solar   /    Jun 15th 2021

The Top 5 Best Solar Design Software - Pylon, Aurora, HelioScope, SolarPlus, OpenSolar

Good solar design software can prevent site visits, increase your solar quote conversion rate, and streamline your business.

Making the right choice when looking for the best PV software will make a meaningful and long-term impact to your business. In this post we provide a brief summary of each solar design software along with their strengths and weaknesses.


Pylon is one of the better choices for your solar installation business.

Not only does Pylon offer you high resolution imagery, a 3D Shading Analysis feature and an integrated CRM, it is the only design software that charges no monthly fees.

Another reason Pylon is so popular is because of its flat 2D studio surface. Many solar design software have a 3D studio that moves on different axes. Pylon keeps the surface flat, which makes it easier to work with. However, 3D shading simulation is still possible because Pylon uses the length of a shadow and the azimuth of the sun to determine an object’s dimensions.

Another difference is Pylon includes high resolution imagery in its software suite.

Some solar installers say that their design times have been cut by 50% after using Observer.

Aurora Solar

Aurora Solar is another good choice for your solar installation business. We have found few features lacking; however their design could be improved and high resolution imagery costs an additional fee.

One caveat of using Aurora is that they have high monthly fees per user.

Find out more about Aurora vs Pylon here.


OpenSolar is known as the ‘free’ option for solar design software, but are they really free? To get onboarding and support, you must pay at least $795 excluding GST. You must also buy your own imagery.

While OpenSolar’s feature set is usable, some customers find them lacking as an all around solution.

Learn more about OpenSolar vs Pylon here


HelioScope is another good choice for your solar installation business. The feature set is one of the better we have seen; HelioScope compares to Pylon well.

However, you will be stuck paying monthly fees as well as buying your own imagery. Additionally, you will not have a CRM and integrations are limited. HelioScope is not a complete solar design solution.

Learn more about HelioScope vs Pylon here


SolarPlus combines a CRM with solar design tools. SolarPlus did not previously have imagery included, but with SolarPlus V4 they include MetroMap imagery.

The pricing for SolarPlus is complicated. You will pay a monthly fee, but they also have per prospect fees and and kW per hour caps.

Learn more about SolarPlus vs Pylon here

Oseh Mathias

Oseh Mathias

Oseh Mathias has nearly a decade of experience in digital marketing and lead generation. He helps solar installers generate and convert more deals using Pylon's award-winning solar design software.

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