Ford’s electric version of its iconic F-Series trucks, F-150 Lightning, can power a house for three days using a piece of extra equipment.
As truck owners are used to tapping a variety of features – torque, towing capability, and more – to get things done, now they can power their houses during blackouts.
Ford is the first electric vehicle manufacturer in the U.S. to offer the ability for customers to power their homes with an electric truck during brief or extended outages.
Ford and F-Series are partnering with the solar company Sunrun to enhance home energy management, leveraging the substantial onboard battery capability of the all-electric F-150 Lightning.
According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, Americans experienced the most power interruptions on record in 2020.
“F-150 Lightning brings new innovations to customers, including the ability to power their homes when they need it most,” said Matt Stover, Ford charging and energy services director. “Teaming up with Sunrun leverages their expertise to bring solar power to even more customers, giving them the chance to turn their truck into an incredible energy storage source – and future truck features can help accelerate the development of a less carbon-intensive grid.”
The F-150 Lightning’s home charging solutions, including the 80-amp Ford Charge Station Pro and Home Integration System, enables the vehicle to store and supply power to homes.
“America’s energy future starts at home, and partnering with Ford illustrates a momentous shift in the way we power our lives,” said Mary Powell, Sunrun CEO. “No longer tethered to a carbon-intensive energy system, we’ll be able to offer more paths to greater energy independence by powering homes and vehicles with the sun while helping rapidly accelerate the transition to a clean, resilient energy future for all.”
More efficient than gasoline-powered generators
Ford Intelligent Backup Power made its debut on F-150 Lightning, giving customers the ability to use bidirectional power technology from their all-electric truck to provide energy to their homes during an outage, whether sheltering in a storm or keeping cool in a heatwave.
The F-150 Lightning's extended-range battery system can store 131 kilowatt-hours of energy and deliver up to 9.6 kilowatts of power in a cleaner, quieter, more efficient way versus gasoline-powered generators, and with greater capacity than many wall battery units.
With Ford Intelligent Backup Power and the Home Integration System, F-150 Lightning automatically kicks in to power your house if the grid goes down. Once power is restored, the system automatically reverts back to utility power. Based on an average U.S. home at 30 kilowatt-hours of use per day, F-150 Lightning with an extended-range battery provides full home power for up to three days, or as long as 10 days when used in conjunction with solar power or rationing.
The Lightning is “a mini powerplant for your home,” Jason Glickman, executive vice president for engineering, planning, and strategy at California utility PG&E Corp told Bloomberg.
“At scale, when these vehicles are enabled to send energy back to the grid, flex alerts and notices of grid emergencies will be a thing completely of the past,” added Glickman.
To benefit from Ford Intelligent Backup Power and future energy management solutions, customers need to equip their home with the Ford Charge Station Pro and Home Integration System, which is composed of a power inverter plus a dark start battery and transfer switch, which enables the two-way power flow.
Ford’s innovative technology allows us to power our houses during blackouts, continues to decrease our reliance on fossil fuels, and lets us ditch our gasoline-powered generators.