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June 24, 2024

Solar Learning Centre

Can You Install a Tesla Powerwall 2 Outside?

A Tesla Powerwall is installed outdoors in a desert landscape. Text on the image asks, "Can You Install a Powerwall Outside?" and displays the Penrith Solar Centre logo in the top left.

The Tesla Powerwall 2 is a popular solar battery. It stores energy generated from solar panels or the grid, and it’s saving folks a lot of money on electricity bills. We have a lot of customers asking this question: can a Tesla Powerwall 2 be installed outside?

The short answer is yes, but there are some things to consider.

At Penrith Solar Centre, we’re here to guide you through any and every question you might have about solar systems. Powerwalls are extremely popular because they’re brand-agnostic and work with a variety of solar systems. Things like size and operating temperature require consideration, especially if you have your heart set on installing it outside.

In this article, you will learn:

  • Is Powerwall 2 Designed for Outdoor Use?
  • Does Powerwall Ever Get Too Hot?
  • Tesla Powerwall Ventilation Specifications
  • What is the Installation Process for a Powerwall 2?
  • Safety Considerations for Installing Powerwall 2
  • What Are the Benefits of Installing Powerwall Outdoors?

By the end of this article, you will know what you ought to consider when you install a Powerwall 2.

Is Powerwall 2 Designed for Outdoor Use?

The Tesla Powerwall 2 is designed to be installed both indoors and outdoors. It has a durable casing that protects it from various weather conditions.

The battery is rated IP67. This means it is resistant to dust and can handle being submerged in water up to one meter deep for 30 minutes. This is a safety feature in case it floods where your Powerwalls are mounted. Please do not take it swimming.

While it can operate in a wide range of temperatures, extreme conditions can affect its performance. In very hot or cold climates, extra measures may be needed to maintain optimal performance.

The Powerwall 2 can operate in temperatures ranging from -20°C to 50°. While that sounds like a generous range, in parts of Australia where it gets truly hot in the summer, you might need to install it indoors.

If you’re interested in learning a bit more about Powerwall, you might want to check out the following article titled, Is the Tesla Powerwall 2 Worth It? Cost, Specs, Bill Savings & More.

Talk to an expert

Does Powerwall Ever Get Too Hot?

When installing a Tesla Powerwall 2 outside, you need to consider the following:

Choose a sheltered location to protect the Powerwall 2 from direct sunlight, (and rain). A covered patio on the side of a house should be sufficient. Our director, Jake Warner, actually has 4 Powerwalls installed outside his home under an eve.

Tesla has this information about Powerwall on their website in the installation manual: “For best performance, Tesla recommends installing Powerwall in locations with an ambient temperature between 32°F and 86°F (0°C to 30°C) year-round.”

However, sunlight is hot, especially in the summertime. Sunlight on the surface of your Powerwall is going to heat the battery up.

Three tesla powerwalls are lined up against a wall.

Powerwalls contain a liquid that’s created when you dissolve an electrical conducting substance called an electrolyte in water. This is different from the electrolytes in the drinks they sell in pharmacies for sick children and hungover adults. The electrolyte in a battery facilitates the chemical reaction that causes the storage and release of energy.

The electrolyte is sensitive to extreme temperatures. Heat agitates the electrolyte which decreases its conductivity and shortens the lifespan of the battery.

If it’s the middle of a January afternoon and your Powerwall is hard at work with the sun blazing down on it when the outside temperature is in the low 40s, the interior might be able to reach 50°. It is a possibility.

Because of this, we really like to find a spot for your Powerwalls that’s protected if it’s possible. We’re always looking for a cool dry place to install them.

If you’re interested in learning about the pros and cons of Powerwall, you might want to check out the following article titled, Tesla Powerwall 2 Review.

Enquire about Powerwall

Tesla Powerwall Ventilation Specifications

It’s necessary to make sure the installation site has proper ventilation. This prevents overheating and keeps your Powerwall functioning as intended.

Side Clearances: At least 50 mm of clearance on the left side of the Powerwall. 150 mm is necessary on the right side. This allows for adequate airflow around the unit.

Top Clearance: Maintain a minimum of 300 mm of clearance above the Powerwall. This space is necessary to allow heat to dissipate effectively.

Bottom Clearance: We can wall-mount your Powerwall and leave a clearance beneath it to ensure airflow. We can install them on the ground too. If your Powerwall is installed on the ground (in a cool dry place), there won’t be any bottom clearance. This is perfectly fine. But Powerwall does need a sturdy base like a concrete slab.

If you’re interested in learning a bit more about how Powerwall stacks up against the elements, you might want to check out the following article titled, What is the Lifespan of the Tesla Powerwall 2?

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What is the Installation Process for a Powerwall 2?

The main steps for installing a Powerwall are as follows:

Site Assessment: A certified Tesla installer (like Penrith Solar Centre) will visit your home to assess the installation site.

Our consultants will check possible locations for your new Powerwall, and work with you to meet your needs as well as the required technical specifications.

Mounting Surface: A Powerwall weighs 125 kg. That’s heavy. We make sure the wall you want it installed on is strong enough to support its weight.

The surface should be flat and sturdy because your Powerwall will rest flush against it. Our team will verify that the surface is suitable; we look for concrete, brick, or a reinforced wall that can securely hold the battery.

Because they’re so heavy, we often install them on the ground if there isn’t a good spot for them on the wall.

Electrical Connections: The installer will connect the Powerwall 2 to your home’s electrical system through the main switchboard. This includes connecting it to your solar panels (if you have them) and the grid.

We measure the distance from the installation site (whether it’s inside or outside) to the main switchboard. Shorter distances are preferable because this minimises voltage rise/drop. The location shall allow reasonable access for us to run our cables to the battery.

After our team has assessed the site for safety and has figured out how to install it so it functions as efficiently as possible, they install it.

If you’re interested in learning a bit more about the differences between an in-house solar installer and subcontractors, you might want to check out the following article titled, In-house Installers vs. Subcontractors: Which is Better?

More about our installations

Safety Considerations for Installing Powerwall 2

Safety is our top priority when installing a Tesla Powerwall 2. Here are some important safety considerations:

Certified Installers: Always use certified Tesla installers. We have the training and experience to install the Powerwall 2 safely and correctly.

In addition to being certified by Tesla, installations in Australia must be licensed electricians. Electricians are trained to follow best practices and ensure solar panels and battery installation is safe and compliant with any regulations your strata, town, city, or state may require.

If you’re interested in learning a bit more about solar safety, you might want to check out the following article titled, Solar Safety: Microinverters vs. String Inverters.

Talk to an expert

What Are the Benefits of Installing Powerwall Outdoors?

As much as we’ve leaned into the potential problems of installing a Powerwall outside, there are also several benefits to installing it in the great outdoors.

Space Saving: Installing the Powerwall 2 outside saves indoor space. This is useful if you have limited space inside your garage.

By placing the Powerwall outside, you avoid cluttering your garage with a big metal box. This allows you to use your indoor space more effectively for storage.

Noise Reduction: The Powerwall makes noise during operation, primarily from its cooling system. Installing it outside keeps the noise out of your garage. For some folks, the garage is a Zen place. If you’re someone who has a hobby that’s done in the garage and you like to Zen-out, you’ll want to keep the Powerwall outside.

You should also probably keep Powerwall out of your garage if you’re terrible at parking. If you smash your car into, it will need maintenance.

If you’re learning about the long-term financial benefits of your Powerwall and how you can program it to generate passive income for you, you might want to check out the following article titled, Variable Feed-in Rates and VPPs in NSW.

Find out more

Installing Powerwall Outside: Have You Got a Battery Idea?

Now you know some of the things our installation crew is going to consider if you request an outdoor installation for your Tesla Powerwall 2. It’s designed to withstand hot and cold weather.

However, it is important to consider location, mounting surface, and temperature. Always use certified Tesla installers and electricians for a safe and proper installation. With proper maintenance and monitoring, your Powerwall 2 will provide reliable energy storage for your home.

At Penrith Solar Centre, we love installing Powerwalls. We love their design aesthetic, their efficiencies, and their storage capacity. If you’re interested in producing, storing, and consuming your own energy, you might want to investigate Powerwall further.

A group of people posing in front of a building at Penrith Solar Centre.

If you’re ready to take that next step in your solar journey, we recommend you check out the following article titled, What to Expect on the Day of Your Solar Installation.

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References

These sources provide comprehensive information on the specifications, benefits, and installation considerations for the Tesla Powerwall 2, ensuring a reliable and efficient setup for outdoor use.

Tesla, Inc: “Tesla Powerwall 2 Specifications.” Tesla. Retrieved from Tesla Powerwall.

Clean Energy Reviews: “Tesla Powerwall 2 Review.” Retrieved from Clean Energy Reviews.

CleanTechnica: “Tesla Powerwall 2: The Ultimate Guide.” Retrieved from CleanTechnica.

Tesla: “Powerwall Installation Manual.” Retrieved from Tesla.

Clean Energy Council: “Battery Storage Safety Guide.” Retrieved from Clean Energy Council.

Electrek: “Tesla Powerwall 2 Review and Installation.” Retrieved from Electrek.

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