A story aired on A Current Affair last night shows how ordinary Aussies are using solar panels and Tesla Powerwall 2 battery storage to slash electricity bills.
The rapid rise in the price of electricity has turned many Australians to solar power to reduce their bills, the ACA solar power report found.
Families are going off-grid in what is described as an energy revolution, with solar panels plus battery storage adding up to a 90 per cent reduction in electricity bills. The future holds the promise of free electricity for life.
According to ACA reporter Dan Nolan, solar panels used to take a decade to pay off. But rising electricity costs and a drop in the cost of solar panels has shortened the gap between investment and return.
“Solar systems now pay themselves off in a much faster time – just a few years,” Mr Nolan said.
Solar panels and batteries now cost effective
In 2009 the cost of a 1kW solar system was $10,000. Today, a 3kW system is roughly $3,800, according to ACA. It will take three to five years to pay that off through electricity bill savings.
From family homes to schools, ‘free electricity’ has captured the country’s imagination, literally giving power back to the people.
A Current Affair spoke with families that have halved their power bills by using solar panels alone.
One woman interviewed said she could no longer afford to pay for her air-conditioning. But after installing solar panels, even without a battery, she halved her bills. Her air-con is now on 24/7 during summer days.
Tesla Powerwall 2 – taking savings to the next level
Adding battery storage with a Tesla Powerwall 2 means families can approach the dream of free electricity all the time, whether the sun is out or not.
ACA spoke with Michael D’Angelo and his family of five, who are big energy users. Mr D’Angelo normally spends close to $3,000 on electricity annually.
But after installing 6kW of solar panels and a Tesla Powerwall 2 battery on the D’Angelo home in Sydney’s Campbelltown, energy costs plummeted.
During the day the sun generates more energy than the family can use, so they use the excess energy to charge their Tesla Powerwall 2 battery.
Once the battery is full, the remaining electricity is fed back into the grid, for which they receive a small credit.
Consequently, the family’s $3,000 annual bill is reduced to $600. This pays for the upkeep of the electricity distribution grid and the use of grid power on heavily overcast days.
“The sun’s free and we live in a great country for sun, so why not?” Mr D’Angelo said.
Adding a Tesla Powerwall 2 to a home and increasing solar panels to 5kW will cost $20,000. However, bill savings will pay off that initial investment in six to nine years, ACA reported.
Solar batteries will be as common as dishwashers
Principal Mark Sly said the school decided to practice what it preached when it came to sustainability and the environment.
The expansion of the school’s solar panel array is expected to save it $1.8 million over the next 30 years.
According to Climate Council CEO Amanda McKenzie, most Australians think batteries will be as common as dishwashers in the next 10 years. She said demand for solar panels and battery storage in Australia is at an all-time high.
Meanwhile, Tesla’s Gigafactory in Nevada, USA, continues to produce batteries for its electric cars as well as its popular Powerwall 2 home batteries.
The dream of becoming energy self-sufficient is fast becoming a reality for those who are taking advantage of Australia’s energy revolution.