Federal Solar and Wind Tax Credits

Types of solar electric systems that qualify for the 30% Federal Tax Credit.*

ANY complete solar power package, for home or business.

Emergency battery backup system, as long as the purchase includes at least one solar panel.

Product purchases that expand your existing solar power system and include at least one solar panel.

Solar System for RV and boat that has been accepted by the IRS as a second home for tax purposes.


Facts Regarding Eligibility of the Federal Tax Credit:*

 The home served by the system does not have to be the taxpayer’s principal residence.

If the federal tax credit exceeds your tax liability, the excess amount may be carried forward to the succeeding taxable year.

There is no ceiling on the tax credit.

Applies to equipment AND installation costs.

For Residential Renewable Energy Systems, use IRS Tax Form 5695 to report your expenses. (It can be used for any residence, not just your primary one.) Learn more about residential tax credits.

Commercial systems have similar guidelines as residential systems but use IRS Tax Form 3468. Click on the DSIRE Link below to lean more about commercial tax credits.

* Every individual's tax situation is different. Please consult a tax professional to make sure your situation is applicable.


Federal Tax Credits are in effect through 2021

In December 2015, the Consolidated Appropriations Act extended the 30% credit for residential solar to the end of 2019.  It then steps down over two years and expires completely at the end of 2021. 

30% for systems placed in service by 12/31/2019

26% for systems placed in service after 12/31/2019 and before 01/01/2021

22% for systems placed in service after 12/31/2020 and before 01/01/2022

There is no maximum credit for systems placed in service after 2008.

Systems must be placed in service on or after January 1, 2006, and on or before December 31, 2021.

The home served by the system does not have to be the taxpayer’s principal residence.


Locate financial incentives and rebate programs for renewable energy systems installed in the United States.

DSIRE Database of State Incentives for Renewable Energy


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