The Solar Wave Installation Process

2 Minutes Read


The actual installation of a solar panel system only takes a day or two, however, a lot more than just the installation goes into a solar project. It all starts with a free design and consultation from a Solar Wave expert. Once a system is designed, financing is determined and an install agreement is signed, the real work begins. In this article, I will outline all the steps that are included in a solar installation with the average timeframe it takes to complete each step so you know exactly what to expect when you go solar with Solar Wave. 



Once you are officially signed up to go solar with us the first step in the installation process is engineering. Here we take your solar design and turn it into fully engineered electrical and structural plans. These plans are necessary to apply for your permit and net metering application. We use professional engineers that specialize in solar and they normally take one week to complete plans for us.  


Net metering Application

With engineering completed, we can submit an application to your utility company for net metering approval. This application and approval process is very important as net metering is essential in the operation of your solar system. Most utility companies have up to 90 days to approve a net metering application. Xcel Energy has a 45 - 60 day process and applications are very easily delayed.



This step will be based on your local city or county solar permitting guidelines. Some unincorporated areas do not require permits for solar projects which can expedite your project whereas other jurisdictions can have added rules which can prolong this stage of your project. Regardless of your project permitting requirements we handle all communication and work to apply and gain the correct permits for your solar project normally within one week.



This is where the magic happens. Most of our customers are super impressed at how efficiently our teams are able to install a solar panel system. This only takes one to two days depending on your project scope. 



If your project required a permit then the permitting jurisdiction will perform an inspection of our installation to make sure everything matches the approved engineering plans. After your permitting jurisdiction approves the installation your utility company will also want to complete an inspection and swap out your electrical meter. This can take up to four weeks however we do our best to request inspections right away and normally have them completed within two weeks of your installation.


Permission To Operate (PTO) 

This is the final step in the installation process. Permission to operate comes from your utility company and this is what allows you to turn on your new solar panel system! This normally happens immediately after your utility company swaps out your electric meter. In most cases, this is one to two weeks after your permitting jurisdiction inspection. 

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All timelines combined you can have a solar project installed in under 60 days! When you are ready to get started let us know. We are always standing by to make the process to go solar an enjoyable experience for you and your family. 

If you do not have a proposal from us yet, click here to start your proposal today. If you already have a proposal from us and you would like to discuss the next steps to get your system installed click here.

Picture of Steven Weaver

Steven Weaver

Steven is the founder of Solar Wave and has dedicated the last 4 years of his career to the solar industry. After consulting for multiple solar companies across the US he founded Solar Wave. Solar Wave is on a mission to continue the rapid deployment of residential and commercial solar in the US by offering the best solar equipment and installation services at the lowest prices possible.