Tesla Powerwall Money Savings Explained


Tesla Powerwalls are meant to help save you money, but you may not fully understand everything that goes into the money savings. Many things go into the formula of figuring out how much you are saving when those savings will make a difference and how you can optimize your savings when it comes to your Tesla Powerwall.

According to Tesla, it will take about six to seven years to begin collecting a return on your investment of a Powerwall. However, beyond that generalization the specifics and timeframe are different depending on a host of factors.

It can be a confusing topic to figure out entirely but keep reading to learn everything that you need to know when it comes to saving money with Tesla’s Powerwall.

When To Actually Expect To Get Money Back

When looking on the internet to find when you can start expecting to be saving money off the Tesla Powerwall, the results can differ. This comes from the fact that each person’s experience with savings when it comes to the Tesla Powerwall will be different. So remember to keep this in mind when looking at your Powerwall savings.

Tesla officially reports that it will take about six to seven years before you start to see a return on your investment. However, this estimate of six to seven years rarely turns out to be the actual period of time it takes before you begin to see a return on the Tesla Powerwall.

In reality, it typically takes upwards of eleven to thirteen years before you can expect to see a return on the Tesla Powerwall. That is around double what Tesla themselves reported for how long it would take you for you to start making something off of your investment.

Tesla Powerwalls take a long time to provide you with any type of monetary return, but the wait is well worth the reward. Once you reach that eleven to thirteen-year mark, you will be getting your electricity for free. You can even make money off of the Tesla Powerwall by selling your excess power to electric companies each month.

How To Save The Most Money With Tesla Powerwall

There are a large number of factors that you can take into mind when you are trying to figure out the savings you are getting from the Powerwall. If you want to save more money with the Tesla Powerwall and shorten the time it takes to make money off your investment, keeping these factors in mind will greatly help you.

Keep in mind that not every route that you choose to go down with a Tesla Powerwall will bring you many savings. Most times, you will only make a modest amount of savings with the Powerwall at best, but not even that is not a guarantee.

However, each person’s needs will decide which of these factors will affect them and how they can increase the money savings of the Powerwall. Make sure that you focus more on what your needs are when it comes to your Powerwall versus what you are told if it does not pertain to you.

Purchasing Solar Panels To Increase Output

Since the Tesla Powerwall is just a battery system, it relies on an external power source to be of any use to you. Obviously, you could just connect it with your current electric system, but if the point of using the Powerwall is to save money and stop paying electric bills, then you will be better off getting a solar system as well.

If you get a solar system, though, it may take longer for you to begin seeing savings on your power system. Using a solar system will help you get off of your electric grid, however, meaning you will no longer have a monthly electric bill. You will pay upfront for the system, but you will no longer have any more electric-related bills to pay after that.

Powerwall and Solar System Savings:

  • Using a Tesla Powerwall 2, combined with a 5kW solar system, you can expect to save around $2,000 your first year using the system. This is around double what you would save if you are only using the Tesla Powerwall on its own.
  • Using only the Tesla Powerwall 2 on its own, you can expect to save about $1,100 in the first year. That is part of the $2,000 saved with the solar system combined, meaning the solar system only saves an additional $900.

Source: How Much Can You Save With Tesla Powerwall?

Change Your Total Hourly Usage

One of the most obvious ways to increase your money savings when it comes to your Tesla Powerwall is to decrease your hourly power usage. The less power you are using each day, the more money you will be able to save, and the shorter period it will take to see a return on your Tesla Powerwall.

It may be difficult to decrease your daily power usage, but if you are more focused on saving money with the Powerwall, this can be a great way to do that. Take the time to look at your power needs and where you can decrease your total daily power usage, as there are probably at least a few areas that you could cut back on.

This factor of Tesla Powerwall savings is not for everyone, so only cut back on your daily power usage if it works for you. The Tesla Powerwall is meant to help make life easier for you to enjoy everything you usually do for cheaper. If you can cut back on your power usage, then that is great.

If you can not cut back on your daily power usage, that is fine too. You will still save a large amount of money on your power bill just by using the Tesla Powerwall. Decreasing your daily power usage is only one of many ways and factors that go into the amount of savings you can expect to get from your Powerwall.

Optimizing Your System When There Is Sunny Weather

This factor is more focused on those that use a Tesla Powerwall alongside a solar system that they have installed. If you do not have a solar system and use your electric grid with your Tesla Powerwall, this factor will not affect how much money you save with the Tesla Powerwall.

If you are using a Tesla Powerwall with a solar system, it is important that you are optimizing the system for sunny weather. The more coverage and time in the sun your panels get, the more energy will get produced and stored in the Powerwall. It may take you some time to optimize your solar system fully, so just take your time doing it.

Tesla solar systems come with the ability to customize how the solar system is gathering solar energy. This comes in handy when trying to optimize your system to get the most money savings with your Tesla Powerwall. You will want to focus on increasing the amount of energy gathered while it is sunny out and storing that in your Powerwall.

However, do not forget that, like all batteries, the Tesla Powerwall does have a limit on how much energy it can store at once. You will have to figure out the perfect setup for you regarding optimizing your system for sunny weather. You can purchase more than one Powerwall, but you rarely save any money past the first Tesla Powerwall.

Factoring In The Costs To Figure Out Your Money Savings

Before you can even begin wondering how much you might save off your Powerwall or how long it will take for you to make anything off your investment, you have to figure out the costs that are going into it. Powerwalls are not cheap, and that is not counting your monthly electric bill or the cost of solar panels, depending on which route you go with.

Here are the costs that go into the Powerwall System:

  • The Tesla Powerwall itself typically costs between $4,700 to $6,700. This is without considering the other costs that go into the Powerwall. Once you have purchased the Tesla Powerwall, you will have to pay anywhere from $2,000 to $3,000 more just to install the Powerwall.
  • If you are still using your electric grid, you can expect your monthly electric bills to decrease drastically after several years. However, you will still be paying each month for your electricity, so you will need to factor that into the costs that come with a Tesla Powerwall.
  • If you are using a solar panel system with your Powerwall, you will not have to worry about monthly electric bills anymore. However, Tesla solar systems can cost you anywhere from $8,000 to $30,00 depending on which system you go with and how many solar panels you decide to purchase.

Your Savings Will Decrease Over Time

When considering your money savings with the Tesla Powerwall, you have to remember that your Powerwall will lose capacity to store energy. This will be a small, steady decrease over the years, so you will not necessarily notice it for the first few years, but it will make a sizable difference within a decade.

By the end of your first decade using the Powerwall, you can expect its energy capacity to have decreased to about 70%. That is a 30% loss in storage capacity, which is also a decrease in your money savings after that first decade. This loss of storage capacity is one of the chief reasons why it takes between eleven to thirteen years to break even.

You can expect that your money savings annually on the Powerwall to drop by roughly $40. By the end of that decade, your money savings from the Powerwall will have decreased to between $700 to $800 annually. That is a large decrease in your savings, and you will want to make sure you are factoring this in when figuring your savings.

Luckily though, Tesla does have a warranty in place on any purchased Powerwall, ensuring that your Powerwall does not drop below 70% effectiveness within a decade. If you find that your Powerwall has dropped below this capacity within that first decade, you can use the warranty to get yourself a replacement Powerwall.

The Rules Your Power Company Has Regarding Powerwalls

Another major role that plays a factor in your money savings concerning the Tesla Powerwall is the rules that your power company has in place for the usage of Powerwalls. This applies to people who are both still using their original electric power grid and those that are using solar panels to provide the energy for their home.

Before you set your Tesla Powerwall up in your home, you should check with your power company to find out their rules when it comes to Powerwalls. Taking the time to find out these rules beforehand will save you a lot of time in the long run if you ever decide you want to try to sell your excess power to your local power company.

The rules for your Powerwall may be different, depending on if you are using your original power grid or if you are using solar power. If you are using your power grid for your Powerwall, you will be a bit more limited on the options that you have in regards to the amount of power that you can sell back to your power company.

In And Out Power Grid Rule

This power company rule in regards to Powerwalls tends to be a rare grid rule since not many Powerwalls are capable of doing this. This can be a beneficial thing to have, though, since it can increase the amount of money savings that you can get from your Tesla Powerwall.

The way that the in and out power rule works when it comes to the Tesla Power wall is as such:

  • Your power company will allow you to charge your battery during off-peak hours for the power grid. Off-peak hours are those hours you are not using much energy for your home typically though most power companies will not allow you to do this.
  • Once your battery is charged during the off-peak hours, the power company will pay you to put that power back into the grid. If your power company supports this, then it can be an excellent opportunity for you to make some money off your excess power.

Bringing Energy Into The Grid Only Rule

When it comes to your Powerwall and your electric company, the grid-only rule tends to be a lot more common. This one is not an option that will help you make extra money by selling your excess power back to your power company, but it is still a good way to save money.

This Powerwall configuration works because it allows you to charge your Powerwall from the power grid during off-peak hours. Once you have charged your Powerwall during the off-peak hours, you can then go ahead and use that power during the peak hours of the day.

This Powerwall configuration saves you money by allowing you to avoid paying more for the power you are using during peak hours. Instead, you get to use the power you gathered during the off-peak hours and then use that, which means you only pay for the power you stored away during the off-peak hours of the day.

Some power companies will not allow you to use this configuration, though, if you are using both their energy grid and solar power. So if you are hoping to go this route, make sure that you check to see the rules that your power company has in place for this. It will save you time and trouble farther down the road.

Using Only Solar Panel Power Input With Your Powerwall

The final typical Powerwall configuration that you can use in tandem with your power company is using solar panel input. Obviously, this type of Powerwall configuration will only work if you have a solar panel. It also tends to be the only power configuration that power companies will use for your Powerwall if you are using solar panel power.

Using solar power input for your Tesla Powerwall:

  • If you use solar panels for your Powerwall, then most electric companies will pay you to put your excess power into the power grid. It works just like the in and out power grid configuration but instead uses solar panels to produce the power rather than the power grid itself.
  • If you decide to put power back into the grid, you will have to charge your Powerwall only via solar power. This is to help prevent arbitrage from happening with the power companies, which many of them do not allow. You will need to check with your power company to find out their rules on this.
  • If you want to charge your Powerwall during off-peak hours, you can, but do keep in mind this tends to be after the sun goes down. You will not get much power for your Powerwall during off-peak hours, but you can still sometimes make a small amount of money back by doing this.

Conclusion

There is a large amount of information and factors that go into the money savings regarding the Tesla Powerwall. It can seem like a complicated matter, but you will find that it is quite simple once you take the time to do some basic research. Just take your time and figure out what works best for you, and you will be saving money in no time.

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Greg

Hi, I'm Greg. My daily driver is a Tesla Model 3 Performance. I've learned a ton about Teslas from hands-on experience and this is the site where I share everything I've learned.

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