While enjoying all the benefits of having solar, there is one isolated setback to just solar only. 98% of the solar in the world is grid-tied. This means with no grid power, your system is unable to operate without power to the inverters due to a Public Safety Power Shut-Off or a regular outage.
Solar electrical systems are required by code to disconnect from the grid during an outage. This means customers who have chosen to go solar are left without power like everyone else. Don’t want to be left in the dark? Investing in a solar backup power system allows you to maintain your lifestyle without disruption when the grid goes down.
Keeping Your Family Safe With a Solar Backup Battery
Whether for a few hours or several days, being without power is not only inconvenient, it may also prevent essential and life-sustaining equipment from running. Solar batteries offer dependable emergency energy. Since grid-tied solar systems by themselves don’t power your home when the grid goes down, batteries allow you to tap into the power generated by your system at any time.
With a regular grid-tied system, the excess solar energy produced by your photovoltaic (PV) panels gets sent back to the utility grid. However, with a home backup battery, that excess electricity is stored in the battery instead. When the power goes down, you can use that stored energy.
Whether or not you require one battery, or many depends on your personal situation. Installing enough batteries to meet 100% of your typical energy needs can be costly. Therefore, you may want to consider installing only enough to power your critical loads. These are the essential items like your refrigerator, freezer, small heaters, a few lights, medical equipment, and a few outlets to charge devices.
Avoiding Time-of-Use Electricity Rates
When your power company utilizes Time-Of-Use (TOU) rates, solar batteries help you to avoid the impact of the varying charges. TOU rates increase the price of electricity during peak early evening usage when your panels are no longer producing electricity. So, even if you’re storing more energy than you use during the day when prices are low, the power you pull from the grid in the evening is priced at a higher rate.
When You Don’t Have One-to-One Net Metering Credits
Net metering allows you to send your excess solar energy production to the grid in exchange for a credit to be used later when your solar panels aren’t producing enough. When your power company does not offer one-to-one net metering, you are only receiving a partial credit for every unit of energy you put on the grid. In other words, your credit may only be worth half of the kilowatt-hour exported by your system. So, completely covering your bill would require you to export twice as much solar energy as the amount you pull from the grid.
Is a Solar Backup Power System Right for You?
DC Solar Electric can help you determine your backup power requirements, and design a system that is right for you. Break free from the grid. Contact us today!