Updated 2 days ago

Best Solar Batteries: How to Choose the Right One for Your Home (2024)

Written by Catherine Lane , Edited by Ben Zientara

How much do solar batteries cost near you?

Key takeaways

  • Our solar experts chose Enphase, Tesla, Canadian Solar, Panasonic, and Qcells as the best solar battery storage brands of 2024.

  • We rate batteries by reviewing storage capacity, power output, safety considerations, system design and usability, warranty, company financial performance, U.S. investment, price, and industry opinion.

  • Homeowners should consider their energy storage needs, battery performance, and characteristics to find the best storage system for their home. 


What are the best solar batteries of 2024?

SolarReviews’ battery experts reviewed over a dozen lithium-ion home storage products to find the best ones for homeowners. Here are the five best home solar batteries of 2024:

  1. Enphase IQ 5P: Best overall solar battery

  2. Tesla Powerwall 3: Best all-in-one solar battery

  3. Canadian Solar EP Cube: Best solar battery value

  4. Panasonic Evervolt Home Battery: Best solar battery performance

  5. Qcells Q.HOME CORE: Best solar battery design and usability

We reviewed everything from performance and warranty to a brand’s financial status and solar installer’s opinions on the batteries to provide a holistic view of the best batteries for homes. 

Let’s take a closer look at our top 5.

Calculate how much a solar + battery installation would cost for your home

1. Enphase IQ 5P: Best overall solar battery

Enphase was voted best overall solar battery, with a SolarReviews Expert Score of 8.7/10, scoring highest in system performance, warranty, and company finance and reputation categories.

Read our expert review of the Enphase IQ battery system.

The Enphase Energy System with IQ 5P batteries is our pick for the best home solar battery of 2024. We’re not the only ones who like Enphase batteries — 46% of solar installers chose Enphase as their top battery brand in our 2024 Solar Industry Survey.  

The IQ 5P is Enphase's latest battery, offering twice the power output of the company’s other batteries. Its power output, design flexibility, 15-year warranty, and popularity among solar installers earned its #1 spot. 

Pros
  • Very powerful power output

  • Brand trusted by more installers than any other

  • Industry-leading 15-year warranty

  • System can be sized to meet your needs and expand in the future

Cons
  • Expensive

  • Doesn’t look as nice as other batteries on the market


2. Tesla Powerwall 3: Best all-in-one solar battery

The Tesla Powerwall was voted best all-in-one solar battery, with a SolarReviews Expert Score of 8.6/10, scoring highest in value, company finances and reputation, and system performance.

Read our full review of the Tesla Powerwall battery.

Tesla is often credited with making lithium-ion home storage mainstream with its ultra-sleek, reasonably priced Tesla Powerwall. Since its launch in 2015, the Powerwall remains one of the cheapest home storage options on the market while still performing great!

The new Powerwall 3 has a built-in hybrid solar inverter, 13.5 kWh of storage capacity, and an easy-to-use battery management system. According to installers, it’s one of the easiest batteries to install, which helps keep costs low. 

Pros
  • Excellent value

  • Very popular with homeowners and installers

  • Tesla is a profitable company with over two million American customers

Cons
  • Comes in one size

  • Difficult to pair with existing solar systems


Find out how much a Tesla Powerwall will cost from installers near you

3. Canadian Solar EP Cube: Best solar battery value

The Canadian Solar EP Cube was voted best solar battery value, with a SolarReviews Expert Score of 8.5/10, scoring highest in system performance, warranty, and company finance and reputation categories.

Read our full review of the Canadian Solar EP Cube.

The introduction of the Canadian Solar EP Cube in 2022 was one of the most exciting announcements of the year. The EP Cube carries on Canadian Solar’s tradition of offering great performance at a moderate price point. 

This excellent value, warranty, and Canadian Solar’s sterling reputation among installers and financiers earn the EP Cube the third spot in our ranking.

Pros
  • Low cost compared to other modular batteries

  • Modular design is easy to install

  • Canadian Solar is of the most successful companies in the solar industry

Cons
  • Output limited to 7.6 kW unless you add a second battery stack

  • Not yet as popular as other batteries among installers


4. Panasonic Evervolt Home Battery: Best solar battery performance

The Panasonic Evervolt Home Battery was voted best solar battery performance, with a SolarReviews Expert Score of 8.2/10, scoring highest in system performance, company finance and reputation, and warranty.

Read our expert review of the Panasonic Evervolt Home Battery.

Consumers are no strangers to Panasonic. The popular electronics brand is known for its quality, and its energy products are no different. 

The modular Panasonic Evervolt Home Battery system outperforms the other batteries in our top 5 with its design flexibility, allowing homeowners to get precisely what they want out of the system. 

Pros
  • Stackable modular design is easy to install and expand

  • Includes a solar inverter that allows up to 15.2 kW of solar input

  • 12-year warranty is one of the best in the industry

  • Panasonic is a trusted company

  • AC- and DC-coupled models increase flexibility

Cons
  • Output is limited to 7.6 kW unless you add a second stack

  • Moderately expensive on a per-kWh basis unless you choose the largest size


5. Qcells Q.HOME CORE: Best solar battery design and usability

The Qcells Q.HOME CORE was voted best solar battery design and usability, with a SolarReviews Expert Score of 7.5/10, scoring highest in system performance and company finance and reputation.

Read our full Qcells Q.HOME CORE battery review.

Qcells is another top solar panel brand that entered the battery business. The brand acts as a one-stop shop for homeowners, offering solar panels, batteries, its own solar financing, and even an installation company. 

With its modular design and integrated solar inverter, VPP eligibility, and the included Q.HOME HUB backup gateway offering extended benefits, the Q.HOME CORE is a solid option for homeowners who want storage. 

Pros
  • Modular design is easy to install and expand

  • Integration with other Qcells products, installation, and financing options

  • 12-year warranty terms

  • Qcells is one of the most trusted brands in the industry

Cons
  • Higher cost than some competitors


Calculate how much you can save on a solar battery with local incentives and rebates

Compare the best solar batteries of 2024

Brand/Battery

Estimated cost per kWh*

Storage capacity

Continuous power output

Warranty

Industry average

$1,100

14.85 kWh

7.6 kW

10 years or 3,500 cycles

Enphase IQ 5P system (3 modules)

$809

15 kWh

11.52 kW

15 years or 6,000 cycles

Tesla Powerwall 3

$684

13.5 kWh

11.5 kW

10 years 

Canadian Solar EP Cube (5 modules)

$690

16.6 kWh

7.6 kW

10 years or 6,000 cycles

Panasonic EverVolt Home Battery (4 modules)

$913

18 kWh

7.6 kW

12 years or 6,000 cycles

Qcells Q.HOME CORE 

$964

15 kWh

7.6 kW

12 years, 6,000 cycles

*Does not include installation and labor costs. DC-coupled models include the added cost of a 7.6 kW hybrid inverter

Other battery backup systems we reviewed

We reviewed 19 solar energy storage systems to find the top choices for homeowners. 

Not all of these batteries made it into our top five, there are a few honorable mentions we still think you should know about:

  • FranklinWH got a lot of praise in our Solar Industry Survey from solar installers. Even though it’s a private company and we can’t look at its financial history, the positive reviews from installers and its features make the FranklinWH battery worth considering. 

  • Fortress Power is another private company that offers energy storage systems, but we’re impressed with the brand’s innovation! The Avalon ESS, for example, includes a smart energy panel with its installation. It’s exciting to see people thinking outside of the box!

  • SimpliPhi by Briggs & Stratton makes high-quality, affordable batteries. SimpliPhi is popular in the DIY solar and off-grid communities, we think it’ll do well in the grid-tied home storage market, too!

 Batteries to watch! Our experts are keeping an eye on home batteries from a few brands that have had success in the portable solar generator industry. Anker’s SOLIX X1 home battery, the Mango Power M battery, and Bluetti’s complete home battery system are exciting additions to the home backup market!


How do solar batteries work with solar panels?

Solar batteries store extra energy produced by rooftop solar panels to be used later when the solar panels aren’t generating enough electricity to cover a home’s energy usage.

Energy storage systems also provide backup power during grid outages, so essential appliances can stay running even when the power is out.

Most home battery systems can also be charged directly from the power grid.

The following video illustrates how solar panels, batteries, and the grid work together in a hybrid solar system.


Use our calculator to find out how many batteries you need to run different appliances

Pros and cons of solar battery systems

Pros
  • Backup power source

  • Increased energy independence

  • Decrease carbon footprint

  • Potential electricity bill savings

Cons
  • High upfront costs

  • Long payback period

  • Not practical for whole-home backup

  • Take up space

Advantages of solar batteries

  • Backup power source: Solar batteries can run key appliances when the power goes out, making them popular in areas that experience frequent blackouts. 

  • Increase energy independence: When you have a battery, you rely less on the utility company. Take your power into your own hands!

  • Decrease carbon footprint: Using solar energy stored in your battery maximizes the amount of renewable energy your home uses! 

  • Potential electricity bill savings: If your utility requires time-of-use billing or doesn’t offer full retail net metering, you could save more on your electricity bill when you get a battery installed. 

Disadvantages of solar batteries

  • High upfront cost: Solar batteries are expensive to install. While standalone solar panels cost about $18,000, a solar plus storage system will cost closer to $30,000 (or more!).

  • Longer payback period:  Solar panels typically pay themselves back in 12 years or less. Adding a battery can extend that up to 20 or even 30 years, depending on how a utility bills solar homeowners.

  • Not practical for whole-home backup: Solar batteries are a source of backup power, but because of their price, getting enough batteries to run every appliance in your home is usually not worth it. Batteries are better for running your most essential appliances during power outages. 

  • Take up space: Solar batteries are bigger than you think, typically weighing over 200 pounds and standing between three and four feet tall. You’ll need somewhere to put all that storage - somewhere you don’t mind seeing it!


How to choose the best solar battery backup system for your home 

What you want from a solar battery is the number one thing you need to consider when selecting the best solar battery for you. Do you want to keep your whole home powered during a blackout? Are you looking for a battery that will save the most money on your electricity bills? The needs you have will determine which battery is best. 

  • If you want to store excess solar power and use it during the evening each day, or if you want to have a small amount of backup power to keep your refrigerator and a few key devices running in a power outage, almost any battery on our list will do. 

  • If you want to save money on your electricity bill, consider a battery like the Enphase IQ 5P or Canadian Solar EP Cube Lite. These batteries are designed to handle time-of-use rates and can be installed without backup capabilities, lowering installation costs and providing a better return on your investment.

  • If you want to run large appliances like air conditioners and heat pumps in addition to your refrigerator, lights, and devices during a power outage, the Tesla Powerwall 3 or Fortress Power Avalon ESS are great because of their high power outputs. You’ll want a battery system with at least 15 kWh of capacity and more than 8 kW of continuous output. 

If you want whole-home backup where the batteries can power all of your circuits for a day or two, you’ll need at least 30 kWh of storage and 15 kW of power output. This will involve installing multiple battery units to reach the desired capacity and output.

Expert insight: Most solar storage solutions are powerful enough to keep a small number of critical appliances, outlets, and lights running for a day or two without power and could last indefinitely with solar recharging on sunny days. If you want more backup power than this, you’ll likely need more than one battery.


See if a solar battery can help you meet your energy goals

Factors to consider when buying a battery for solar panels

Every person and every home is different, so the best solar battery can change with your needs. You’ll need to know which battery specifications are important and how to evaluate them to find the right solar battery to reach your goals!

Our general advice is to trust expert battery installers to help you decide on the right battery. That being said, there are a few key features you should look for when choosing a solar battery backup system.

Cost

The price of a solar battery installation is one of the most important things to consider when getting a battery. On average, home energy storage systems can cost between $12,000 and $20,000, but they may be even more expensive depending on the design, features, and battery you choose. 

There are battery incentives and rebates available, including the 30% federal tax credit. You can also finance battery installations with personal or solar-specific loans, and some utility and solar companies even offer battery lease programs. 

Use this solar battery cost calculator to find out how much energy storage costs near you

Energy capacity 

The storage capacity of a battery describes how much energy it can store, measured in kilowatt-hours (kWh). The capacity gives you an idea of how long a battery can run your appliances. 

For example, a 10 kWh battery can hold more energy than a 5 kWh battery, so it can run appliances for longer. The 10 kWh battery could run a refrigerator for 20 hours, while the 5 kWh battery could only run it for 10 hours!

The right battery capacity for you depends on your energy usage and what you’re trying to power with your battery. The more appliances you want to run, the more storage capacity you’ll need.

Most homeowners will be fine with between 10 and 18 kWh of storage capacity, but a solar installer can accurately estimate your storage needs.

Power output

Power output measures how much power a battery can provide at any given time, measured in watts or kilowatts. How much power a battery can release gives you an idea of what appliances you can run, and how many you can run at once. 

Each battery has continuous and peak power output ratings. 

  • Peak power output is important because some appliances need a short burst of power to start running, like air conditioners or sump pumps. 

  • Continuous output is how much the battery can release for more than a few seconds. 

A professional system designer will help you choose a battery option that matches your appliances' requirements.

Depth of discharge

Depth of discharge (DoD) describes how much of the energy a battery holds can actually be used without damaging the battery’s health. 

For example, a battery with 10 kWh of total capacity that only allows 80% depth of discharge really only has 8 kWh of stored energy that a home can use.

Ideally, you should look for a battery with a 100% depth of discharge to get the most out of the battery. But anything above 90% shouldn’t be a deal breaker. 

If you can’t find the depth of discharge listed, you can compare the battery’s maximum capacity (the total amount of energy a battery stores) and the usable capacity (the amount of stored energy you can use) to get an idea of the DoD. 

Many manufacturers have started listing the usable capacity as the nameplate capacity, meaning you can discharge 100% of the listed capacity. But there is still some capacity reserved to protect the battery’s health. 

Battery chemistry

Battery chemistry is very important in home solar batteries today. Today, most home energy storage systems use lithium-iron phosphate batteries. You may also see this written as LFP. LFP batteries are safer and longer lasting than other battery types.

A few home batteries today still use nickel-manganese cobalt (NMC). Sometimes referred to as just lithium-ion batteries, NMC modules are becoming less popular because they contain toxic cobalt and are at a higher risk of catching fire if they’re mishandled. 

However, they have a higher energy density, meaning NMC battery banks can store more power in a smaller space.

Lead-acid batteries can also be used as backup storage but aren’t as common because they require regular maintenance and have short lifespans. You’ll mostly see lead-acid batteries paired with off-grid solar systems. 

AC- or DC-coupling

AC- or DC-coupling describes how a battery is connected to your solar panels. All batteries store DC power, but how that happens depends on how the system is designed. 

DC-coupled batteries are connected directly to DC solar output and must be installed alongside a hybrid solar inverter to power home appliances, making DC-coupled batteries best for new solar installations. Some DC-coupled batteries include the LG Chem RESU Prime and the Generac PWRcell. 

AC-coupled batteries have their own battery inverter that can turn solar power that has already been converted to AC power back into DC power that can be stored. This makes AC-coupled batteries easy to set up with existing solar installations. AC-coupled batteries include the Tesla Powerwall 2 and the Enphase IQ 5P.

Some brands offer both AC- and DC-coupled versions of their batteries, allowing for greater design flexibility. The Panasonic EverVolt and the Qcells Q.HOME CORE have both coupling options. 

Solar battery warranty

The warranty is important to understand when investing in battery storage. Most battery warranties have three parts: a coverage term in years, cycle and throughput limits, and a capacity retention guarantee. 

  • Term: The coverage term of a battery warranty is usually listed in years. Almost all solar batteries are covered for ten years. Some battery manufacturers are starting to offer 12 and even 15-year terms. But, if you reach the cycle or throughput limit of the battery before the coverage term, the warranty expires even if there is still time remaining on your warranty. 

  • Cycles or throughput: Home storage batteries lose their ability to hold a charge as they are used. So, the more you charge and discharge, or cycle, your battery, the quicker it ages. To account for this, most battery manufacturers include a cycle or throughput measurement in the warranty. Our top battery brands tend to have 6,000-cycle limits. If you reach your cycle or throughput limit before the term is up, the warranty expires. 

  • Capacity retention: Energy storage warranties typically include a capacity retention guarantee that guarantees that the battery’s capacity won’t fall below a certain level as you use it. Most batteries have a 70% capacity retention guarantee, but some offer 80%. A capacity retention guarantee below 70% is a red flag for us unless the term length is longer (over ten years).

A typical battery warranty will look something like this: 70% capacity guaranteed after the first of 10 years or 6,000 cycles.

Mounting configuration and IP rating

Mounting configuration and IP rating affect how and where a battery is installed. Be aware of whether a battery is wall-mounted or stackable from the ground up, and know if it must be installed indoors or comes with an outdoor-rated cabinet with an ingress protection (IP) rating.

You can also look for a NEMA 3R rating, indicating a battery enclosure is resistant to water, rain, inc formation, sleet, and snow. The Tesla Powerwall and Enphase IQ 5P are NEMA 3R rated.

A NEMA 4X-rated enclosure is even more durable, protecting against corrosion, windblown rain and dust, and hose-directed water. The EP Cube and Qcells Q.HOME CORE are NEMA 4X rated. 


How long do solar batteries last?

Most home batteries are guaranteed to last at least 10 years, but many brands are starting to extend their warranties to 12 or 15 years. Battery warranties typically include a number of discharge cycles or energy throughput, as well. 

Batteries will continue to operate after their warranty period. Exactly how long your battery will work depends on its chemistry and how it’s used. For example, a battery that is completely drained more than once a day won’t last as long as one that’s used once a week. 

Keep in mind that batteries age and store less energy. Think about your smartphone battery—it probably doesn’t hold a charge quite like it did when you first got it. The same thing happens with solar batteries. Most battery warranties outline how batteries degrade with use and how much energy they can store over time.

Solar batteries have a shorter lifespan than solar panels, so you may have to replace your battery over the 25-year lifespan of your solar power system. Consider this when calculating the return on your solar investment and deciding on your financing options.


Are solar batteries worth it?

Most homeowners don’t need a solar battery, but it can be beneficial to some. From a financial perspective, there are very few cases where solar batteries are worth it. 

If you live in an area that experiences frequent, prolonged power outages, home battery backup systems can keep your most important appliances running for a few days. When paired with solar panels, a battery could keep them running indefinitely without the utility.

Batteries can also be helpful in areas where solar buyback rates are low, net metering is not available, or utilities require time of use rates. In these cases, batteries can save a bit of extra money on your utility bill, but the savings are likely too low to ever see a real return on your investment. 

Overall, whether or not you need a solar battery storage system depends on what matters most to you! For some homeowners, the peace of mind of having backup power is worth the upfront cost. The best way to figure out the best battery solution for you is to speak to a local solar installer who can assess your energy needs and map out how a battery can benefit you. 


Get battery installation quotes from trusted pre-screened solar companies in your area

Methodology: Our expert energy battery storage system rankings

SolarReviews’ battery rating methodology differs from other websites because we don’t simply rank performance and cost characteristics. In addition to technical specs, our team of solar experts emphasizes factors that encompass the company's success, which in turn provides long-term benefits to homeowners. 

We also consider the value of the batteries on a dollar-per-kWh basis and examine the battery company’s popularity among installers to get a holistic view of which batteries are the best. 

Here are the categories and weights of our battery ranking criteria:

Ring chart showing the proportions of the total solar battery brand score that each factor represents

Company financial visibility and strength (20%)

This category offers the most points based on a manufacturer’s financial performance and transparency. Companies are awarded points for being publicly traded, publishing financial statements, and maintaining high revenue and profitability.

Value (15%)

For this category, we evaluate a battery system based on its cost per kWh of storage, including installation costs, but before any incentives. For DC-coupled batteries, we add the cost of a SolarEdge hybrid inverter to the evaluation to fully represent the cost compared to AC-coupled batteries that include their own inverter.

Design and usability (14%)

This category examines a battery’s design flexibility. Points are awarded based on expandability, modularity, indoor and/or outdoor rating, and AC-and/or DC-coupled capability. Virtual power plant eligibility is also considered.

Warranty coverage (10%)

The warranty is an extremely important evaluation criterion when it comes to batteries. Ten years has been the industry standard for a long time, but several companies now offer warranties of 12 years, and Enphase now leads the industry with a 15-year warranty. Companies get points for length and having cycle-life or total energy throughput clauses in their warranties.

Energy storage capacity (10%)

This category represents the total capacity for a typical home battery. In the case of modular batteries, we evaluate using the most common or most functional size for the average homeowner.

Continuous power output (10%)

Here, we look at a single battery’s ability to output continuous power. In the case of modular batteries, we evaluate a battery with the number of modules needed to reach the inverter's maximum output.

Safety certifications (10%)

Safety certifications ensure a product meets certain standards, providing peace of mind for both installers and homeowners. Points were awarded for the presence of specific UL and UN certifications. 

U.S. investment (6%)

Our country needs home-grown businesses to bring us into a post-carbon world. This category tracks whether a company has offices or is based in the U.S., manufactures its equipment here, and regularly attends U.S. trade shows and industry events.

Industry opinion (5%)

Data for this category comes directly from our annual Solar Industry Survey. We ask installers which battery brands they will work with and award points weighted by the percentage of the industry that says they will install a company’s products. Full points are awarded to companies with at least 50% of installers saying they choose to install the battery.


Best solar battery backup FAQs

Written by Catherine Lane Solar Industry Expert

Catherine is the Written Content Manager at SolarReviews, where she has been at the forefront of researching and reporting on the solar industry for five years. She leads a dynamic team in producing informative and engaging content on residential solar to help homeowners make informed decisions about investing in solar panels. Catherine’s expertise has garnered attention from leading industry publications, with her work being featured in Sola...

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