Will we still need standalone batteries in homes with bidirectional EVs?

Ford Lightning and Sunrun
Will I need a separate battery if I have the Ford Lightning?

As an aside to our big feature on the emerging intersection of EV charging and solar installations, we asked our sources if they thought bidirectional, vehicle to home capabilities would possibly remove the need for standalone energy storage down the road. Here’s what they had to say.

Nate Coleman, SunPower: “Standalone batteries are crucial. If you’re relying solely on your EV during multi-day outage it means your EV has to be plugged in all of the time, which has obvious limitations. A dedicated stationary storage system is really complementary, which can give you extended duration in multi-day outage.”

Nick Smallwood, Sunrun: “My current thinking is these EVs have huge batteries in them — 10x the size or more of standalone battery system. When plugged in with the proper technology, it can do what those batteries do. But fundamentally it’s also a vehicle. If there is a massive storm, not only do people want electricity and resiliency at home, they’ll want their mode of transportation. Batteries today aren’t always equipped for full home backup, but that battery technology will be getting smarter and bigger as well. So I think you’ll see an evolution on both sides. There is room for both. As you see battery prices drop, they’re just going to be part of your solar installation.”

Jennifer Ploskina, Eaton: “I think solar and storage will grow and always have a place in the market, but I’m interested to see how EV-as-storage happens, and that’s why we’re doing additional pilots on vehicle-to-home, vehicle-to-grid. Time will tell to determine how consumers prefer to behave.”

Have you checked out our YouTube page?

We have a ton video interviews and additional content on our YouTube page. Recently we debuted Power Forward! -- a collaboration with BayWa r.e. to discuss higher level industry topics as well as best practices / trends for running a solar business today.

Our longer running side project is The Pitch -- in which we have awkward discussions with solar manufacturers and suppliers about their new technology and ideas so that you don't have to. We discuss everything from residential rail-less deck attaching and home solar financing to large-scale energy storage value stacking and utility-driven new home solar + storage microgrids.

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