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Beginners Guide to Solar Panels for Off Grid Homes. Off grid solar pv

Beginners Guide to Solar Panels for Off Grid Homes. Off grid solar pv

    Off-grid Solar System Components: what do you need?

    For a typical off-grid solar system you need solar panels, charge controller, batteries and an inverter. This article explains solar system components in detail.

    Components needed for a grid-tied solar system

    Every solar system needs similar components to start with. A grid-tied solar system consists of the following components:

    For this system to function well, you need a connection to the grid.

    Components needed for an Off-Grid solar system

    An Off-Grid solar system is slightly more complicated and needs the following additional components:

    Instead of a grid-tied solar inverter, you can use a standard power inverter or off-grid solar inverter to power your AC appliances. For this system to work, you need a load connected to the batteries.

    Optional components Off-Grid solar system

    Depending upon your needs, there may be other components that you require. These include:

    • A backup Generator or a Backup Source of power
    • A Transfer Switch
    • AC Load Center
    • A DC Load Center

    Off-Grid solar system components explained

    The following Picture shows the typical Off-grid solar system somponents: Off-grid solar system components Here are the functions of each solar system component:

    • PV Panel: This is used to convert solar energy to electrical energy. Whenever sunlight falls upon these panels, these generate electricity which feeds the batteries.
    • Charge Controller: A charge controller determines how much current should be injected into the batteries for its most optimum performance. As it determines the efficiency of the entire solar system as well as the operating life of the batteries, it is a critical component. The charge controller protects the battery bank from overcharging.
    • Battery Bank: There may be periods when there is no sunlight. Evenings, nights and cloudy days are examples of such situations beyond our control. In order to provide electricity during these periods, excess energy, during day, is stored in these battery banks and is used to power loads whenever required.
    • DC-AC Inverter: A DC-AC solar inverter (or just a ‘solar inverter’) is a power electronics device which is used to convert Direct Current to Alternating Current. The electricity generated by Solar Systems is DC in nature while most of our household loads require AC power. This conversion takes place in real time with a very minimal time gap (nowadays inverter efficiency goes up to 98%). DC loads can be directly fed from the solar system and do not require an Inverter.
    • Connected Load: Load ensures that the electrical circuit is complete, and the electricity can flow through.
    • Backup Generator: Even though a backup generator is not always required, it is a good device to add as it increases reliability as well as redundancy. By installing it, you are making sure that you are not solely dependent upon solar for your power requirements. Modern generators can be configured to start automatically when the solar array and /or battery bank doesn’t provide sufficient power.
    • Transfer Switch: Whenever a backup generator is installed, a transfer switch must be installed. A transfer switch helps you to switch between two sources of power. For example if the solar system is backed up by a diesel generator, a transfer switch helps you to choose the source of electricity. Transfer switches can be automatic or manual.
    • AC Load Center: An AC Load Centre is somewhat like a panel board with all appropriate switches, fuses and circuit breakers that help maintain required AC voltage and current to corresponding loads.
    • DC Load Center: A DC Load Centre is similar and also includes all appropriate switches, fuses and circuit breakers that help maintain required DC voltage and current to corresponding loads.

    Beginners Guide to Solar Panels for Off Grid Homes

    If you’re moving off the grid, one of the key conveniences you should consider is the installation of solar photovoltaics (PV), better known as solar panels. These allow you protection, convenience, and the ability to continue your daily activities with less hardship.

    September 2022 Update: We’ve powered our off-grid home with solar panels for the past nine years. We have updated our system several times, most recently to include a Tesla 2 Powerwall system.

    Estimated reading time: 10 minutes

    What Are Solar Panels?

    In simple terms, solar panels allow you to capture your daily sunlight and convert it into the electricity you use around your homestead.

    This helps to provide small creature comforts to your off grid home. It allows you to run off grid appliances, such as an off grid washer or dryer.

    Depending on your situation, adding solar panels may help you power your off grid water system or other home systems.

    Consider a solar system setup if you’re preparing to go off the grid.

    How Solar Panels Work

    Current solar panels are made up of many silicon wafers. These wafers gather the sun’s rays and create electricity.

    The power originally created by solar panels is called direct current (DC), which gets stored in batteries.

    This DC power must go through an Inverter to change (invert) DC power to alternating current (AC). Whether you’re on the grid or off the grid, your home operates on AC current.

    Cost of Solar Panels

    Solar panels, although still requiring an initial outlay of cash, have come down substantially in price over the past decade. In 2010, the cost was about 2.50 per watt to purchase panels in the US. A mere seven years later, in early 2017, that cost had fallen to just 0.38 per watt.

    Unfortunately, panel increased by about 20% in early 2018. This was about the time the US took steps to implement tariffs on imported solar panels. They have since resumed their downward pricing trend.

    The solar industry even has its own name for this trend. It is called Swanson’s Law for the falling price of solar panels. This was popularized in a 2012 article in The Economist.

    In summary, Swanson’s Law states that solar panel tend to decrease by 20% for every doubling of worldwide panel shipments. In the real world, this is about a 10% cost decrease each year.

    If you’re building an off grid homestead or off grid cabin, make sure to budget for solar in your off grid costs.

    And if you’re looking at buying an existing off grid home, look carefully at the solar panel system and specs. If it needs upgrading, you could face significant costs.

    Where to Install Solar Panels

    Always install solar panels so they face in a southerly direction. This allows you to take full advantage of the sun and get maximum exposure.

    Solar panels can be mounted in a variety of different ways.

    Different Ways to Install Solar Panels

    You might not think there’s much to consider regarding your install location, yet there are many factors that come into play.

    • Does your yard have clear access to the southern exposure to the sun?
    • Are you limited by the space around your home?
    • Do you have to be concerned about livestock being able to damage your panels?
    • Are you in a location (such as where we live, in Canada’s subarctic Northwest Territories) that has minimal sun in the winter?
    • That same sun is extremely low in the sky in our winter months, so trees cause more blockage to solar.
    • Do you want the ability to “track” the sun?
    • How much snow do you get in the winter that could require regular cleaning?

    As part of our off grid home winter routine, I adjust the panels to best capture the sun as it moves lower across the horizon.

    There are many pros and cons to each installation method, and I will try to address each in the following install methods.

    Fixed Ground Mounting for Solar Panels

    Ground mounting is as it sounds. It refers to mounting your panels on racks outside in your yard.

    These are extremely handy because it makes it easy to install them. And this is a great choice when your yard is clear of trees or structures, which could block the southern exposure to the sun.

    They are very easy to maintain. You can easily wipe them free of dust throughout the year and snow during your winter preparation and maintenance.

    There is, of course, the risk of damage from some daily playground activities or even vandalism or horseplay.

    Fixed Roof Mounting 1

    Fixed roof mounting has many advantages of fixed ground mounting. The disadvantages can be that they can be harder to get to for maintenance.

    Cleaning snow and dust off the solar panels is not as easy and requires more planning. Your panels will, however, face less physical risk due to vandalism and inadvertent damage from yard animals, including children.

    You can also face greater risk if in an area with high winds. Generally, these require the racking to be mounted on brackets and bolted down to the roof.

    If you go this route, ensure that you have waterproofed all entry points.

    Fixed Roof Mounting 2

    Similar in nature to the first noted fixed roof mounting, these are on your roof yet not bolted down.

    You can use different ballast (heavy material) to hold your racking in place. This reduces the potential of rainwater entering your home through the bolt seams.

    You can use concrete blocks, sandbags, or whatever material you may have available.

    Fixed Roof Mounting 3

    Use this method for installing solar panels when your home has a metal roof.

    As you know, corrugated metal is a rigid material and has an up and down aspect. It is here that you can buy hardware to attach your panels directly to the roof.

    This reduces drilling through the roof, and some hardware removes that requirement.

    Wall Mounting

    Take advantage of south-facing building walls as module mounting surfaces.

    Arrange module arrays parallel to the wall, tilted away from the wall, or configured as an overhanging canopy.

    They will already have a certain slope that allows natural run-off of rain (easy wash) and much of the snow you may have.

    The disadvantage of wall-mounted solar panels is that they are generally stationary. This reduces the ability to adjust based on seasons and the sun’s height.

    Tracked Mounting

    This method can greatly increase your solar panel efficiency.

    Using a tracker can increase your solar input by 25% – 40% over fixed mounting. You can install trackers either on the ground or can be roof mounted.

    Ground-mounted tracking hardware can easily add 15% – 20% to the cost of a project over fixed mounting hardware. Since rooftop installations require more engineering and labor to complete, the system cost difference can be even higher.

    Top of Pole Mounts

    Top of pole mounting is another fixed mounting method.

    Your panel cluster remains stationary even though the setup can look similar to a tracker.

    Top of pole mounts often allows for seasonal tilt adjustments. This can help to increase the input of solar, particularly during winter conditions.

    Total Equipment Required (Including Optional)

    Solar Panels

    We have already discussed these as the equipment that captures the sun’s rays to create energy. Our off grid home power system currently includes nine 250-watt panels.

    Inverter for DC to AC

    The inverter is the device you use to convert Direct Current to Alternating Current. The electricity generated by solar systems is DC in nature. Yet most of our household loads require AC power.

    This unit does the inversion almost seamlessly and has close to 100% efficiency ratings.

    Note that if you operate direct current appliances, they can be fed directly from the solar system without an inverter.

    Charge Controller

    If your off-grid solar power system operates with a battery bank, you will require a charge controller. This is the brains between your solar panels and your battery bank.

    The charge controller determines how much current should get pushed into your batteries for the best performance.

    It is critical since it establishes how efficiently your solar system runs. It also determines the operating life of the batteries since it prevents them from overcharging.

    Battery Bank

    Although optional, I personally feel a battery bank is an essential part of your system. Unless you live in an area with sun 24/7 and 365 days a year, you will need to store power.

    If you are grid-tied, many communities require the hydro utility to buy back or store your excess power. And if you are not grid-tied, you will need a method to store this power yourself.

    This gives you source of power at night time or when it is cloudy outside.

    Backup Generator

    This, again, is not a mandatory add-on, yet it sure is nice to have. A backup generator improves the reliability of your setup. Plus, it gives you an alternate source of power.

    If you have many days without sunshine, this can generate power in those gaps. Today these generators can be set up to start automatically. This is convenient when you have those extended periods without the sun.

    It can also help when you operate equipment or appliances that draw a very heavy load. Learn more about how to buy a generator for home use before making the purchase.

    Transfer Switch

    Whenever you hook a backup generator to your setup, you must also install a transfer switch.

    This helps you to switch between two sources of power. For example, if the solar system is backed up by a diesel generator, you can now choose the power source.

    For greater convenience, these can be automatic or manual.

    AC Load Center

    An AC Load Center (electrical panel) holds all your switches, fuses, and circuit breakers. This is required to maintain the required AC voltage and current to corresponding loads.

    DC Load Center

    A DC Load Center is similar and also includes all appropriate switches, fuses, and circuit breakers. This helps maintain the required DC voltage and current to corresponding loads.

    Automatic Start

    An automatic start is an electrical device that ties to your charge controller. It “communicates” with your battery bank and knows when it is low or has an increased load.

    In these situations, it will autostart your generator to give you extra comfort and peace of mind.

    Where to Buy Solar Panels

    Solar panels, due to their popularity, can be purchased just about anywhere.

    You can even buy them in local hardware stores like Lowes, Menards, Home Depot, and Canadian Tire, to name a few.

    The decision of where to buy solar panels might depend more on your usage, and the number of panels and power required.

    Although the local hardware store is convenient, cost efficiency may be reduced. If you’re looking for a full system, you’re better off searching for a full system provider.

    Typing “solar installations” into your web browser will yield thousands of potential sites. Check with the Better Business Bureau, personal contacts, local companies, etc. to get the best fit for your needs.

    You can even buy cross border with minimal duty these days. I suggest you look at the 250 to 400-watt range for a better cost per watt. These can easily be run in series or parallel, a topic for another article.

    Solar Panels for Home Installation

    If you’re new to powering your home with solar panels, spend some time researching your options. Talk to other off grid homeowners and ask experts many questions.

    Learn all you can before you invest your time, energy, and money into installing a solar power system.

    Remember, if you’re thinking about living off the grid, one of the key conveniences you need to consider is the installation of solar photovoltaics (PV) or better known as solar panels.

    These allow you protection, convenience, and the ability to continue your daily activities with less hardship.

    Interested in learning more about living off the grid? Keep reading below.

    Going Off-Grid With Solar Panels: Everything You Need to Know

    Katherine Gallagher is a writer and sustainability expert. She holds a B.A. in English Literature from Chapman University and a Sustainable Tourism certificate from the GSTC.

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    Whether it’s to help lower electricity costs or just a general desire to live unplugged from the rest of society, more and more people are choosing to go off-grid. While the concept of off-grid seems simple enough, actually putting it into practice can be complicated and costly if you’re not properly prepared.

    If you’re entertaining the idea of going off-grid using solar panels, consider aspects like costs, installation, and local laws before taking the plunge.

    Grid-Tied vs. Off-Grid Solar

    From an electricity perspective, taking your home off-grid means removing any connection to your area’s larger electric grid. This electric grid is usually what’s responsible for powering a majority of homes, buildings, and businesses through the region, so you’ll require a personal on-site energy system in place that can meet all the demands of your household electricity needs.

    Off-grid systems are more popular in remote locations, where the added costs of batteries, solar panels, and generators are less than the cost of extending power lines to the main grid. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, the cost of extending existing power lines to connect with the grid in remote areas can range from 15,000 to 50,000 per mile.

    It is important to note that installing solar panels doesn’t necessarily mean that you’ve gone off-grid, either. Typical solar energy systems aren’t always designed to generate enough electricity to power an entire home, but rather maintain a connection to the utility company’s main grid as backup. This is referred to as a hybrid system, a less expensive and more flexible option, especially for homeowners that live closer to their area’s power grid.

    Which System Should I Choose?

    When it comes to off-grid solar power, monocrystalline solar panels tend to be the most commonly used. That’s because they are generally more efficient and have a longer lifespan. However, monocrystalline solar panels are more expensive and create a high amount of waste during production.

    Polycrystalline solar panels are another option, which is less expensive than monocrystalline. Polycrystalline may not be a good choice if you are trying to go off-grid on a smaller property, since the panels are larger and take up more space, though they can be more efficient in low light situations than monocrystalline.

    The third main option is thin-film solar cells, which are lighter with a smaller carbon footprint, though the materials to make them can be highly toxic and leach into the groundwater supply if they’re not disposed of properly.


    The first step to going off-grid with solar is to determine whether or not it is even financially advantageous for your home. You’ll be able to figure this out by calculating how much energy you use, determining how many solar batteries you will need, researching solar systems that fit your specific needs, and then add up the costs.

    To figure out how many solar panels and batteries you need to go completely off-grid, check out the monthly consumption number on your personal electricity bill or multiply the wattage of your appliances by the number of hours you use them each day. The U.S. Department of Energy has a handy calculator to help you estimate the electric load of common household appliances, or you can always purchase a home energy monitor to get an exact number.

    You’ll also need a backup generator and solar batteries to store the electricity produced by the solar paneling system for cloudy days, when the power goes out, or at night when the panels aren’t producing any energy. Your daily electricity consumption will help with this, as you can simply compare that to the amount of electricity stored in a specific battery (or “usable energy”). In 2020, the average American household used about 10,715 kilowatt hours (kWh) worth of electrical energy annually, or an average of 893 kWh each month.

    beginners, guide, solar, panels, grid


    Whether or not you’ll be able to install off-grid solar panels on your property depends on your county and state laws. For example, in California, you must be or employ a licensed C-10 or C-46 contractor (or a qualified person per the latest California Electrical Code) in order to install an off-grid solar system.

    Some states will even discourage residents from off-grid living by imposing harsher laws, require that you use particular materials, or not even allow you to live in homes of a certain size with off-grid systems. Most states, though, will have some sort of building regulations for solar panel systems, so be sure to check with your local county’s website or hire a licensed solar panel installer to assist with the process.

    The average American home would need to produce about 7 Kw of power to go off-grid. That would be equivalent to using about 35 200-watt or 20 350-watt solar panels.

    You can absolutely run a house on solar power if you live in a sunny enough climate. In order to do so, though, you’d need an adequate number of high-efficiency solar panels and batteries to store the power (at least two or three). Without a battery, your house is tied to the grid and not necessarily always using solar energy.

    In the U.S., the cost of a full off-grid solar system ranges from 30,000 to 60,000 before tax credits and rebates. That’s including the panels, battery (or batteries), inverter, and installation.

    • Off-Grid or Stand-Aline Renewable Energy Systems. United States Department of Energy.
    • Luceño-Sánchez, José Antonio, et al. Materials for Photovoltaics: State of Art and Recent Developments. International Journal of Molecular Sciences, vol. 20, no. 4, 2019, pp. 976., doi:10.3390/ijms20040976
    • Taraba, Michal. Properties Measurement of the Thin Film Solar Panels Under Adverse Weather Conditions. Transportation Research Procedia, vol. 40, 2019, pp. 535-540., doi:10.1016/j.trpro.2019.07.077
    • Baghar, Askari Muhammed, et al. Types of Solar Cells and Applications. American Journal of Optics and Photonics, vol. 3, no. 5, 2015, pp. 94-113., doi:10.11648/j.ajop.20150305.17
    • How Much Electricity Does an American Home Use? U.S. Energy Information Administration.

    Off-grid Solar PV Panels Market Size, Share Trends Analysis Report By Technology (Thin Film, Crystalline Silicon, Others), By Application (Residential, Commercial, Industrial), By Region, And Segment Forecasts, 2022. 2030

    The global off-grid solar PV panels market size was valued at USD 2.3 billion in 2021 and it is projected to register a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 8.47% from 2022 to 2030. Proliferation of PV panel manufacturing companies along with growing solar PV capacities is expected to drive the solar panels market growth.

    The U.S. emerged as the largest off-grid solar PV panels market in North America during 2021. Owing to the rising consumption of PV panels in the country, the U.S. is recognized as the second largest in the world, in terms of the adoption of PV panels. The market in the country projected to exhibit a significant CAGR during the forecast period.

    Low maintenance and management costs incurred for installing off grid solar panel is furthermore expected to increase Technology demand during the forecast period. Off-grid solar panels are easily adjustable as per the position of the sun to harness maximum energy and output. Off-grid solar panel also helps in promoting self-sustaining infrastructure, especially in remote areas. Off-grid solar PV panels provide higher efficiency along with maintaining the constant temperature of silicon panels, thus maintaining the output level. The major factor driving the global off-grid solar market is the declining cost of solar PV and batteries.

    Growing awareness among the population to use low carbon intensive technologies to limit carbon footprint is one of the main factors that is driving the adoption of solar PV systems in commercial, industrial and residential sector.

    COVID-19 led to the global economic slowdown, further leading to a decrease in individual earnings and unemployment, also hampering the growth of the off-grid solar market.

    Technology Insights

    Based on technology, the off-grid solar PV panels market has segmented into thin-film, crystalline silicon, and others. In terms of revenue, thin-film accounted for the largest share of 40.43% in the global off-grid solar PV panels market in 2021, owing to its narrow design, strong durability, and manufacturing from flexible lightweight materials. A thin-film off-grid solar PV panels find major application in commercial projects since they are lightweight panels, and have reduced installation costs.

    Due to the extremely thin layers of the film on glass, stainless steel. or a flexible substrate, these are widely known as thin films The thickness of the film is required to be less than one micron. These cells are combined into a module and laminated to protect them from damage and tampering.

    Crystalline silicon segment is projected to witness substantial growth during the forecast period owing to the extended lifecycle of the panels, low weight volume ratio, and low-cost manufacturing of silicon semiconductors. Crystalline Silicon is witnessing high demand, outperforming production capacities, thus driving up the prices.

    Application Insights

    Based on application, the solar PV panels market is segmented as residential, commercial, and industrial. In terms of revenue, industrial segment led the market in 2021 by accounting for a share of 40.25% of the market in this year. The industrial segment includes small, medium, and large-scale production and manufacturing facilities, construction premises, among other sites.

    The commercial solar PV panels have a 14-20 years’ lifespan and can power industrial buildings in off-grid or remote locations, pre-heating ventilation air, and water heating in offices, businesses, and others. The Rapid adoption of PV modules in corporate offices, hotels, and hospitals expected to drive product demand across the commercial sector, coupled with increased power demand in communication base stations and data centers.

    The residential segment is projected to witness the fastest growth in the forecast period. The Rapid growth is likely to increase owing to the consumers preferring to end contracts with utility companies by choosing off-grid solar PV panels while taking the liberty of fulfilling their energy needs.

    Regional Insights

    Asia Pacific (APAC) is expected to account for the largest market share of 32.39% in the forecast period, due to the demand for potential in renewable energy projects, investments in rural areas, and solar energy. Schemes for electrification of rural areas and government incentives for enhancing solar energy use can drive the APAC market demand. Sustainable goals of the countries in APAC to lower the carbon emission levels and meet power demand can bode well for the market.

    North America expected to benefit the global off-grid solar PV panels market due to the adoption of clean energy technologies and growing residential activities as industries are the largest electricity consumers and use thin films to store energy across maximum sunlit areas. Awareness of financial incentives and adherence to the Paris Agreement by the U.S. government can bode well for the off-grid solar market.

    Countries such as U.S., U.K., India, Germany, and others have set up ambitious targets to surge the renewable share in their energy mix. Governments across these countries are planning to surge the renewable energy share through the distribution of residential and off-grid solar PV panels in the upcoming years. Hence, it estimated to act as a prospect to the off-grid solar PV panel producers and distributors, during the forecast period.

    Key Companies Market Share Insights

    The global off-grid solar PV panels market is highly competitive and consolidated due to the presence of large number of market players. Technology sourcing, skilled labor and strong RD are among the significant factors governing the competitiveness of the off-grid solar PV panels industry.

    Competitive landscape among sellers, based on offering superior efficiency as well as performance of the manufactured solar PV panels, together with ancillary services offered by them, RD with greater technological capabilities owing to the constant evolution of technology, coupled with intense competition, plus growing awareness of customers are the factors, projected to contribute significantly to the enlargement of the off-grid solar PV panels market. Some prominent players in the off-grid solar PV panels market include:

    • Jinko Solar
    • JA Solar
    • Trina Solar
    • LONGi Solar
    • Canadian Solar
    • Sun Power Corporation
    • First Solar
    • Hanwha Q-CELLS
    • Risen Energy
    • Talesun

    Off-grid Solar PV Panels Market Report Scope

    Report Attribute

    Market size value in 2022

    Full Description and 5 Riveting Benefits of an Off-Grid Solar System

    It is no surprise you are on the search to understand, “What is an off-grid solar system?” Right now, off-grid power is an extremely “hot” topic (no pun intended, so hold the applause ) among the renewable energy community. So, naturally, you want to understand more of the innovative power behind off-grid solar.

    This blog is going to spark your queries into full-fledged confidence on what all this off-grid talk is about and specifically answer, what is an off-grid solar system. Plus, how does off-grid solar system work, and divulge the benefits of an off-grid solar system.

    Off-Grid Living = Off-Grid Solar.

    Perhaps you are confused by the ambush of information on the web for an off-grid living when all the while you were hoping to understand off-grid solar. There are differences between the two, yet at the end of the day, they connect beautifully.

    Let’s begin connecting those dots.

    Prepare to be charged with newfound inspiration for off-grid solar power!

    beginners, guide, solar, panels, grid

    First, what is Off-Grid Living?

    Off-Grid Living: Living independently without any public supplies of utilities such as water, heat, AC, electric, etc.

    You might be planning to live or create a getaway zone for yourself where you don’t have to deal with society and avoid the system. It can be anything such as an RV, Cabin, or a two-story house with a small garden that is not dependent on the electricity grid.

    Now, as a huge part of off-grid living, you will most likely need to get on the off-grid solar systems! Here is where you’ll get the idea of “off-grid-living” and how it is linked to the “off-grid solar” topic.

    Second, What is Off-Grid Solar?

    According to Energy Sage, the term off-grid can be defined as, …” living autonomously without reliance on a utility for power.”

    Or as Merriam Webster puts it, “not connected to or served by publicly or privately managed utilities (such as electricity, gas, or water)”.

    The Official Zonna Energy Off-Grid Solar Definition

    Let’s cut to the chase with the official and simple Zonna Energy definition. Off-grid is functioning electrically without any connection to a mainline power supply.

    Whoa! So, off-grid literally means no connection to your state or counties main electrical grid.

    What is an Off-Grid Solar System?

    An off-grid solar system permits electricity to be harnessed by solar panels and stored inside a battery without direct connection to the utility grid, providing an independent power supply to your home or business.

    Basically, an off-grid solar system is a novel innovation which provides you independent energy harnessed by the sun. An off-grid solar system is made up of the following components.

    Now that we answered, what is an off-grid solar system, lets dish out how off-grid solar energy systems actually work.

    How Does Off-Grid Solar Work?

    The ingenuity of an off-grid solar energy system is made-up of the efficiency of its components. A solar energy system’s solar panels, charge controllers, battery bank, and inverters all work together to provide your laptop or refrigerator energy, and this is how.

    Off-grid solar energy systems work by…

    • Solar Panels (PV array). Solar panels are set either on your rooftop or in an open yard or property space. The Sunlight is soaked up by the solar panels and transferred to the charge controllers.
    • Charge Controllers. The charge controller is the “delivery man” between the solar panels, the inverters, and the battery bank. Charge controllers also act as a regulator, ensuring that the amount of power received through the solar panels does not overload the battery, instead keep the battery fully charged and top it off when needed. The charge controllers either deliver the energy directly as DC power to your lights or to the inverters to be converted into AC power for household appliances and all excess energy goes to the…
    • Battery Bank. With the charge controllers feeding energy to the batteries, the battery bank acts as the heart of the off-grid solar system, as it stores up excess energy for cloudy days and nights, when needed it pumps electricity to the…
    • Inverters. Lastly, inverters convert the DC (direct current) power into AC power which is passed on to be digested by your electronics or appliances as DC power and allows you to switch on the TV or fry up an egg.

    Bam! Can you picture yourself eating that fried egg on a piece of toast with some sliced avocado? Reality check…that delicious sunny side up, was fried simply through the power of the sun. If that does not pull your self-sufficient cape out, get a load of the following benefits of an off-grid solar system!

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