Private Homes

Why a combination of solar panels, energy storage and an electric vehicle represents a good investment for homeowners

Thomas Lövgren lives on a quiet street lined with mature detached houses, in the town of Slite on Gotland. The large south-facing roof is covered by solar cells, and there is a plug-in hybrid charging in the carport. Since the solar cells were installed one year ago, Thomas has made significant savings on his electricity bills, and he can also monitor usage and consumption in real time.
Thomas says that the purpose of the investment was primarily preventive. For one thing, the system of solar cells and energy storage adds value, as at some point in the future the house will be sold. In addition to this, there are plans to replace the hybrid with a pure electric car. At the same time, there was also a degree frustration about not being able to influence the fixed charges on the electricity bill. Now, one year on, Thomas confirms with satisfaction that the cash savings are just under SEK 10,000 per year and that the electricity bill during the summer months is ridiculously low. Thomas views the fact that the main 20A fuse does not need to be upgraded for an electric vehicle to be charged in the future as a pure bonus.

Thomas is able to monitor the system’s operation and performance in real time via Ferroamp’s EnergyCloud portal. Thomas thinks it feels good to be able to choose for himself how his stored solar electricity should be used, either for peak shaving or to increase his personal use of solar. In the portal, the user chooses the control method to be prioritised, but the good thing is that these often go hand in hand.

Thomas Lövgren och Jonas Thomson, Slite EL
“The sun is shining here on Gotland today, and I can confirm that the production level right now is 4kW and consumption is 0.8kW. It’s easy to understand and fun to monitor consumption - I can even see when my wife’s using the espresso machine,” says Thomas Lövgren.

Slite El, who carried out the installation at the Lövgren house, also testifies to the educational benefit of being able to monitor usage and consumption in real time.

“The homeowner gets an ‘aha!’ experience and a totally different understanding of both their investment and what it means. It’s extremely easy to see the benefit,” says Jonas Thomson, Slite El.

Jonas says that he always attaches great importance to adopting the most pedagogical approach possible to make sure that the customer understands and feels secure in what he or she is investing in, and what the cost calculation looks like. The conversations often start with the homeowner having problems when adding another load to the house’s grid connection, for example a spa bath, a small additional house in the garden or an electric vehicle.

“When we explain the benefits of combining solar cells with energy storage and an electric vehicle, we usually get the thumbs up to install the full system. We currently install Ferroamp in 85% of cases,” says Jonas.

One important aspect of investing in green technology is the opportunity to take advantage the Green Deduction, similar to the so-called ROT deduction for renovation, rebuilding and extension work. Many people still opt for solar cells, as it is easier to “earn back” the investment, but it is often absolutely crucial to have co-financing from the state for an investment in home batteries, believes Jonas Thomson at Slite El.

“The best argument for investing in a home battery right now is the Green Deduction of 50% on costs of labour and materials. As with support for solar cells, it is expected to be gradually reduced and eventually phased out as prices fall and market conditions for batteries improve,” concludes Jonas Thomson.

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