Solar Panel Permits

Permitting for Solar Photovoltaic Systems

There are over 100 solar energy installations in Issaquah including the City's LEED Platinum Maple Street Fire Station. These systems contribute to the community's greenhouse gas reduction goals, produce onsite renewable energy and save residents and businesses money too!

Solar energy might be right for you if you:

  • Own your home or commercial property;
  • Have a suitable shade-free area of your roof; and
  • Are interested in making a longer-term investment to reduce your environmental impact.

SolSmart Gold Designation

The City of Issaquah received a Gold designation from the national SolSmart program for making it faster, easier, and more affordable for homes and businesses to go solar.


The City has streamlined the solar permitting process for residents. In fact, for most standard residential systems, you do not even need a building permit (an electrical permit through the State Department of Labor and Industries, is still required, however). Please consult the Solar Checklist (PDF) to see if your system requires a building permit. If your project does not meet the solar checklist criteria, the Community Planning and Development Department will work with you to review building and site plans.


Solar installations on commercial properties require building and electrical permits. Please work with the Community Planning and Development Department on building and site plans.


Design & Installation Considerations

Solar Access & Performance

For optimal solar performance your collectors should be in a location that has clear unobstructed access to the sun (free of shading from roofs, trees, and other landscape features) for most of the day and through-out the year. During a site evaluation, a solar contractor should evaluate potential collector locations using a tool like a Solar Pathfinder that illustrates annual shade impacts.

Rooftop Structural

Typical residential rooftop solar installations do not require additional structural engineering or reinforcements. However, in some cases with old buildings or unusual construction techniques, it may be necessary to make roofing improvements prior to mounting solar modules. If you are unsure about the structural integrity of your roof, or if it is in need of repair, have it professionally inspected to verify its condition and suitability.

Firefighter Accessibility

Please refer to the Solar Energy Tip Sheet 24 on for information on firefighter accessibility.