With the only viable option for new solar customers in Hawaii being to purchase a home battery, lets take a look at the benefits to having one installed.
You Get to Keep All That Energy
A home battery is no different than any other battery. It charges up and stores power for later use. The power going into it generated by solar panels in the daytime is free, and the power coming out of it at night when solar panels aren’t generating electricity is also free.
Its easy to calculate savings from a battery as well. Battery sizes are measured in Kilowatt hours (kWh), and the utility charges you based on the kWh you use. So if you fully charge your 10kWh battery in the daytime and use almost all of it at night, you’ve saved yourself from having to buy 10kWh from the utility. Going rate right now for 1kWh is about $0.255, which is about $2.55 you’ll per day on your night time usage alone.
Big Storm Coming? No Worries!
Another benefit to having a home battery is if there’s a storm. With a grid failure, no one has power. Not even those who have solar, not even in the daytime. But you will.
The utility mandates that in the event of a power outage, no solar systems can supply energy to the grid so technicians can safely make repairs. This applies to all systems that feed back to the grid for credit, including NEM & DER agreements.
With the current Customer Self Supply (CSS) program energy is not permitted to feed back to the grid and a battery is needed to make the investment sound. In the event of the storm, since your battery-enabled system can’t feed back to the grid you will still have power! As long as your panels are intact, producing, and sending power to the inverter & battery you will have power at night (supplied by your battery) and it will charge back up every day.
So if you have a battery & the grid goes down, your food wont go bad, you won’t be stuck next to candlelight, and still be able to enjoy some of the comforts you’re used to on a daily basis. Like cooking & not eating canned food.
Did Someone Say Tax Credits?
Federal Tax credits are a big reason why solar has been such a hit. And batteries are eligible for them as well.
As long as 75% of the energy going into the battery is from a renewable source of energy (like solar) it qualifies! Depending on your energy needs, a battery can be a significant investment so its eligibility for tax credits reinforce the system’s affordability.
Home batteries are eligible for Hawaii state Tax Incentive as well, and fall under the same stipulations as PV. You can read here for more information about Solar Tax Incentives.
A Home Battery will Benefit the Earth Too!
Aside from the benefits above, having a home battery does a great deal to reduce your carbon footprint. How? The utility doesn’t have to burn oil (which is only getting more expensive) to produce your energy.
Do you have questions about home batteries? Are you interested purchasing a home battery? Connect with one of our energy advisors today!