People Are Using Old Laptop Batteries to Build Their Own Versions of Tesla’s Powerwall

Tesla’s Powerwall was intended to provide a convenient way for homeowners to store electricity for future use, such as when the power goes out. But with a $5,500 price tag, they haven’t been affordable for many consumers. 

Some who had been interested in the tech, however, decided to try to make their own: constructed their own powerwalls by utilizing old, recycled batteries from laptops. 18650 lithium-ion batteries are the most recommended batteries to use. They can be found in more than just laptops. DIY powerwall builders are recycling batteries and giving them a whole new purpose.
While companies like Tesla sell powerwalls, these DIY models allow people to save money — and potentially store more electricity.

WARNING: When building such powerwalls, you need to know for sure what you are doing (know the risks) because Li-Ion batteries are potentially dangerous when the cells go bad or they are not used correctly



  1. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Build your own open source solar panels

    Do-it-yourself electricity generation is still difficult and expensive. The inventors of the SunZilla project aim to make it easier, cleaner, portable, quiet, and completely open source.

    The SunZilla system is designed to replace diesel and gasoline-powered generators for portable and emergency power: camping, events, mobile phone charging station, provide power to refugee camps, or keep the lights on during a power outage. Two people can set it up in a few minutes. It is modular and plug-and-play.

  2. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Hacker Builds His Own Version of the Tesla Powerwall

    In 2015, Tesla announced their Powerwall power storage system. While the Powerwall didn’t generate the kind of excitement that Tesla cars have, the idea is actually very good. Essentially, it’s a huge battery pack designed for homes. If you rely heavily on solar power, it can store that electricity to get you through the night.

    Unfortunately, you just can’t get a new Powerwall right now, but you can follow Jehu Garcia’s lead and build your own.

    As you’d imagine, most of the money and labor for a project like this goes into the batteries themselves.

    The cheapest way to build a large rechargeable battery pack is to combine hundreds — or even thousands — of small 18650 lithium-ion batteries. Those can be purchased for less than $1 each

  3. Tomi Engdahl says:

    The Quick-Build PowerWall

    Elon Musk isn’t just the greatest human being — he’s also a great inventor. He’s invented the reusable rocket, the electric car, and so much more. While those are fantastic achievements, Elon’s greatest invention is probably the PowerWall. The idea of a PowerWall is simple and has been around for years: just get a bunch of batteries and build a giant UPS for your house. Elon brought it to the forefront, though, and DIYers around the world are building their own. Thanks, Elon.

    Of course, while the idea of building your own PowerWall is simple, the devil is in the details. How are you going to buy all those batteries? How are you going to connect them together? How do you connect it to your fuse box? It’s a systems integration nightmare, made even more difficult by the fact that lithium cells can catch fire if you do something wrong. [jehugarcia] is building his own PowerWall, and he might have hit upon an interesting solution. He’s built a modular system to store and charge hundreds of 18650 cells. It looks great, and this might be the answer to anyone wanting to build their own PowerWall.

  4. Tomi Engdahl says:

    1kw DIY PowerWall affordable 18650 build project (2018)

    $300 DIY Tesla Powerwall – Solar storage 18650 lithium ion home Battery

  5. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Kentucky Congressman Converts a Tesla Model S Into a Home Powerwall

    “Politician” and “maker” are two words that are rarely used to describe the same person. But, in the case of Thomas Massie, Republican representative for Kentucky’s 4th congressional district and MIT graduate, those are apt descriptions. In a series of tweets yesterday and YouTube videos over the past year, he proved that with a demonstration of a DIY Powerwall he built from a Tesla Model S battery pack.

  6. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Simple DIY Powerwall using $1 LG 18650 eBay Cells


    not a $1 anymore more like $1099.99.

    For info, brass is an alloy of copper and zinc. It’s electrical conductivity is about 28% that of copper. That means for a given current (Amps) and length the brass needs to have about 3.5 X the cross sectional area!

    Your battery systems are very interesting, but when you have high currents through brass you will lose quite a bit of energy through heat unless you take into account the need for a far greater size of conductor using brass.

    I can see that brass rod is very easy to source (easier than copper rod) but remember that you need to scale up the cross sectional area in relation to copper.

    This is important because if you are going to the trouble of collecting electricity, storing it, recovering it then converting it to AC, every inefficiency means you need more solar collection and more battery storage.

  7. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Microbatteries On The Grid

    Not everybody has $6500 to toss into a Tesla Powerwall (and that’s a low estimate), but if you want the benefits of battery storage for your house, [Matt]’s modular “microbattery” storage system might be right up your alley. With a build-as-you-go model, virtually any battery can be placed on the grid in order to start storing power from a small solar installation or other power source.

    Networked home battery
    Choose your battery tech, microinverter tech and network some home batteries to power your house.

  8. Tomi Engdahl says:

    #ElectronicsCreators #Solar #batterystorage
    EEVblog 1502 – Is Home Battery Storage Financially Viable?

    Running through the numbers to see if home battery storage is viable on my home.
    And comparing Tesla Powerwall, Enphase IQ Battery, BYD LVS, and Greenbank battery pricing.

    00:00 – Is Home Battery Storage Financially Viable?
    00:45 – Energy consumption & production numbers
    03:25 – What about hot water?
    04:30 – Am I 100% grid-independent?
    05:18 – How much does electricity cost?
    06:10 – What size battery and what budget?
    07:07 – 5 year or 10 year payback?
    07:35 – What size battery?
    08:34 – Battery storage price comparison.
    10:01 – AC Battery. Tesla, Enphase.
    10:40 – DC battery hybrid inverter storage
    12:26 – Do I get blackouts in Sydney?
    12:54 – DYD LVS battery
    13:19 – CHEAP Greenbank battery
    14:25 – Does a cheap battery pay for itself?
    15:11 – Feeding Enphase microinverters into a Hybrid inverter?
    17:17 – Longevity, Maintenance, Peak power, and depth of discharge all determine battery life.
    18:44 – Conclusion


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