Frequently Asked Questions.
I already have a solar PV system with a meter in the switchboard, can I still add a sonnenBatterie?
The sonnenBatterie can be retrofitted to any PV system without needing to touch it. The sonnenBatterie requires its own sonnen metre, though it can operate parallel and independently of the existing meter. The sonnen meter detects if you are exporting excess solar energy to the grid, and tells the battery to store this energy instead.
How do I know the sonnenBatterie is working properly?
If there is an issue with the battery or supporting circuits, the sonnen logo on the front of the device will change colours; from blue to red, or in some cases go out altogether if it shuts down. If the sonnenBatterie is not working optimally an automatic notification will be sent to the local technical team at sonnen who will in turn remotely fix the issue or arrange a visit from a technician.
Is there a warranty? How does it compare?
sonnen is a market leader in warranty standards. The sonnenBatterie is warranted for 10 years or 10,000 cycles, whichever comes first-this is unmatched by any other solar battery system on the market.
How much money can I save with sonnen every month?
If you fully charge the sonnenBatterie each day and discharge each evening, you get 4 kWh worth of electricity for ~ 6 c/kWh (your feed in tariff) instead of ~ 26 c/kWh (your retail rate). This is a total of ~ $24 per month. If you are on high time of use rates, e.g. 40 or 60 c/kWh at night, the savings will be more, e.g. double
Will the sonnenBatterie work on days when it is not sunny outside?
Yes, the sonnenBatterie will charge when it is sunny and discharge when needed. The sonnenBatterie stores energy so it can be used anytime including during the night time or when it is cloudy. When it is sunny again, the battery will recharge.
How long can I expect the battery to last if it is fully charged?
A standard sonnenBatterie holds 4 kW. The average household uses 20 kWh per day, mostly in the evening. You could probably expect the battery to be empty before midnight. However, if you expect a higher usage on your battery, you can add on up to 16kW on the same system.
Will sonnen get damaged if it is fully charged and the PV is still generating?
No, the sonnenBatterie is very intelligent; it will charge until it is full after which it will redirect the additional solar PV energy to the grid.
Does it always have to be connected to the internet? If so, how much data will it use?
The sonnenBatterie will work without being connected to the internet. It is beneficial that the sonnenBatterie be connected to internet so it can be monitored and receive regular software updates. The warranty specifies that if it is not connected to the internet then it may not be performing as it should. The usage is small and estimated to be less than 10MB per month.
Can I buy a sonnenBatterie today and add the sonnenProtect next year?
Yes. The sonnenProtect can be retrofitted at a later date.
Can I use sonnen as backup power in case the grid fails?
Yes you can, for a dedicated circuit or appliance not exceeding 1300W. The sonnenProtect has limitations that applies to all "On-grid" systems. The solar PV inverter will not send out power when there is an outage on the network. Therefore, the storage system cannot get charged by the solar during an outage. Whatever energy stored at the time of the outage is all that will be available.
How does the sonnenBatterie help me achieve greater energy autonomy?
The sonnenBatterie allows customers to store surplus energy generated from the PV system and use at peak times when electricity prices are high. The combination of a PV system and a sonnenBatterie will allow you to cover about 75% of your yearly energy requirement with self-produced and clean energy.
What is in the sonnenBatterie?
The sonnenBatterie is made up of a robust and long-lasting lithium Iron phosphate (LiFePO4) battery, the intelligent energy management software, and a power inverter.
What if my energy needs change and I need a bigger storage system?
A major advantage of the sonnenBatterie is that it is a modular system and its capacity can be increased by the easy addition of more batteries. sonnenBatterie has a storage size of 2kW-16kWh, expandable in steps of 2 kW.
What are the physical features of the sonnenBatterie?
The 4 kW sonnen model is 88 kg and 137 cm high, 64 cm wide, 22 cm deep. The sonnenBatterie modules are available in various colours including white, black and space grey. White is the standard offer, black and space grey will incur additional costs
Why should I purchase the battery now when it’s said technology will improve and get cheaper, in the future?
The payback of a sonnen system already makes it a viable proposition. Sonnen is well ahead of other storage system manufacturers as it was the first company to produce an all-in-one intelligent system. New technology is appealing but proven reliable technology is beneficial.
The batteries are designed for inside installation, but they are not allowed to be kept in inhabitable locations, is this a safety concern?
No, sonnen batteries have undergone an excess of 150 safety tests to date and reported no safety issues. In Germany, the home country of sonnen, the batteries are installed in liveable rooms however this is not permitted in Australia due to laws and regulations.