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Going Solar in Cleveland, Ohio: A Comprehensive Guide For Solar Installers


Embarking on a solar energy journey in Cleveland, Ohio, promises sustainability and savings. This guide illuminates the path, outlining the essential permits and approvals necessary for a successful solar installation. Whether you’re a building owner or a solar installer, understanding the permitting process is crucial for a seamless transition to solar power.

Building and Zoning Permits

  • Building Permit: Solar installations, whether commercial or residential, require a building permit as they are considered exterior alterations.
  • Electrical Permit: In addition to the building permit, an electrical permit is mandatory. Sealed structural and electrical drawings are critical for a smooth application process.
  • Zoning Review: Ground-mounted systems undergo a more rigorous zoning review compared to roof-mounted systems. Zoning and plan review fees are fixed, while permit fees are based on the project’s valuation.

Permit Fees

  • Residential Fees: Fees for residential solar permits are based on the project’s size and scope. For example, building permit fees start at $30, while electrical permit fees are $50 per 1,000 ft².
  • Commercial Fees: Commercial solar permit fees are structured differently, with building permit fees starting at $150 for new structures.
  • State Surcharge: A state surcharge of 1% for residential projects and 3% for commercial projects is applied to plan review and permit fees.

Processing Time

  • Permit processing time varies depending on the project’s complexity. Residential systems typically take three to five working days for review, while commercial systems may take up to two weeks.

Zoning Standards

  • Cleveland does not have specific codes restricting solar installations. Ohio law allows property owners to create solar easements to protect access to sunlight.

Interconnection Application

  • After obtaining permits, the next step is to apply for interconnection approval with the utility company, such as Cleveland Public Power (CPP) or First Energy, to connect the solar system to the grid and receive net metering benefits.

City Inspection

  • Inspections are crucial for ensuring safety and code compliance. Communication with City inspectors is key to a successful inspection process.

Vishtik’s Solar Permit Package

Vishtik offers a comprehensive solar permit package, ensuring a hassle-free experience for building owners and solar installers. Our package includes:

  • Document Preparation: We handle all critical documents required for the permit application process.
  • Expert Consultation: Our team of experts provides guidance and support throughout the permitting process.
  • Efficient Permit Processing: We expedite the permit processing, ensuring quick turnaround times.

Going solar in Cleveland is not just about sustainability—it’s about making a sound financial investment. With Vishtik’s solar permit package, you can embark on your solar journey with confidence, knowing that your installation is in good hands.

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