Off Grid Solar Inverters: Working, Benefits, Price, and More
Worried about your skyrocketing electricity bills this summer?
Switch to solar power systems and benefit from the sun’s never-ending and consistent, sustainable energy.
You can maximize your value for money by opting for a solar power system.
Wondering, which solar system are we talking about? Well, an off-grid solar system. This self-sustaining (stand-alone) system is ideal for areas with no power grids or long power cuts.
Want to know what are the components of an off grid solar power system?
Solar panels, an off grid solar inverter, a mounting structure, a charge controller, and a battery bank are the major components of an off grid solar system.
This guide will walk you through one of these components: the inverter. An off grid inverter is often referred to as the brain of a solar power system.
Want to learn more details about an off-grid solar inverter? Dive in – we have lots of information to share with you.
What is an Off Grid Solar Inverter?
First things first, an off grid solar inverter is a component of the off grid solar system. The solar panels produce Direct Current (DC), while household appliances work on Alternating Current (AC).
A solar inverter is a device that converts DC power to AC power so that consumers can utilize the electricity generated by the panels to run appliances.
In an off-grid solar system that works independently, you need not connect solar panels to a power grid. Rather your off grid inverter stays connected to a battery backup to store the solar power generated during day hours.
The solar panels seize sufficient energy during sunshine hours. The battery system connected to the off-grid inverter stores excess charge. It supplies electricity to power all the electrical appliances during night hours.
Off-grid inverters started as simple boxes concerned only with converting DC power into AC power. However, in recent times, they have undergone much evolution.
They have been developed to incorporate intelligent units, performing functions like data monitoring, advanced utility controls, and more.
How Does An Off Grid Inverter Work?
An off grid solar inverter is a battery-based system. It is used for battery charging and load sharing.
When the Sun is unavailable, such as during night hours, an off grid solar inverter is used to feed load through a charged battery.
So, the two different working conditions for an off grid solar inverter are as follows:
- Case I- During the daytime: Whatever power isn’t being consumed keeps charging the battery.
- Case II- During nighttime: The battery will feed to loads, and power flow is reversed. It means the current now flows from the battery to the inverter. It keeps the power supply on at nighttime.
Pros and Cons of Off Grid Solar Inverter
An off grid solar inverter provides multiple key benefits, but it also has some disadvantages. You must weigh both.
- – An off-grid inverter makes it possible to store the abundant sun’s energy into a battery.
- – During the nighttime, it uses the stored power to supply electricity to the house.
- – An off-grid solar inverter makes you independent of grid energy. It means that a power failure or an outage will not affect you in any way.
- – You do not have to pay electricity bills because your power system is no longer tied to the grid.
Following are the demerits of using an off grid solar inverter:
- – In case of insufficient sunlight, your battery may not get fully charged and you may face electricity issues.
- – This inverter can be costly to purchase and install.
What are The Important Features of an Off Grid Solar Inverter?
Off-grid solar inverters having the following features are always better in the longer run.
- – LCD: It helps homeowners understand the functions of their inverter, such as real-time power generation analysis, power consumption details, reason for inverter issues, and battery charging status.
- – Mobile App: It allows you to access all the LCD details on your mobile phone. You can have your off-grid inverter monitored and serviced online via a mobile app and Wi-Fi functionality.
- – Bypass Switch: A bypass switch enables electricity use even if the inverter turns faulty.
Off Grid Solar Inverter Price
Off-grid inverter price amounts to nearly 25-30% of the total solar power system’s cost.
You cannot put one price tag on all inverters: they have different features, come from different brands, are built with different technologies, and have different power ratings.
Therefore, there’s no fixed price!
Please note: As the rating of the inverter increases, the price rises too.
Although many owners install on-grid solar systems, there are still rural setups where there’s no electricity grid. These are the places that can get electricity from an off-grid solar system.
In fact, many farmers use an off-grid solar system.
And, an off-grid solar inverter is that essential component without which the entire off-grid solar system won’t work. Why? As we already said, it’s the inverter that works as a DC to AC converter.
So, be very picky about the type of solar inverter you’re purchasing. Some brands might be costlier than others, but with a better power rating, they will offer better performance and will last longer too.
Q. How to connect an off grid solar inverter to a battery?
A battery has two terminals: positive (+) and negative (-). These terminals need to be connected to the inverter DC input side.
You have to connect the negative and the positive of the battery to the negative and the positive of the inverter.
Q. How do I check whether the inverter is charging the battery?
The latest off-grid inverters come with advanced technologies, such as:
- – IoT Based Technology
- – Transformerless Inverter
- – LCDs
The basic information, including input and output displace, charging status, and circuit issue details, are available on the LCD of the inverter.
Additionally, you can view the battery charging status, battery health details, and outgoing feeder information using the mobile app.
Q. What steps should I take to maintain the efficiency of an off grid solar inverter?
An off-grid inverter is an electronic component installed indoors. You should always keep it away from dust and water.
You must get it checked by experts from time to time. An off-grid inverter usually has 80%-87% efficiency, and optimal care can maintain its range.