What is Solar Inverter?

A solar inverter is a central component in almost all solar systems that binds the whole system together. Solar inverters are like the brain of a solar system that converts the DC (direct current) electricity received from the solar panels into AC (alternative current) that can be used by home appliances and other electronics.

Solar inverter

Solar inverters also know as solar power inverters or solar energy inverters. Most solar inverters available in the market have peak efficiencies of over 95% and some as high as 98%. It’s really important to choose the best inverter for your solar panels because you want to ensure peak performance. So make sure you do your homework before making a decision.

Why use Solar Inverter?

Now, most of you might be thinking that why should we use solar inverters at all? So let’s know the answer

Solar panels produce DC electricity and solar batteries also store it in the same form. However, appliances run on AC power as does the power grid. Therefore, all types of solar systems need a solar inverter. Nowadays, smart/intelligent solar inverters are available in the market which will automatically match the required frequency, voltage, etc with the electrical grid to run our load.

How Does Solar Inverter Work?

Let’s have a look at how a solar inverter works and the various types of solar inverters in the market.

During the day when the sun shines on the solar panels installed in your homes, electrons within the solar cells start to move around which produces DC power. This DC power then goes straight into a solar inverter which converts it into usable AC electricity which is the standard electrical current used to power appliances at your home.

3 Types of Solar Inverter

  • On-Grid Solar Inverter
  • Off-Grid Solar Inverter
  • Hybrid Solar Inverter

Solar inverters are available in three different types – on-grid, off-grid, and hybrid. All these types of solar inverters can further be classified on the input capacity too that they accept i.e. 12 volt DC, 24 volt DC, 48 volt DC or even 96 volt DC. Without going into more technicalities, let’s know in detail about these 3 main types of solar inverters.

On-Grid Solar Inverter

On-grid tie solar inverters are also known as a grid-tie or grid-connected solar inverter, generally used with an on-grid solar system. A grid-tie solar inverter is used with the solar system that is integrally connected to the utility grid. The excess electricity generated by the solar system is automatically injected into the utility grid via a bi-directional meter. This process is known as net-metering.

 

on grid solar system for home

On-grid inverters have the additional functionality of shutting down the solar system in case of a power outage. This is a safety feature which is known as Anti Islanding. This is done to prevent the energy it transfers from harming any line workers who are sent to fix the power grid. This system doesn’t have battery backup, so during a power cut, you will not have access to power. On-grid solar inverters are used for home and commercial use in urban and industrial areas where electricity bills are high.

Off-Grid Solar Inverter

An off-grid solar power inverter is also known as a stand-alone solar inverter or solar battery inverter, used in an off-grid solar system. An off-grid inverter is an inverter that works completely isolated from the grid. It can’t feed electricity to the grid or can say, it has no provision to tap into the grid electricity. Normally if a solar system is designed with an off-grid inverter then the panels are connected with a solar battery and the battery is then connected with an off-grid inverter.

5 kW-OFF-Grid Solar Power System

In an off-grid solar system direct current (DC) generated by the solar panel is used to charge the solar battery. When there is a power cut, the inverter will draw stored energy from the solar battery, converting DC power from the battery to usable AC power for running electrical appliances. This system can be used in the area where there is a frequent or prolonged power cut.

Hybrid Solar Inverter

A hybrid inverter is a combination of on-grid and off-grid solar inverters. Under normal operating conditions it will supply power to your home, charge the solar battery and excess power will be fed into the grid. In case of a power cut or the panels are not producing enough to meet the load, the unit will automatically switch over to battery supply and continue to operate independently from the electricity grid. This smart feature is very useful when the solar panels are not producing enough electricity and the batteries are getting drained.

Hybrid solar system working diagram

A hybrid inverter ensures a smooth power to the load. The advantage of using a hybrid inverter is that it can feed excess electricity to the grid and take advantage of net metering. These all-in-one modern inverters are highly versatile. A hybrid inverter system can be used in both high power cut areas or areas where there is rare or very less power cut.

2 Technologies of Solar Inverter

A solar inverter is an upgraded version of a normal inverter. In this, you will get to see an inbuilt solar charge controller. Therefore, inverters used by solar systems have either MPPT or PWM options. Let’s see the difference between MPPT and PWM solar inverters.

MPPT Solar Inverter

UTL Solar GammaPlus

MPPT (maximum power point tracking) is the latest solar technology with maximum efficiency of up to 97%. This technology allows for more power to be extracted from solar panels. This is done by keeping the panel’s output close to the maximum power point of the panels. Inverters with MPPT functionality are more expensive than the PWM solar inverter.

PWM (pulse width modulation) technology is suitable for small size inverters. These solar inverters have a maximum output efficiency of around 70%. It is a good low-cost solution for all home solar systems. PWM inverters tend not to work very efficiently if the solar panel is shaded.

PWM Solar Inverter

Heliac PWM Inverter

MPPT V/s PWM Solar Inverter

Criteria

MPPT Solar Inverter

PWM Solar Inverter

Efficiency

96% Efficient

70% Efficient

Recommended

For higher capacity solar system

For smaller capacity solar system

Technology

Latest technology

Time tested technology

Cost

Expensive

Cheaper

Limitation

Can’t utilize up to 4% solar power

Can’t utilize up to 30% solar power

 

Price List of Solar Inverter 2021

When it comes to buying a solar inverter, the price is the most important factor to consider. There are a lot of solar inverters in the market and their prices vary according to their type, capacity, and brand. That’s why we have brought you the price list of solar inverters so that you can have an idea of ​​their prices.

  • On-Grid Solar Inverter
  • Off-Grid Solar Inverter
  • Hybrid Solar Inverter

On-Grid Solar Inverter Model

Rating (kW)

Selling Price

1kW On-grid solar inverter

1kW - 1 Phase

Rs.19,000

2kW On-grid solar inverter

2kW - 1Phase

Rs.25,000

3kW On-grid solar inverter

3kW - 1Phase

Rs.30,000

5kW On-grid solar inverter

5kW - 1Phase

Rs.45,000

6kW On-grid solar inverter

6kW - 3Phase

Rs.75,000

10kW On-grid solar inverter

10kW - 3Phase

Rs.90,000

  • A solar inverter will cost you between Rs.5 to Rs.25 per watt.
  • Prices may increase/decrease depending on its type and solar brand.
  • Almost all on-grid solar inverters come with a warranty of 5 years.

Off-Grid Solar Inverter Model

Rating (kW)

Selling Price

1kW Off-grid solar inverter

1kW - 1Phase

Rs.19,000

2kW Off-grid solar inverter

2kW - 1Phase

Rs.25,000

3kW Off-grid solar inverter

3kW - 1Phase

Rs.30,000

5kW Off-grid solar inverter

5kW - 1Phase

Rs.45,000

6kW Off-grid solar inverter

6kW - 1Phase

Rs.75,000

10kW Off-grid solar inverter

10kW - 1Phase

Rs.90,000

  • A solar inverter will cost you between Rs.5 to Rs.25 per watt.
  • Prices may increase/decrease depending on its type and solar brand.
  • Almost all off-grid solar inverters come with a warranty of 2 years.

Hybrid Inverter Model

Rating (kW)

Selling Price

3kW Hybrid solar inverter

3kW - 1Phase

Rs.75,000

5kW Hybrid solar inverter

5kW - 1Phase

Rs.78,500

6kW Hybrid solar inverter

6kW - 1Phase

Rs.83,500

10kW Hybrid solar inverter

10kW - 1Phase

Rs.1,78,500

10kW Hybrid solar inverter

10kW - 3Phase

Rs.2,39,000

  • A solar inverter will cost you between Rs.5 to Rs.25 per watt.
  • Prices may increase/decrease depending on its type and solar brand.
  • Almost all hybrid solar inverters come with a warranty of 3 years.

Features of Solar Inverter

Now we all know that a solar inverter is the most crucial component of a solar system. So we should also know about its features.

  • High-Efficiency

    Solar inverters are much more efficient than ordinary inverters. The efficiency of these inverters can range from 96% to 97%. It depends on which technology and brand of solar inverter you are getting installed.

  • Futuristic Technology

    In a solar inverter, you will get to see both MPPT and PWM technology. Both the technologies are time-tested and excellent. Now you have to decide which technology inverter is better for you according to your solar system.

  • Strong & Lightweight

    Solar inverters are made of high-quality material which provides them with robustness. At the same time, they are also very lightweight so that there is no problem in carrying them. They may easily be moved from one location to another.

  • User Friendly LCD Display

    You will get to see a user-friendly LCD display in almost all solar inverters. In this display, you can see the daily generation of the solar system, your electricity consumption as well as other solar calculations.

  • High Safety & Protection Level

    The best thing about solar inverters is that you will get to see all the necessary safety features in them. If we talk about these features, then you get many advanced features like anti-islanding, surge protection.

  • Zero Noise Level

    Solar inverters not only reduce carbon footprints but also help in reducing noise pollution. They do their work in a very smooth manner without any noise. The solar inverter will continue to work in your house throughout the day and you will not even know.

Solar Inverter V/s Normal Inverter

A solar inverter is nothing but an upgraded form of an ordinary inverter which is much more efficient than an ordinary inverter. One of its specialties is that a solar inverter can work as an ordinary inverter, but a simple inverter can never work as a solar inverter. Let’s see some other differences between solar inverters and normal inverters.

Criteria

Solar Inverter

Normal Inverter

Power Source

Use both solar & grid power

Use only grid power

Working

Can works with or without battery

Works with battery only

Cost

Little more expensive

Less expensive

Suitable For

Both home and commercial appliances

Only for home appliances

Pros & Cons of Solar Inverter

Advantages

  • You will get free solar power
  • No limitation of load (on-grid inverter)
  • Export extra electricity to the grid
  • Up to 70% subsidy on on-grid solar
  • Works even without grid (off-grid/hybrid)
  • No dependency on govt. electricity
  • Ensures smooth power to the load
  • Reduce your electricity bills up to ₹0
  • Easy to install and maintain
  • Reduce carbon footprint

Disadvantages

  • Little expensive compare to a normal inverter.
  • Required battery during night/power outage.

Top 10 Solar Inverters For Home

For most people who wish to save money, installing a solar inverter has become a top priority. Because it reduces our reliance on the grid and allows us to generate clean energy on our own for a long time. But it gets complicated when we get to see hundreds of companies of solar inverters in the market. All solar companies tell their solar product better than others.

To solve this confusion of yours, we have deeply analyzed many companies of solar inverters in different ways and thereafter we have compiled a list of top 10 solar companies for homes like UTL Solar, Luminous Solar, Delta Solar, and many more.

You can see the best solar inverter companies here: Top 10 solar inverter companies

FAQs - Solar Inverter

We have dedicated solar installation team for installation of solar power inverter including complete solar system.

You mean cost of complete solar system. The cost of solar system with panel, inverter and battery depends upon size, brand and types of solar system. We have also created specific pages for solar panel and solar battery.

If you already have inverter and battery, you can install solar panel with charge controller.

Yes, but only in on grid solar system.

In off grid solar system, intelligent inverter that charges solar battery from both grid and solar. There are two types of charge controller inbuilt in solar power inverter, PWM and MPPT. Solar energy is converted into electrical energy and stored in batteries by solar power inverter. The inverter then alternates this direct current from the battery and run our load.

You can connect the solar panel to your inverter battery using a charge controller.

You need to install a hybrid solar charge controller to converter your normal inverter to solar inverters.

You can buy solar inverter from us. Contact us.

On grid solar system work with the only, this is the one and only disadvantage of on grid solar inverters.

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Author: Akhil Sharma
Edited By: Bhanwar Chauhan
Updated On: 21/08/2021