Best Solar Inverter for Home – How to Choose It?

Posted on : 27-01-2014 | By : Max | In : DIY Solar


GUIDE: How To Make a DIY Solar Power System At Home

Solar Inverters

Solar panels and solar panel energy systems are growing in popularity daily. These sorts of systems can help you to save money on your utility bills, and also help you to do your part for the environment. In some cases, you may even be eligible for tax breaks for installing or investing in such a system. Every solar panel system must have an inverter. But what is an inverter? Is there only one type? If not, what are the types? Which of these types of inverters are the best for your home system? In this article, we will answer all these questions and some others.

From DC to AC

The main role of the solar inverter is to transform the solar power collected from the form of direct current (also known as DC) to alternating current (AC) which can be used safely in your home as power for appliances, outlets and so on. DC is the only type of electricity that a photovoltaic panel or system actually generates. Because of this, nearly every system must have an inverter somewhere in the system.

Getting the Most of Your Investment

You may also want to consider inverters that do more than just transform energy. For instance, many of them allow you to purchase extras, as well, as part of your inverter unit. These include things like a system to tell you about how much power you are generating and using over time, a control panel for your system, and much more. In this way, the people using the systems, as well as the local utilities (if they are involved) can really put your system to good use. Many of these extras easily pay for themselves.

Types of Solar Inverters

There are several types of solar inverters. All of these different types offer different things to owners. The most common types of solar inverters include central, string, off-grid, and microinverters. Although all of these inverters do exactly the same thing, they often do it in very different ways. These ways (as well as the benefits or drawbacks of some units) make it simple for most homeowners to choose the best solar inverter for their homes. Consider the options and the information below with your needs and wants in order to get a better grasp of which type of solar inverter is best for your home and system.

Central inverters are very much like string inverters. They can power a small business or home unit, but are most typically installed on the floor and not on the wall. These type of inverters may be heavy, large, and pretty expensive. They can be as complicated as offering a boost and isolation, or may just only have one DC to AC converter stage. Most of these units do not offer extra frills like data displays or very useful power controls. Many of the problems seen here are also seen in string converters, which we will discuss next.

String inverters can also be used to power smaller systems for residence or businesses. In the last few years, these systems, which are a lot like central inverters, but wall mounted, have really improved in leaps and bounds. However, they have come under competition with other types of inverters, as improvements have been made on their overall efficiency and design, as well. For most systems, a string inverter is a very fine choice. However, again, you may be missing out on things like power controls, as well as data collection. How you manage your system, as well as the overall safety may also be an issue with string inverters.

If you are really wanting to experience freedom of choice in energy, off-grid inverters are the choice for you. These systems can be either hooked-up to the grid for energy exchange with a utility company, or completely independent of the grid. For those who want to save money on their utility bills while also being prepared, just in case, this is the perfect option. They predict that these systems will be the wave of the future. Off-grid inverter systems often offer extras like data outputs, power controls, and much more.

Microinverters, for a long time, have been just too expensive and not realistic for use in residential applications. They have found a home in large governmental buildings and big systems since the 1990s, but declined in popularity because of their high cost and low output. However, with the advancements of the last few years, these inverters are making a comeback. These systems offer the very best in keeping track of system data, as well as being very easy for owners to learn to use, or to even install on their own without little training. For many homeowners, this overall package is just too great to pass up.

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