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Tesla announces the launch of Powerwall 3 home battery

The Tesla Powerwall 2 (left) vs. the Tesla Powerwall 3

You may have seen the news that Tesla – the U.S.-based car and battery manufacturer – is poised to launch its new Powerwall battery, the Powerwall 3. Here’s what you need to know:

From Tesla’s website: “Powerwall 3 is a fully integrated solar and battery system, designed to meet the needs of your home. Powerwall 3 can supply more power with a single unit and is designed for easy expansion to meet your present or future needs. Powerwall 3 features an integrated solar inverter allowing solar to be connected directly for high efficiency.”

Let’s take a step back before explaining further:

  • The Powerwall 2 is a rechargeable home battery that can store energy from solar.
  • The Powerwall+ is a rechargeable home battery that includes an integrated Tesla Solar Inverter (which converts energy from the home’s solar panels or Solar Roof to be used by the home) and a system controller. The built-in inverter makes it a more streamlined and efficient energy storage solution and helps to manage energy storage and distribution. This is beneficial particularly when there are less-than-ideal conditions, such as shading from trees or other obstructions that reduce the amount of sunlight reaching your solar array.

With that said, the Powerwall 3 should be considered a product evolution to the Powerwall+ rather than Powerwall 2, although we will list comparisons for both below.

The new battery has an energy capacity of 13.5 kW – the same as PW2 – and offers continuous on-grid power of 11.5 kW – this is several kilowatts higher than the PW2. The system measures 43.3 inches x 24 inches x 7.6 inches and weighs nearly 287 pounds (the PW2 is 251.3 pounds and the PW+ is nearly 344 pounds). The size of the Powerwall 3 is also significantly smaller than the PW+.

The battery includes an inverter featuring six solar inputs (as compared with four in the PW+) with maximum power point trackers (MPPTs), which helps to maximize energy. The device is reported to have a solar-to-grid efficiency of 97.5% and comes with a 10-year product warranty (both of those are the same as the PW+).

According to product specs, PW3 is flood resistant to over 2 feet; as noted in its promotional materials: “flood and dust resistance” versus the PW2 or PW2+, which note “water and dust resistance.”

An important note is that the PW3 is not directly compatible with the PW2/PW+, and can’t be added to PW2 or PW+ installations. From Tesla’s website: “Powerwall 3 can be added to other Powerwall 3 batteries and cannot be added to Powerwall 2 or Powerwall+ batteries. Powerwall 3 is not compatible with other solar inverters.”

It’s also not entirely clear from Tesla’s website whether Powerwall 3 can be wired to existing solar panels.

According to Tesla, the Powerwall 3 will be available to customers starting in 2024. Orders are not being accepted yet but there is an option to sign up for updates on the Tesla website.

We will continue to watch for announcements regarding PW3 as well as look for more technical details to be released but, for now at least, we do not see PW3 as a direct replacement to PW2, since the addition of the solar inverter to the battery requires a 1-1 ratio between inverters and batteries in any PW3 architecture. PW3 may also have similar system architecture limitations like PW+ had (relative to PW2, PW+ systems had lower limits in terms of how many battery units can be installed in a system).  PW2 allows additional flexibility in terms of solar to battery ratios and also allows non-Tesla solar to be integrated with PW2. 

PW3 is expected to become available in late Q1 2024. If you have any further questions, please don’t hesitate to give us a call!

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