Questions to ask yourself
To work out whether or not investing in a Solar Battery will pay off for you, there’s a few things to consider, such as:
How much energy do you use?
If you consume more energy, then you’ll have a quicker payback with a solar storage system than if you’re only consuming a little bit of energy.
When you’ll use it: day or night?
If most of your energy is consumed at night, then you’ll have more favourable outcomes from installing batteries than not.
Where do I live?
This not only affects the amount of sunshine you get but also the electricity prices and other factors such as feed-in tariffs — the amount you are paid to contribute energy to the grid.
If you live in South Australia, a combination of high solar, and high electricity prices means that solar on its own is an amazingly high payback (ROI), but even when you add a battery you can most likely get a payback in under five years.
Why Buy Now?
If you’ve been researching the merits of buying a solar battery, you may have heard (or read) that it’s not really worth making a purchase of a solar battery yet.
The 2 main reasons given as why to delay the purchase of a battery are….
1. ROI (return of investment) is not quick enough.
2. Batteries will become cheaper in time.
The above 2 reasons maybe a reasonable assumption if you live anywhere else apart from South Australia!
ROI is based on the calculation of battery cost divided by the warranty period, to work out yearly return over the warranted life of the battery. With the SA government battery subsidy in place you can effectively halve the ROI time frame, as the cost of the battery is significantly reduced by the subsidy. For example, a 10kW battery retails for approx. $10,000.00 but after the subsidy this cost is reduced to around $5350.00 thus plunging the ROI time frame significantly to well within the warranty period of ten years. Also when a 10 year warranty expires, it does not necessarily follow that the battery will imminently fail. After speaking with the leading manufacturer’s many are confident that life cycles of they’re batteries should be at least double the warranty period.
Batteries will become cheaper in time.
The rational here is, as more battery manufacturers enter the market there will be more competition and thus drive prices lower. Unfortunately, in reality the fact is that prices of solar batteries have increased slightly rather than reduced since the SA battery scheme was introduced. Why? Because battery manufacturers know the customer is receiving a hefty government subsidy so any price increase will be offset to a large degree by the subsidy offered.
Also, if there are any price reductions over time by the battery manufacturers, the government has said the subsidy will be reduced to reflect this. So, the net change to the customer will be nil.
Analysing The Results
The upshot is that there is no advantage in waiting to purchase a solar battery.if you live in South Australia. Even if battery prices do come down (which is unlikely) the government subsidy will be reduced to at least match the manufacturers price drop, so there is no advantage to the retail customer.
Advantages Of Buying Now
There are many advantages to purchasing a battery straight away.
- Stored energy when and where you want it.
Using your own stored energy in the evenings when power retailers are charging premium prices because of high demand, could make the difference in regards to you receiving a payment rather than a bill from your energy retailer.
2. VPP (Virtual Power Plant) Joining a VPP can make you money!
Another huge advantage of having a battery to store energy is the ability to sell your electricity back to the grid. Virtual Power Plant plans, give you many opportunities and options to sell your energy making money off your solar system. Go4solar has partnered with a VPP which we believe gives the customer better pricing and control of their energy when it comes time to sell.
What’s next if you’ve decided to buy a battery?
- Know your energy needs — we can do a thorough evaluation of your energy needs. This is normally done by an assessment of your power bill history.
- Research and talk to us about the different types — most people are going with variations of lithium ion batteries but they’re not the only batteries.
- If you decide to get a hybrid system decide whether or not you want that system to provide you with backup power during a black out. By law solar systems must not use technology that can send power out to the grid during a black out, so the network switches them off. There are some systems that do enable you to use your stored power for your house during a blackout (and not send to the grid) but these are more expensive.
- Know the difference from a performance warranty (how long the technology will live for) and the product warranty (how long you are covered for). We also offer an installation warranty (installing batteries is not a simple case of whacking a battery in, often especially in the case of retrofitting, you may need to get some rewiring done.)