You’ll need more than an Allen key for this new Ikea product. Ikea is about to start selling solar panel and home storage battery systems to its UK customers.
The products come from a collaboration with British solar developer Solarcentury. Existing customers can purchase solar storage batteries that integrate with existing Solarcentury products, while first-time customers can get a solar+storage bundle. The bundle includes PV panels and the complete battery system.
The battery will retail for around $4000 USD while the bundle will be about $9000 USD, depending on the size of the array and battery capacity. Ikea expects the battery to help homeowners up to $700 USD off their electricity bills each year. The batteries are expected to be a popular item for existing solar customers who on average only use 40% of the energy generated from the PV arrays. The remaining 60% is sent back to the grid at often unfavorable rates. The batteries will help store and use this power within their own home.
[Image Source: Pujanak/Wikimedia Commons]
The solar panels come with a 25-year guarantee, and the installation of the system has a six-year warranty.
While the installation won’t be a DIY job, a break from the mold for the Swedish furniture giant, Ikea says they will do everything to make the setup as fast and efficient as possible. Customers will be provided with a fee quotation for the installation and products as well as a home survey, and final installation from accredited solar electricians.
“We know that our customers want to live more sustainably and together with Solarcentury we will help them to get more value from their solar panels and do just that,” said IKEA UK & Ireland country sustainability manager Hege Saebjornsen. Solarcentury’s head of residential solar Susannah Wood added: “Battery storage is set to completely revolutionize the home energy market, with solar homeowners now able to maximize the amount of solar generated electricity that they can store and use in their homes. We believe IKEA and Solarcentury are offering the most competitive package on the market yet.”
Ikea to face off with Tesla to grab UK solar market
By entering the home solar power market Ikea is going head to head with Solar giant Tesla. Tesla offers its solar roof panels and Tesla Powerwall to UK customers.
The solar market has had a rocky 12 months in the UK with several large Solar companies pulling out of the country citing lack of support from the government. Zep Solar, a Musk backed Solar company closed it UK subsidiary last year saying, “We had been exploring opportunities in the UK but based on the DECC decision we’re left to conclude that the UK government doesn’t support solar development. We’ve put expansion plans to the UK on hold indefinitely and will focus efforts elsewhere.”
If Ikea’s foray into solar goes well, it may plan to expand the project into other regions. Whether it would look to other local companies to collaborate with or start to develop its own branded solar panels remain to be seen.