With the cost solar dropping so much and beating the heck out of the price of electricity in an increasing number of places, solar power is growing fast in the US. For sure, this is just the beginning, but have a look at these solar power growth charts below for a quick look at how popular going solar is becoming.

Here’s a look at US solar PV growth through 2012:

going solar growing in US

A few things to note from the chart above are that:

  1. Residential solar power growth has increased tremendously in the past few years.
  2. Commercial solar power growth has also grown tremendously, but accounts for a much bigger portion of the solar power capacity split. Clearly, businesses (which pay more attention to their energy bottom lines) are realizing the financial benefits of going solar faster than homeowners are. Companies like Walmart, IKEA, Google, Apple, Walgreens, Kohl’s, and many other corporate giants know now that going solar is cheaper than relying on utilities for all their electricity needs. (The greener image also doesn’t hurt. But I’m sure the main reason these companies are going solar is for the money.)
  3. Utility solar power growth is also strong. Going solar is clearly getting competitive at every level.

For some more fun, this next chart shows quarterly US solar power growth through Q1 2013:

It’s important to note that Q4 is always the strongest quarter of the year for solar power installations, and Q1 is always the weakest. This is due to reasons concerning taxes and solar incentives. Even so, Q1 2013 was the 4th best quarter for US solar power installations.

Also, while overall solar power installations dropped, residential solar power installations actually increased from Q4 2012 to Q1 2013!

This year, solar power is projected to become the #2 source new US power capacity. Watch as Q2 through Q4 pick up in installation capacity.

But solar power’s growth isn’t expected to slow down following 2013. Going solar will keep increasing as more and more people realize that solar power costs less than electricity from the grid, and US solar power installations will climb higher and higher like a mountain. Here are projections from GTM Research and the Solar Energy Industries Association.