UK home energy storage in Winter 2022
Winter can be a challenging time for a variety of reasons, affecting millions of people and businesses. The impact on UK industries will vary drastically as some will see financial gain and others will require cost-cutting measures. Businesses within the manufacturing, construction and transport sectors begin to experience pressure points over the winter months as higher energy costs and logistical complications arise with solutions not easily available. As well as businesses, challenges exist for UK homeowners and families as we strive to find the most efficient solutions for energy storage in winter.
The cold temperatures can have detrimental effects on our daily lives, from a mental health and wellbeing perspective, to a financial perspective. Financially, winter is an expensive time of year predominantly due to rising energy costs following the need for heating. As well as heating costs, freezing temperatures can lead to household damage and apply pressure on the efficiency of home energy storage.
Winter 2022 energy costs
This year has been a turbulent time for energy prices following unforeseen global events, where countless businesses and homeowners have been put under pressure by extraordinarily high energy costs. Adaptation of our lifestyles and daily activity has been necessary in order to cope with the sharp rises, and cost-cutting has become fundamental for many.
The UK government has introduced a new Energy Prices Bill to ensure people receive vital support this winter. This has been split into two frameworks, one being the Energy Price Guarantee (EPG) which is for domestic consumers, and the other being the Energy Bill Relief Scheme for businesses.
The EPG has provided an average annual gas and electricity bill of £2,500 for direct debit customers with ‘typical’ levels of consumption. This EPG still remains 27% above the summer 2022 price cap, however is lower than the original Q4 2022 price cap and much lower than the early 2023 forecasts.
While the EPG is no doubt a positive for many homeowners, it is a whole 96% higher than the winter 2021/22 price cap. Therefore the extent of this year’s energy price rises is still hugely significant, and homeowners will be looking for additional support and solutions to improve their energy consumption.
Domestic energy storage
Energy storage in UK homes has been developed over recent years to have greater efficiency and improved reliability. Homeowners using photovoltaic (PV) panels can now store significant amounts of energy that can be used as surplus or even sold to the grid. Further benefits include the cutting of electricity bills and reduction of carbon footprint.
Domestic energy storage in winter is important for many homeowners, as they look to offset the expensive energy prices and generate their own to be stored. The UK has had the hottest summer on record, and those households with PV panels installed have reaped the benefits. With surplus energy stored, heating households in winter can become more affordable.
The electricity is stored domestically in electrical batteries for use around the house, with some systems allowing for the conversion of electricity into heat using heat batteries and thermal storage. For example, a PV diverter switch uses electricity to power immersion heaters in hot water tanks. The ability to store electricity and heat will become hugely beneficial over the winter months as our reliability on lighting and heating increases.
Renewable energy sources for domestic households commonly involve PV panels, but some rural areas may see the use of wind turbines as well. Usage of renewable energy is growing in the UK as these sources become more accessible. There are shifts in perspective as people are becoming more attuned to environmental responsibility, therefore further pushing the development, accessibility and usage of renewable energy.
At Elmelin, we develop mica-based insulation solutions for a variety of industries, including battery technology and domestic energy storage. Batteries used in domestic energy storage systems require excellent insulation to maintain efficiency over long periods of time. Energy storage systems require certain characteristics for them to be effective and financially viable, when compared to traditional on-grid energy.
Our battery insulation solutions meet new standards of home building. We’ve had the pleasure of working with experts in battery technology and it ensures we continue to incorporate the latest ideas and developments, ensuring our solutions remain at the highest standards. Mica is ideal for insulation due to its excellent physical properties, namely having excellent thermal resistance up to 1000°C and high dielectric strength, able to withstand up to 2000 kV/mm before breaking down.
This upcoming winter will prove to be a challenging period for many homeowners and businesses in the UK. The reasons may vary, however this year we are facing energy costs that were unprecedented this time last year. Domestic energy storage in winter requires solutions that can offer some comfort to homeowners, allowing them to use their own stored energy for heating and electricity. Our insulation solutions help to improve domestic energy storage system batteries, improving their durability, reliability and efficiency.
If you would like to find out more about our battery insulation solutions for domestic energy storage, or the numerous other industries we specialise in, please do get in touch.