Buying a home with domestic battery storage: a ‘powerful’ decision.

Original Article
November 20th, 2023


Share


Image shows a domestic battery storage system in a living room

As domestic battery storage systems become increasingly prevalent in UK homes, enquiries about their usage and functionality are on the rise. This article aims to address crucial questions that may emerge, equipping agents with valuable information to provide informed responses to potential customers.

What is a battery storage system?

Battery storage systems store surplus electricity, harnessed during periods of low energy demand or excess production from renewable sources like solar panels. This stored energy is then used during peak demand, enabling homeowners to reduce electricity bills and save money.

Will my battery storage system work with my solar panels?

You must check with the manufacturer, but most home battery storage systems are designed to work in conjunction with solar panels. This ensures optimal utilisation during periods without sunlight of excess solar-generated electricity, maximising direct use.

Do I need solar panels to use the battery?

While pairing with solar panels is beneficial, battery systems can still be utilised without them. For example, if you have a “time of use” tariff you can charge your battery during periods of low electricity demand when rates are lower, then use the stored energy during peak hours, saving on bills.

What are the maintenance requirements?

Adhering to manufacturer guidelines and warranty requirements is crucial for optimal performance, safety, and longevity. Regular checks, including overheating and dust inspections, are essential. Many systems offer smartphone app integration for real-time warnings and updates.

How many power does it store?

The storage capacity of installed systems varies, falling within the range of 5-15 kWh. Generally, higher storage capacity is associated with a higher cost. To illustrate how this capacity can support powering your home, consider that an average home, as estimated by Ovo Energy, consumes approximately 7.5 kWh per day. Hence, a battery with a 15 kWh capacity should be capable of supplying power to that home for around two days. Note that the maximum power flow will be limited to typically 5kw at any one time.

Will it power my home during a power cut?

Some battery storage systems are capable of powering your home during a power cut. Check with your manufacturer to see if this is a feature that is offered with your battery.

Will a battery storage system increase my home’s resale value?

A battery storage system can enhance property value by increasing energy efficiency and power cut resilience, potentially appealing to buyers. It may also improve the Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating if solar panels are installed as well.

How long do domestic battery storage systems last?

Lifespan typically ranges from 10-15 years, contingent on usage and maintenance. The usable capacity diminishes over time; therefore, you may not get the maximum storage capacity for the entire lifetime of your battery.

How much do they cost?

Installation cost for home batteries varies between £3,500 and £10,000, with higher capacity units generally being more expensive.

Can it power my electric vehicle?

Whilst battery storage systems can charge electric vehicles, offering a useful top-up, they are unlikely to fully charge the vehicle overnight.

What are the safety considerations?

Home battery systems are designed with safety in mind. They use smart features to manage their internal temperature, monitor battery health, and prevent issues like overheating. The batteries are enclosed with proper ventilation, and safety measures include emergency shutdown and sometimes fire suppression systems. Reputable brands follow industry standards and certifications to ensure quality and safety. Professional installation and adherence to guidelines are crucial, and regular monitoring of associated apps is essential to keep everything in check. For homeowners, it’s essential to choose trusted brands, follow guidelines, and keep up to date with latest industry advice for a safe and worry-free experience with their battery storage systems.

This article was written by Samuel Lott, Energy Data Consultant at Sava.  

Find out more about how we support housing providers with their zero-carbon planning, and work with career changers looking to enter the residential surveying profession.