Harnessing the Sun’s Power: A Rooftop Solar Customer’s Battery Installation Journey

Glen Battery Storage

Meet San José Clean Energy customer, Glen Garfunkel, a long-time ambassador of all things sustainable and on a journey to electrify his home. Glen, a SJCE Clean Energy Community Advisory Commission member, is making a difference by living the ultimate environmental lifestyle. He and his family drive electric vehicles; plan to install a heat pump water heater; power their home with solar panels; and recently added battery storage to their solar system.

Solar panels were originally installed on Glen’s home 15 years ago. Realizing that solar equipment has continued evolving with new technology, he decided it was time to install additional panels last year to maximize his investment. By harnessing more clean energy to power his home, he is able to charge his electric vehicles and other electric home upgrades. In order for his system to be more efficient, power more electric parts of his home, and help do his part in our clean energy transition, he added battery storage.

“The primary reason I installed a battery was to support the grid and power my electric home with solar energy during more hours of the day.,” Glen shared. “Plus, it also provides backup power during outages and emergencies, reduces the need for fossil fuels especially in the evenings, and provides a small financial compensation by not having to buy electricity during peak hours.”

The process for adding battery storage to Glen’s home was simple. He obtained quotes from four different contractors and chose the company he felt most comfortable with. The process in all took three to four months with the installation taking place over the course of week or so. He also was able to take advantage of the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) federal tax credits and the Self-Generation Incentive Program (SGIP) offered through the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) to help cover the purchase and installation of the additional panels and battery.

Glen offers the following advice about electrifying and adding storage, “People can make a huge difference by investing in the technology now, because in the long run, we will be better off if people adopt cleaner practices today instead of tomorrow when things could possibly be worse and more expensive.” And as with many of those working to fight climate change, he also agrees that it’s really about preserving the planet now and for future generations. He wants to leave a better planet for his daughter.