About Tour

solar tour
Solar Tour, San Francisco, CA

For more than two decades, ASES has organized and delivered the largest grassroots solar event in the U.S., the National Solar Tour. What began in 1995 as a proof of concept grew into an annual showcase of real-world, right-now renewable energy and sustainability technologies. As these technologies progressed from simple passive solar design and solar thermal to advances in solar photovoltaics (PV) and other renewables, the National Solar Tour helped drive the progression from fringe technology to mainstream prevalence.

Today’s tours are held across the country in more than 60 cities and towns, often in early October. They feature residential and commercial properties, exciting displays of renewable energy and energy efficiency, and examples of green building and other design elements.

Tours demonstrate purpose, possibility and progress

Duval House

Communities participating in the National Solar Tour help educate people about how renewables are improving quality of life around the globe and in their own backyards. From pollution mitigation to energy independence, cost savings and incentives to new trends and technologies, the tours have been the place for people to see it all in action. We’ve featured solar-powered homes, vineyards, farms, public agencies, condo complexes, as well as solar-powered businesses that run the gamut from dental offices to corporate offices and donut shops to ceramic shops.

Each year, attendees have opportunities to tour new sites and learn from others in their community about:

  • Technologies including green building design, passive solar, solar photovoltaics (PV), solar thermal, geothermal, wind, storage, and energy efficiency
  • Cost savings and incentives
  • Pollution reduction
  • Energy independence
  • Grid reliability


Benefits to communities hosting tours:

  • Educated communities conserve more energy and other resources
  • Economic lift for architects, engineers, designers, installers, contracters, financial institutions and other professionals impacted by the renewable energy industry
  • Streamlined policies and permits stemming from increased awareness and demand