Your electrical service is responsible for distributing electricity from your solar pv system to your home or business. Meeting the proper electrical service requirements for solar is a crucial step in the installation process. In Alaska, we must ensure that the utility AND cities requirements are met. When you install solar, it’s an upgrade to the electrical service which means the homeowner is responsible for bringing their electrical service up to code.

A few reasons to install a new electrical service:

ONE: Safety

Some solar electrical services are simply dangerous. Poor manufacturing, worn out wires, electrical service near gas, no grounding, or a damaged busbar are dangerous and need to be remedied prior to the installation of solar.

In this photo you can see that the gas meter is located right below the electrical. The gas meter needs to be at least 3 feet away from the electrical service (from the left or to the right)

TWO: Location

Electrical service under a deck? Behind trees? Next to gas meter? Doesn’t have a 3’x3’ clearance in front of it? If you answered yes to any of these questions, you may need a new service.

This particular service did not have a 3’x3′ clearance for safe working space. This service was out of compliance and had to be moved and upgraded.
This particular service was out of compliance as the home owner built a deck on top of the service. This does not allow for a safe working clearance.


Having an improper sized or outdated breaker box can be dangerous and should be replaced to reduce the risk of an electrical fire in your home.

This electrical panel was code compliant but there was no additional breaker space for the solar so other connecting methods were used.

How to move forward?

Because today’s solar design tools are advanced, most online solar quotes are very accurate, however- there are times you may hear back from the installer that the price has increased after seeing your site in-person. The cost of a new electrical service can range anywhere from $2500 – $3500 depending on the size / location and utility requirements.

Need a new service, no problem? Give us a call and we can come out to your home or business with our licensed electrician and provide you with pricing prior to going solar or at the same time.

New service installed in May 2021.

An additional benefit… The cost for the new service will also be eligible for the Federal Solar Investment Tax Credit (ITC).

quote board on top of cash bills