Since 2008, Big Dog Solar Energy has been designing and installing quality solar panel systems in residential, commercial, and industrial markets across the country. Big Dog Solar is currently licensed and insured in 13 states, employs NABCEP-certified installers, and offers a suite of high-quality solar power products designed to reduce homeowners’ utility bill and carbon footprint.
For a solar company that’s only been in business since 2008, Big Dog Solar has rapidly expanded its service area from local jobs in and around its Pocatello, Idaho headquarters to 13 states across the country:
Considering the majority of the nation’s solar providers only conduct solar installation services in one, possibly two states, Big Dog Solar Energy’s expansive coverage is certainly impressive. And while the company may be behind some industry leaders in terms of state coverage, the fact that Big Dog has been in business for well over a decade and has maintained operations across such a broad service area indicates that customer satisfaction is generally good.
In addition to solar inverters from SolarEdge, which are considered industry-leading, Big Dog Solar Energy also installs solar panels from REC Solar into its solar system. REC Solar panels are widely regarded as a top five solar module in terms of energy efficiency (up to 21.7 percent), temperature coefficient (-0.37 to -0.26), and equipment warranty (20 years).
The company installs two main types of systems for its residential solar customers: grid-tied and off-grid. These systems can be installed via ground mount or roof mount depending on available space. Big Dog Solar has chosen SnapNRack Solar Mounting Solutions as its partner for both roof- and ground-mounted systems.
Big Dog Solar Energy doesn’t just install solar panels; the company also installs the LG Chem backup battery, which allows homeowners to store excess solar energy harnessed during the day, and apply it — rather than switch back to a traditional utility supplier — at night. The LG Chem battery also provides emergency power in the event of a grid outage. This addition allows homeowners to save even more on their electricity bill.
Installers employed by Big Dog Solar Energy have been certified by the North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP), a solar industry–recognized organization that sponsors some of the more rigorous certification programs in solar. This certification sets companies like Big Dog Solar Energy apart from the competition because it tells customers that technicians are installing their photovoltaic systems according to top standards and best industry practices.
The solar installer offers customers two types of solar energy systems: grid-tied, and off-grid. Grid-tied solar systems are connected to the city's utility grid and allow system owners to benefit from net metering (if their state allows it) with the power company.
Off-grid systems, meanwhile, do not depend on the utility grid and utilize the solar energy storage devices mentioned above. Off-grid systems not only have the potential to reduce the home's electric bill, but also to establish true energy independence, and could be a great solution for homes located in rural areas.
If purchased for financed through a third-party solar loan, both types of systems qualify for the Federal Solar Tax Credit as well as other available rebates and incentives.
While the company website does mention that Big Dog Solar Energy has partnered with certain third parties to provide affordable financing solutions to its customers, the company does not appear to disclose either the identity of these partners or the various financing options and terms they might provide. For a company with such an expansive service area, the partnerships could be many, each coming with its own terms for solar loans, solar leases, or power purchase agreements (PPAs).
Potential customers interested in learning what financing options are available to them will need to fill out a contact form to obtain a free quote first.
Big Dog Solar also mentions that certain components of its solar energy systems come with a 25-year manufacturer’s warranty; however, this does not account for the workmanship warranty (if any exists) from Big Dog itself. Unlike the equipment warranty, which covers defective parts, the workmanship warranty protects the homeowner from costs associated with labor and installation errors. Often, companies will attach a workmanship warranty between 10 and 25 years, or the life of the system; but whether Big Dog Solar Energy offers either of these terms (or none of them) is unknown.
Although the solar company has earned a number of reviews on Google, few verified Big Dog Solar Reviews have been posted to Best Company. Verified reviews guarantee the authenticity of the reviewer and provide potential customers with important, unfiltered information regarding the solar provider's customer service, solar installation quality, and other factors to help determine whether it's the best solar company for the customer.
If you are a current or former Big Dog Solar customer, please consider leaving a review of your experience below.