Two Changes in the Solar Industry in the Last Two Years

Two Changes in the Solar Industry

Two Changes in the Solar Industry in the Last Two Years

More and more people are opting for rooftop solar panels as an affordable and sustainable energy option, but we’ve seen a major uptick in requests for two things in particular: battery back-up systems for solar panels and home charging systems for electric vehicles. The rapid progression of the solar industry has driven the need for additional solar options and motivated current or prospective customers to expand their solar setup to include off-grid and EV-charging capabilities.

New Back-Up Options

Ten years ago, there were almost no options for a homeowner who wanted to install solar with a battery back-up. There have always been fossil fuel back-up systems, but they‘re noisy and can run out of fuel in the case of a widespread catastrophe.

As we go into 2023, there are many more solar back-up options for the consumer, from the Tesla Powerwall to lesser known battery back-up systems that can shift from grid-tied to off-grid operation depending on the client’s need. 

These battery back-up systems are designed to use energy from the grid and the solar array while keeping the battery at full charge in case of a grid failure and typically switch over to battery power within milliseconds, as soon as a grid failure is detected. In the event of a long-term blackout, solar panels paired with a battery will recharge every morning after the sun rises. Solar with a battery is also silent, with zero exhaust emissions. 

These systems are now priced similar to the cost of fossil fuel generators, making them more accessible to consumers

Another emerging back-up option is using the battery in an electric vehicle to power a home during an outage. As of 2022, both the Ford Lightning and the Kia EV6 have this capability. We predict that more electric vehicles will offer home power back-up as an option within the next five years, and using an EV as a battery back-up will be a common practice by the 2030s.   

Tampa Bay Solar has seen a high demand for battery back-up systems in the last 12 months and predict it will continue in 2023.  

EV Home Charging Systems

In addition to more requests for battery back-up systems, we’ve also seen an increase in demand for home charging systems for electric vehicles. In the most general sense, this is simply a 240-volt outlet (for fast charging) or a 120-volt outlet (for trickle charging) installed on a garage wall for a present or future electric vehicle.

Many of our solar clients own an electric vehicle or plan to purchase one in the next 18 months. The most efficient way to power an EV is by using kilowatts that are already falling on your roof every single day, even on cloudy days!

After you pay off your solar array, you are effectively fueling your EV for free. In this regard, there are four ways solar pays for itself if you have or plan on getting an electric vehicle:

1. The savings on your electric bill

2. The increased value of your home with solar

3. The 30% federal tax credit

4. Your savings in gasoline costs after you buy an EV

If you’ve never looked into solar before now, call us today for a free estimate. We can help you explore all your options, from rooftop systems to battery back-ups and even EV home charging stations, to help you save money and take back your energy independence.

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