Is Solar Battery Storage Worth It?

Energy storage technology has been around for decades. However, battery technology is evolving exponentially faster, and you may be surprised to learn how battery storage could help you get the maximum return on your solar investment.

If you’re wondering if battery storage is worth it, our answer is yes!

Our top reasons to consider battery storage:

1) Backup power.1 Power outages cost more than you think.

Whether you live with frequent grid instability, increasing weather threats, or utility-mandated outages, the threat of looming blackouts can cause a great deal of stress and fear.

  • In Puerto Rico, “PREPA's electricity generators were 28 years older than the U.S. average and experienced outage rates 12 times higher than the U.S. average.” (2018)2
  • Hawaii is facing increasing risks of severe weather due to climate change.3
  • California is the blackout capital of the mainland US: "Between 2008 and 2017, California endured 4,297 power cuts - more than double the number of next runner-up Texas, which experienced 1,603."4 This alarming statistic does not include the new Public Safety Power Shutoffs which are already affecting customers of the three largest utilities in California.

And these are just a few examples of increasing blackouts across the United States.

Unlike a solar-only system, a solar + storage system can help you power your most needed lights and appliances during a grid outage. In addition, if the grid goes down, your solar-only system will shut down. When you add a battery to your solar system, your solar panels can continue to generate energy during a grid outage.5

Besides the emotional toll of a power outage, there are economic consequences of power outages that may affect your wallet.

 

2) Get the maximum economic benefit from your solar system.

 

Your battery can do more than just charge and power your most needed lights and appliances - you may be surprised to learn that there are various battery storage configuration options. If you’re a Sunnova customer, we will configure your battery to make sure you get the maximum economic benefit from your solar + storage system.6

When we install and configure your battery, we look at your relationship with the grid and your utility. From there, we work to make sure your battery will power your critical loads while taking full advantage of any incentives or rebates you may have.

For example, your battery configuration may be different if you live in a time of use (TOU) market, net metering market, or if you have other local incentives.

Time of Use

If your utility has time of use rates, the per-kWh rate you pay for electricity will depend on the time of day. During peak time hours, grid electricity costs more, and net metering credits are higher. If you’re a Sunnova customer, we can configure your system to send any excess energy back to the grid during peak hours in order to get the maximum net metering credits.

Net Metering

For customers with retail rate net metering, your battery may be configured to provide maximum backup power in case of a grid outage, or self-consumption for daily use.

For customers without net metering, we can configure your battery for maximum self-consumption. Your battery can be used to power your home at night. While any additional energy needed at night will come from the grid, you can limit the amount of electricity you need from the grid.

 

3) Increase your Energy Independence

 

No matter where you live and what your local utility conditions are, a solar storage battery combined with smart energy consumption can help you reduce the amount of electricity you pull from the grid.

All this sounds great, but how much does the battery cost?

At Sunnova, we offer a variety of financing options for our battery storage products. Our Sunnova +SunSafe® add-on battery storage solution is added to your existing home solar system. Our financing is inclusive of permitting, labor, and more.

With Sunnova +SunSafe®, you will receive a state-of-the art Tesla Powerwall 2 battery, along with Sunnova’s top-of-the-line customer care and support. After 10 years, your Tesla Powerwall warranty guarantees that your battery will still retain 70% of its charging capacity, so you can keep your battery for years to come.

Incentives can help!7

With the federal ITC, you may be able to recover 30% of the retail cost of the battery. You may also be eligible for local incentives. For example, customers in California can apply for the California Self Generation Incentive Program (SGIP). When combined with the ITC, SGIP may help you cover 52%-57% of the retail cost of the battery! 

 

To learn more about Sunnova +SunSafe® add-on battery storage or any of our other solar + storage products, let us know how to get in touch!

 

1. The amount of power available from the battery during a power outage is limited, depending on the loads connected, customer usage and battery configuration (i.e. batteries in certain areas may be configured to provide you with the best economic benefit, which may affect the amount of back-up power available). Solar systems and/or batteries may require repairs after weather events and such repairs may be delayed due to forces outside of our control.
2. EIA
3. Hawaii.edu
4. Eaton Blackout Tracker (page 9)
5. No assurances can be given that the solar system or the battery will always work. You should never rely upon either of these to power life support or other medical devices.
6. Your battery will be configured to provide the best economic benefit to you based on the utility information provided and in accordance with local state laws.
7: You may be eligible for a federal Investment Tax Credit (ITC) with the purchase of a solar system. To receive the full federal tax credit, you must have federal income tax liability at least equal to the value of the tax credit. Additional tax credits may also be available for homeowners in certain states and territories. Sunnova makes no guarantees regarding customer eligibility for tax benefits. Sunnova does not provide tax advice. Contact your personal tax advisor for eligibility requirements. All state and utility incentives are subject to state funding and legislation.