Buying Solar Batteries - 2022 Home Battery Buyer's 101 Guide

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Published 2022-05-19
If you're considering buying a solar battery in 2022, here's what you should know before you fork out a bundle of bucks. Part two of a three-part "101" series on understanding, buying and owning home batteries.

Chapters:
00:00 - Introduction
01:27 - Is a solar battery right for you?
05:13 - How much will you pay for a battery?
06:58 - What size battery system do you need?
07:44 - Rebates and virtual power plants
09:25 - Common dodgy battery sales techniques
11:02 - Battery backup - what you should be asking
13:36 - Cheap batteries a thermal runaway risk
14:39 - AC vs DC coupling
16:30 - Solar battery degradation
17:58 - Battery warranties - tricks and traps
20:23 - Optimal battery installations

You can read the article version of this guide here:

www.solarquotes.com.au/101-guides/buying-batteries…

For the home battery comparison table I mention:

www.solarquotes.com.au/battery-storage/comparison-…

And the solar battery calculator:

www.solarquotes.com.au/solar-calculator/

And check out my other Solar Battery 101 guides:

* Part 1: Understanding Solar Batteries
The fundamentals of home battery storage

Video: https://youtu.be/fC48rVyM3Ws
Article: www.solarquotes.com.au/101-guides/understanding-ba…

* Part 3: Owning Solar Batteries
Sets expectations for your battery-powered lifestyle.

Video: https://youtu.be/rENNsQAhbnc
Article: www.solarquotes.com.au/101-guides/owning-batteries…

You can read all my solar and battery 101 guides here:

www.solarquotes.com.au/101-guides/

And to receive quotes from solar and/or battery installers I have personally pre-vetted and trust: www.solarquotes.com.au/quote/

If you have questions after watching the video, feel free to ask in the comments section below - and don't forget to subscribe to this channel :)

All Comments (21)
  • Phil
    We installed 6.6 kW of solar and a small 4.8 kWh battery over two years ago. After measuring our average 24 hour electricity use (7.5 kWh), I knew that the battery would almost always cover our night time energy use.

    Everything has worked very well and we rarely ever use any grid electricity. The battery cost $6,000, but thanks to a Qld govt's $3,000 battery subsidy at the time, the battery only cost us $3,000 - which was a good investment.
  • Gary Blake
    Thanks for a great guide to solar and battery selection. I am in an off-grid situation and find your explanation the best so far. I will now look for overnight loading and battery capacity. cheers.
  • I'm off grid - and the best way to get a battery in this case is to DIY one. LiFePO4 cells have gotten very cost effective. I'm doubling my existing 28kWh to 56kWh, and this costs me US$4000 in cells. Add a BMS and cabling, fusing, etc. and you're at US$4500 for a 28kWh pack. Best thing is: LiFePO4 doesn't experience thermal runaway and is much more forgiving, and can be charged to 100% without issues.
  • Dean Ervik
    No mention of Zenaji batteries in your preferred brand list. Australian made in the same way PowerPlus is. You neglected to mention that your estimated pricing does not include homes that are without grid access and fully off grid. Love your work and videos, keep up the good work.
  • SUCH Developments
    1.     250 prefabricated CLT & SIPform passive house certified homes. On the roofs of buildings, the Tractile 180m2, the excess electricity will be stored in the 28.8MW Tesla Batteries Farm.
    2.     The PV in total 934,370m2 - Tractile tiles 45,000m2 and ARCTECH SOLAR TRACKING PV 887,400m2
    3.     Bi-Charging of EV one per house and 12 Tesla charging stations in the shopping centre.
    4.     Micro-grid that connects to a community of 4800 residents.
    6.     We will be trailing the SoMax HTC process in 2024. That processes the sewage into sterilises aggregate for concrete so many products that would carbon released into the atmosphere when State Government and Council approved process.

    The Team that assembles onsite and ends in June 2023. COST OF MAINTENANCE AND UPGRADE - PV, BATTERIES, EV Charging Public/Bi-directional and SYSTEM $4,153,170 annually starting 2024.

    At the end of August 2022, they will be posted the video on YouTube.

    Sustainable-Urban-Community-Homes
  • Rich
    Hey Finn. I just signed up with one of your recommended solar system suppliers/installers for fitment of a 10.8 kW system on my property so very much looking forward to that.
    I’m keen to get your thoughts on the Bluetti systems as a pseudo-home battery storage system.
    The AC200 Max coupled with matching Bluetti portable solar panels, allows simultaneous charging/power usage when connected together. If no sun is available to charge up the battery, it can be charged by mains power during the off peak tariff timeframe then used the next day to simultaneously power (up to a point) household items such as the home fridge, kitchen appliances and even clothes dryer during peak tariff times.
    By looking after the battery (maintaining 25-75% SOC, avoiding rapid charge/discharge cycles & avoiding high temperature environments during use), Will Prowse (I’m sure you’ve heard of him) reckons they’d theoretically last the lifetime of the user if not longer. With everyday use and abuse (i.e. contrary to the above), they’re still meant to last at least 3.5K cycles.
    Granted it’s not the same as a dedicated battery system but the Bluetti also has the added benefit of being used for offgrid camping/touring.
    What’re your thoughts?
  • Eric Dutt
    Everything in life should be explained this clearly and concisely.
  • IanD
    Thanks for the great video, very comprehensive and as always, well explained. Do you have a view on the merits of using a smaller battery plus a hot water diverter instead of a bigger battery? This should minimise carbon footprint at a lower cost than using a big battery.
  • Robert
    is there an advantage to installing a battery to begin with over installing one at a later date?
  • Craig Worland
    I have been researching solar for 7 months, even got quotes from 2 recommended by you they were a/ shonky , and B/ way overpriced for inferior product.
    The fact is you have missed Batteries that offer significant upgrade on "Tesla product" that guarantee superior lifetime and also lower degradation rates than many of the batteries you champion. Secondly you never point out that a battery that drops to 70% at 10 years best case will no longer meet the needs of an average Aussie House let alone a battery at 60%.
    Finally the best Solar panels now offers 40 year warranty at 88% of new efficiency and parts and labour.
  • Chris Newman
    I think that people should take a clear eyed approach to an investment how much solar batteries and work out why they’re actually wanting to buy one, is it to impress their neighbours or friends or is it to save money and make it work for them? If you’ve got any money to burn go ahead and buy one but you do need to make sure that you’re buying it for the right reasons
  • Does this apply to the USA? Are these companies available in the US? Cheers to a great video! Sub’d!
  • songforguy1
    Apparently the byd LFP battery degrades far less.
  • Kingston Eldridge
    How much extra does it generally cost to add battery backup of a few lighting and power circuits like you did? I believe you need an extra switchboard installed? So they use the same wiring that’s already there?
  • Alistair Savoury
    Surprised you didn't highlight anything regards LFP batteries....increasingly affordable, safer and while less energy dense offer 10 yr warranties, before degradation.
    I have a small hybrid inverter and a few panels, and will be adding more LFP battery storage, to improve outage cover.
    with a little management I've lower bills, and the package should pay for itself in 3-5yrs....maybe sooner if the energy profiteering continues. Happy days.
  • Jo Blow
    Just installed a 15KW Huawei LUNA2000 battery for $11.5k connected to a 5kW Huawei SUN2000-5KTL-M1 Inverter, was able to go from 6.6KW of solar panels to 10KW for no extra cost. This hybrid inverter can charge the battery at 5KW/h DC while also providing up to 5KW/h AC. Unfortunately if the inverter is auto shut down due to excessive solar power event then no battery or solar power is available to the house.
  • Ian W
    The BYD “Battery Box” system seems to have stackable modules. Is it possible to add modules at a later date as finances allow?