Tesla Motors is extending its reach beyond the automotive industry. Named one of Forbes magazine’s Most Innovative Companies in 2015, entrepreneur Elon Musk’s green technologies incubator broke into the luxury home power market that same year with a new product: The Tesla Powerwall. It’s basically a battery backup for your electricity, providing your home with continued power during any outage.
Camelot Homes recognizes that luxury homeowners are increasingly concerned about energy usage and working towards renewable, eco-conscious power solutions. Is a battery backup worth investing in? What other power options are available? We’re highlighting the benefits and downsides of Tesla’s home battery power so that luxury homeowners can better make informed decisions about alternative power sources for your home.
Tesla Powerwall 2
In fall 2016, Tesla introduced an upgraded version called the Powerwall 2 that doubles the original’s storage capacity of the original. The new home battery pack is sleeker, with a lower profile than its predecessor. Tesla isn’t the only company to offer home battery packs; both Panasonic and Samsung have launched similar products under the radar.
Storage capacity: 14 kWh
Twice the original unit’s capacity sounds amazing, until you realize that the average Arizona home uses 1012.7 kWh of electricity per month. That’s about 33.8 kilowatt-hours per day. The larger square footage of luxury homes in Arizona likely drives this number up significantly. Thus, you would need a handful of units to even temporarily power your home.
Cost: $5,500 per unit (plus hardware, deposit, and installation)
Solar panels cost an average of $16,800 before tax credits. The price of a single Powerwall is much lower, by comparison; however, the cost to purchase and install the three to six units you’ll likely need exceeds the cost of solar.
Integration with Solar Tech
Here’s where the Powerwall gets an energetic boost in desirability. If you already have solar panels installed, the Powerwall provides a handy way to store excess energy accumulated during the day. While the sun is out, the solar panels are charging. After sunset, the Powerwall uses the surplus energy produced by your solar panels to power your home.
Of course, many luxury home communities don’t allow unsightly solar panels to be placed in visible areas, including your roof. Though not yet available for installation, many luxury homeowners are excited about the possibilities of Tesla’s solar glass roof tiles, which promise durability and efficacy with an aesthetic more in line with upscale residences.
Certainly, Tesla’s slim and compact Powerwall 2 provides cleaner energy and higher convenience than a gas generator. It’s practical during power outages and could be a literal lifesaver if you have a family member whose onsite medical care requires power. However, with electric and solar options constantly in development, Tesla or another innovator may soon offer improved solutions for your home energy needs. For information on power solutions in our luxury communities, contact Camelot Homes today.