Let’s face it – warranties aren’t the easiest (or most gripping) documents to read. There are often a lot of details and fine print included that can be hard to digest, leaving many to wonder: what does the warranty actually cover? Am I vulnerable? Anything I might be missing?
To make it as easy as possible, we’ve read warranty documents for the top solar battery manufacturers, talked to them to confirm what is and isn’t included, and plan to point out the most important aspects of each in a series of articles. In this article, we are taking a look at the battery warranty of one of the largest electronics manufacturers in the world: Panasonic.
Highlights of Panasonic’s warranty
- Offers coverage for 10 years or 7.56 MWh per kWh of throughput for the EverVolt, and 10 years or 6,000 cycles for the EverVolt 2.0.
- Is transferable at no additional cost.
- Covers replacement of parts at no cost to you, aside from labor and shipping costs.
Visit the EnergySage Marketplace to compare solar-plus-storage options from local installers.
Quick overview: Panasonic’s history and warranty
Panasonic is a Japan-based company founded in 1918 as a lightbulb socket manufacturer. Over the last century, they have grown into an internationally recognized producer of electronics. They expanded into the solar and energy storage markets, and launched their first battery, the Panasonic EverVolt, in 2019. In 2022, they launched the EverVolt 2.0, a larger battery with additional features. In this warranty review, we’ll discuss the warranties of both the Panasonic EverVolt and the EverVolt 2.0.
Panasonic’s EverVolt battery comes in two different usable capacities: the EverVolt Standard and the EverVolt Plus. The EverVolt 2.0 also comes in one 17.5 kilowatt-hour (kWh) model, the EVHB-L6. All of these batteries come with a 10-year limited warranty that guarantees that the battery will maintain 60 percent of its charge capacity for the full length of the warranty period.
Panasonic’s battery warranty at a glance
|CATEGORY||PANASONIC’S COVERAGE||INDUSTRY STANDARD|
|Product and performance||EverVolt: 10 years, plus a throughput clause (2.65 MWh per kWh) |
EverVolt 2.0: 10 years, plus a cycles clause (6,000 cycles)
|10 years, plus a cycles or throughput clause|
|End of warranty capacity||60% at year 10||60% at year 10|
|Labor for repairs/ replacements||No||No|
|Shipping of parts||No||No|
|Transferability||Yes, no fee||Yes, no fee|
Panasonic’s product and performance warranty
A battery manufacturer’s product and performance warranty covers the integrity and output of the equipment itself – if your battery system has a defect or experiences unreasonable degradation, that should be covered by your product warranty. If there’s a defect with your battery, you or your installer should be able to tell that something is amiss and fix the problem immediately–often before the battery is ever installed. Regardless, it’s good to consider products with longer warranties for the peace of mind it provides.
Panasonic includes a 10-year product warranty for all of their batteries. You can review and compare Panasonic’s batteries in the EnergySage Buyer’s Guide.
You’ll also notice that many battery warranties will include a clause suggesting that your term may be cut short depending on your use of the battery – this is where cycles and throughput come into play.
Every time you drain and charge your battery, it’s called a “cycle”. Like the battery inside your cell phone, your solar battery will gradually lose its ability to hold a full charge the more you use it. Because of this, some manufacturers guarantee a minimum number of cycles as part of their warranty agreement. But read this line carefully: oftentimes, manufacturers will guarantee a fixed product term OR a minimum number of cycles, whichever comes first. This means if you hit the warrantied number of cycles before your battery hits the end of its warranty period, it could end your warranty term. The confusing part here is that manufacturers will sometimes define a “cycle” differently–i.e., how much your battery needs to be drained and charged for it to be considered a “cycle”?
Panasonic includes a cycles warranty of 6,000 cycles for both of the EverVolt 2.0 models (but doesn’t include a cycles clause for the original EverVolt). They define a “cycle” as the battery being 100% discharged and recharged.
Another clause that some manufacturers will put on their warranty pertains to throughput: the total energy a manufacturer expects the battery to deliver throughout its lifetime. Companies state these warranties in terms of megawatt-hours (MWh). For example, if your battery company provides a throughput warranty of 30 MWh, this means that the warranty is valid until the battery stores and delivers 30 MWh–or 30,000 kilowatt-hours (kWh)–of energy. Similar to a cycle life warranty, throughput warranties typically only apply if your battery delivers a set amount of energy before its warranty period is up.
Throughput numbers will vary quite a bit depending on the overall storage capacity of your system. Additionally, if your battery system contains several different battery cells–or modules–within it, your warranty may state a throughput by cell (which you can multiply by number of cells to get total throughput).
Panasonic includes a throughput warranty of 2.65 MWh per kWh for the original EverVolt battery in both the Standard (11.4 kWh) and Plus (17.1 kWh) models.
Panasonic’s end of warranty capacity rating
In addition to providing cycle or throughput warranties, most manufacturers also promise a certain level of performance by the time your warranty is up. This often presents itself as an end of warranty capacity rating.
As you’re comparing the end of warranty capacity ratings across various batteries, higher percentages are better than lower percentage guarantees.
Panasonic includes an end of capacity rating of 60% for all of their batteries. You can check the end of warranty capacity ratings for each Panasonic battery model in the table below.
Panasonic’s battery end of warranty capacity
|EverVolt Standard||EverVolt Plus||EverVolt 2.0 EVHB-L6|
|Initial usable capacity (kWh)||11.4 kWh||17.1 kWh||17.5 kWh|
|End of warranty capacity (kWh)||6.84 kWh||10.26 kWh||10.5 kWh|
Panasonic’s workmanship warranty
Battery companies should cover a replacement battery if you need it during their warrantied term–but, while the manufacturer may cover your replacement part, that doesn’t necessarily mean they’ll cover the labor costs to re-install that equipment. In fact, many manufacturers do not reimburse for labor associated with diagnostics, replacements, or repairs of their products.
More often than not, installers are the sole party responsible for providing workmanship–or labor–warranties for your battery installation. However, some manufacturers offer additional protection by tacking on their own workmanship warranty for a limited number of certified installers in their network.
Panasonic does not currently offer a workmanship warranty for any necessary labor on the EverVolt or EverVolt 2.0 batteries. You can learn more about manufacturer endorsements and how they impact installer warranty offerings in this article.
How to make a warranty claim with Panasonic: shipping & labor costs
Ideally, your storage system will continue operating smoothly for 10+ years, and you’ll never have to worry about Panasonic’s warranty. However, if you experience any defects or performance issues with your equipment, Panasonic will be there to help.
If you notice an issue with your battery, your first phone call should be to your original installer: having designed and installed your system, they are the most equipped to diagnose (and fix!) any potential issue. If you can’t get in touch with your installer, or if they’ve gone out of business, you can contact Panasonic’s battery storage support team online.
During the warranty period, you can reach out to Panasonic with issues covered in the warranty that cannot be resolved by your installer. If repair or replacement of parts is needed, you should reach out to Panasonic in writing via email, or through their online battery storage support team.
When it comes time for any repairs or replacements, there are two additional warranty considerations you’ll want to keep in mind: labor and shipping costs.
Labor costs for diagnostics, repairs or replacements
Many manufacturers cover replacement parts at no extra cost, but don’t pay for the labor costs necessary to re-install that equipment. Panasonic does not offer a labor warranty for their EverVolt battery, and will not cover the costs of repairing or replacing defective parts.
Shipping of parts
Similarly, not all equipment manufacturers will pay the costs to get equipment to you – and unfortunately Panasonic isn’t one of them.
Limitations and exceptions to Panasonic’s warranty
Every warranty has its exceptions – Panasonic is no different. Warranty limitations aren’t meant to make it harder for you to take advantage of the offering; companies simply try to protect themselves from unjust or unreasonable claims.
Here are a few things that aren’t covered in your Panasonic warranty:
- The Panasonic EverVolt Standard and EverVolt Plus must be installed inside and are not certified for outdoor use. The temperature of the indoor location where it’s installed cannot fall outside of the range of 32°F to 122°F. The EverVolt 2.0 is suitable for outdoor use.
- Improper system installation or application that doesn’t comply with the installation manual – your battery system also must be installed by an EverVolt certified installer in order to be eligible for the warranty.
- Acts of nature – this is a common one – most battery system manufacturers will not cover any damage caused by extreme weather events outside of their control, such as hurricanes, floods, earthquakes, etc. Fortunately, the hardware is pretty durable, and can withstand most storms without the added protection. Even better, should damage happen to occur during a storm, many homeowner insurance policies cover damage to solar-plus-storage systems.
- Technical or cosmetic defects that do not interfere with the performance of the battery or actively degrade the system.
- Claims made over a year after the alleged defect or damage was noticed.
For a complete list of exclusions, be sure to check out Panasonic’s warranty documentation.
Other warranty considerations, and how Panasonic stacks up
- Transferability: the Panasonic battery warranty is transferable to new owners, as long as the battery remains at the original location.
- Bankability: Panasonic Corporation is a multinational company that produces batteries, electronics, industrial systems, and other goods. It is a publicly traded company on the Tokyo stock exchange (PCRFY), and you can find more information about the company on their investor page.
- Escrows/insurance policies: Panasonic does not provide information on whether they have insurance policies or an escrow that ensures their warranties will be upheld if they go out of business.
- Eligibility: some manufacturers require customers to permanently connect to their monitoring system in order for their warranty to be valid. Panasonic’s warranty requires the battery to remain connected to the Internet during the warranty period so that Panasonic can remotely monitor and update the battery. However, if you experience periodic losses of Internet connection outside of your control, your battery will still be covered under warranty.
- Customer reviews: an important part of understanding a manufacturer’s warranty offering is investigating how their customers feel about their equipment and the services that they provide. Any warranty can look promising on paper, but how the installer or manufacturer performs when honoring their warranty is also critically important. If you are interested in reading Panasonic’s reviews, you can do so here.
What about inverters?
We use “battery” and “battery system” pretty interchangeably in this article, but there’s one important difference between the two: an inverter. Energy storage systems typically include both batteries and inverters, while certain batteries can be sold independently. Inverters are key to the functionality of a battery, so it’s important to make sure yours is covered! If your product includes a built-in storage-only or hybrid inverter, it’ll likely be covered in your battery’s warranty terms. On the other hand, if you pair your battery with an external, third-party inverter, expect it to come with a different warranty agreement than your battery.
Panasonic’s batteries are all built-in–thus, their warranty covers the inverters.
Finding the right battery for you
Finding the right storage system for your home means comparing multiple quotes from solar installers. Using the EnergySage Marketplace, you can find local solar installers near you, and make easy side-by-side comparisons of all your solar-plus-storage options, including equipment. By shopping around first, you can find the right option at the right price – warranties and all. If you have a preference for one type of equipment over another–Panasonic or otherwise–simply note it in your account when you sign up so installers can quote you accordingly.