Smart Battery Pilot

Get rewards when you install or connect a qualifying home battery system

Why should you consider joining our Smart Battery pilot?

You might be surprised.

PGE’s Smart Battery pilot studies the best ways to connect batteries at customer homes to PGE's grid. At times of peak energy usage, we’ll charge or discharge your battery to either store or provide energy to the grid. Your batteries will remain fully available to you during a power outage or upon request – you’re in control of how much energy you wish to contribute.

Gain resilience

You can rely on back-up power if there’s an outage.

Choose your savings

Save on your bill based on the amount of battery capacity you choose to contribute.

Optimize your solar

You’ll get the most of your solar panels. A battery lets you store the energy you generate during the day.

How it works & ways to participate

For PGE customers there are two ways to be a part of the Smart Battery pilot.

Shift energy and get rewards

PGE customers with a qualifying battery system can enroll and earn rewards for participating in Peak Time Events – if your battery system is listed below, you’re eligible.

Don’t have an eligible system? No problem

You can use your current battery system as a great way to save on your bill when you participate in Peak Time Rebates. PGE Simply program your battery to provide some or all of the energy your home needs during a Peak Time Event.

Incentives, tax credits and rebates lower costs

Energy Trust of Oregon PGE offers cash incentives for solar + battery storage and for batteries added to existing solar systems, including higher incentives for income-qualified households. Your battery may also qualify for the Solar + Storage rebate from the state of Oregon and a 30% federal tax credit.

Why does my participation in this Pilot matter?

By adding your battery system to the grid, you’re part of a community that is creating a “virtual power plant” - one that lets us store and draws energy when needed. It’s an important step towards a clean energy future and a vital one as we add more renewables like wind and solar to the grid.

For example, if our solar panels or wind turbines are generating more than usual, we can store this extra clean energy in batteries and use it later to power your neighbors’ homes and businesses. That strengthens reliability and makes us better equipped to incorporate more low-cost, renewable energy sources into the grid.

Here’s some more details on the paths you can take to be a part of this pilot:

*To be enrolled in the Smart Battery Pilot you must provide a minimum capacity of 3 kWh.

Potential Bill Credit

*The amount of bill credit received during each event depends on the actual amount of energy your battery provides during each Peak Time Event. This chart includes examples of potential bill credits a customer would receive sharing 80% of their capacity and participating in Peak Time Events.

Answers to Smart Battery pilot questions

PGE launched its five-year Smart Battery pilot in 2020. Through this program PGE partners with residential customers with home battery storage systems. The program seeks to install and connect residential energy storage batteries that will contribute up to 9.5 megawatt hours of energy to our grid. Once installed, these battery storage systems will help create a Virtual Power Plant (VPP) that is made up of residential battery systems that can be operated individually or combined to serve the grid, adding flexibility that supports our transition to a cleaner energy future. In addition, these home battery storage systems provide customers with a backup energy resource they can rely on in the event of a power outage.

As we build a cleaner energy future and add more renewable power like wind and solar to our mix, we’re developing energy storage so we can make the best use of these more intermittent resources. This is one of five projects that the OPUC (Oregon Public Utility Commission) approved to test different storage solutions to learn more about the most efficient and effective ways to store power and further modernize our grid.

PGE will schedule times for your battery to be dispatched to provide energy at times of peak energy usage when prices are higher and electricity may be more carbon intensive. During these peak time events, you always have the option to opt out and your batteries remain fully available to you during a power outage.

No, batteries are not dispatched during an outage event. All batteries remain fully available to customers during a power outage. PGE monitors weather conditions very closely, and in the event that severe weather is predicted that may be more likely to cause outages your battery will not be dispatched for grid purposes. Preserving customer resilience from their battery investment is among our top priorities of this Pilot.

In exchange for allowing PGE to connect to and operate their battery system to the grid, participating customers will earn bill credits of $1.70 per kWh of energy each time they participate in a Peak Time Event. Batteries will remain fully available during a power outage. Questions? Contact a PGE Battery Storage expert for assistance - smartbattery@portlandgeneral.com.

Eligible residents living within specific neighborhoods in North Portland and Hillsboro, can receive a rebate of $405 per kWh of energy storage committed if they purchase a battery through the Energy Trust of Oregon. Contact an Energy Trust of Oregon solar trade ally for a bid on a battery storage system (If you don’t have a solar system, now’s a good time to add it but it’s not required to participate in this pilot).

Your solar installer will guide you through the process of installing your battery system (see the list of qualified products below) and connecting it to our grid. Your rebate will be reflected as a reduction on your final invoice. After your battery is installed, you’ll receive a link to connect your battery to PGE. That’s it! Have a question? Email us.

Participating customers allow PGE to interact with and operate their batteries through cloud-based software. This software works as a load management system, allows the dispatching of energy, and offsets some stress from the grid during peak times. In a power outage, the participating customer retains full battery usage as a power backup. They are always in control to opt-out or override any PGE event.

PGE is partnering with the Energy Trust of Oregon to procure residential battery storage systems for eligible residential customers by leveraging their existing solar incentive program infrastructure and trade ally contract network.

An Energy Trust of Oregon solar trade ally can provide a bid on a new battery system. You can include solar if you’d like, although it’s not required for this rebate.

PGE will use the residential battery storage pilot to create a single resource that can help the grid balance energy production with energy demand, freeing up the generation resources that are typically held on standby, ready to kick in and accommodate significant fluctuation. This will allow generation resources that are typically fossil-fueled to do what they do most efficiently – generate energy.

The pilot will also allow PGE to test new smart-grid control devices across its distribution system that will more effectively allow a two-way exchange between PGE and pilot participants. The new controls will more actively manage the way that electricity is distributed across PGE’s system to incorporate energy that customers generate, such as through solar panels, while also meeting power demand that is less predictable, such as for charging electric vehicles. The controls will allow PGE to more actively manage power distribution to improve power quality for all customers.

The Pilot estimates the batteries will be dispatched about 15 times per year, typically occurring during times of extreme heat or cold, when there is more strain on the grid. Due to the experimental nature of the pilot PGE may also send signals for technical testing purposes. You are always in control and can opt out of any PGE dispatch.