In January 2016 the first Tesla Powerwall wasinstalled in Australia by Energex, owned by the Queensland government followed by the first residential unit iby Natural Solar in a Sydney home.
The Energex 12 month trial aims to collect data to study what effect solar batteries may have on future peak demand and gain insights in how to address issues such as reduced electricity demand.
The first residential Tesla Powerwall is installed in a Sydney suburban home by self confessed nerd Nick Pfitzer ( pictured below). At a cost including panels, battery, inverter and installation of around $16,000, the system will never pay for itself before the battery warranty is up. Like all new technology, it can take a while before the price becomes affordable for the masses. His 7kWh system stores electricity generated during the day so it be used in the evening.
6 months later, what’s the verdict?
Nick claims to have cut his power bill by up nearly 90%, from $5 to $6 per day to 59 cents.
The way to achieve this is to change the way you use electricity. An example is to use solar power more during the day for washing clothes and using the dishwasher. Then use the stored electricity in the battery for use in the evening.
On a cloudy day, you still have to draw power from the grid but when it’s sunny Nick says the battery will charge fully by 11am, even after powering the house and using the dishwasher. Over the six months, solar and batteries power the house about three quarters of the time. Any excess power once the battery is charged is fed back into the grid. He reckons it will take 10 years for the system to pay for itself. The battery will degrade over the years which could affect the payback period.
Nick installed A 7 kWh Tesla Powewall 1. Now they have released the Powerwall 2 with double the storage capacity. More on the later.