Powering whole homes with solar + storage is now possible — and smart

American were expected to have installed a record 5.6 GW of Solar Energy Systems For Home in 2023, according to BloombergNEF. While the residential storage market has been slower to take off, various factors may indicate that consumers could be willing to include batteries along with their Solar Power System.

Technology has continued to evolve, and manufacturers have developed some exciting solutions. While traditionally, users had to choose between powering critical and non-critical loads with partial home battery backup, today it’s possible to have a solar-backed storage solution that can hold enough power to run a home’s air conditioning, major appliances and charge an EV, all while keeping the lights on. With product advancement and generous government incentives, it doesn’t have to be more expensive than powering critical loads.

Full home vs. critical load

Critical load backup: Traditional residential energy storage technology can only provide enough electricity to power essentials such as heating, lighting, refrigeration and outlets for small appliances and charging devices.

Full-home backup: Including enough storage for electricity to power the entire home eliminates the need for homeowners to choose which loads will be available during an outage. Whole-home load management covers critical and non-critical loads such as air conditioning, water heaters, laundry, ovens and stoves.

Important factors for homeowners and installers to consider when deciding between partial vs. full-home backup include:

Cost: Residential energy storage is modular. Installers can help homeowners understand how many units it will take to provide partial or full home backup and how this affects cost.In discussing cost, it’s also important for homeowners to understand that, with technology advancements and IRA tax benefits, full-home backup doesn’t have to be more expensive. It’s understandable to assume that whole-home load management systems would cost significantly more, requiring multiple inverters, larger batteries and longer installation times. However, innovative residential energy storage systems offer slim, stackable battery modules, DC-coupled hybrid inverters and turnkey systems with increased intelligence and maximum storage capacity.

Safety: Residential energy storage systems vary by size, capacity and battery chemistry; however, the most trusted global energy providers develop solutions with safety as the top priority, focusing on building long-term solutions that comply with the most stringent safety standards. Solutions like Canadian Solar’s EP Cube contain lithium-iron phosphate batteries and completed UL 9540A safety tests, signifying a superior safety rating and a key differentiator in the emerging marketplace.

The future of energy independence

Energy storage continues to evolve with new solutions coming to market daily that offer sleek design, fast configuration and built-in intelligence. Leading global energy providers must meet the growing demand for residential solar with a vision to instill energy independence, an easy installation process and relief for the homeowner. The ability to power an entire house in a cost-effective manner is an exciting step in the future of residential energy independence and, in turn, combatting the effects of climate change. With further consumer education, we should see vast market growth in 2023.