Friday, May 1, 2015

Tesla home batteries in your rolling home?

Ooooo, pretty

Yesterday Tesla announced its batteries for home and business applications. If they weren't insanely expensive, would they make sense for the Rolling Steel Tent?

Right now I have two 12-volt 104 amp-hour absorbed glass mat batteries. They cost about $300 each. Together they take up a 13" by 13" by 9" chunk of space in a cabinet. They weigh 66 pounds a piece.

Ooooo, functional

So far, they meet my power needs, running a refrigerator, some lights, and charging my electronics. Oh, and my hair clippers about once a month. Really, that's enough for the way I live now.

The Tesla batteries for homes put out 7 and 10 kilowatt-hours. Since I'm not an electricity wiz and can't convert kilowatt-hours to amp-hours in my head, I had to look it up. So, my batteries are putting out something in the neighborhood of 2 kilowatt-hours. Would I need five times as much power? No. But I know some van and RV dwellers who would. They'd like to run an air conditioner and a freezer and a big audio system and huge TV and a water heater and...

But where would a van dweller put a 4' x 3' x 6" battery? Hmmmm, maybe on the roof, beneath the solar panels? (Are they waterproof?) Ah, but how much of those solar panels would you need to keep a 10 kWh battery charged? A lot.

I don't think the Tesla batteries make sense for van dwellers yet. Perhaps there will be smaller, lower power—and cheaper—versions down the road. I can wait.


  1. The batteries design is predicted on heat dispassion rates *required REQUIRED for very high amperage draws. (Like flinging 3 tons of metal & glass cage from zero to 60 mph in 6 seconds flat) What I am saying is that one would be paying a premium price,, for a design feature,, that is not needed / required or desired. Well, unless you wanna do arc wielding from a DC source (off solar or otherwise) and good luck with that!

  2. Here's Technomadia's take on this: