IKEA forays into solar panels and home battery packs

IKEA says customers will get back all of their investment in 12 years

IKEA, the Swedish furniture and home furnishing giant, has started to sell solar power systems and battery packs in the UK. They are stating that households who sign up to the system can save up to £560 a year.

According to IKEA, by having those large battery installed on their walls, homeowners will be able to store extra power generated by photovoltaic cells. This is energy that otherwise gets wasted because it is not usually used in homes.

Due to the decreased prices of solar panels and the integration of lithium-ion batteries to store energy, many homeowners have been encouraged to install these panels on their roofs.

IKEA said that by using supersized battery packs, 60% of the electrical energy produced by solar panels is returned to the national grid instead of being used by homes.  More energy is added to the grid if properties with renewable energy setups remain unoccupied for longer times.

IKEA has started the online sale of the system by partnering with solar power company, Solarcentury. However installation of the system is pretty complicated unlike the do-it-yourself furniture assembly IKEA customers are used to. It takes nearly three weeks from site survey to installation.

Many potential buyers are taking the aid of Google maps to identify locations on their roofs suitable for the installation of solar panels.


They has also given the recoupment plan

According to IKEA’s quotation, these power-storing batteries cost around £ 3000. The complete system for an average household which includes batteries and solar panels bring up the cost to £6,295. It means homeowners can recover this clean energy investment in 12 years. Not all IKEA solar systems are of the same price though. Cost of solar panels with larger surface area can climb up to £10,000.

It is worth mentioning that the Government of the UK is also interested in investing in energy storage. Therefore, they have a plan to invest £246m in battery technology to sustain and support their industrial strategies.

The battery back systems similar to the ones made by IKEA are also sold by the American automaker Tesla, with the brand name “PowerWall”.

The founder of Tesla, Elon Musk, has also revealed their plans to design and sell solar plants resembling roof tiles. According to him, this development will change the dynamics and structure of world’s energy usage and production.


What are IKEA’s ambitions?

According to the statement from IKEA’s sustainability manager for UK, Hege Saebjornsen, “We’re always looking for ways to help customers take positive actions at home for both the environment and their wallets.”

He also mentioned that the increase in electricity price will expand the customer base for solar systems, “With energy bills already going up 15 percent this year, there’s never been a better time for customers to take back control of their electricity bills and maximize their savings by switching to solar and solar storage.”