If you’re contemplating installing a solar energy system in your home or business, you may be wondering what components are necessary. A solar panel alters sunlight into electricity, and an inverter is necessary to convert that electricity into a state that can be used in your home. Without an inverter, your solar system would not be able to provide power to your appliances or electrical devices. This post will explain why an inverter is essential for a solar system and discuss the various inverters available on the market today.
What is an Inverter and What Does it Do?
An inverter is an appliance that takes the direct current (DC) output of a solar panel and remakes it into an alternating current (AC). This AC can then be used to power appliances and devices in your home. Solar panels produce DC electricity, but most appliances and devices in your home use AC electricity. The inverter is essential for converting the DC output of your solar panels into AC electricity that your appliances can use.
There are two main types of inverters: string inverters and micro-inverters.
String inverters are the most common inverter used in residential solar systems. A string inverter is a single unit connected to all of the solar panels in your system (hence the name “string”). The DC output of all of the panels is combined and fed into the string inverter, which then converts it into AC electricity.
String inverters are typically less expensive than microinverters, but they have drawbacks. One is that if one solar panel in the string is shaded, the output of the entire string will be reduced. Additionally, if one panel in the string fails, the output of the entire string will be reduced.
They are great for residential and small commercial solar systems, but if you have a large solar array, you may want to consider using micro-inverters.
Microinverters are attached to each solar panel, and they convert the DC electricity from that one panel into AC electricity. The advantages of microinverters include the fact that if one panel is shaded, the output of that one panel will not affect the outputs of the other panels in the array. Additionally, if one panel fails, the output of the other panels will not be affected.
Microinverters are more expensive than string inverters, but they may be a good option for larger solar arrays or arrays that have shading issues.
Which Inverter is Right for You?
The type of inverter you choose will depend on several factors, including the size and layout of your solar array, the amount of shading on your roof, and your budget.
If you’re not sure which solar inverter is right for you, contact a solar installer in your area. At TruShield Solar, our certified solar experts are readily available to assess your situation and recommend the best option for your needs. We provide solar installation and replacement services in Houston, TX, and surrounding areas and always put our customers first. Schedule a free consultation today!