With every new technology comes a whirlwind of opinions, truths, half-truths, and outright lies about how it works and what it’s worth.
Solar power has been around for many years, but now that battery storage is becoming a mainstream option for families looking to lower their energy bills and pull away from the traditional power grid, the rumour mill has started turning again.
The facts about solar power and energy storage can get a little lost in translation. Before deciding whether solar battery storage is right or not for your home, make sure you check the facts carefully and make an informed opinion. Having the wrong information could be holding you back from the opportunity to save both the planet and your energy bills.
Myth: The solar & energy storage system the salesperson offers is the best option for me.
If you speak to a solar company and the salesperson immediately begins offering you a solar energy storage system without asking you questions about your energy consumption habits, your needs, or why you’re interested in solar power, he or she is most likely offering you the system that provides him or her with the best commission.
Find a salesperson that has your best interests at heart and wants to know your circumstances before giving you any advice. The wrong information could lead you to purchase a system that isn’t suited for to you, doesn’t pay you back as quickly as it should, or is built with poor workmanship, low component quality, and cheaper parts. Shop around to find a high-quality solution that can take care of your energy needs now and into the future.
Myth: Solar & battery storage systems are all basically the same and interchangeable.
When you’re selecting a solar energy system, remember that your lifestyle, your finances, and your long-term objectives all need to be considered. Depending on your level of energy use and when you use the majority of your power, different storage solutions will meet your needs.
With solar energy systems, one size does not fit all – purchasing a solar energy system is about finding one that works best for you in terms of both size and quality.
Myth: Feed-in tariffs let you earn money for the excess power generated throughout the day.
It is true that solar energy can only be produced during the day. Previously, there were large feed-in tariffs that allowed you to earn money for any excess power your solar energy system generated. However, these tariffs are much lower than they used to be. Producing more power than you use is not as beneficial as it was before, unless you switch to using the majority of your power during the day.
What this means is that if you purchase a stand alone solar power system, you may want to look into purchasing a smaller system that produces just enough energy to service your daytime electricity needs, which will cost you less upfront.
However, the best option is to add battery storage to your system. Instead of feeding the excess power back to the grid for very little return, you can store it for use at other times, like during the night or during a blackout. It means you can reap the benefits of Australia’s beautiful sunlight at all hours of the day without relying on the grid.
Myth: I don’t consume energy throughout the day, so solar isn’t important to me.
Let’s say your home, like the average home, consumes about 20 kWh’s of energy per day. About 30-35% of this power is consumed during the day if the family isn’t home at the time. With flexible working arrangements, smart home enhancements and school holidays all causing an uptick in power use, that percentage will only increase. Solar power helps to minimise any extra costs the increase in power use might incur.
If your power use during the daytime is minimal, this is where battery storage comes into its own. Any excess electricity that isn’t consumed is locked away ready for use after the sun has gone down, making your savings last even longer.
Myth: Solar energy doesn’t work during the winter
It’s true that solar energy systems produce energy from sunlight, and there’s certainly more sunlight to take advantage of during the long days of summer. It’s also true that, on average, solar power systems produce about 30 to 40% more energy during the summer, and 30 to 40% less during the winter.
However, solar energy data is calculated on averages, and solar energy is produced based on the amount of light from the sun. Extremely light or dark days can cause wide fluctuations in the energy produced, but temperature won’t adversely affect energy production. In fact, solar panels produce energy more efficiently in colder weather.
Myth: Adding energy storage isn’t worth the extra cost.
Adding an integrated battery system to your home increases the value of not only your solar power system, but also your house. As the price of energy continues to rise, existing solar storage systems will be a big selling point for home buyers.
Energy storage also allows your usage of solar power compared to grid power to be significantly higher than a stand alone system, leaving you with even more money in your back pocket.
To produce all of the power your home will consume, storing the excess daytime energy in your battery ready for nighttime use, you’ll need a larger solar energy system. However, with the right preparation, solar & battery storage can help you to live entirely independently of the grid.
Myth: Every solar energy company is selling the same products.
Just like it’s important to always check the quality of the components and product you’re purchasing, you should also look into the history of the company you purchase from. Unfortunately, the solar energy industry is full of companies that place pressure on their sales teams to sell a lot of solar systems really quickly without any intention of being around for the long haul to follow through on their service warranties.
It’s up to you to do the research and find a reputable company selling a product that has been tailored to your unique circumstances.
Located in South Australia but servicing houses all over the country, ZEN Energy are one of Australia’s most well-established solar companies.
Our experts are here to help you make the transition to battery storage, whether you already have a solar energy system and want to upgrade or are looking to install a whole new package. We look forward to helping you start reaping the benefits of solar battery storage.