Redback’s Guide to Adding Battery Storage to your Home
Are you looking to go renewable by adding solar panels to your home, but you’re not sure whether to add a battery at the same time? There are benefits to both adding a battery now or waiting and adding one in the future. To help you and your family find the best solution that suits your goals, we’ve developed this battery storage guide.
The benefits of adding a battery
Whether you add home battery storage to your solar system when you have your solar panels installed, or at a later date, the benefits you will receive from being able to store your excess energy to use when the sun stops shining are numerous. Perhaps the most obvious one is that you will be using more of your own, self-generated electricity., This reduces the amount that you need to buy from your electricity retailer, and in turn, saves you even more on your energy bill. You also have the added benefit of being more self-sufficient and less dependent on the prices they set.
Installing solar panels has a number of benefits for our planet in addition to saving you money. Using the sun to generate power means less harmful emissions from burning fossil fuels, which in turn helps to fight against climate change. Solar energy also uses far less water, one of our most precious natural resources, than burning fossil fuels to create electricity.
With home battery storage, you can also power through any grid interruptions such as blackouts, and in the case of a multi-day blackout, your solar can continue to charge your battery whenever the sun is shining.
Adding a battery upfront
If you’re considering adding a battery at some point, it may make more financial sense to add battery storage at the same time as your rooftop solar system. A hybrid system such as the Redback Smart Hybrid or Smart 3-Phase Hybrid combines an inverter (which, along with rooftop panels, makes up your solar system) and a battery all in one, saving you the need to purchase a separate inverter. As these are all-in-one units, they also have the benefit of reducing the number of external cables needed on the side of your home. The Redback Smart Hybrid and Smart 3-Phase Hybrid Systems are also modular, allowing you to add more battery capacity to the units in the future if needed.
Adding solar now, and a battery in the future
If you are unsure whether or not you want to have battery storage, you can add a solar system to your home to start with, and then decide if you want to add a battery in the future. This has the benefit of a lower upfront cost, and there is the potential to wait until your solar system has paid for itself before investing in a battery (generally 4 – 5 years). The Redback Smart Battery System has been designed to be retrofitted to existing solar inverters and once connected, it works by storing your excess generated solar power for later use.
The downside to waiting to add a battery is that you won’t be taking advantage of the full potential of your rooftop solar from the start. These systems generate power during the day when the sun is up, and generally, we use the most power in our homes in the mornings and the evenings. Excess power can be sold back into the grid, however, the prices you receive (called the Feed-In Tariff, or FIT) are minimal and much less than you will need to pay for electricity outside of these hours. Adding a battery to your rooftop solar system gives you the benefit of storing your own, self-generated energy to use when you need it.
Ultimately, the decision to add a battery at the same time as when you install solar, or to wait, is up to you. But with the benefits of adding a battery being so great, it should really be a matter of “when” not “if” you add a one to complement your rooftop solar.