Tag Archives: solar batteries

sunrun brightbox solar battery

Everything you need to know about the Sunrun Brightbox solar package

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Batteries are becoming a popular addition to solar panel systems throughout the U.S. and across the globe. Energy storage can provide backup power if the grid goes down, and also help maximize savings in utility territories that have time-of-use (TOU) rates or unfavorable net metering policies.

Solar installation companies are picking up on the trend, and have started offering battery installation as a service. The biggest residential solar installer in the country, Sunrun, has a “solar plus storage” option known as the Brightbox package. Brightbox is available in Hawaii, Arizona, California, New York, and most recently Massachusetts.

What is the Brightbox?

The Brightbox package is Sunrun’s company-branded battery option, launched in partnership with LG. The Brightbox batteries are manufactured by LG Chem, not Sunrun, and are also available from other U.S. solar installation companies.

The LG Chem batteries are lithium ion, and come in a variety of sizes. Sunrun primarily offers the LG Chem RESU 10, which can hold 9.8 kilowatt-hours (kWh) of electricity. Sunrun says that their Brightbox package can provide 10+ hours of backup power if the grid goes down.

Brightbox financing options and maintenance offerings from Sunrun

Sunrun offers a few different financing options for the Brightbox. Like with solar, you can either buy the equipment or lease it from the company. If you lease, you can choose either a prepaid option or  monthly payments. If you’re looking to buy the equipment, they also have loan options for the solar panel system and battery.

Sunrun also offers a 20-year full service plan for the battery if you choose to lease it. Even without this service plan, the Brightbox is backed by LG’s warranty of 10 years, and assures that the battery won’t lose more than 40% of its storage capacity during that time.

Pricing for Brightbox from Sunrun

Sunrun doesn’t share pricing for the Brightbox package on its website. It can vary depending on the state and your financing option. Sources in New York report pricing between $6,500 and $8,000 in addition to the cost of your solar installation, while in Massachusetts, Sunrun advertises an initial cost of $1,000 with its leasing arrangement.

It’s also worth noting that Sunrun isn’t offering the Brightbox package to homeowners who already have Sunrun solar panel systems. The Brightbox is only available to customers in the states mentioned above (Arizona, California, Hawaii, Massachusetts, and New York) who are looking to install a new solar panel system and would like to add storage.

How Brightbox compares to the Tesla Powerwall

LG chem resu brightbox

The LG Chem RESU used in Brightbox installations

The Tesla Powerwall and Sunrun’s Brightbox offering are similar in multiple ways. Both batteries batteries have a lithium ion chemistry and come with a 10-year manufacturer warranty. Neither Tesla nor Sunrun are the exclusive installers of the batteries they offer.

The companies differ on the purchase options and installation for their batteries. Tesla is selling the Powerwall separately from solar, and offers it as an add-on to any homeowner (whether they have an old solar panel system, looking to install a new one, or have no solar panels whatsoever).

Sunrun, by comparison, only offers the Brightbox package if you’re also looking to purchase solar from them. That being said, both the Powerwall and LG Chem can be installed by many different types of installation companies (and even Sunrun was previously offering the Powerwall in their Brightbox package before partnering with LG!).

Another difference between the two types of batteries is their size. Tesla’s current battery offering has a higher capacity at 13.5 kWh than what is offered by the LG Chem RESU 10 (9.8 kWh), which means it is capable of storing and supplying more power.

Should you buy a Brightbox with Sunrun?

Like with any big purchase (including solar), you want to explore your options. Signing up on the EnergySage Solar Marketplace can allow you to compare turnkey pricing for solar installations from different pre-screened installers, and ultimately help you find the best deal.

If you already have a quote from Sunrun with a Brightbox offering, you can have it uploaded onto EnergySage to compare with other options. Alternatively, you can also note in your account which type of battery option you’re most interested in (whether it’s the Powerwall, LG Chem, or something else) so installations companies can provide you pricing and information about that battery if they offer it.


solar batteries


Depth of discharge (DoD): What does it mean for your battery, and why is it important?

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Batteries are becoming a popular add-on to solar systems thanks to the extra benefits they can offer for solar system buyers. Batteries offer backup power benefits when the grid goes down, increases the usefulness of off-grid systems, and improves solar economics if you have less than ideal net metering policies or time-of-use (TOU) rates.

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Solar news: falling high-efficiency solar panel prices, solar+storage options beating out natural gas

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In this week’s Solar News Roundup, we explore the massive price drop in high-efficiency solar panels over the past year, plus an early indication that solar battery systems are a viable solution for peak electricity demand.

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How safe are solar batteries for your home?

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solar battery safety

One of the best ways to take full advantage of solar energy is to install an energy storage system along with your solar panels. Solar batteries allow you to store the excess energy produced by your solar system for later use when the sun isn’t shining. Batteries are complex products, and it is important to understand the safety implications of installing a home solar battery.

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Tesla solar charger: How much does it cost to charge a Tesla using solar energy?

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Tesla EV in front of solar panels

Following the news of Tesla’s acquisition of U.S. solar installer giant SolarCity, the world has been keeping a close eye on Elon Musk and his two prosperous clean energy ventures. Tesla and SolarCity, electric cars and solar panels – a two-front war waged against grid reliance and energy dependence. In 2018, Musktopia is both expanding and constricting as two of the tech entrepreneur’s five companies are joining forces around one common goal: decimating your carbon footprint.

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How do solar batteries compare? Tesla Powerwall vs. Sonnen batterie vs. Aquion vs. LG Chem RESU

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compare solar battery companies Tesla Sonnen LG Aquion

Home energy storage is a relatively new technology that’s steadily gained interest over the past few years, and it’s hard to know where to start when comparing all your options. Top solar batteries like those made by Tesla and Sonnen make it possible for homeowners and businesses to store their excess solar energy instead of sending it back to the grid, so that when the power goes out or electricity rates spike they can keep the lights on. If you want to install a solar battery at your home, you have a few different choices currently available to you. Compare the Tesla Powerwall vs. Sonnen eco vs. LG Chem vs. Aquion Aspen in terms of capacity, warranty, and price.

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Can I go off the grid with solar batteries? Excess solar energy explained

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Going off the grid with solar batteries

Newer, more efficient solar panels and inverters have been in the news recently, but advancements in solar technology aren’t limited to standard equipment. Energy storage is also moving closer to mass-market adoption, and more installers are offering solar batteries and solar panel battery banks (a.k.a. solar-plus-storage) as an option for homeowners.

Solar-plus-storage systems include a battery that captures and stores the excess solar energy generated by the PV system, opening up the possibility of going “off the grid” – a tempting proposition for homeowners who want to sever their connection with utility companies by using renewable energy. As solar batteries become cheaper and more accessible for homeowners, more people are wondering, “Can I use solar batteries to go off the grid with my solar panel system?”

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Which PG&E rate schedule is best for solar? Understanding peak hours

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PG&E rate schedule increase and solar

PG&E’s new rate schedule affects utility’s entire coverage area in 2018. Whether you have solar panels on your roof, are considering solar, or don’t have any plans to generate your own electricity, the time-of-use (TOU) rates will have an impact on your monthly electricity costs. Currently, all PG&E customers have the option of switching to TOU rates or remaining on their existing rate schedule. However, if you are a new PG&E customer or move to a new address, you’ll have to choose a new TOU plan. The best option for your home depends on your electricity use habits.

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Maryland home energy storage rebate program makes solar batteries affordable

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Maryland home battery rebate program explained

The state of Maryland has taken its place alongside California and Massachusetts as a leader in energy storage, thanks to a new piece of legislation that establishes a state tax credit for batteries.

The Maryland solar battery rebate program offers a financial incentive worth thousands of dollars to homeowners and businesses looking to purchase batteries that can store energy on-site. With this tax incentive, the Old Line State becomes the first in the country to offer a direct financial boost to energy storage installations.

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Solar panel battery banks: use solar and batteries to power your home without the grid

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solar panel battery banks

Home energy storage has featured frequently in the news over the past few months thanks to new battery products from companies like Tesla, LG and Mercedes-Benz. These products are popular for a reason: when you pair solar panels with a battery bank at your home or business, you can actually operate independently from the electric grid. However, not all solar batteries are created equal. Here’s the rundown on what it actually takes to use a solar panel battery bank to go off the grid.

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