-tied. This provides backup power when the solar panels don’t generate enough energy, such as on cloudy days or at night. As the name suggests, an off-grid solar panel system doesn’t connect to a power grid. That means what it generates is the only energy available to fulfill your electrical needs.

People choose this route for a few reasons. Many homeowners who opt for an off-grid system live in remote areas without electric service. Some want to be completely off-grid as a lifestyle choice geared toward sustainability. Off-grid systems can also be ideal for those who have detached workshops or sheds they want to power and those who frequently travel via a recreational vehicle (RV).

Off-Grid Solar Benefits

Some of the top benefits of not connecting your solar energy system to the grid include:



What Are the Parts of an Off-Grid System?

To understand the cost of an off-grid system, you must first know all the components required to go off-grid and how they’ll add to your total cost. Necessary system components include:

These are the basics of an off-grid solar power system, but many people decide to expand their setup with equipment such as generators or wind turbines. The company you get your panels from may offer a mobile app to monitor system performance or ongoing maintenance services you might want to invest in.



Off-Grid Solar System Costs

The average off-grid solar system costs $55,000 for a 7-kilowatt (kW) system. Smaller properties with low energy needs, such as an RV or shed, can get by with a smaller system and may require an investment as low as $20,000. Larger properties, those with high energy needs, or those in cloudy climates that require more panels and backup energy storage may need a system closer to $100,000.

Price LevelYou’ll Pay

National average

$55,000 (Avg. range: $45,000 to $65,000)

Low end


High end


See average price breakdown by component:

Component Average Price

Solar battery

$4,000 to $14,000 each

Solar charge controller

$550 to $600 each

Solar inverter

$7,000 to $8,000 each

Solar panels

$10,000 to $18,000

Payment Options

Most solar companies offer a combination of the following solar financing options:

Solar Incentives

Solar incentives are available at the state and federal levels to help you save money when you invest in renewable energy. Incentives vary by state, but common ones include:



Cost Considerations

Solar power system costs vary greatly depending on several factors, so it’s best to speak with reputable solar companies in your area and get a few estimates to compare.

Energy Consumption and System Size

The more energy you use, the bigger the system you’ll need. If you need to power many appliances or run electricity all day and night, you’ll need a system designed to meet this capacity. You’ll also need more batteries to store energy during low-sun hours. With panels and batteries being the biggest factors in total system cost, going bigger means investing thousands more dollars.

Your solar installation company should analyze how much energy you need and what system size and number of batteries will suit you.

Equipment Quality

The brand and off-grid home features you choose affect the price. Some solar companies are more expensive than others due to their reputation, years in business, or inventory performance. Not all panels or batteries are the same, either. The design and degree of energy efficiency will increase the price.


Don’t forget that you’ll need a team to design and install the system. The National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) estimates labor to be around 7% of the total solar cost. Using the average system cost of $55,000, that’s $3,850. You can forgo labor costs by installing your system using a DIY solar panel kit. However, we don’t recommend this option because it requires extensive skill and disqualifies you from solar incentives.

Solar Exposure

Since off-grid systems supply 100% of your electricity, you need one that can soak up plenty of sun. You’re in luck if you live in an area with abundant year-round sun exposure. If not, you’ll need more panels, increasing the price. Your solar installer can assess your solar exposure, how to make the most of it, and what system size you’ll need to cover your electricity needs.

System Type

You have several options when choosing an off-grid system. Common types include:



Is an Off-Grid Solar System Worth It?

Whether an off-grid system is worth it depends mainly on your energy needs and budget. If your home uses excessive electricity to power many appliances throughout the day, then installing solar panels and backup batteries may be too expensive to justify leaving the grid.

On the other hand, if your energy needs are more conservative, then you may need only one battery and fewer panels, lowering the cost. The lower your cost, the shorter your payback period, and the quicker you’ll enjoy no electricity fees. A solar company can assess your electricity needs and help you determine if going off-grid will make sense for you based on what you’ll spend and save.



Our Recommendation

Going off-grid isn’t right for everyone. However, if you think it’s right for you, you can spare yourself a lifetime of high electricity bills. You’ll also reduce your carbon footprint and usage of fossil fuels by relying solely on clean energy.

We recommend starting with a reputable solar company to analyze your electricity usage and advise you on the best setup for your needs. We suggest looking at different solar providers’ warranty coverage, customer reviews, and reputation before deciding. It’s also a good idea to get price estimates from at least three companies to compare.



Off-Grid Solar System Cost FAQ

How big of a solar system do I need off-grid?

The system size you need depends on how much electricity you require to power your home. A large home with multiple floors, numerous appliances, and frequent overhead lighting requires a much more powerful system than a small home with a few appliances.

How much do off-grid solar batteries cost?

Solar batteries typically cost between $4,000 and $14,000. The Tesla Powerwall, the industry’s most popular solar battery, starts at $8,700.

How long do off-grid systems last?

The Department of Energy estimates that most panels last between 30 and 35 years. Solar batteries and charge controllers typically last 5 to 10 years, while inverters can last as long as 25.

What components do you need for an off-grid solar system?

An off-grid solar system requires solar panels, at least one solar battery, a solar inverter, and solar charge controllers.

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