What is the Top Solar Contractors list?
Solar Power World, the leading solar publication covering technology, development and installation, publishes the Top Solar Contractors list annually. The list includes hundreds of solar contractors and developers in the United States, listed and categorized by state/territory, service and market.
How does a company get on the Top Solar Contractors list?
Any U.S. company wanting to take part in the Top Solar Contractors campaign must fill out an application every year. It is free to apply, and the application is released online at the end of February. The 2021 application will first be available Feb. 23, 2021.
Who can apply for the Top Solar Contractors list?
The list includes solar PV companies that provide the following services: EPC contracting, development, construction/installation, electrical work and/or rooftop-specific installations. Companies can do work in any market segment, including utility, commercial, residential and off-grid. Companies must be headquartered in the United States.
How are companies on the Top Solar Contractors list determined?
Companies are listed according to the kilowatt capacity of projects they installed, developed or helped construct in the previous year within the borders of the United States and its territories (global installations are not counted, including installations in Canada). Each company is listed multiple ways: by state/territory, market and service.
Only new kilowatts installed in the previous calendar year can be submitted for each list. Re-installed kilowatts (in the case of re-roofing or other solar removal tasks) cannot be submitted. Neither can O&M/post-installation-serviced kilowatts. If you have acquired operational solar projects in the last calendar year, you cannot include those kilowatts in your application as you were not the initial development or installation company. This list is only for projects directly completed by developers, installers and subcontractors. No O&M or acquired projects are permitted.
We also have a Top Solar + Storage Installer list, and more information on how to apply to that sub-list can be found here.
What are the different solar service definitions?
Developer – A company that secures financing for solar installations, often owning the result, and may or may not build the project, sometimes contracting with local EPCs.
EPC (non-residential) – Responsible for the engineering, procurement and construction of non-residential solar projects. Often the primary contractor and will sometimes appoint subcontractors to do aspects of installation or electrical work.
Rooftop Contractor (residential) – A solar installer that works primarily on residential rooftop installations or other small-scale systems.
Electrical Subcontractor – A company that performs specialized work related to the installation of electrical systems, often under contract with the developer or EPC.
Installation Subcontractor – A company that often works under a developer or EPC on a specific aspect of a solar array, such as pile driving or panel installation only.
NEW for 2021: Sales Partner – A company that only handles the sales process (usually within the residential market) and hands off the installation to a reputable installation partner.
How do I apply for the Top Solar Contractors list?
Applying is easy. The application is open from late February to late May every year. The 2021 application will first be available Feb. 23, 2021.
Can my company review the questions prior to filling out the application?
Yes. Each year we provide the application in PDF form to review. Here is the 2020 application PDF, but please be aware, the 2021 application will be slightly different.
What information do I need to apply?
In addition to basic company information (number of employees, address, etc.), applicants must submit documented proof of installations in an Excel document. Data must be submitted to support claimed kilowatt installation numbers. We require for each project: project size (DC kilowatts), project location (city and state), installation completion date (between Jan. 1, 2020 and Dec. 31, 2020 for the 2021 list) and your company’s role on the project (if it’s not obvious).
For subcontractors unaware of project commissioning dates, please include your work completion date along with the name of the general contractor or project owner, so we have secondary information in case we need to follow up. For off-grid submissions, please provide work completion date and any secondary information to assist us in verifying numbers.
Additional information is required for those wanting to be included on the Top Solar + Storage Installers sub-list, including the kWh storage capacity installed with each solar project. Further explanation of how to collect and record storage data can be found here.
Please note, your provided information will not be used for any other purposes or provided to anyone else for solicitation. Your information will be destroyed after your number is verified.
Five documents or datasets may be submitted with applications to show 2020 projects, although we require at least one Excel document. Submitted data will be verified with state interconnection records, utility records and an advisory board. We will use context clues if your submitted completion date doesn’t exactly match official records. We have the right to remove companies from our list if we feel they have exaggerated numbers or cannot adhere to our data request.
Please format your Excel documents to at least show these specific data columns (yellow storage columns are optional):
PLEASE submit your data as closely to this example as possible. State lists are organized based on kilowatt installations your company actually installed in each state (rather than just your headquartered state), and easy organization by this type of Excel outline will ensure we sort your company correctly.
When will the 2021 Top Solar Contractors list be published?
The 2021 list will be published both online and in print sometime in July 2021.
Where can I see previous Top Solar Contractors lists?
Will there be a Top Solar Contractors Gala in 2021?
Right now, we are planning on a virtual Gala in July 2021, but information about the 2021 Top Solar Contractors Gala will be available after the list is published. Only companies listed on the Top Solar Contractors list may attend the Gala.
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