Solar energy is no longer our future. It is our present too, with residential installations of solar panels increasing by 14% in one quarter in 2020. This followed a dip in installations after shelter-in-place orders due to Covid-19.
Do you currently have solar panels or are you thinking of joining residential homes with solar energy? You may wonder if your new solar-powered system will work no matter the power outage situation outside. Here’s how to determine whether or not your solar panels will serve 24/7.
On-Grid Solar Panels During a Power Outage
At first thought, solar panels should be able to operate even when you lose power from a different source, right?
This is usually not the case. This depends on whether or not your solar panel grid is on or off-grid. On-grid solar panel systems enable you to rely on bought electricity and not your solar panel-generated electricity alone.
This means that when your solar panels generate more electricity than you use, you can often “forward” that energy via the grid to the utility companies for a profit.
Unfortunately, this also means that when you lose electricity in a power outage, your solar panels are unable to operate. This is because your solar panels are “grid-tied,” and need to be connected to a meter to operate.
Despite this, on-grid solar panels are often the best option for at-home solar panel systems. They are easier to operate and offer the flexibility of switching between solar and industry electricity.
Off-Grid Solar Panels will Operate During an Outage
If ensuring that your solar panels work during an outage is important to you, you can look into getting an off-grid solar panel system.
These are beneficial as they operate completely independently, and thus will work during outages in your area. However, you will be unable to receive money for any extra electricity your panels create.
This is because the surplus in energy has no way of going back to your town or a different electricity provider without being connected to a power grid.
The best way to know if an on or off-grid solar panel system would work for you is to search for solar companies near me. Companies including Blue Solar Raven will spend time ensuring the solar panel system you built is ideal for your home and energy needs.
Choosing a Solar Panel System
There are pros and cons to both on and off-grid solar panel systems. On-grid solar panels are easier to install and offer energy flexibility. However, off-grid systems can operate independently.
One thing to keep in mind is that you will likely need to have more panels in an off-grid solar panel system compared to an on-grid system. This will depend on your typical monthly use.
Many individuals use a mix of solar panel-generated and utility-bought energy in their homes. If you choose to have an off-grid solar panel system, you’ll need to make sure the system can support all of your energy needs.
Ready to learn more about living an eco-friendly life? Read more on our blog today.