Designing for energy independence
Daman is a big advocate for solar energy as he has seen the financial beneﬁ ts it offers to many households. Working in the renewables industry, he saw the opportunity to create a modern 8-star energy efficient home with solar and storage when he renovated a Queens-lander that was built in the 1920’s for their family home. Daman said, “we wanted a house that suited the needs of a small growing family, ensuring that it was future-proofed with thermal comfort & smart renewable technologies”.
One of the key objectives with this renovation was being able to achieve a net zero emissions home. We want to live in a home that is thermally comfortable and energy efficient. Reducing our reliance on energy to heat, cool or light the house throughout the year was a driving force behind every one of our decisions.”
Daman engaged Gareth Cole, an award-winning eco architect with over 40 years of experience in the design and construction of passive solar homes. The design of the home was highly insulated, with consideration for thermal mass & orientation carefully considered, to achieve and deliver a 8.3star NatHERS rated build. This design ensures the need for heating and cooling throughout the year is minimised, making it energy efficient year round.
To further minimise their reliance on grid electricity, Daman in- stalled a 16 kWp rooftop solar PV system and coupled this with the Australian Made 7.5 kWh sonnenBatterie, aimed at storing the excess energy is stored in this industry leading technology.
Modular design to change with growing family needs
Daman had a strong understanding on what he would like from a home battery. Quality was an important factor in leading him to install a sonnen. He said, “sonnen is a market leader and they’ve been designing and manufacturing home batteries for more than a decade".
The modular design of a sonnenBatterie makes it a future-proofed home battery. Should we need to expand our home energy storage system, we can do this easily. When we purchase an electric vehicle in the future, we could charge this with our home battery and this will reduce our need to pay for grid electricity at a peak tariff in the evenings.
I like the fact that the sonnenBatterie is made in Australia because we’re supporting local jobs and hel-ping the Australian economy when we buy sonnen. The sonnenBatterie is backed by the best warranty for home batteries and getting help from a local support team if I needed it gives me further peace of mind.”
“The sonnen app puts the power in my hands because I can see how and when we are using our energy...”
Daman likes the visibility they can get from their sonnenBatterie with the sonnen app that monitors the performance of their battery. Daman said, “The sonnen app puts the power in my hands because I can see how and when we are using our energy and when its best to use our home battery to create cost savings.”
Keeping the lights on and energy bills low
An incentive that drove Daman to select sonnen was the option to backup power and that sonnen provided access to an energy plan that rewards him for investing in a sonnenBatterie, also allowing me to use any energy retailer of my choosing. Extreme weather conditions such as major storms or hot summers have made energy outages frequent events in Queensland. “The electricity grid is very vulnerable in Australia and the outages we’ve experienced in Queensland from severe weather conditions has led us to install sonnenProtect,” said Daman. “Because we’ve designed this home to be energy efficient and selected our household appliances based on low energy consumption, we estimate that we can get 2 days of backup power by connecting sonnenProtect to our home battery.” sonnenProtect provides an additional layer of protection during grid failure as the battery is wired to dedicated circuits that ensure connected appliances and ﬁtting can continue to operate and the sonnenBatterie can be charged without a grid connection.
Daman’s energy independence doesn’t end with sonnenProtect. As part of the sonnenCommunity, he has sonnenConnect, an energy plan that rewards customers who provide sonnen with access to their batteries when it is needed for demand response. A demand response incident occurs when there is a surge in demand for electricity from the grid and sonnen's home batteries are used to send energy back to support the grid. In return, sonnen provides a monthly financial incentive to its battery owners who support the grid in addition to receiving the feed-in tariff from their energy retailers. “It’s nice to get an energy bill with a credit and until today, we’ve yet to pay for any grid electricity”, Daman said. “While home batteries and rooftop solar panels generate and store energy, it’s the integration of smart and proven technology that gives homeowners the greatest ability to be energy independent.”
Location: Brisbane, Queensland
Installation date: December 2020
sonnenBatterie type: sonnenBatterie 9.53 hybrid
sonnenBatterie size: 7.5 kWh
Solar panel size: 16 kWp