Residential Solar Storage from SunPower and KB Home: Is This the Start of Something Big?

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SunPower and KB Home team up to offer energy storage solutions at certain KB Home locations in California as part of a pilot program. The program expands on the companies’ existing partnership to offer solar on new homes.

You can’t go too many days lately without solar storage news — and it just keeps getting more interesting. Today, SunPower Corp. (NASDAQ: SPWR) announced a new collaboration with its longtime partner KB Home (NYSE: KBH) to install energy storage solutions at certain KB Home locations in California as part of a pilot program.  

SunPower already offers solar to purchasers of new homes in more than 150 KB Home communities. This new pilot program expands the partnership and demonstrates the new technology’s ability to store solar power generated during the day for use during power outages.

 

“With energy storage capability, homeowners with solar power systems and home system monitoring today can control their electricity costs and have the security of knowing they’ll have power during an outage. In the near future, battery storage will help homeowners manage energy loads using stored power, including charging electric vehicles at night,” said SunPower CEO Tom Werner. “KB Home is once again demonstrating leadership with this move to show how homeowners could use this state-of-the-art technology to take even greater advantage of their high-performing SunPower solar power systems.”

 

SunPower and KB Home are piloting the energy storage solutions this year in select KB Home communities in Irvine, El Dorado Hills, and San Diego, California, with the potential for a broader rollout to additional communities next year.

 

“Offering our new homebuyers highly advanced energy-efficient features is a key differentiator for KB Home, and we are proud to partner with SunPower to pilot the energy storage solutions,” said Dan Bridleman, senior vice president of Sustainability, Technology and Strategic Sourcing for KB Home. “Showcasing this cutting-edge technology speaks to the strength of KB Home’s partnership with SunPower and once again demonstrates KB Home’s forward-thinking approach to new home innovation.”

 

One of the first KB Home locations to participate in SunPower’s energy storage pilot program is the builder’s Vicenza at Orchard Hills in Irvine, a community where all KB homes will include SunPower solar power systems.

 

KB Home provides estimates for a 1.4 kW high-efficiency PV system provided by SunPower and installed as a standard part of a 3,654-square-foot, ENERGY STAR® certified home at Vicenza. At current residential electric rates, KB Home estimates such a system would yield average energy savings of $216 per month, or approximately $25,900 over ten years, compared to a typical resale home without these features.

 

“Battery storage and energy management services are highly complementary to residential solar systems,” said Werner. “Together, they help further reduce the monthly cost of energy, maximize value and energy security, and provide a hedge against rising utility costs.”

 

This is just the beginning. While storage is not yet allowing most homeowners to defect from the grid, small steps like this one could lead us on the path to that outcome.