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.
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.
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.
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?”
Solar panels and electric cars are a match made in heaven – when you install a solar energy system on your home, you can use it to both power your home and charge your electric car for emissions-free transportation. The cost of solar is falling rapidly, and companies from Tesla to Nissan are manufacturing electric cars for your daily use. Now, the ability to install a solar PV system large enough to power both your home and your car is an option within reach. But even with incentives and rebates available for both technologies, most homeowners still can’t afford to install solar and buy an electric car at the same time. Luckily, it’s easy to install a solar energy system today that takes your future electricity consumption into account, if you take a few additional factors into consideration.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.