Mathis Bros., Indio: Testing, 1, 2, 3… Success!

Commercial Case Study

MATHIS BROS. FURNITURE - INDIO, CA

CHALLENGE

Mathis Bros. is one of the largest independent furniture retailers in America. The operations division does an outstanding job of monitoring and optimizing their energy use over their retail locations. 

“Taking care of the environment is something that’s really important to Mathis Brothers…” says Rit Mathis, company spokesman, on the company website, “…So our goal for all of our locations is to be completely grid-neutral. Meaning that we pull no power from the grid and power our facilities completely by renewable energy.” Turning this environmental tenet into action, the corporation selected its furniture showroom in Indio, California as a pilot site. The microgrid solar and storage system in Indio would serve to prove the benefits of creating a 100% grid-independent facility that could be replicated across the rest of the Mathis Bros. retail and warehouse locations.

The primary business goal of the solar and storage microgrid system was to prevent store closures related to energy availability. Mathis Bros. never wanted to send customers or employees home due to a power outage, and they saw the added advantage of being able to remain as one of the few businesses open during any grid outages. 

The Indio location consists of two retail buildings and one large warehouse facility – three large structures with unique power needs. Mathis Bros. wanted the ability to manage their stored power to prioritize the retail buildings over the warehouse in time of extended blackouts or when weather impacted solar production. 

Even prior to the solar and storage project, Mathis Bros. kept accurate energy use data for this and their other facilities in Southern California. They selected HES Renewables to design and install their pilot site’s solar + storage system with microgrid functionality.

SOLUTION

HES Renewables installed 738 solar panels across the rooftop of the newest Mathis Bros. outlet showroom in Indio. With Mathis Bros.’s strong and accurate historical energy peak load and consumption data, HES Renewables selected the 271.8 kW / 1,087.2 kWh Tesla Megapack energy storage system that had the capability to meet the site’s max load and runtime requirements.

The solar production and renewable energy storage were designed and installed as a microgrid-capable system. The Tesla Megapack microgrid project was the first large microgrid system running through the Imperial Irrigation District electricity utility in Southern California. The energy system design also allowed energy management so that stored energy could be prioritized to keep the retail locations open for business in fully-functioning and air conditioned showrooms.  

BENEFIT

The Mathis Bros. Indio building made history when it became the first Tesla Megapack microgrid on the Imperial Irrigation District energy utility grid. Within the first month of operation, in the summer of 2022, the system proved its promise with multiple days of operating completely off-grid. The pilot site immediately demonstrated its value in energy independence and proof of future decades of cost savings.  

Commercial Solar system in Indio, California on the roof of a Mathis Bros. Furniture outlet. There is a Tesla MegaPack energy storage on the right hand side of the building with a truck parked next to it.

“Taking care of the environment is something that’s really important to Mathis Brothers… So our goal for all of our locations is to be completely grid-neutral. Meaning that we pull no power from the grid and power our facilities completely by renewable energy.” 

Rit Mathis, Company Spokesman of Mathis Bros., on the Mathis Bros. website

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We are a San Diego-based solar energy production and energy storage installation company. We have been an energy innovator since 2001 and can handle projects from solar-only arrays to micro-grid solar and storage systems with on-site EV charging stations. 

If you’re looking into the benefits of on-site energy production, energy storage, or EV Charging capability, we’d love to speak with you. We’ll show you how to lower and stabilize energy costs, receive the maximum incentives, open new revenue streams, and gain control over one of the largest expenses of your business or commercial property. 

Click here to be contacted by an HES Renewables representative, or simply dial us at 866-HES-RNEW (866-437-7639).

Robert Laverty

Senior Energy Consultant, Residential

Robert Laverty joined the HES team in the summer of 2018, bringing his ten years of solar design experience and his Bachelor’s degree from the University of Puget Sound with him. Robert is dedicated to finding solutions to help families produce and store electricity in order to reduce their reliance on grid power as well as help reduce their household’s carbon footprint. Robert’s experience as a newspaper editor as well as his involvement with the sustainability-focused Rocky Mountain Institute drives him to constantly seek out innovative ways to meet energy needs through renewable resources as well as helps him share those ideas with Southern California homeowners. When not at work or volunteering time with his church or community, Robert spends time with his wife and two sons or pursues his passion of fly fishing.

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