There’s nothing worse than being left in the dark, figuratively and literally. Solar roofs are a great way to produce clean energy and lower your electricity bill. However, your fancy new roof cannot store collected energy without the help of a battery backup system. You can expect to spend between $7,850 to $16,500, or a national average of $12,175, for a solar battery system and installation.
The battery stores collected solar power so your home can use it when your solar array cannot produce energy. The battery backup system and solar array are both building-integrated photovoltaics (BIPV). Keep in mind it is more cost-effective to install the battery at the same time as your new solar array to create a hybrid system.
In this pricing guide, we’ll cover:
- Average Costs
- Cost Estimator By Kilowatt-Hour
- Cost Estimator By Units
- Other Factors That Affect Cost
- Related Services
- Cost By Location
Average Costs of Solar Batteries in 2023
|National Average Cost||$12,175|
|Typical Price Range||$7,850 – $16,500|
|Extreme Low End Cost||$240|
|Extreme High End Cost||$30,000|
Most solar battery installations fall into the $7,850 to $16,500 range, but many factors can impact your budget and overall costs. A small lead-acid battery used for emergency power in an RV can cost as little as $240, while a luxury, German-manufactured Sonnen battery for a 6,000-square-foot home can set you back as much as $30,000.
Solar Battery Cost Estimator By Kilowatt-Hour
Solar roof systems produce the most energy in the middle of the day when you are using the least amount of home energy. Without a battery, this energy is sent back to the power grid. Solar batteries help lower your electric bill and allow you to use energy when you need it most, like during a power outage.
One of the best ways to estimate the overall system cost is to know how much energy in kilowatt-hours (kWh) your new solar battery needs to capture to power your home and appliances. On average, solar batteries cost between $400 to $750 per kilowatt-hour.
Solar batteries installed between 2023 to 2032 are eligible for a 30% credit on materials and labor.
Solar Battery Cost by Units
Larger homes may require more than one battery to power the home or offset 100% of electricity costs. Most solar batteries can be joined together to create circuits, creating one larger unit with greater capacity.
The U.S. Energy Information Association estimates that the average home uses around 29 kWh per day, or 886 kWh per month. It is important to understand how many kWh your home needs to support your average use if you want to save the most on your electric bill.
While many homeowners aim to offset 100% of their electric bills, most installations offset 40% to 60% of annual costs. It is also a good idea to purchase a larger capacity battery then stack smaller, less expensive batteries, together in a modular system. The larger your circuit, the higher its potential rate of failure.
Other Factors That Affect Cost
Going solar is a big decision with large upfront costs. It is more economical to install your new battery storage system at the same time as your solar roof. Consider these additional factors affecting your installation costs, including location, labor costs, incentives, and more.
Federal Solar Tax Credit
Solar upgrades, including solar storage systems and solar roofing materials, are eligible for a government tax credit. The program runs from 2022 to 2035.
Solar batteries installed between 2022 to 2032 are eligible for a 30% credit. Systems installed in 2033 are only eligible for a 26% credit, and those installed in 2034 will receive a 22% credit. There is no maximum amount a homeowner can claim.
- Energy storage devices with a capacity rating of 3 kilowatt-hours or greater
- Solar shingles, tiles, or panels
- Contractor labor costs, including permitting fees and inspection costs
- Balancing equipment, including wiring, mounting equipment, and inverters
- Sales tax on expenses
Many states also have policies governing renewable energy, offering their own incentives and rebates. The federal tax credit expires in 2035 unless it receives a congressional extension.
|Year||2022 – 2032||2033||2034|
Solar Battery Cost Estimator by Chemistry
Most residential solar systems use lithium-ion (Li-ion) batteries, the same technology found in smartphones. These batteries replaced cheaper lead-acid batteries, and there are two main types used in solar storage systems under the Li-ion umbrella: lithium iron phosphate (LFP) and nickel manganese cobalt (NMC).
NMC battery technology is older and slightly less expensive than LFP technology. NMC batteries have a higher energy density making the physical size smaller than the same capacity LFP battery. Additionally, NMC batteries perform better in cold temperatures. Overall, there are not many notable differences between the two cathode types.
Here’s a look at some of the most popular solar batteries:
|Battery||Lithium-Ion Battery Type|
|LG Chem RESU Prime||NMC|
Solar Battery Cost Estimator by Brand
Several U.S. brands manufacture solar storage systems, and as the technology continues to rise in popularity, we can expect to see more brands develop their own batteries.
Here are the most popular solar batteries and their average cost before tax incentives. Note that these costs will vary depending on your location and other factors.
Let’s look at the most popular solar storage systems:
- Enphase Encharge
- Generac PWRcell
- LG Chem RESU Prime
- Panasonic EverVolt
- SunPower Sunvault
- Tesla Powerwall
Enphase offers a 3.36 kWh storage system and a larger system with a capacity of 10.8 kWh. For the last decade, Enphase has been the market leader in microinverter technology for solar arrays. On the downside, while its modular storage systems are high-quality, they won’t work with any existing inverters, requiring an Enphase microinverter to operate.
Generac works to meet any budget with its three and six-module configurations offering 9 kWh to 18 kWh of capacity. Each PWRcell inverter handles up to 36kWh of storage capacity so systems are easily upgradeable to meet growing energy demands.
LG Chem RESU Prime
LG Chem’s RESU Prime batteries come in two capacities: 9.6 kWh and 16 kWh. The modular systems are upgradable, featuring the highest round-trip efficiency of any home energy storage system with a rating of 96%.
Panasonic’s EverVolt 2.0 helps homeowners achieve energy independence. The storage solution delivers an impressive 17.1 kWh up to 25.65 kWh storage capacity, and homeowners can monitor the all-weather system from their phones with an intuitive mobile app.
The German-engineered and luxury-minded SonneCore+ and ecoLinx come in three capacities ranging from 10 kWh to 30 kWh and are 100% recyclable. Sonnen backs each storage system with a 10-year or 15-year, 10,000-cycle to 15,000-cycle warranty, and the sleek designs pair with any new or existing solar array.
SunPower’s flexible solar energy storage system features a minimalistic design that comes in multiple storage capacities ranging from 13 kWh to 52 kWh. The smart, app-controlled system supplies backup power during blackouts and decreases energy and time of use during peak hours.
Elon Musk’s easy-to-install Tesla Powerwall 2 features a powerful electrical interface that is simple to connect while its compact design is equipped with industry-leading energy density. Tesla’s smart energy system provides 13 kWh of storage for self-consumption, backup, and time-based control.
Labor Cost to Install a Solar Battery
The cost of solar batteries typically decreases when installed at the same time as a solar panel system, and you should be prepared to spend approximately 60% of your total project costs on labor.
The total cost of installation combines materials and labor, and most solar providers charge per hour, with the average cost of installation falling between $45 to $70 per hour.
Additionally, solar battery storage systems require skilled electrical work. Your contractor will work with a local electrician to complete this portion of the job. Typically, electricians cost between $45 to $135 per hour.
Overall, labor rates depend on your location, the experience of the installer and electrician, the complexity of your installation, and other electrical work necessary to complete your job like a critical load panel or inverter installation.
|Solar installer per hr.||$45 – $70|
|Electrician per hr.||$45 to $135|
Critical Load Panel
Most homeowners install a backup load panel, or critical load panel, with their new battery system. The electrician routes important home technology such as lights, refrigerators, and freezers to the new load panel, ensuring they have priority and remain operational during blackouts.
Typical solar storage installations do not contain enough storage capacity to power every electronic in a home, especially energy-consuming air conditioners. Critical load panel installation and retrofitting typically cost between $1,100 to $3,000.
Your new solar battery stores direct current (DC). For your home to make use of the stored energy, it has to convert the current to alternating current (AC). Most storage systems do this automatically with a built-in inverter. However, some storage systems require an outside inverter. Inverter installations typically cost between $1,000 to $1,500.
Solar batteries most obviously require a solar roofing system. However, there are a few other related services and upgrades you should consider when making your decision.
Solar Roof Installation
Solar shingles and solar panels use solar cells to harness the sun’s rays and convert them into electricity. Traditional solar panels are simply larger versions of solar shingles, and both solar arrays work with energy storage systems.
Check out some of the key differences:
|Solar Shingles||Solar Panels|
|Installation Cost*materials and labor included||$55,800||$18,000|
|Lifespan*for peak performance||25 – 30 years||25 – 30 years|
|Size||12 inches x 86 inches x 1 inch||39 inches x 65 inches x 1.5 inches|
|Weight||13 pounds per square foot||40 pounds each|
|Installation Time||Minimum 1 week||Less than 1 day|
|Efficiency||10% – 22%||15% – 22%|
|Output||13 to 63 watts per shingle||250 to 400 watts per panel|
If your solar roof installation is part of a roof replacement, your roofers will need to remove the old materials for disposal. You can expect to spend between $1 to $3 per square foot, or around $1,200, for the service.
Most solar storage systems are rated for indoor and outdoor use. However, some batteries require additional outdoor housing to weatherproof the system.
|LG Chem RESU Prime||Indoor/Outdoor|
Cost of Solar Batteries By Location
All solar installations vary widely based on location and cost of living. Labor and materials cost significantly more in metro areas like Los Angeles or New York.
There is no way to know exactly what your solar storage installation will cost without receiving free quotes from professional contractors in your area to compare.
No. Home solar systems are a complicated technology, requiring electrical and building permits to modify or install, and improper installation can void the manufacturer’s warranty.
Most solar batteries maintain performance for 10 years, but this lifespan can range between 5 to 15 years. The longevity depends on many factors, including brand, battery chemistry, and ambient temperature. Be prepared to replace your solar battery about halfway through the 25-year lifespan of your solar roof.
Most home solar batteries power essential functions, not including electric heat or air conditioning, for a minimum of 12 hours. Typical installations with a 10-kWh storage capacity can power a house for 24 hours or more.
Many homeowners seek energy independence with their new solar roof installations. However, it is important to understand the battery storage system you select for your home. Not all batteries are designed to work independently of the grid, but it is possible with the right setup.
Installing a solar storage system ensures you get the most out of your new solar roof. The 30% tax credit makes it affordable for many homeowners, making it a great time to install the worthy investment. You can expect to spend between $7,850 to $16,500, or a national average of $12,175, for a solar battery system and installation. If you are ready to decrease your home’s grid reliance, contact a LawnStarter solar installation professional in your area to learn about the brands and your options.
Note: LawnStarter may get a referral fee for matching you with contractors in your area.
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