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Colorado solar program

Black Hills Energy – Colorado Electric is proud to offer customers an opportunity to have solar for your home or business. When you install a solar system, you will receive two meters – a production meter and a net meter – Any excess energy produced by your solar system is retuned to Black Hills Energy Power Grid. Excess energy is added to your banked energy for use in future months. 


  • You must be receiving electric service in Southern Colorado from Black Hills Energy.
  • Your account must be active and current at the site of the proposed installation.
  • All equipment must meet the minimum standards of UL 1741 and the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers in effect at the time of purchase.
  • The proposed Solar system shall be sized to supply no more than 200 percent of the customer's reasonable and expected annual electricity consumption (measured in kWh) at that site. Use our limited usage table (below) for customers with less than 6 months of usage history available.

Limited usage table

Home size (Square Feet) Annual Usage (kWh) 100% Capacity (W) 120% Capacity (W) 200% of Usage (W)
500 square feet 3,199 1,927 2,313 3,854
501 - 100 square feet 4,548 2,740 3,288 5,480
1001 - 1500 square feet 6,071 3,657 4,389 7,314
1501 - 2000 square feet 7,333 4,417 5,301 8,835
2001 - 2500 square feet 8,433 5,080 6,096 10,160
2501 - 3000 square feet 9,092 5,477 6,573 10,954
3001 - 3500 square feet 10,000 6,024 7,229 12,048
3501 - 4000 square feet 10,907 6,570 7,885 13,141
4001 or more square feet 12,455 7,503 9,004 15,006

Getting started

We recommend that customers read the program rules, talk to their solar energy neighbors, and contact several qualified solar installation contractors. Industry professionals will help you decide the size and type of system that will best meet your needs and obtain the necessary permits and inspections.

Black Hills Energy works closely with third party solar developers however we cannot directly recommend solar developers. The Colorado Solar Energy Industries Association, COSEIA, maintains a list of qualified Colorado solar installation contractors with the training and experience necessary to properly design and install your solar system.

We encourage you to also consider the following tips. 

Ask the right questions

Asking the right questions and carefully reviewing solar developer responses will help you make an informed decision when choosing the right company and will help ensure a successful solar installation project. 

  • How long has the company been in the solar industry? 
  • Can you provide refences and examples of past solar projects you’ve completed?
  • Are your installers and technicians licensed and certified?
  • What warranties are offered to cover solar panels, inverters and other components?
  • Is there a maintenance plan included in the contract and what are the terms?
  • Can you explain the design of the solar system for my property, including panel placement and orientation?
  • What is the estimated energy production and system efficiency?
  • What is the total cost of the installation including all associated fees and equipment?
  • Can you help me understand any available government incentives, tax credits, or rebates that apply to my project? 
  • What is the estimated timeline for the installation, from start to finish?
  • What is the expected duration of the permitting process?
  • Is there a system monitoring solution in place to track the performance of my solar system?
  • How can I access and interpret this data?
  • What is the process for reporting and addressing system issues or failures?
  • Are there any additional costs associated with maintenance or repairs?
  • Can you provide a detailed contract outlining all terms and conditions? 
  • Do you have liability insurance to cover any damages to my property during installation?
  • Do you guarantee a minimum level of energy production or system performance?
  • What happens if the system doesn’t meet the expected performance levels?
  • What are the precures and costs associated with removing the system if necessary in the future?
  • How can I reach your team for support and inquiries during and after installation?
  • Do you provide regular updates on project progress?

Residential and commercial solar installations

All installations in this class will require a design and inverter review by the Company (i.e., metering and inverter one-lines, and nameplate data of the DER(s), inverter(s) and disconnect switch.

Each application will be reviewed to verify that it is certified and applied in a manner consistent with its certification. 

The installation must be permanently wired into a suitable load center in accordance with the National Electric Code (NEC). A lockable disconnect switch that is readily accessible to the Company’s personnel must be provided. This switch is to be at the metering point unless an alternate location is readily accessible and easily identifiable. The Company must approve the alternate location and a durable map or written sign will need to be provided at the metering or PCC location indicating the location of the switch.

Fees: $380.00
Insurance Requirement: For solar installations at or under 1 MW, no insurance requirement.

All installations in this class will require a design and relay review by the Company (i.e., metering and relaying one-lines, protection and control schematics, relay setting sheets, nameplate data of the DER(s) and breaker(s) or like equipment and disconnect switch(es).

Certified test reports will be provided to the Company by the Customer upon request. 

Installations in this size range may be an assembly of multiple certified interconnection packages. This is a common practice with PV sites. The certification process certifies the design and functionality for only the package with its associated energy source. It does not address the increased system impacts that multiple units will have. Because of this, a site with multiple packages must be reviewed in aggregate and additional protective equipment and field-testing will likely be required.

Fees: $760.00
Insurance requirements: For solar installations at or under 1 MW, no insurance requirement.

Renewable Energy Standard Compliance Plan for years 2023-2026

PBI 2023-2026

Incentive allocations and Rebates will be made available in proportional capacity quarterly.

Incentive program 0.5 kW – 25 kW

Income Qualified (IQ)and Disproportionately Impacted (DI) Participants 

Available Annual Capacity 

250,000 Watts 

Solar and Storage  

PBI=$0.038 kWh

$1/watt solar system rebate payment

$100/kW paired storage system rebate payment. Maximum $1,000.00 Rebate per customer

Incentive Program
0.5 kW – 25 kW

Available Annual Capacity 

1,750,000 Watts


Solar and Storage  


$100/kW paired storage system rebate. Maximum $1,000.00 Rebate per customer

Incentive Program 
25 kW – 250 kW

Available Annual Capacity 

250,000 Watts




IQ and DI statutory definition can be found in (SB 21-272)