During planning for their new building in 2009, the Butterweck-Werner family in Kassel, Germany, were certain that they needed a PV system. This is because living sustainably and minimizing their impact on the environment and the climate represents an approach to life for the Butterweck-Werner family – one that they also want to pass on to their son. The goal for the family of three is to use as much of the self-generated solar power as possible directly at home and to make big savings on energy costs.
In the new house, the electricity supply has gone green and is self-generated. The 13.455 kWp PV system generates around 11,033 kWh of solar power per year and supplies electricity for the washing machine and dishwasher from their own roof. Self-generated green power is also used to provide warm water and energy for heating.
For a few years now, the energy system in the Butterweck-Werner household has also included a storage system. This is because the climate-conscious family was bothered by the fact that solar power could no longer be used after sundown. When the time was ripe for storage systems, they wasted no time in expanding their PV system to include a suitable battery. Now the washing machine also runs in the evening on solar power that was previously stored.
Recently, the family began refueling with sunlight. An electric car completes their personal declaration of independence, as their consumption of fossil fuels is now so low that they can hardly believe it themselves. The household supplies 90 percent of its own energy, all using the power of the sun.
Adaptive energy management, with the Sunny Home Manager 2.0 as its intelligent core, controls the connected devices as well as the electric car’s charging process, taking into account the available energy, the residents’ consumption habits and user requirements. It always ensures that the maximum amount of solar power is used. A nice side effect of the storage system is that the lights never go out in the Butterweck-Werner household, even if there is a power outage.
“We use solar energy for electricity, hot water, heating and our electric car. This means that we are independent from fossil fuels and rising costs. In this way, we are actively involved in shaping the energy transition.”
The Butterweck-Werner family
Because the members of the Butterweck-Werner family are real solar power fans, they naturally like to keep an eye on their PV system. They can do so anywhere – at home, on the go and, if they so desire, even on vacation. This is made possible by the mobile view of the system data in the Sunny Portal monitoring tool, either on a cell phone or tablet. Here, they can keep an eye on the most important system data at all times and see how much energy is being produced live as well as what is happening to it. Self-consumption is, of course, particularly important to them and the amount of CO2 that they spare the environment with their PV system is also a key figure for the family.