Do I need a solar battery? Are they worth it?
Did you know that as of last year, one in every four houses in Australia has a rooftop solar power system? Around 268 million rooftop solar panels have been installed across the country so far.
The concept of solar energy has been around for quite some time. The growing utility of a solar battery is also coming to light in the current political climate. This climate is centred around saving the environment and self-sufficiency.
If you are a homeowner or a business enterprise exploring the option of installing solar power in your facilities, you may find this article useful. It will help you determine how installing solar panels and batteries may be the right choice for you. You’ll also learn what factors you can consider in this regard.
But first, let’s explore what a solar battery is and how this option can be beneficial. Read on to find out more.
What is a solar battery?
A solar battery is a solar storage unit that conserves energy from a solar PV system. Solar panels in the system absorb energy from the sun and then convert it into electricity. The solar panels are the backbone of any decent solar system.
After the panels, the electricity passes through the solar inverter and provides power to your household.
The system may have a battery that can store unused energy. The energy can then be used later when the solar panels are not actively producing electricity. For instance, when the sun is down in the evening time, the energy conserved in the battery kicks in.
Usually, the solar battery setup is connected to the electrical grid in your home or commercial facility. In an instance where your facility is not receiving enough energy from the solar battery, the electrical grid continues to provide the requisite energy.
Alternatively, if the solar panels produce more than the required energy, the excess energy is returned to the grid. This phenomenon is net-metering. This means you can get credit on your next month’s electricity bill and as a result, you will get a reduced (or even negative) electricity bill.
At the same time, you can opt for an off-grid system and conserve the excess energy for later use instead of sending it back to the grid. In such an instance, the solar battery is a necessary part of the system.
What size do I need?
There has been a remarkable increase in the last few years of the installation of solar batteries. New solar rooftop systems mean that individuals can conserve excessively produced energy for later use or divert it back to the electrical grid and earn a discount in electricity rates.
A solar battery can either be connected to an existing system or installed with a new solar panel system. Depending on your energy needs, you can opt for a solar battery from a size range of 1kWh to 15kWh.
The size must be sufficient to store excess electricity generated during the day when energy production is at an optimum level when the sun is up. The battery can utilize the excess energy at night time, particularly in the peak energy usage hours when the electricity rate tends to be higher.
It’s a good idea to gain an understanding of your power needs before you decide on a battery so you don’t end up spending too much or getting an insufficient battery for your needs.
The advantages of a solar battery
Installing a solar battery can be a difficult decision as significant financial investment is involved. It is therefore important to assess how a solar battery can be beneficial for you.
We have listed down a few benefits of solar batteries that may help you determine if you want to add the option of energy storage to your solar panel system.
Reducing carbon footprint
The main benefit of having a solar battery is that you have excess energy in store, which you can use later. If you don’t have excess energy stores, you will have to resort to the electrical grid for power supply. Electricity grids run on fossil fuels which can have a detrimental impact on the environment.
Therefore, if you want to go green, you can install a solar system with a solar battery to conserve as much energy as possible, reduce your dependence on power from the electrical grid, and reduce your carbon footprint.
At the same time, solar energy is renewable, and Australia is endowed with abundant sunlight. You are not using gas, oil, or water; all of which are all currently running out. Your environment-friendly initiative may enable you to have a lighter conscience.
An alternative source of power
Suppose the grid in your area goes down. If you have a solar panel setup with a battery, you can instantly get an alternative source of energy. You do not have to rely on power backup generators and simply use the energy in the solar battery to provide you with the required energy supply.
This can be particularly helpful if you live in an area that is subject to frequent blackouts. With a solar battery, you do not have to worry about your lights going out. You will have gained independence from the grid and no longer rely on it for your power needs.
If you do not have a solar battery, the solar panels stop working when the electricity grid or the sun is down. Thus, there is no electricity to export to the system. The battery acts as a buffer and continues to hold onto the energy until it is needed.
Saving on electricity costs
If you have opted for net metering, your utility services will provide you with credit for energy you have exported to the electrical grid. The amount of credit will depend on the amount of energy you export. It is beneficial if your utility services offer time-of-use rates to provide a rebate on electricity bills.
Since the electricity rate varies depending on the time of the day, you can opt to use the stored solar battery energy during peak usage hours and save considerably in terms of electrical bill expenses.
Efficient solar power service providers provide custom-built solutions to suit the energy requirements of households or commercial facilities. They use historical consumption data from electricity bills and then discuss the consumption habits with the clients.
They also discuss feed-in tariff potential and system size that will cover all of the relevant aspects. A quality solar provider then works out a personalized solution that allows the customers to achieve the minimum or even zero electricity bills.
Australia is prone to extreme weather conditions now and then. It can get very hot at times and most of the houses aren’t built for the cold nights. In any instance, electricity expenses are expected to go up as you crank up the AC’s in the heat or turn on heaters in the cold.
However, you may constantly feel bogged down by the looming dread of pending electricity bills which you expect to be on the hefty side due to overconsumption of electricity. Having a solar battery prevents that from happening and provides you with a cost-effective solution to your energy needs.
Should I go for a solar battery?
As a homeowner, if you are frustrated with the energy tariffs or live in an area with frequent blackouts, a solar power system may be a great option. Moreover, if you are constantly irked by the nagging notion of having a significant carbon footprint, you may find a solar power system very beneficial.
If you incorporate a solar battery pack in the system, the overall costs of your system installation may increase. However, the long-term impact will be worth that extra investment. Moreover, the price of solar batteries is decreasing and is predicted to decline even more in the future.
So, regardless of where you live, even if you can’t afford one now, you may be able to in the future.
It would be helpful if your utility provider does not offer full-retail net-metering and uses the time-of-the-day method. This way, you can utilize the full potential of the solar battery and gain maximum financial leverage from it.
Types of solar battery
Once you have decided to opt for a solar battery integrated solar PV system, the next step is to then consider what type of solar battery to acquire for your home.
Solar battery retailers provide unique solutions in terms of the variations and features of solar batteries available commercially. You may come across several variations and may have difficulty in deciding what the best solar battery is.
For this article we have discussed two of the best solar batteries available; Tesla Powerwall and Sonnen. These are Lithium-ion batteries and are the most popular kinds available.
The main advantage of lithium-ion batteries is that they are durable and can easily be stored outdoors. Lithium-ion batteries can be discharged heavily and have an approximately 95% depth of discharge.
The only consideration is that Lithium needs to be handled with care as it is difficult to recycle and may be harmful to the environment.
Let’s have a look at the solar battery by Tesla Powerwall and Sonnen.
As the market leader in innovative solutions for solar energy and storage, Tesla is inarguably the frontrunner in the field. From a technical standpoint, Tesla Powerwall has remarkable features that make it the best solar battery. It is a great option for residential solar energy storage needs.
The battery has a storage capacity of 14kWh, which is more than enough to meet the electrical requirements of a regular household. The battery has a very high discharge rate which allows it to supply power to major electrical appliances at any time adequately. The battery is durable and comes with a ten-year warranty.
Tesla Powerwall provides its products in partnerships with major solar energy solution providers in the country. The product has a reasonable price tag which further adds to its appeal.
Sonnen batteries are a product of renowned German manufacturer Sonnen but are built in Australia. Sonnen is currently considered one of the best solar batteries in the country and holds a market share almost equivalent to market forerunners like Tesla.
Sonnen provides an approximately 80% coverage of electricity requirements to consumers annually. The battery comes with in-built smart management technology that allows it to detect excess energy at any time of the day instantly.
It then stores the energy for use later at night and then takes the house off-grid when the electricity rates go up at peak hours. Your battery is thus optimized and has a longer life.
Sonnen comes with a capacity range of 2.5kWh to 15kWh, and the depth of discharge is around 90%. Like Tesla, Sonnen also comes with a warranty of 10 years.
How do I get a solar battery?
As of last year, more than 24% of Australians rely on solar power for their energy needs. Solar panels installed in unity with a solar battery are the most efficient method of utilizing solar power.
If you want to reduce your reliance on energy sources that use fossil fuels and reduce your carbon footprint, looking at alternative sources of energy is the way to go. When you opt for a solar power setup with a solar battery, you are reducing your dependence on grid-based electricity.
You’ll also save yourself from the hassle of paying hefty electricity bills and avoid the nuisance of power failures and blackouts.
Looking at all the benefits mentioned above, it is easy to see why millions of individuals across the country are changing to solar power.
If you want to install a solar PV system in your household and require a solar battery pack along with the setup, you may want to work with the best in the field that provides reliable and efficient services.
Nectr is one such name in the field renowned for providing value-based reliable services to consumers across the country. You can get a complete package including a solar panel, solar inverter, and a solar battery for your house from us.
If you want to find out more, you can check out our blog for more information.
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