Can You Combine Solar Panels With a Home Battery System for Added Energy Storage?

Joe Brennan
Dec 16, 2023

As electricity costs rise and environmental awareness grows, many Irish homeowners are turning to solar panels as a sustainable energy solution. A common question arises: "How to use solar energy effectively when it's not sunny?" By incorporating a battery storage system, households can significantly increase their use of solar energy, from 30% to 60%.

Our in-depth research explains how combining solar panels with a battery system can keep your home powered during the night or on cloudy days. This article provides practical insights for sustainable living through intelligent energy management.

So, let's go ahead and discover how adopting solar energy with battery storage can lead to a more eco-friendly lifestyle. Let's explore the benefits of making green choices and walk the path to a sustainable future.

Key Takeaways

  • Solar panel battery storage can double a household's solar usage from 30% to 60%, offering increased energy independence and reduced reliance on the grid.
  • Evaluating factors such as energy usage, sunlight availability, and potential cost savings is crucial when determining if solar battery storage is suitable for a home.
  • Understanding the type of inverter in an existing solar system is essential for adding battery storage, with different scenarios and retrofitting options available based on individual needs.
  • Choosing the right battery and inverter involves assessing energy consumption patterns, considering lithium-ion batteries for high energy density, and selecting hybrid or multi-mode inverters that integrate smoothly with the chosen battery system.

Solar Panel Battery Storage

Let's understand the concept of solar panel battery storage and its potential benefits for homeowners looking to store excess energy from their solar panels.

We can store the sun's energy with solar panel battery storage. It means you have power even when the sun goes down or on cloudy days. Your home gets clean energy from your solar panels during the day.

Extra energy that you don't use right away can charge batteries. Later, you can use this stored power, maybe at night or when you need more.

Solar panel battery systems give us a way to keep our homes running without always needing power from outside sources. This is great for saving money and having less impact on our planet.

Many in Ireland are seeing how good it is to add battery storage to their homes' solar setups. Let's look at what makes them so beneficial and check if they're right for your house too! Now, let's talk about how adding these batteries might change things for those of us who already have solar panels in place.

Pros and cons of solar panel battery storage

As we consider installing solar panel battery storage in our homes, it's essential to weigh the advantages and drawbacks. Here's a concise overview in table format to assist Irish homeowners in making an informed decision.

Pros of Solar Panel Battery Storage

  • Increased energy independence
  • Ability to store excess solar energy
  • Reduced reliance on the grid
  • Protection from power outages
  • Potential savings on electricity bills
  • An environmentally friendly solution
  • Suitable for remote locations

Cons of Solar Panel Battery Storage

  • Initial installation can be costly
  • Battery life span is limited
  • May require additional space
  • Complexity in system management
  • Maintenance and replacement costs
  • Slower return on investment
  • Performance depends on weather conditions

Using solar energy efficiently requires balancing the benefits of added energy storage against the considerations that come with it.

Determining If Solar Battery Storage is Suitable for Your Home

Before deciding if solar battery storage is suitable for your home, consider factors such as your energy usage, electricity bills, and the amount of sunlight your area receives. It's important to assess whether adding a battery system aligns with your goal of reducing dependency on the grid and increasing self-sufficiency.

Evaluate if you have enough space for the additional equipment needed for storing energy. Take into account potential cost savings from reduced electricity bills and any available government incentives for renewable energy systems in Ireland.

Moreover, consider how often there are power outages in your area; having a battery backup could provide peace of mind during blackouts. If you're environmentally conscious, installing a solar panel battery can significantly reduce carbon emissions associated with traditional energy sources.

How to Add Battery Storage to Your Existing Solar System?

To add battery storage to your existing solar system, first identify the type of inverter in your system, which is crucial for adding battery storage. Then, analyse different scenarios for adding battery storage because it will depend on whether you have a grid-tied system or an off-grid system.

Lastly, retrofitting options are available for different types of inverters to seamlessly integrate battery storage. Now, let's study each in detail:

Identifying the type of inverter in your system

Check the type of inverter in your solar system. Look for a string inverter, micro-inverter, or power optimiser. Different batteries work with different types of inverters. Understanding which one you have will help you choose the right battery for your solar energy storage system.

Consider if you have a string inverter, micro-inverter, or power optimiser in your current setup to determine how to add battery storage. This knowledge is essential when planning to integrate a home battery system with your existing solar panels.

By knowing what type of inverter you have, you can make informed decisions about adding batteries to your solar panel system based on compatibility and efficiency.

Different scenarios for adding battery storage

After identifying the type of inverter in your system, you can consider various scenarios for adding battery storage to your existing solar panel system. Here are the options you might explore:

  1. Expanding Current System: If you have a grid-tied system and want to increase energy storage, you can add compatible batteries without major modifications.
  2. Upgrading to Off-Grid: For those looking to transition to an off-grid setup, integrating batteries with your solar panels allows you to store excess energy for use when the sun isn't shining.
  3. Hybrid System Integration: If you desire a hybrid solar system that combines grid-tied and off-grid capabilities, it's possible to incorporate battery storage for both energy security and cost savings.
  4. Emergency Backup Power: Adding batteries solely for backup power during outages is also an option worth considering, allowing uninterrupted electricity supply when the grid goes down.
  5. Optimising Self-Consumption: By adding battery storage, homeowners can optimise self-consumption of solar energy by storing surplus electricity generated during the day for use during peak evening hours or when solar generation is low.
  6. Off-Peak Energy Management: Battery storage enables homeowners to store cheaper off-peak energy from the grid or excess solar energy and use it during peak periods, reducing reliance on expensive peak-time electricity.
  7. Maximising Solar Incentives: Some regions offer incentives for installing battery storage with solar panels, which can help offset installation costs and maximise overall renewable energy benefits.

Retrofitting options for different types of inverters

When considering retrofitting options for different types of inverters in your solar system, it's essential to evaluate the compatibility and requirements for integrating battery storage. Here are some key points to consider:

  1. Ensure that your existing inverter is compatible with adding battery storage, as some older models may not support this addition without upgrades.
  2. If your current inverter is not compatible, options include replacing the inverter with a hybrid or multi-mode inverter that can manage both solar panels and battery storage.
  3. Investigate retrofitting options specific to your type of inverter, such as string inverters or micro-inverters, to determine the best approach for integrating battery storage.
  4. Consider consulting a qualified solar installer to assess the feasibility and cost - effectiveness of retrofitting battery storage to your existing solar system.
  5. Explore available battery - ready inverters that provide flexibility for future expansion of your energy storage capacity without requiring significant modifications.
  6. Analyse the potential performance enhancements and benefits that come with retrofitting suitable battery storage solutions to different types of inverters in your solar system.

Choosing the Right Battery and Inverter

It's important to consider the type and size of battery needed for your home, as well as the inverter options available. Popular brands for batteries and inverters will also be discussed.

To learn more about choosing the right battery and inverter for your solar panel system, continue reading our blog.

Type and size of battery needed

When considering the type and size of battery needed for your solar panel system, it's important to assess your household's energy usage patterns. A lithium-ion battery is a popular choice due to its longevity and high energy density, making it suitable for residential energy storage.

The size of the battery should match your daily energy consumption and provide enough power during low sunlight or at night. Additionally, consider whether you want an all-in-one hybrid inverter and battery system or separate components for flexibility.

Understanding these factors will help you choose the right battery that aligns with your specific energy needs and maximises the benefits of your solar panel system. It's essential to seek professional advice to determine the most suitable option for integrating a home battery into your existing solar setup while ensuring optimal performance.

Understanding inverter options

Now, let's talk about the inverter options that are compatible with adding a battery storage system to your existing solar panels. When considering an inverter for your battery storage, it's important to choose between a hybrid or multi-mode inverter.

A hybrid inverter can manage both the solar panels and the battery, while a multi-mode inverter requires a separate charge controller for the battery. It's essential to select an inverter that matches your specific needs and integrates smoothly with your chosen battery system.

By understanding these options, you can make informed decisions when adding energy storage to your home solar system.

Other Considerations and Benefits

When it comes to other considerations, the eligibility for feed-in tariffs and potential upgrades to existing systems with battery storage can provide additional financial benefits. Additionally, understanding the charging options (grid or solar) and the energy savings that come with battery storage are also important considerations for homeowners looking to maximise their renewable energy usage.

Eligibility for feed-in tariffs

To receive feed-in tariffs, you must have an eligible renewable energy system. This includes solar panels and home battery storage. The electricity your system generates can be used to power your home, and any excess can be exported to the grid in return for payment via the feed-in tariff scheme.

To benefit from this scheme, your system needs to meet certain requirements set by the government. It's crucial to ensure that your system is installed by a certified professional who can provide the necessary certification for eligibility.

By meeting these criteria, you can potentially earn money by exporting surplus energy back to the grid. This serves as an incentive for homeowners with solar panel and battery systems, encouraging sustainable energy generation and promoting environmental conservation while also helping households reduce their electricity bills.

Charging options (grid or solar)

You can choose to charge your home battery system using electricity from the grid or solar panels. When you opt for grid charging, your battery will draw power from the main electrical grid, which is useful when there's not enough sunlight to generate solar power.

On the other hand, with solar charging, your battery will store energy generated by your solar panels during sunny days. This can be a cost-effective and environmentally friendly option if you live in an area with plenty of sunshine.

Understanding these options will help you make an informed decision based on your energy needs and local conditions.

Energy savings with battery storage

When combining solar panels with a home battery system, you can maximise your energy savings. By storing excess solar energy during the day, you can use it during peak evening hours, when electricity rates are typically higher.

This allows you to rely less on grid power and save money on your overall energy costs.

Moreover, with a home battery system, you can also take advantage of any excess energy generated by your solar panels, storing it for use at night or during periods of low sunlight.

This helps reduce dependency on the grid and ensures a more consistent and reliable power supply for your home. Additionally, the integration of battery storage with your solar panel system enables better management of your household energy consumption.

With potential upgrades to existing systems through increased efficiency and reduced reliance on external sources.

Potential upgrades to existing system with battery storage

To enhance your existing solar system with battery storage, you may consider upgrading to a more advanced inverter that can integrate seamlessly with the new batteries. This upgrade allows for better control and management of energy flow, optimising the use of stored solar power.

Additionally, if you have an older system, it might be beneficial to assess its compatibility with modern battery technology and explore retrofitting options. Upgrading your existing solar system with battery storage could potentially lead to increased self-consumption of solar energy, further reducing your reliance on the grid and maximising your renewable energy usage.

Once you've added batteries to your current solar system, you might also want to explore other potential upgrades, such as smart energy management systems or software solutions that provide real-time monitoring and insights into your energy consumption patterns.


In conclusion, combining solar panels with a home battery system is a smart and eco-friendly way to maximise the benefits of renewable energy while ensuring a reliable power supply for your home. With this integrated setup, you can harness the sun's energy during the day, store excess power for use at night or during outages, and reduce your reliance on the grid. 

While the initial investment may seem significant, the long-term savings and environmental advantages make it a worthwhile choice for homeowners looking to embrace a sustainable and resilient energy future. As technology advances and costs continue to decrease, the prospect of a cleaner, more energy-efficient home becomes increasingly achievable for all. 

So, if you're considering this upgrade, consult with a professional installer, like Going Solar, assess your energy needs, and take the first steps towards a more sustainable and self-sufficient home energy system. 

Embrace the power of the sun and home battery technology to create a brighter, greener future for you and the planet.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Can I add batteries to my solar system at home?

Yes, you can add a home battery storage system to your solar panels for extra energy storage.

Will a solar panel and battery combination work when there's no sun?

Certainly! A solar battery system stores power for use at any time, so even without sunlight, you still have energy.

Is it possible to go off-grid with a solar panel battery backup?

Absolutely! With enough battery storage for whole-home needs, you could go off-grid and not rely on the public energy supply.

How much does adding a battery to a solar panel system usually cost?

The cost of adding renewable energy storage depends on the size of the battery and how much power you need, but expect some investment for this upgrade.

Are there benefits to connecting my residential battery storage to the grid-tied system?

Sure, if your home is connected through a grid-tied system with added renewable energy storage like batteries, it may help lower costs and provide backup power during outages.

How does solar battery storage impact the environment?

Solar battery storage greatly reduces your carbon footprint by minimising reliance on fossil fuels. It enhances the use of clean, renewable solar energy, contributing to environmental preservation and a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions.

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*FYI, parts of this blog post were drafted by artificial technlogy. But rest assured, it's been thoroughly researched, edited, reviewed and me & my team.
Author Fahad Zahid
Founder @ Going Solar

Joe Brennan, the founder of Going Solar, is dedicated to making solar power mainstream in Ireland and meet SEAI objectives. With a focus on affordability and sustainability, he is bringing renewable energy solutions to homes, reducing costs & environmental impact.