Solar Energy System Options
Grid Tied Solar
Grid-tied or Grid-direct is a solar power system “tied” into your existing electrical company meter. Most utilities call this a “System Interconnection.” Your electric meter measures the amount of electricity you draw from the utility system as well as the amount of electricity exported to the “grid” by your solar equipment. This is called “net metering,” a billing mechanism used to incentivize excess solar energy that is fed back to the grid.
For a Grid-Tied Solar Power System, no batteries are needed. The electricity goes directly into the Power Grid of your electric company. When you use the electricity, you get it from the Grid. If you put in more than you take out, your electric bill will be “Net-Zero.” Plus, the panel cost for this type of solar power system is usually lower since you do not need batteries or any other equipment to keep the solar panel array producing or storing energy. However, grid-tied home solar power systems cannot provide power during a blackout or power outage. When the grid goes down, the system has to disconnect to prevent damage to itself, the electronics in your home, or the grid. For backup power during power outages or blackouts, when the grid goes down, you will have to invest in a backup power system, such as a generator or batteries that can be connected to the system.
Off Grid Solar
What is Off the Grid? An off-grid solar power system, also called a stand-alone power system, is the exact opposite of an on-grid system and is reliant on battery use and storage. This means that you are no longer dependent on a utility company to provide your power and that you are self-sufficient when it comes to your energy needs! Pure off-grid solar systems are not connected to a utility grid. Your solar energy is stored in batteries. The battery bank is charged by your solar array.
On a financial standpoint, an off-grid system will be more expensive to install and maintain because of the battery storage system and other components needed, and batteries have a typical 10-year lifespan. The main advantage of off-grid Home Solar Power Systems is being self-sufficient and independent. In some rural areas, this may be your only option, but for some, this is a way of life. Some words of warning: This type of system must be designed and engineered carefully and correctly to ensure you will have enough power when you need it and to power everything in your home during hot summer days and cold winter nights.
Hybrid Solar System
A hybrid solar power system is a grid-tied system that has batteries for energy storage and a controller to disconnect the system from the utility company and the grid during power outages. A generator can be added to this system as a backup power supply for times when your solar power is not enough and the grid is down! This set-up requires a special controller to isolate your electrical system from the grid during utility power outages and blackouts. For battery systems, stored power provides backup power during an outage and your solar panels can power your home and charge the batteries. No more blackouts or power outages, ever! You will always have clean, stable electricity, even in times of crisis. This is the ultimate power supply system!
Net metering is when your electric utility company connects your solar system to their meter through “system interconnection.” Your electric meter will measure the power you draw FROM the grid and the power you export TO the grid from your solar system. You will get full credit for the power you generate until your bill is zero! This is Net – Metering! Some utilities, like PEC, offer a net energy credit rate if you generate more power than the power you use.
Solar Energy System Monitoring
We only sell solar power systems that have monitoring capabilities. Solar monitoring systems will show you how your solar panels are performing, how much power you are producing, and if there are any problems with any of the components. Also, many customers want to project and calculate their incentives from the exported energy that is fed back to the grid and you will be able to use a monitoring app for this. There are different types of solar monitoring available, each with their own complex pros and cons. Our process will identify for you what type of monitoring best fits your desire.
These are just some of the reasons why Affordable Solar is here! Our solutions are tailor-made to suit your specific needs. That’s our guarantee! Whether you are planning to live on or off the grid. Call us now so you can start living clean and green! Affordable Solar is here to help you make a smooth start-up and transition to a Home Solar Power System.