Everything you need to know about home battery system safety

Published On: November 23rd, 2023|11 min read|

No matter where you are on your solar journey, the topic of safety has likely crossed your mind. As solar and battery technology continues to surge forward, bringing with it a flurry of updates and newer, more sophisticated technologies, it’s understandable to ponder some critical questions: Are these innovations safe? How can I be sure that my solar battery system is secure and operating optimally? 

In this blog, we’re going to dive into the world of home battery storage systems, how to keep them safe, the potential hazards to watch out for, and why staying informed about these advancements is essential. So, let’s buckle up and journey into the realm of solar safety. 

Family in garden with a Solar Battery visible in the back

Is there a fire risk associated with a battery system?

There has been a lot of news about lithium-ion battery fires in recent months, and it’s important to address the concerns associated with this media. Firstly, it’s essential to make a distinction between lithium-ion batteries as a general term, and batteries used in home storage systems. According to the Department of Fire and Emergency Services, many modern household devices contain a rechargeable lithium-ion battery. This includes devices such as phones, tablets, power banks, computers, toys, appliances and tools, as well as mobility equipment such as electric bikes and scooters. 

In general, many things can contribute to a lithium-ion battery fire in these household devices, but it’s important to note that all fires occur for a reason. Exposure to extreme heat, physical abuse, a battery cell malfunction, overcharging or overheating, charging with incompatible cords or plugs can all create risk with these batteries. As an example, some of the lithium-ion batteries that have been in the media lately were due to a battery in a leaf blower that was left on charge, an overheated escooter, and a manufacturing fault with a toy purchased overseas (among other similar situations).  

So how does this relate to a home battery system that is used to store solar energy? Although the lithium-ion and lithium-ion phosphate batteries used in many solar storage systems share a similar battery chemistry to the ones mentioned above, they differ in many important ways. Aside from the fact that the batteries used in storage systems are subject to rigorous quality control and manufacturing standards, there are several other safety features in place to ensure a storage system’s interior batteries do not pose a fire risk.  

When it comes to Redback batteries, for instance, an Energy Management System (EMS) constantly monitors the batteries and has a feature called ‘interlock’ which will automatically shut down the system if anything abnormal, including overheating, is detected. In the event of an EMS interlock, both you and your installer will get a notification so arrangements can be made for maintenance or an inspection. Redback’s Site Manager feature also keeps the batteries in our systems balanced and working in tandem to ensure no one battery is working ‘harder’ than the others, subsequently reducing overheating risk from an overworked battery. The Redback team are also constantly monitoring battery output to ensure your safety. 

The Queensland Government’s Electrical Safety Department indicates that incorrect installation is one of the main factors that can create danger with a home battery system. Redback only partners with certified and accredited electricians for safe installations and offers real-time monitoring to identify and address issues promptly. All installation manuals provided to our installer network are complete with detailed instructions, fully compliant with the AS/NZS 5139:2019 Battery Safety Standard. Additionally, we collaborate with a leading battery manufacturer, recognised for its high-performance batteries, strict quality control, and components that are fully compliant with Australian safety standards.  

Overall, when it comes to assessing the fire risk associated with lithium-ion batteries, it’s important to maintain a distinction between small batteries found in common household items that have been improperly charged or cared for, compared to quality-controlled and high-performance lithium-ion batteries used in home storage systems. 

What factors should I be aware of when it comes to a home battery system? 

The first step in maintaining a safe home battery system is understanding what can create hazards and affect safety. So what factors can cause issues with a battery system, and what should you do to understand and mitigate these risks?  


When you’re considering investing in a battery system, it’s crucial to select one that aligns with your power requirements and meets your specific needs. Before making a purchase, take a moment to ask yourself these key questions

  • Does the battery system meet my home’s power needs?
  • Is it built to last? (This is particularly important to consider when purchasing a battery system from an overseas manufacturer. Is it equipped to deal with Australian weather conditions? Or just the local climate of the country it was made?)
  • Does it adhere to current Australian safety standards?
  • Does the manufacturer work with qualified and accredited installers?
  • Does the company offer a warranty? Is the warranty period as long as it should be?  

These questions will not only indicate a company’s legitimacy, but will also indicate how they back their products, how well their products work, and more importantly, if their battery system is right for you. 

And while we’re here, it’s worth saying that it’s an absolute no-no to build your own battery. 

Physical damage:

Home battery systems are robust, but not invincible. Damage to a battery, including punctures, crushes or impacts can compromise a battery system’s integrity and lead to dangerous hazards. If you’re getting a battery system installed in your garage, it’s important to ensure it’s far away from any tools or work areas, so a rogue shot from a nail gun, for instance, wouldn’t cause a puncture. In your garage, there’s also a risk of a collision with the battery while you’re parking your car. So in accordance with AS/NZS 5139:2019, the battery must be placed in a particular location, and many people are required to place a protective bollard in front of the system.  

If your battery system’s manufacturer advertises that their units can be installed outside, it’s worth looking into whether they have an IP rating, which can help the system ‘hold its own’ in the rain. For outdoor installations, it also doesn’t hurt to look into what material the system’s cabinet is made from. That way you’ll be able to know if it can handle the impacts of hail as well. 


Since your battery is storing energy, it’s valid to wonder if it’s going to overheat. It is normal for the batteries inside a solar battery system to generate some heat when charging and discharging, but how hot is too hot? 

Touching back on the point about manufacturing, it’s important to check if your battery has been made to handle Australia’s ambient temperatures, particularly in our harsh summer heat. Additionally, understanding your battery’s cooling mechanisms is important. Does it have a fan system to keep the batteries cool? Does the system kick into gear automatically at a certain temperature?  

When it comes to Redback products, our battery system’s enclosures feature innovative cooling that continuously monitors the internal temperature of the unit, and automatically kicks in when the unit reaches a certain temperature. This cooling system works by drawing in cool air from the bottom of the enclosure and expelling warm air from the top, effectively keeping the system at an optimal temperature.  To further prevent overheating risk, the Redback team has engineered our battery system’s cabinets out of sturdy material that can handle the normal heat produced by a battery, plus ‘sun loading’ – i.e. exposure to the hot Australian sun. Additionally, the batteries used in Redback storage systems operate in a wider heat range than many other options on the market. 

So what can you do to ensure your battery system isn’t at risk of overheating? Exposing your battery to direct severe heat sources is definitely not a good idea, so forget about setting a fire pit or barbecue next to your outdoor battery. Also, opting for an install either indoors or undercover will reduce any risk of heat degradation – this can include a small shade or roof over an outdoor install for good measure. An accredited installer can take you through these options in further detail.  

Incorrect installation: 

A DIY installation may seem like a nifty way to save some cash on face value, but in reality, it’s incredibly dangerous and should be avoided. It’s essential that your solar battery is installed by a qualified and accredited professional. Why? Not only are they qualified to correctly and safely install your battery, but they’re also aware of all safety regulations, and can provide unmatched support and advice on where your battery should go specific to your home and needs. 

I already have a battery system. What can I do to make sure it’s safe? 

If you already have a battery system installed at your home, there are some things you can do to put your mind at ease that your unit is operating safely.  

Be attentive to external risks:

Think about where your system is installed and ask yourself these key questions: 

  • Is there a collision risk associated with my system
  • Have I left a clear space around the battery system
  • Are wires out of reach of children and pets
  • Am I checking my system’s performance as often as I should
  • Do any of my activities post a puncture or crushing risk to my system? 
  • Does my system require maintenance? Have I been keeping up with this? 
  • Is my battery system online and being continuously monitored? 
  • Am I keeping grass, plants and trees near my system trimmed and away from the unit? 

If you aren’t certain if your battery system is free of external risks after answering the above questions, it’s best to get in touch with your installer for more information. 

Keep an eye on your system’s performance:

Be vigilant for potential signs of trouble with your solar battery, including black char marks, the presence of smoke or a chemical odour, dents on the battery shell, a burning scent, loud unusual noises, or any displayed error messages. If you observe any of these indicators on your system, refrain from handling it and promptly contact your installer, or the fire department if necessary.  

Additionally, it’s beneficial to develop a routine of monitoring your battery’s performance using a manufacturer-provided app or portal. This allows you to keep tabs on the battery’s operational status, identify network errors, and confirm that it’s online which will give you a clearer picture of how it’s all working.  

Have a plan:

Save your installer’s details in your phone so you can quickly contact them if you have any concerns. Get in the habit of doing a quick no-touch ‘safety check’ of your battery system, inclusive of in-app monitoring and an external visual inspection. It is important, however, that during these visual inspections, you refrain from handling wires or other electrical parts of the system for your own safety. 

To avoid any other unexpected hazards, it’s worth having a chat with your children about battery safety and the importance of ‘not touching’, while also encouraging them to avoid throwing the football around the battery or leaning their bike on the unit. Overall, leaving the battery alone is a great way to ensure it works as intended.  

Up close image of Redback Battery installed against a tin wall

Are Redback batteries safe? 

At Redback Technologies, we prioritise safety. We partner with only one manufacturer (for the batteries cells used within Redback systems) for safety reasons. Firstly, by not attempting to fit multiple battery types within our systems, we have been able to extensively test and develop our systems in tandem with our manufacturing partner. Secondly, by using one type of battery cell, there is a lower risk of calibration mistakes upon installation. Essentially, our Brisbane-based team has been able to confidently and extensively test our range with these specific batteries and is reducing the risk of incident by not compromising on quality or cost.  

Redback’s Australian-engineered battery systems are designed to be able to handle both indoor and outdoor installation while being able to ‘cop’ Australia’s harsh weather. Every Redback battery system is crafted from durable materials like steel and aluminium, safeguarding against physical impact. Our active cooling system, which engages when the internal battery’s temperature reaches a certain benchmark, maintains optimal battery temperature and works to prevent overheating. 



With Redback, you can rest assured that safety is a top priority for your solar battery system.