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There are many benefits to installing a battery system on your home or business.
Batteries store energy produced from solar panels to use overnight or in poor weather conditions. The Soluna Power Bank goes a step further and also allows you to connect and charge from a generator as an alternative option, which is great for many remote off-grid areas.
By storing and using your own clean, renewable energy generated, you become self-sufficient with more energy independence whilst caring for the environment.
Not every battery system on the market will provide blackout protection.
Many offer storage only, allowing to use the energy after the sun goes down but will shut down completely if the grid goes down.
Others have limited blackout protection, they will allow you to use whats available in the battery during the blackout but cannot recharge until the grid is back on. This is often the case when retrofitting or upgrading existing systems. As the new battery inverter is not directly connected to the solar panels, it relays on the existing solar-only inverter to be live to pass through power generated (AC coupling) and is not able to recharge until the solar inverter is working again.
Our Soluna systems can be connected directly to solar panels via our inbuilt hybrid solar + battery inverter (DC coupling) to provide true blackout protection and recharging capabilities during power outages. Our Power Bank system can be connected to the grid as a hybrid system or installed as a complete stand-alone system independent from the utility grid, we even have a generator input to allow more power and recharging option. We can also connect to existing solar PV systems (AC coupled) however the blackout protection is then limited by the solar only inverter already installed.
The short answer absolutely. However there are a number of different options to choose from.
You can simply connect to any existing solar system via the solar-only inverter (AC coupling). Note there are some limitations with this option when it comes to blackout protected – read more about this in the ‘what happens in a blackout’ FAQ section above.
You can connect to an existing system and split the solar panels between the pre-installed solar-only inverter and the new Soluna system. Only the solar panels connected directly to the Soluna system will work in a blackout (DC coupled). Depending on the age of the existing system there can be some complications due to electrical regulations changing overtime. You may be required to upgrade wiring, isolators and the racking of the existing solar system. Your installer will advise of this at time of quotation.
Depending on the age of the system often it is easier and cheaper to install a complete new system with the latest technology and restart all the warranty periods together. You then have the option for a complete DC coupled system allowing greater backup protection and maximum efficiency system.
The amount you will save by adding a battery can vary dramatically, our dealers will work out the estimated savings on an individual bases.
Below are a few key factor to look at:
How do you use energy? Is it mostly all day when your solar panels are producing the most amount of instant power or in the evenings when you may be paying a high peak tariff from the utilities?
What size system can fit on your roof? Note bigger doesn’t always mean better. Once your battery is charged, any excess production goes back into the grid, often the utilities will give you a much lower rate for your power than what they charge you to use theirs at night. This can be a waste of energy going back and also waste of money putting on the extra panels. Same goes for battery sizing, there is no point paying for a 13.5kWh system when you may only need 7kWh. A Soluna dealer can work out the best size for your needs.
Will you start with a small battery then scale up in the future? Needs can change overtime as your family or business grows and appliances change. Soluna S8 and S12 Power Bank’s can fit 1, 2 or 3 batteries inside, giving you ultimate choice.
Battery sizing is usually determined by how many kWh of energy you use at night time and how big your solar system is to ensure supply to your home and being able to charge the battery.
A small solar system wont be able to charge a big battery very well, if at all.
Having single-phase (1ph) or three-phase (3ph) also plays its part. If you have 3ph loads then you need to consider specific 3ph products for best results.
To make it easy Soluna offers a range of battery systems. Our Power Bank series cater to 1ph, the S4 for small homes, S8 and S12 for medium and large homes. We also offer the 15K Pack HV which is a specific 3ph battery for homes and small businesses.
Our Power Cell is designed for larger commercial applications.
Both kW (kilowatt) and kWh (kilowatt hour) are measurement of power and energy in thousand-watt steps. kW is instant power whereas kWh is energy over time.
A 2kW (2000 watt) oven running for 1 hour uses 2kWh. So does a 20 watt light bulb if it ran for 20 hours.
A battery with 10kWh stored energy could run the 2kW over for 5 hours or the 20 watt light bulb for 500 hours.
In reality you will likely have a few appliances running at once, such as a TV, lights, fridge etc. Keep in mind that whilst battery sizes vary with amount of stored energy (kWh capacity), the output power at one time will be fixed.
For example the Power Bank S12 can store 11.5kWh (nominal) and outputs max 5kW of energy at any one time. So make sure your not running more than 5kW of appliances at once. If you did run 5kW of appliances all at once and continuously, then the Power Bank would last just under 2.5 hours.
Our 15K Pack HV for 3ph properties holds 15kWh (nominal) and has a 10kW output, meaning you could run a 10kW appliance for 1.5 hours or the 20 watt light bulb for 1000 hours/41 days.
Life expectancy of a battery is measured in cycles. A cycle is a full discharge and recharge of the battery with the DOD (depth of discharge) design life set by the manufacture or system designer.
The Soluna Power Bank batteries come with 6000 cycles, or approx 16 years if you do one cycle per day. Note the warranty is set to 10 years as its possible to design the system to have more than one cycle per day.
Our unique company focus is to close the loop on the battery energy metal cycle by incorporating partnerships with Lithium Australia, VSPC and Envirostream. These partnerships ensure lower lithium wastage, end-of-life battery recycling programs plus reusing the Mixed Metal Dust (MMD) from old batteries to make new cathode powders for future new batteries, this puts Soluna Australia truly in the heart of the sustainability cycle.
We also understand that every home and business is different, we don’t all use the same amount of energy nor at the same time of day and night. We have a number of different system sizes available to cater for different needs plus our internal smart energy management system responds to your specific demand to maximise self-consumption and savings.
We offer the ultimate blackout protection, including option for a generator input and can be both an on-grid hybrid or complete stand-alone system with all-in-one neat design and fast installation. Our 1ph or 3ph options available either as a new system or retrofit to any existing solar system easily.
Through our SolBank package, we also offer a personal financial planner for free holistic wealth and debt reduction strategy plan to really see your savings at work and potentially wipe thousands off your home loan interest and get you mortgage free quickly.
See our ABOUT US page for more information.
There are a number of rebates and incentives in place across Australia which can vary from state to state and even local councils.
For businesses there may be additional tax benefits too.
Your local Soluna dealer will advise what is available to you in your area and provide a tailored quotation accordingly.
Most of our dealers offer many different ways to pay. No matter if its cash from savings, redraw from a home loan or a finance plan, solar + battery systems provide an excellent return on investment to get your money back and more plus generate savings from day 1.
Soluna can take things a step further though our Solbank package offering. We have created a partnership with a personal financial planner who can create a free wealth and debt reduction strategy plan specifically tailored for you. This takes into account your home loan plus other debts or investment properties and looks at where the estimated battery saving can be applied to potentially wipe thousands off your home loan interest and get you mortgage free quickly. Often through this approach they can find savings already there where you didn’t think there was any and also build a cash reserve for a rainy day without the need for additional finance. However they can also organised personal loans and get a better home loan if you wish too, all tailored and in their strategy plan to get you debt free quickly. Check out the SOLBANK page for more info.
One thing for sure is that you wont get any return on investment by continuing to pay the electricity utility and you’re basically giving your money away for free.
The best time to buy solar + batteries was yesterday. So if you are serious and want to start lowering your bills note that pricing will vary depending on a number of factors:
Are you installing a complete new system or retrofitting to an existing solar system?
Do you qualify for state or federal rebates or incentives?
What size system you install?
We can connect you with a local Soluna dealer to discuss the right system for you and obtain a free quote.