So solar batteries are a new technology. And new technologies fall in price, right? Does that mean you should wait to buy? Well, here are 5 reasons why you shouldn’t.
#1 – The battery cells are only 20% of the cost of your system
Yes battery cells are falling in cost as the electric car and energy storage industries take off around the world. It’s one of the reasons that we started Evergen. But the actual battery cells only make up around 20% of the cost of a solar battery system. The biggest cost component isn’t hardware at all but rather the installation and distribution. So when you hear people talking about how far battery prices are falling, they’re usually referring to the battery cells not the other 80% of the system costs.
Cost make up of a typical solar battery system
#2 – we’ve just had a big fall in prices
There’s a reason that you’re suddenly hearing a lot about home batteries. The last few years have seen a massive fall in prices to the point that they now make sense to put in the home. Research from Bloomberg New Energy Finance shows that battery cell prices fell 70% in just 5 years. After that big change in prices, BNEF forecasts that battery cell prices will continue to fall, still strongly, but at a more gradual rate of 9-20% per year.
How does the price fall of battery cells translate to the overall installed cost of a solar battery system? Multiply the maximum forecast price decline by the proportion of total system cost. 20% x 20% = 4% impact on total system price per year.
#3 – you’re missing out on savings
Every day you don’t have an intelligent energy system installed you are missing out on savings. How much? We analysed the savings of Evergen system owner Greg Maclean here. He saved $1,800 in the first year of operation. Those savings represent 12% of the cost of the same system today.
So the system would have to fall in price by more than 12% over a year for it to be worth the wait. And with battery cells only 20% of the total cost of a system, that means they would have to fall by 60% at least for that to make up for the lost savings.
#4 – solar subsidies are being phased out
Yes there are still federal subsidies available for rooftop solar in the home. Thanks to the Federal Government’s Small Scale Renewable Energy Scheme, you can get $3,000 – $4,000 off the cost of a typical solar installation. But with 1.5 million systems already installed around the country, the scheme is being gradually wound back. So every year you wait, the smaller the subsidy gets.
#5 – there’s no technological break-through on the horizon yet
In his excellent video series, leading CSIRO energy scientist and former Evergen CEO Dr Glenn Platt discusses the future of energy technology. He says: “My expectation is that the sorts of solar panels and batteries we use today are going to be the same sorts of solar panels and batteries we use quite a few years ahead. What’s changing is we’re getting better at mass producing those technologies.”
So what are you waiting for?
There are always reasons to sit around and wait, but now you have 5 reasons why you shouldn’t when it comes to solar battery systems. If you’re wondering how much a system could save you, Evergen can do a detailed system design for your home.