Solar Power Myths: Solar panels will give me backup power

Solar Power Myths: Solar panels will give me backup power

Hi, this is Amy from the altE Store. Well, I’m sure you’ve noticed there’s a whole lot of wrong information about solar power out here on the internet. So we are doing a whole series of solar myth busting for you. You can see more in our playlist here. For example. Solar panels will provide me with backup
power when the grid goes out. This answer is actually an “it depends”. Depending on what type of solar inverter you
install, you may or may not have some power available when the grid goes out. All inverters that are connected to the grid
are required to shut down their connection to the grid immediately when the grid goes
out. As inconvenient to the homeowner as this may
seem, it is to prevent an even bigger inconvenience to the lineworkers fixing the lines outside,
it keeps from accidentally killing them. However, at least one grid-tie inverter manufacturer,
SMA, has added a feature to their SunnyBoy inverter called the Secure Power Supply. It gives you one circuit in your house that
can put out up to 1500 watts of daytime power, as long as the sun is out and your solar panels
are able to produce that much power. This power can be used to charge up your phones,
laptop, tablets, and rechargeable lanterns. Without this feature, your grid tie solar
system will not output any power, even when the sun is shining. Another option to provide power during a power
outage is to have a hybrid grid tie with battery backup system. This lets you enjoy the benefits of grid tie
solar, such as only installing as much solar as you want to offset your daily power usage, but not having to make and store all of your power. But also gives you
some backup power for your critical loads, like your fridge, well pump, furnace fan,
and communication devices, like phones and tablets. You’re not going to be powering your hot
tub with it, but at least you can update your Facebook status while binge watching your
favorite shows. If you already have a grid tie solar system
installed without any sort of backup, don’t fret, not all is lost. You still have options available to install
a battery backup system with your grid tie solar system. This can be accomplished a few ways, but they
generally require adding a battery based inverter that connects to a new battery bank and critical
loads breaker box. We’ve done a few videos on adding battery
backup to your grid tie system, you can check it out here. Tesla’s new PowerWall battery has prompted
many grid tie inverter manufacturers such as SolarEdge and Fronius to add optional battery
support to their grid tie inverters. So this answer is not as cut and dry as it
once was. So, it depends… I hope this was helpful, if so, give us a
like and a share, and subscribe to our altE Store channel, so we can notify you when new
videos come out. And be sure to go to our website at,
where we’ve been making renewable do-able since 1999.


    Love the videos, but PLEASE get yourself a Lavalier Microphone that will plug into your camera. Like this one –

    I have seen some setups on youtube that have a zero power bill for usage but have only one gfx outback and a very large array of solar?

    Tesla battery unit current cost here is just under $10,000. so my power company offered an install package. what was interesting was that the Tesla pack was warranted for 10 years. the documents claimed you may get 13 years out of them depending onDOD. so I am going to have to put away $770/yr over 13 years to replace the power unit. didnt quite yet seem worthwhile going this route.

    Why not just cut the lines and use another inverter when there is a blackout ( making it a off the grid system)?
    This is just pure BS laws to prevent ppl going off grid !

    Just get some good used batteries, properly care for them, and get a good quality power inverter. Then you have backup power when you need it. If the solar is not available to charge your battery bank, just use your idling car and some jumper cables to charge your battery bank 12V at a time. This is easiest with 12V systems. If your system is 24V input, perhaps start up 2 cars to charge the batteries. Many people have 2 cars.

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