Being the #1 state for solar, California is the most permissive state for solar installers. Gaining accreditation in California is a good choice for people looking to work on the West Coast as California has reciprocity agreements with Arizona, Nevada, and Utah.
In the State of California, the C-46 Solar Contractor license is the most comprehensive license covering active solar water and space heating systems, solar pool heating systems, and photovoltaic systems.
Find out more about the application process here
To apply for a contractor’s license, you must be able to demonstrate 4 years of applicable work experience.
Credit for experience is given only for experience at a journey level or as a foreman, supervising employee, contractor, or owner-builder. You can also receive credit of up to three (3) years for technical training, apprenticeship training, or education toward the four (4) years of required experience in the classification for which you are seeking licensure, but you must have at least one year must be practical experience.
As part of the Contractors State License Board (CSLB) process, you must be fingerprinted, and your prints will be compared to the records of the California Department of Justice and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. If you have ever been convicted of a crime, your criminal record information will be reported to CSLB. This includes DUIs and other Vehicle Code violations resulting in a conviction.
Applicants with criminal convictions are not automatically denied licensure – each application is reviewed individually based on the applicable sections of law. When reviewing criminal convictions, CSLB considers factors such as the nature and severity of the crimes, the amount of time that has passed since the convictions, and any evidence of rehabilitation submitted by the applicant. You may also be asked to produce mitigating material when the Board is considering your application.
Accreditation through NABCEP is not mandatory in California but recommended. There are a number of courses that you can take both in person and online to gain your certification varying between 2 and 48 hours.
Once you have acquired your solar installation license in California, use our solar lead generation guide to fill your deal flow.
We also advise using Pylon Solar Design Software to generate proposals in under 2 minutes. It is the only full-features solar design software with no monthly fees. Instead, you only pay $4 per project.
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