Are you aiming to go solar or upgrade an existing system? The inverter is the device that transforms power from the solar panels into usable energy for your house. It’s normally one of the most intricate parts of a house’s solar system and frequently the first component to stop working.
What does a solar inverter do?
The inverter is a box on the wall surface, or occasionally on the roofing system, that takes the Direct current (DC) generated by the solar panels and converts it to alternating current (AC) for use in your home power circuits.
Factors important to choose a best solar inverter brand
Make sure you choose the best inverter with basic features as mentioned below
- CEC Approved
The first thing to try to find when choosing a solar inverter is to see if it abides by the relevant Australian Standard (AS4777). You can quickly do this by taking a look at the Clean Energy Council’s authorized items list.
- How much should I pay?
This is the most concern of all customers. Usually, grid-connected inverters are most of the time offered as part of a whole solar power system package. A solar inverter can represent around 20% of the cost of the entire solar system.
Usually, a 5kW inverter is paired with a 6.6kW system, and you can get a solar inverter of Sungrow for $1,000, single-phase models in the inverter market.
- Is it weather-proof?
Solar inverters are ranked by performance, even in the most critical weather conditions. Most grid-connected inverters are weather-proof, generally, the ones that are IP65 rated. So, they can also be installed in areas that may be exposed to some weather conditions. Your solar inverter is a box of sensitive electronic components, and the more it is protected from heat and weather conditions, the better it will perform and the longer it will perform efficiently.
- How good is the warranty?
Generally, solar inverters have a lifespan of 10 to 20 years. You can expect most good quality inverters to last ten years minimum.
Solar inverters have service warranties varying from 5 to 12 years, with an increasing number of producers offering pay-for-service guarantee extensions. Most retailers are now providing 8 to ten years’ service warranty. Clearly, the longer the guarantee, the more protection you have.
What are my solar power inverter functions?
- Maximize power output- Inverters are also responsible for continuously tracking the solar arrays voltage to identify the optimum power at which the modules can run. If shading occurs from environmental elements or if modules deteriorate, the inverter can also recognize the incorrect peak in the string, hence reducing the general energy production of the system.
- Conversion – Solar panel produce Direct current (DC) with many solar arrays producing around 200-600 Volts DC. In Australia, we use power as 240V AC, so the 2nd function of an inverter is to convert the direct present (DC) electrical power to usable electricity, that is, Alternative current (AC)
- Regulation – As sunshine, solar output and grid conditions differ, an inverter will synchronise and regulate all these variables, so the power quality is within requirements and power harvest is increased. The regulation also includes tracking and detaching the inverter and planetary system from the grid if needed for safety or other factors, like a malfunction.
- Monitoring – Inverters also determine and show information for you so that you can check that your system is carrying out as expected or detect faults if they happen. Many alternatives exist for accessing information consisting of display screens on the inverter, web and smartphone-based applications, and more. Ask your solar installer to recommend a suitable system keeping an eye on options.
Common problems with Solar Inverter
- Power switch defect: This may be one of the most common inverter problems when it’s not working. Whenever you notice a defective power switch, you should immediately contact the service centre for its repair.
- The battery is not connected: One common problem is loose battery connections or no connection when the inverter is not working. You have to connect it to the inverter properly and then switch it on.
- Shortened backup time: Less backup time can either be because the inverter has consumed more power than average or the battery is not fully charged up. Whenever it faces excess power usage, reduce the load by switching off high energy appliances.
- Tripped inverter: To solve this problem, press the reset button. If it doesn’t work, then try replacing it.
The solar inverter is the most advanced part of any grid-tie solar system, and sadly it’s also the part that can have issues. This is not surprising as inverters are typically situated outside in extreme weather, including rain, humidity and severe heat, all while producing countless watts of power for approximately 10 hours a day. If possible, this is why it’s crucial to use a quality inverter and mount it in a protected place.
Due to variations in humidity and temperature level, it is most likely that multiple inverters installed outdoors will experience a fault at some point throughout their lifetime. The life of a solar inverter can be significantly increased by locating it inside a garage, under a carport, and out of direct sunshine.