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    “Our goal today is the same as it was 40 years ago—to provide products and services that exceed expectations and to do it with honesty, integrity and reliability.”

    - Jake Rabe

    BBB Accredited Business

    Iowa’s Most Trusted Service Company

    Rabe Hardware is a family owned and locally operated full service mechanical contractor serving residential and commercial customers in Eastern Iowa since 1979. What started as a small-town hardware store and heating shop in Blairstown, Iowa, has since grown into one of Eastern Iowa’s most trusted service companies specializing in solar, geothermal, HVAC, plumbing, electrical and fireplace products and services. With decades of experience, our professionally trained technicians and installers have the expertise and knowledge to get the tough jobs done—and done right!

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    BBB Accredited Business


    This vicious storm passed through Iowa. Our house lost power. By the fourth day, every place I called had me looking at at least a week’s wait time for electricians to hook the meter back to the house. As I was sitting on our deck, I saw a Rabe Hardware truck drive by. Called them, and within an hour got a callback. They were just a few minutes away. Hours later, the job was done, and that night we had power again. Big shoutout to Rabe, I really appreciated the fast service.

    Steven Perez

    We would like to thank every person at Rabe Hardware for the pleasant and professional work we received in the installation of heating, plumbing, and electrical contracting. We constructed a new home in 2005, after visiting with Jake Rabe. We took his suggestion and installed a geothermal unit. It surpassed all expectations, both in comfort and operating cost. The help with electrical and plumbing installation was great. The products are quality, the staff is superb, and the service exceptional. It was a very good experience.

    Denny & Wendy

    My wife and I started investigating the potential for a house solar system in late April. Jake and Rabe Hardware was one of several providers that we contacted for consideration. By far, they were the most responsive of all the companies we considered. They came to the house, got us educated, and provided a quote before most others even got back to us.

    The Rabe price was the most competitive and provided the best solution, with high-quality components. Their team had our system (30 panels) installed in 4 hours while working with/around our roofer, who was finishing the installation of a new metal roof! They submitted and completed all of the paperwork and we are off and running!

    Please consider Rabe first if you want a reliable, cost-effective solar solution done right!

    Scott Wagner

    This is the first time I have used Rabe Hardware. Allen and Josh installed a gas insert fireplace in my home yesterday. I could not have been happier. They were professional, polite, and most importantly, knowledgeable. I was so impressed that I will use them exclusively in the future.

    Word of mouth is the best advertising which is how I came to find out about Rabe Hardware and is why I am writing this review. I promise you will not be disappointed using them.

    Steve Bagenstos

    My wife and I moved to Shellsburg, Iowa, this past summer. The home we purchased had solar panels that we knew nothing about. One of Rabe Hardware’s representatives stopped by not long after we moved in, as our panels were offline. He had us up and running in no time at all. He got us set up with the online app and gave a quick and easy tutorial.

    Then, just days later, we found ourselves in the same situation as many in our area due to Hurricane Derecho. Jake Rabe and his team responded before anyone else! They laid out what needed to be done and completed it with the same speed and excellence as before.I am so impressed with this company, from the owner to all his team members.

    Walter Malone

    The Overall Process for Solar Installation Services: What You Need to Know

    You’re looking forward to getting high-quality solar installation services for your Cedar Rapids home or business but you aren’t sure exactly what this process entails. You are not alone! Many of our customers are baffled by the overall steps in this process and need help knowing what to expect. The following is what you can anticipate if you decide to work with us or other types of solar installation professionals.

    The Early Inspection Process

    People who expect that solar installation services will take no more than an afternoon will be disappointed to find that it may take over a month or two for this service to finish. Most of this time wait is neither the fault of the solar professionals nor your own: it’s just that you need to make sure that the site is properly inspected and the proper permits are given out by the right legal authorities.

    The first step is for solar experts to come to your home and check out the house and its many unique aspects. For example, they will look at where the sun best hits your home, examine the shape and landscaping of your yard, watch for any trees or other obstructions, and sit down with planning professionals on their team to come up with a solar design that works for your needs as a buyer.

    Most of the time, this type of plan is going to take a minimum of one week to finish, though it may take longer if the solar professionals are very busy. Don’t be too disappointed about this wait, though. It is designed to ensure that the engineers take into account every aspect of your solar system and your home, ensuring that you get the best possible experience for your money and your time.

    Working With the Local Government

    Here comes the longest-lasting and most frustrating part of solar installation services: working with the local government. Typically, your solar experts will handle this part of the process for you to ensure that you don’t get bogged down in excessive paperwork. You will have to sign papers, of course, and get the licensing in your name. However, your contractor will ensure things go smoothly for you.

    For example, they will get you the proper paperwork, walk you through what everything means, help you better understand what you’re getting into as a person, provide a better look at the different licensing elements that affect your investment, give you an idea of what inspectors want, and give you a plan for achieving this level of high-quality licensing in your facility or your home building.

    The length of time spent on this process will vary according to your experts. Some may be able to get your permits done in as little as two weeks. If things go well, this means you may be ready for installation as soon as three weeks after you started. But complications may stretch this out to eight weeks, meaning you could be waiting over two months for your installation. The wait is worth it!

    Getting Panels Where They Need to Be

    Once your solar installation services have properly licensed every element of your solar project, they can begin installing your solar panels. The nice thing about this step is that it shouldn’t take that long for most professionals to handle. There’s a good chance that some experts may be able to finish in as little as one day, as long as your project is small enough and you don’t have any complications.

    You’ll have to not only order all of the parts during this segment of the installation process but also get the mounting equipment and other items delivered there. Sometimes, this step takes up most of the first day and may force workers to come back again. In some cases, they may be able to finish in as little as another 2-6 days, with longer and larger jobs usually taking more time and work power.

    Here comes another frustrating element of this process: your system is ready to go into action and could be activated right now. However! The government requires one last inspection of all solar power systems to ensure that they are properly installed and executed. This factor may drive you into fits of pique but is very understandable and doesn’t take as long as you might think it would.

    Finishing Touches With the Inspectors

    Finally, your solar installation services are on the last step of the process. At this point, your professional solar experts will reach out to a government inspector and get them to come to your home and check out the system. This process checks every element of the grid to make sure that it is properly installed, safe, and that you can use it without any complications on the day you turn it on properly.

    This type of inspection should take no more than a few hours or an afternoon, as the inspector may also want to install a new net meter, check various other wiring elements, and do basic maintenance to keep it working properly. However, you may be waiting 2-3 weeks for this professional to come to your home, a wait that is often very frustrating and upsetting for many home and business owners.

    That said, once you have been approved to activate your solar power system, you can turn it on right then and there. With a flip of the switch, your system will begin operating, collecting UV rays, converting them to power, and producing a great extra power source for your home. This step is a great option for those who want the best overall look and feel for their home and business’ power needs.

    Reach Out to Us Today

    If you believe that Cedar Rapids home or business needs solar installation services, and you want someone all of Iowa can trust, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us at Rabe Hardware right away to learn more. Our professionals have years of experience in this field and will do whatever it takes to ensure that you get the best experience for your overall home or business needs.



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