Installing a solar panel can be a smart investment. It can support your power needs along with the main power grid and can help you save on the electricity bill. Solar panels generate most of their electricity during the day which can be used to power up devices and appliances in your home.
But sometimes, you might not end up using all the electricity that the solar panel has produced. In that case, the excess energy can be fed back to the grid. By pairing a solar battery with the solar panel, you can store that excess energy and use it when there is no sun or when there is a power outage in your area. You can even stop utilizing the electricity from the grid and use the energy stored in the batteries instead to cut down on monthly electricity costs.
While using solar energy to power your home might sound tempting, it is not suited for everyone. Setting up a whole solar power system with solar panels and storage can demand a lot of capital investment upfront before you start seeing any returns. Setting up the battery alone can cost as much as the solar panel. This makes it important to figure out if solar batteries are really worth the purchase.
Different Types of Solar Batteries
Before comparing solar battery costs, let’s see how many kinds of solar batteries are there and which one would suit your requirements.
Batteries can be divided into four technologies:
Lead Acid Batteries: Having been around for a long time, these batteries are best suited for off-grid solar systems. They are reliable, cheap and can be easily recycled.
Lithium-Ion Batteries: New kids on the block, these batteries are quickly catching on. Although more expensive, these batteries require little maintenance and can hold more charge than lead-acid batteries.
Nickel Cadmium Batteries: Due to their durability, Nickel Cadmium batteries are often used for large scale applications. But cadmium is extremely toxic and banned in some countries, which has affected its popularity.
Flow Batteries: Flow batteries are just starting to emerge and showing great signs of being useful in large-scale installations. They’re low maintenance and can thrive for 30 years, but their large size makes them too expensive for residential use.
How Much Can Solar Batteries Cost?
The cost of a solar battery can depend on a number of different factors.
- Battery Chemistry
The type of battery you choose plays a big role in how much you might end up spending on the battery. Some solar battery technologies cost a lot less than others. They are used for different purposes as well.
- Number of Batteries
As a rule of thumb, the more batteries you use, the higher is the cost. Solar battery price depends a lot on the number of cells used.
- Labour Costs
Installing a solar battery can also drive up the cost. If you are installing the battery with the solar panel, it can cost less. Installing it afterwards might require more permits, extra labour costs and added investments.
- Rebates and Incentives
There are several government schemes and plans available in different areas that offer a rebate for installing a solar component. This might also bring the final cost down.
Are Solar Batteries Worth the Cost?
Although using solar energy is great for the environment and governments also provide appealing rebates, installing the whole system can be a massive undertaking.
So, before spending huge amounts of money, you should find out the solar battery price and whether it is worth it or not. As they store the extra solar energy produced by the panel, it won’t be useful if you live in an area that doesn’t experience frequent power outages.
A solar battery will make more sense in areas with frequent power cuts, where heavy rebates are provided by the government, or where there is no provision of full-net metering. The battery can then utilize the stored energy when needed and heavy discounts can make it a profitable purchase for the future.
A solar battery is also good for users who want to shift to a more sustainable way of generating and using electricity. They can use solar batteries to power up their homes during the day and use the power provided by the main grid at night. This will substantially reduce their overall power bill and will work well during times of unexpected power cuts.
Solar panels and batteries make a great pair. One generates electricity free of cost and the other stores it for later use. While the whole system can add immense value to your home, it might not be a sensible purchase for everyone.
So, assess the reasons why you want a solar panel along with a battery for your home. See if the power cuts are frequent enough to warrant such a big investment and whether you can make do with something less expensive like an inverter or a generator. Since solar battery prices are decreasing gradually, waiting for a couple of years can help you to make a more profitable purchase.