What Is a Solar Power Inverter?
A solar power inverter converts the direct current (DC) electricity from your solar panels into alternating current (AC) energy, which is then used to power the electronics in your home. This can help reduce the amount of supplemental power needed by your household, and can also help you sell any excess electricity back to the utility grid through net metering.
There are a variety of inverters available, depending on the type of system you want to install and your budget. There are string inverters, microinverters, and power optimizer inverters.
How Solar Panel Inverters Help Maximize Your Solar System’s Efficiency
Choosing the right inverter is crucial for maximizing your solar systems’ production potential, and for making sure that any excess electricity is not lost. Inverters have maximum power ratings, so if your solar panel array supplies DC electricity that is in excess of the inverter’s rating, it will be “clipped.” This clipping may cause your system to produce less power than it could otherwise, but you should avoid excessive clipping by selecting an inverter with the correct size and type.
In addition to converting your solar power into AC electricity, many inverters also serve as a tracker for individual panels. This can help you monitor conditions so you can make corrections to your solar array if necessary. Some inverters also offer grid-tie capabilities so you can feed electricity from your solar panels into the grid whenever possible.