Solar Hybrid Inverter and DC-Coupling option

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The solar power industry is improving the way we use electricity in our homes and businesses. Thus, here comes a new addition to the solar inverter list in Australia.  The hybrid solar inverter.

What is a solar hybrid inverter?

The hybrid solar inverter integrates both solar and battery inverters in one system. This new design manages power from solar panels, solar batteries, and the utility grid all at once.

Types of hybrid solar inverter

1. Basic Hybrid Inverters

Hybrid solar battery inverters are grid-feed inverters. It also allows self-use battery storage. Basic hybrid inverters lack grid isolation devices. Thus, it cannot power your home during a blackout. A basic hybrid inverter is best for reliable grids.

2. Inverter Hybrid Multi-Mode with Battery Backup

When needed, a multi-mode hybrid inverter provides power backup. These inverters power homes, charge batteries and feed excess electricity to the grid. The machine will run on battery power if the grid fails.

3. Complete Hybrid Energy Storage System

Hybrid inverters usually include a battery system. This is what we call a Battery Energy Storage System (BESS). You can install this system in your home with an existing solar setup. Hybrid systems have several sizes and features.

4. AC-Coupled Hybrid and Off-Grid Systems

Most hybrid systems use AC-coupled inverters.  These systems have solar and interactive or multi-mode battery inverters. The multi-mode inverter completes the energy management. It also optimises energy utilisation using a software.

Is a hybrid solar inverter better than a conventional inverter?

Compared to conventional inverters, hybrid models perform better. Power loss occurs when alternating current (AC) converts to direct current (DC) and vice versa due to conversion losses. Thus, DC-coupled models of many hybrid solar inverters are available. This avoids the need to convert DC power from the solar panel to AC and back before supplying it to the battery.Because it is efficient and cost-effective in the long run, Dillon & Kenzie Electrical Co. recommends the DC-Coupling option for solar hybrid inverters.

What is a DC-Coupling Option?

Hybrid solar inverters with DC coupling are often more expensive than normal solar inverters. But they offer an excellent solution for battery integration. You can install them now with your solar panels and add a battery later. 

There is no limit set by the authorities to the number of batteries that you can add to your DC-coupled system. 

But, since each solar inverter can only work with a specific battery type. You will need to stick to what’s compatible with your inverter. 

This is because they need to work in unison.

Dillon & Kenzie’s solar hybrid inverter recommendations

  • GoodWe EH series
  • Fronius GEN24 and GEN24 Plus range 

We like these two inverters because, even though they are hybrid models, you can buy them with a grid tie. This means that they work as a standard inverter until you are ready to install a battery. Then, with a simple software switch, they become a hybrid inverter.

We recommend installing the system first, and tracking how you use your solar power system. Also, track how much is your grid export to help guide you in selecting the battery size for your home.

GoodWe EH series

The GoodWe EH inverter comes grid-tied. After the software activation, it becomes a hybrid inverter. It is available in a 5kW or 6kW single phase.  It is a reliable cost-effective option for those interested in battery-ready solar inverters.

Features of a GoodWe EH Series

1. Backup power without a battery

If there is a loss of grid power, the GoodWe Hybrid has a separate port for all emergency loads. You can use this port to supply a GPO of PV power if no batteries are connected. 

2. Batteries

GoodWe has a range of batteries built using lithium phosphate (LFP) cells. They are reliable, with great performance and high safety ratings. The options are scalable from 5.4kWh to 32.5kWh.

3. Cooling

Natural convection using a heat sink chassis.

Fronius GEN24 and GEN24 Plus range

The Fronius GEN24 inverter is grid-connected. Following software activation, it becomes the GEN24 Plus. It is available in single and three-phase configurations of various sizes.

Features of a Fronius GEN24 and GEN24 Plus range

1. Back up power without a battery

Both the GEN24 and GEN24 Plus inverters can have a PV point installed.  This is a power-point that we put close to the inverter. It will only turn on when the grid connection is gone (during a blackout) and the sun is shining.  This PV point delivers 3kW (a single 10A GPO) that can use to charge devices, among other things.

2. Batteries

If you want to start adding batteries to your house. We recommend purchasing or activating the GEN24 Plus model. This is battery ready and comes with BYD batteries. 

The BYD batteries are modular, which means you can add more as needed. There is no time limit, unlike conventional batteries with a one-year end date.

3. Smart features

Fronius uses multi-flow technology, which allows the battery to both recharge and discharge. This means that when the sun is shining, the battery will continue to charge even if the grid connection is lost. Not all hybrid inverters include this feature.

4. Cooling

Fronius inverters use two fans.  There is chatter about the noise this creates but it’s as noisy as an old computer starting up, or a fridge running.  Often inverters are installed in or near garages, so any noise created isn’t in the living areas of a home.

Are you ready to purchase a solar hybrid inverter?Dillon & Kenzie Electrical Co. offers a free solar onsite visit and consultation. Give us a call to know more about solar hybrid inverters.


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About the Author

DK Electrical

DK Electrical

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