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Frequently Asked Questions
Battery Storage

A home battery system is a large battery that you have installed at home, which can store excess electricity – usually that which is generated by your solar PV system and isn’t needed at the time – for use in your home at a time when energy can’t be generated such as night-time or on days with poor weather. This reduces your demand on the grid, because your home can use the energy stored in the battery instead.  It helps you make savings on your electricity bills and ensure that more of the energy you are using is renewably generated.

A battery System that you own is the answer to greater grid independence, reduced electrical costs and in the event of a power cut the energy storage system will restore critical loads to the home.

The simple answer is that the home battery system stores electricity for use in your home at another time. The demand for energy within the home isn’t at one level all day, especially if there are periods when some or all of the family are out of the house. This means that for some periods of the day, the electricity being generated by their solar panels isn’t being fully utilised. Of course, when the sun goes down or the weather is particularly bad, the solar PV can’t generate electricity, and you need to draw from the grid to power your home. A home battery means that you have solar energy stored to use before you need to take from the grid.

With home battery systems that you use your solar PV system to charge, there are two ways to answer this question.

The amount of time that the solar battery can run your home for will depend on the capacity of the battery system and the level of charge. Some home batteries, like the Tesla Powerwall 2, could potentially power your home for more than 24 hours from a full charge, because the capacity of the battery is more than the average daily household usage of electricity. However, if it is only partially charged, or if you have a battery system with less capacity, the energy won’t last as long when powering your home.

In terms of the life span of a home battery system, this can vary; depending on the make and model of your battery and the way that you use it. Whilst these types of batteries are designed and optimised to undergo frequent charging and discharging, eventually, over many thousand cycles, the batteries will start to lose a small percentage of capacity. Professionally installed home battery systems will always come with a warranty, which are usually around 10 years, and are guaranteed to maintain a certain level of performance e.g. the Tesla Powerwall 2 has a warranty for 10 years for 80% of the original capacity; so, if your battery isn’t storing at least 80% of the energy it did when new within 10 years, Tesla will replace it.

From our own experience of these products and the very slow degradation of the types of batteries used in the home battery systems, the likelihood is that a home battery system will usually significantly outlast the warranty.  It is the same as any other electronic product in this respect – if you bought a TV with a 5 year warranty, you would reasonably expect it to last for 10+ years.

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