How Much Do Batteries for Solar Panels Cost in 2024?

January 12, 2024

It may come as a surprise, but solar energy, one of the most powerful and promising renewable energy sources, has its limitations. While they’re not critical, solar energy still depends on weather conditions and daily cycles.

The good news is that you can store the excess energy with the help of solar power batteries. But why would you need that? And that, my dear reader, is an excellent question worth delving into.

Pumping the excess energy into solar batteries might seem like an overkill. But you’re probably aware of all the pros and challenges of going solar. Speaking of which, you’ll need all the energy you can store (and some solar batteries installed) during a cloudy, rainy day or a power outage.

That explains why, alongside the growing popularity of solar energy, there has been an increasing demand for solar battery backups in the last three years.

How Much Do Batteries for Solar Panels Cost in 2024

Source: EIA

Statista illustrates the dynamics of the global battery storage market estimate between 2022 and 2028, with the gap estimated at $12.1 billion.

Hence, many Americans are interested in the prices, types, and features of solar batteries, especially solar power batteries, for home solar systems.

So, without further ado, let’s examine how much a backup battery for solar panels costs, what influences the price, and ways to save.

What Is a Solar Power Battery?

People’s desire to access renewable energy began long ago with the creation of solar collectors. In simple terms, a collector consists of two parts – a receiver and a concentrator. The receiver gathered solar radiation, and the concentrator converted it into energy. In earlier times, energy was obtained by heating water to the point of boiling.

Today, as society progresses, there is an understanding of the potential for the development of solar energy and the utilization of its resources. According to Statista, nearly $300 billion was invested in this industry in 2022 alone.

How Much Do Batteries for Solar Panels Cost in 2024

Source: Statista

However, merely harnessing solar energy is not enough; it needs to be stored for use in critical moments. One of the essential elements of a solar power system now fulfills this function – the solar backup battery.

The accumulated energy stored in the solar battery system can be used to power a home or even sell excess energy back to the grid.

Why Do You Need a Solar Backup Battery?

Backup batteries for solar panels store the electricity generated by your solar panels when the sun isn’t shining or when your solar system doesn’t produce enough electricity. In such cases, you will always have access to electricity without worrying about unplanned outages.

A solar battery itself has sufficient capacity to fully meet the energy needs of your household. However, it depends on how much energy you consume per day and the coverage area. If a large volume of energy is required, multiple batteries can be synchronized in various ways.

However, when installing a solar system, you likely aim to have uninterrupted access to electricity in any weather. Here, it’s worth considering backup solar batteries for homes. You will benefit from them if:

  • There is a power outage from the main grid, regardless of the cause – technical malfunction, human error, or natural disasters.
  • The local power grid’s operation is unstable, leaving your electronic devices vulnerable to potential damage from power interruptions.
  • Your battery is broken or damaged, requiring urgent repair or replacement.
  • You want to alternate between batteries occasionally to distribute the load evenly, thus maintaining their energy capacity and power for an extended period.

Thus, batteries for solar panels are a modern solution that addresses productivity, reliability, and safety concerns in case of emergencies.

How Does a Solar Panel Battery Work?

If you are already interested in solar batteries, it is crucial to understand how they work. Knowing the basics will help you understand the specifications of solar power batteries and avoid overpaying or choosing ones that do not suit your solar system’s power needs.

Some of the main components of a solar system are solar panels, inverters, and solar batteries. Let’s discuss how they work together to provide your home with green energy.

Stage 1: Solar Energy Collection

Solar panels absorb and transform sunlight into electricity through photovoltaic elements. Most panels primarily use crystalline silicon as their material. Sunlight hits the surface of the silicon element, and silicon atoms absorb it. Photons from sunlight then knock electrons out of atoms, and as these electrons move freely, they generate an electric current.

Stage 2: Current Transformation

The current generated by the panel is alternating current (AC), meaning its direction periodically changes. However, most home electrical devices and systems operate on direct current (DC). This is where the inverter comes into play. There are various types of inverters, but their principle of operation is the same: the inverter receives alternating current and converts it into an electric field that charges capacitors. When these capacitors discharge, they produce direct current.

Stage 3: Battery Charging

The direct current is then sent to the solar backup battery to store excess electrical energy generated by the solar panels. From balancing electricity loads to filling the gaps in the energy system to reducing carbon footprint and electric bills, solar batteries have the potential to ensure uninterrupted power and reduce dependence on traditional energy sources.

If you’re an owner of a large solar system, you’ll need a powerful solar battery storage system to provide the entire house with electricity for an extended period during a main grid power outage or serious local electrical damage.

How Much Does a Solar Backup Battery Cost?

Our World In Data claims that over the last 30 years, battery cost has plummeted by 97%. Quite impressive, isn’t it? It’s high time to consider purchasing a device because it’s not only cost-effective now but also economically beneficial in the future.

Analyzing various data, we’ve determined that the average solar battery price ranges from $5000 to $18,000.

Average Cost $12,200
Price Range $5,000 – $18,000
Low-End Cost $240
High-End Cost $35,000

How Much Does the Installation of Solar Batteries Cost?

If you order a battery from a reputable brand, sometimes you may get free installation along with the warranty. However, this is not common.

More often than not, to integrate a solar battery into the system, you’ll need to hire a professional installer yourself. Typically, this will cost you no more than $100.

Types of Solar Batteries

There are many types of batteries classified by various factors – the type of active material, structural features, etc. According to Allied Market Research statistics, the most popular type from today until the projected year 2027 will be the lithium-ion battery. By 2030, global demand for them is expected to increase almost sevenfold.

How Much Do Batteries for Solar Panels Cost in 2024

Source: Allied Market Research

Let’s examine the distinctive features of lithium-ion and other popular batteries.

Lithium-Ion Batteries

They have the highest energy coefficient and service life of all types but are also the most expensive. They are free from the memory effect and have high density, allowing them to store more energy per unit weight.

They can typically provide up to 90% of their available capacity per day. The power range of one battery is from 3 to 20 kWh.

Lead-Acid Batteries

That’s the oldest type of solar backup battery, but it’s still widely used. Such solar batteries are relatively inexpensive but have a low energy coefficient and service life since they comprise lead plates immersed in acidic electrolytes. On top of that, they’re inefficient at freezing temperatures if the load is high.

Such solar batteries can be fully discharged, providing only 30–40% of their total capacity per day. The power of one battery varies from 100 to 250 W.

Nickel-Cadmium Batteries

They have a higher energy coefficient than lead-acid but are more expensive. They also have a memory effect, meaning they can lose their ability to store a charge if not fully discharged before charging.

Characterized by a relatively high level of self-discharge, with a cycle life of up to 1000 cycles. The power of one such device equals 100–250 W.

Price Differences by Type

Of course, the specific price of a solar battery for home depends on many factors, and it’s always better to compare prices from different suppliers before making a purchase. However, there are certain patterns in pricing based on the characteristics of each type of battery described above.

Type Approximate Price Why is that?
Lithium-Ion Batteries $800 to $1500 per kWh
  1. Highest energy coefficient and service lifeSealed construction, requiring no maintenance
Lead-Acid Batteries Up to $300 per kWh
  1. Lowest energy coefficient and service lifeOpen construction requiring maintenance
Nickel-Cadmium Batteries Up to $500 per kWh
  1. Intermediate service lifeOpen construction requiring maintenance

In general, lead-acid batteries are 2-3 times cheaper than lithium-ion batteries and approximately 1.5 times cheaper than nickel-cadmium batteries.

Other Factors Affecting Price

In addition to the type of solar battery system, the price depends on several factors:

  • Capacity: Higher capacity means longer operation without recharging but also increases weight, size, and cost.
  • Quality: Solar batteries made from high-quality materials and employing the latest technologies cost more but guarantee resistance to wear, stable operation, and protection against overheating or short circuits.
  • Power: Devices with higher power cost more. However, in this case, more expensive doesn’t necessarily mean better. Minimal power might suffice as long as it meets your needs.
  • Brand: Buying a device from a well-known brand may require you to pay more for the warranty, technical support, and confidence in purchasing a quality model.

In any case, consider the individual needs of your solar system and budget, comparing different models using various online services.

Battery Storage VS Solar Battery System

In general, to choose the right energy storage and determine its quantity, you need to carefully study the technical parameters of your solar system.

Type of Solar Power Station (SPS)

For standalone SPS, more powerful and capacious batteries are needed than for hybrid ones. Autonomous SPS are not connected to the power grid and rely entirely on solar panels and batteries, whereas hybrid systems can use the power grid as an additional source.

Power of Solar Panels

The power indicates how much energy the panels can generate per hour. It affects the number of batteries needed to store the generated energy. The higher the power of the panels, the more batteries are required.

Total Power of Electric Appliances

Electric appliances, such as refrigerators, TVs, and air conditioners, consume electrical energy. Their total power shows how much energy they consume per hour. The higher the total power, the more batteries are needed.

Frequency and Duration of Autonomous Operation

This depends on climatic conditions, season, day of the week, time of day, etc. The more often and longer the SPS operates autonomously, the more batteries are needed.

Presence of Energy-Intensive Loads

Energy-intensive loads are devices that consume a lot of energy and have high power (pump, fan, electric motor). The more such loads, the more batteries are needed.

How To Get a Solar Backup Battery Cheaper

There are several ways to get a battery at a lower cost, from government support to buying used devices. Read on to learn about possible cost-saving methods.

Federal Tax Credit

In the U.S., there is a federal tax credit for clean energy, amounting to 30% of the cost of solar equipment and work. It applies to battery projects installed in 2022 and remains at 30% until 2032. Regardless of the state you live in, the credit will be available to you. Try it, and you might get a financial boost of over $3000 per kilowatt of fuel cell capacity.

State Programs

Some states offer additional programs, tax credits, and other incentives to support the installation of solar batteries. For up-to-date and detailed information, contact the government agency responsible for this matter in your state.

For example, the state of Oregon offers the Oregon Solar + Storage Rebate discount system for installing batteries. You can receive assistance ranging from $5000 or 40% to 60% of the net cost, regardless of your income level.

Buying Used Equipment

Used or refurbished batteries can be significantly cheaper than new ones. However, don’t fall for excessively low prices. After all, a used battery will no longer provide 100% coverage of your energy needs. So, before purchasing, pay attention to:

  • Battery condition
  • Manufacturer’s warranty
  • Results of a technical check for functionality

Incentives from Energy Companies

Sometimes, companies indeed offer incentive programs for consumers, which may include:

  • Discounts on the purchase or installation of a solar panel battery.
  • Incentives such as tax credits, grants, or other forms of funding.
  • Reimbursement, where you get money back for the energy you generate and feed back into the grid.
  • Leases that allow you to install the device for a monthly fee.

Important note: The availability of these programs varies in different states.

Can I Add a Solar Backup Battery to My System?

You can easily integrate a solar backup battery into your already-established solar system. By doing so, you expand your backup power capabilities. The results from the 2023 solar energy report prove that adding battery storage is one way to enhance the value of solar energy.

It’s a great idea to secure yourself with electricity in critical situations. Additionally, you can save extra money on utility bills. Why? Because you can use electricity from the battery during nighttime or other periods when electricity rates are higher.

However, make sure you really need a solar backup battery. According to the EIA, the average American consumes 889 kWh of energy per month. Calculate your monthly energy needs and compare them with your battery’s capabilities. Based on this, determine whether you need a backup device.

Will the Price of the Storage System Change?

Actually, the price of the device itself won’t change. However, installing a new solar backup battery to synchronize with all elements of the solar system involves additional expenses. Why is that?

  1. Installation complexity: If your solar system was designed with the possibility of adding an energy-efficient device later, integrating solar batteries will be easy.
  2. Labor cost: Assuming your solar system operates properly and doesn’t require significant upgrades, the cost of hiring professionals to add a battery should not exceed $1000.

Still, it’s somewhat more economical to install a new battery storage system simultaneously with the solar system. However, in any case, the costs of installing the battery will pay off in the long run.

How To Prolong the Lifespan of a Solar Backup Battery

Certainly, you’d want the battery to work as long as possible because it’s a considerable investment. To achieve this, try:

  • Not discharging the device below 20% of its capacity.
  • Not leaving the battery discharged for an extended period.
  • Protecting it from temperature fluctuations (the minimum temperature should be above 20°C).
  • Shielding it from direct sunlight.
  • Regularly checking for damages.

Besides these general recommendations, some types of batteries have additional operational rules. For example, lithium-ion batteries should not be fully discharged.

Find the Right Solar Backup Battery

If you’re still weighing all the pros and cons of adding a solar backup battery to your home solar system, consider this a sign! Allow yourself the luxury of independence from local power grids and likely interruptions with the right solar backup battery.

By comparing solar battery prices from different suppliers and leveraging government support, you can save on a backup battery and reap significant benefits from using solar energy.

Frequently Asked Questions

Will a new solar backup battery be compatible with my existing solar system?

A backup home solar battery is generally compatible with existing solar systems. However, it’s always worth checking compatibility, perhaps with the help of an electrician or a solar panel installation specialist.

How to choose the right solar batteries for your property

When choosing among different devices, find out its required capacity and power. Pay attention to the device’s quality, warranty availability, and the brand’s reputation.

Does professional installation come with the solar battery cost?

Most often, companies do not provide installation services as part of the product purchase. Therefore, budget for installation costs in addition to the device.

Andy Worford
Andy Worford

Andy is a Founder, Chief Content Officer, regular contributor, and idea generator behind Solar Power Systems. He is well-versed in various aspects of solar energy, including photovoltaic systems, solar policy trends, and green technology innovations.