2017 was another groundbreaking year for home batteries, and as it draws to a close, we thought it was time for another review of the best home batteries on the market today… you know, just in case solar energy storage was on your Christmas list.
Many new companies jumped into the growing home battery market this year, contributing some new models with new features, and building some great diversity into the industry. There are still a few stand-out models when we’re looking at the combination of price point and storage capacity, but we’ll highlight a number of batteries that could be a great pick for your home. Why? Because not one single home battery is the best for every home. There are so many amazing, high-quality home battery products out there today, it all depends on your top priorities, and how you want to capitalize on energy security.
With the growth in quality and sophistication we saw throughout 2017, we’re excited for what the future will bring. But for now, here’s the best home batteries on the market for storing at-home solar power… or just power in general.
Tesla Powerwall II
Tesla’s updated home battery model, the Powerwall 2, made a huge splash in the residential energy storage market in 2016 precisely because of it’s affordability factor. The Powerwall 2 offers 14 kWh of energy storage capacity at an impressive starting cost of $5,500 per unit. This makes the Powerwall 2 the stand-alone best home battery in terms of affordability, taking into account the price per kWh of storage.
But Tesla’s price point isn’t the only reason it makes it on our list of best home batteries. A double-winner in this, post, we also name the Powerwall 2 the best home battery based on the balance of high-quality features, covering a range of residential energy storage needs.
The fact that the Powerwall 2 offers the most energy storage capacity for the price is a huge perk, but we also think it’s the best home battery for buyers looking for a battery that offers premium features across the board. A huge addition that came out with the Powerwall’s updated model is the fully integrated Tesla inverter, included in the price.
The Powerwall 2 is compact, stackable, and offers indoor-outdoor installation, which rivals many of the stand-out features of other brands.
Sonnen Eco Compact
Designed in Germany, the sonnenBatterie is the best home battery for buyers who are looking for a high-quality, longer-lasting premium product. It has definitely already proven itself in the market, with over 10,000 systems installed in Europe. The intelligent energy management controller and 10,000 cycle life make it a long-lasting, versatile option capable of any conceivable use. The clean design will appeal to those who value beauty in addition to function.
Each component of the sonnenBatterie is made with it’s 20-year warranty in mind. Sonnen chose only the best, most high-quality home battery components, making this the best home battery for homeowners based on longer lifespan and battery durability. Not every household is on the market for a long-term investment return, however. The best home battery search for some is more geared toward affordability.
The Eco Compact can store 4 kWh of energy, at a cost of $5,950. An inverter is included with each battery. The sonnenBatterie Eco can store up to 16 kWh of energy, and starts at $9.950.
LG Chem RESU
LG Chem’s RESU home battery tops our chart for the best home battery for solar capability. The LG solar battery allows for outdoor placement, which is great for households with limited indoor space. Another big advantage is the E-Gear energy management controller, a smart technology that comes with the LG solar battery. The E-Gear controller gives complete visibility into and control over the use, generation, and storage of energy in your home. This smart tech allows you to enable backup power, automate self-consumption of solar, and lets you know the rise and fall of energy rates, so you can jump at the chance to store energy when rates are lowest, and use it when rates rise during peak demand hours (this is commonly called time-of-use shifting.)
The major reason LG Chem tops the list for the best home battery for solar capability is because it can be retrofitted to a solar array that has already been installed. This is not true of every home battery, and it’s a question solar owners should always ask battery installers before closing a deal.
The RESU can store up to 9.8 kWh of energy, and starts around $4,000 for lower-voltage options.
Orison Home Battery
Simplicity of installation: The Orison home battery is the first truly plug-and-play home battery system: there is no professional setup required. This is precisely why we name it the best home battery based on installation simplicity, even though it is very new and not yet proven in the field. Because of it’s simplicity and the very reason why there is no professional installation required, is because the Orison home battery cannot backup your whole house and is limited to just one circuit. It’s not for everybody, but for households that are looking for a single-circuit solution for back-up power, this may be the best home battery for you.
The Best Home Battery Runner-Ups
There are a number of companies that we’re keeping our eye on, some here in the US, and some overseas. You may or may not be surprised to hear that the United States is not actually the prime target market for many home battery developers. Europe and Australia are ahead of the US in residential solar panel penetration, and residential energy storage capacity. This is why many companies are targeting Europe and Australia… exclusively.
The Powervault Available in the United Kingdom only, Powervault offers both lithium-ion and lead acid batteries, storing between 2 - 6 kWh of electricity. The Powervault focuses on solar customers, and reducing the UK’s dependence on fossil fuels.
Prices for the Powervault start around $3,000.
Mercedes-Benz Energy Mercedes has developed a smaller, lighter battery that’s a little lighter on the storage as well, with 2.5 kWh of storage. It is modular, however, and units can be combined for up to 20kWh. For German buyers who want a smaller, less conspicuous battery, Mercedes has an edge.
Mercedes’ battery stores 2.5 kWh of energy, but you can combine units to store up to 20 kWh. The biggest storage option that Mercedes offers costs $13,000, with installation included.
Panasonic LJ-SK56A Australian homeowners have the option of a Panasonic battery, offering 5.3 kWh of storage capacity in its lithium-ion battery. It can be programmed or remote-controlled, and offers an emergency back-up feature.
Nissan XStorage Nissan’s home battery boasts an affordable $4,500 price point for 4.2 kWh of energy storage, which includes the price of installation. Nissan doesn’t have any plans to bring their business from Europe to the United States, but if it’s sleek design and affordability take off overseas, we might see it in the US market soon.