Battery Backup for Photovoltaic Systems
A solar energy system with a battery backup is ideal for people who (for one reason or another) cannot rely on the grid. You may want to have this kind of solar energy system:
- if you absolutely rely on power for your business (e.g. auto mechanic, car wash)
- or if you live in an area where power can be interrupted by weather (e.g. Florida).
Components of a solar electric system with battery backup
A grid-inter-tied solar electric system with battery backup will include these elements:
- Solar panels collect the sun's light and convert it into an electrical current. Solar panels are supported by solar mounts (or racks).
- An array DC Disconnect is a device that allows you to halt the flow of electricity from the panel array, during times of system maintenance.
- An inverter is an important part of many energy systems. It converts direct current (DC) energy into more widely usable alternating current (AC) energy.
- The Charge Controller protects your battery (battery bank) from being overcharged.
- The system meter measures how full your battery is, how much electricity the panels are producing and how much electricity you are using.
- Batteries store energy for later use. To learn more see our page on batteries.
- A main DC disconnect is found in any battery-based system, between the battery and the inverter. This is a large breaker to allow easy shut off, for battery service.
- The AC breaker panel is the same as you would find in any household.
- Wiring to the house's "normal electricity." By this, we mean the house's breaker panel and beyond that, what electricians call your "load": all electricity you use.
- A Kilowatt Hour Meter is used by your local utility to calculate your electricity bill.
- tips on choosing a solar provider or service company
- state and federal financing incentives for renewable energy
- net metering
- tips on solar panels and grid inter tied inverters