Battery storage to be standard in all newbuilds

20 March 2017 - Solar and battery storage will be included as a standard feature in all newly built houses in Australia within just a few years’ time, a key solar and building industry player has predicted

March , 2017 Read more: One Step Off The Grid  By Sophie Vorrath 

CSR Bradford – whose NSW-based company started in insulation more than 80 years ago, and has since expanded into a broader range of energy saving building materials, as well as solar and storage through Bradford Solar – is an Tesla Powerwall certified installer, and has been watching the growth of the battery storage market closely over the past few years.

CSR Bradford’s executive general manager, Anthony Tannous, says that in the few months since consumers got wind that Tesla was releasing a new and improved version of its home battery, Tesla Powerwall 2, his company alone has had close to 1,000 inquiries about the product.

But the market that Tannous sees as particularly fertile is in new housing, where he says the addition of solar and storage is rapidly becoming a standard feature of off-the plan homes.

Certainly, that is what CSR Bradford itself is doing in its partnership with Victorian housing developers Arden Homes, which sees the company include the Bradford Solar ChargePack including Tesla Powerwall 2 as standard in every new home.

And they’re not the only ones.

Tesla Powerwall Lifestyle

In another CSR Bradford collaboration, this time with NSW building group Mojo Homes, Tesla Powerwall is being recommended as an optional extra.

“I have a vision that every house built in a few years’ time will have a battery installed, it just makes so much sense,” Tannous said.

“We’ve been working with most of the major builders across Australia and a lot of them are starting to include storage as standard… while others offer it as an upgrade,” he said.

“And that will just gain more momentum.”

A key driver of that momentum, of course, is the falling cost of battery storage technology which, in turn, has been driven down by some of the key industry players, like LG Chem and Tesla.

Tesla’s 13.2kWh Powerwall 2, for example, which is set to arrive on Australian shores in April, offers twice the capacity of its predecessor at nearly half the cost per kilowatt-hour, and comes in a streamlined box that is one-third smaller than the Powerwall 1. Tesla, itself, has predicted all solar homes – new or existing – will have battery storage within 10 years.

Add to this the 2016-17 summer of record-breaking heat waves and unpredictable power supply and you have fertile ground for home battery market growth.

“Those black outs and threats of blackouts increased peoples’ awareness, people are doing more research into how they can protect themselves by having solar and storage,” Tannous said.

“(Tesla Powerwall 2 is) twice the capacity, at a not much higher price, that enables you to …store the energy during the day, giving you enough power to cover consumption during the night.”

Tannous says that customers can install a Bradford Solar ChargePack including Powerwall 2 for $18,999. He says 5kW of solar is “ideal” for the capacity of Tesla’s new 13.2kWh lithium-ion battery.

“The savings are there,” he added. “A 6kW Bradford Solar system can see households save up to $2,500 on their electricity bills a year.”

March , 2017 Read more: One Step Off The Grid  By Sophie Vorrath 

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