Micro-Inverters: Pros & Cons

Posted by on Sep 17, 2020 in Blog, environmental industry | 0 comments

Micro-Inverters: Pros & Cons

Inverters are an essential component in all solar panel installations because they are like the brain of the system. When light energy from the sun is absorbed by the solar panels, is transformed into DC or Direct Current, which is similar to the energy from batteries. The problem is that the energy from the utility grid is AC or Alternating Current. Therefore, an inverter is required to convert the electricity from DC into AC in order to power the appliances in your home or business.

While there are a few different options of inverter technologies available, micro-inverters are one of the more popular. In order to help you decide if micro-inverters are the right inverter solution for your solar panels, we’ll explain below exactly what they are, how they work, and discuss both their pros and cons. 

What Is A Micro-Inverter?

Traditional solar inverters are designed to manage groups of panels which are all plugged into the input. They take in the total quantity of DC power that’s been generated by all the solar panels and then convert it into AC power.

A Micro-inverter does the same thing, except they convert the power output of one single solar panel. That means each combination of a microinverter and solar panel essentially becomes its own self-contained solar energy system. So, regardless of whether you’ve got one or one hundred solar panels, once you have micro-inverters installed on each panel by a qualified electrician, your system will be producing AC electricity directly from the sun. 

Compared to string (traditional) converters, micro-inverters involve significantly more inputs and connections so it’s safest to find a qualified electrician to ensure your system is installed correctly and optimised ( https://www.power4allelectrical.com.au/ is a good example). 

What Are The Pros Of Micro-Inverters?

Micro-inverters take full advantage of each individual solar panel’s capability to produce electricity, so they ensure maximum AC creation regardless of external issues like shade or orientation towards the sun. If one inverter does stop working for any reason, your system will only stop generating power from that one panel. 

Each micro-inverter is capable of producing useful information that allows you to monitor the overall performance of the total solar power system. This better and more in-depth data provided by micro-inverters also offers data regarding the energy produced by each individual solar panel, while also monitoring things like the condition and cleanliness of each module.

Micro-inverters also have greater design flexibility with simpler and cheaper wiring due to the lower currents involved. That means solar panel systems can be expanded relatively easily at any time in the future because systems aren’t paired to the specific capacity of standalone inverters. 

What Are The Cons Of Micro-Inverters?

While there are quite a few clear benefits of installing micro-inverters with your solar panels, there are also some negatives that should be considered. For example, conventional wisdom is that micro-inverters are more costly overall and more prone to issues as there are more of them. 

This is also true considering there is one installed with each panel on your roof, they are all constantly exposed to the elements such as rain, heat, and even snow. This exposure could ultimately reduce the total life of your micro-inverters. 

Finally, because micro-inverters are still a relatively new technology, their warranty over 25 years of performance is only just beginning to be tested.

Depending on individual circumstances, micro-inverters are an excellent solution for many homeowners. Ultimately, it will depend on your budget, the type of installation you want, and whether or not you want to add any additional solar panels to your system at any point in the future. 

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Related Articles and Resources:

Solar Panels – the Cheapest Power Source of the Future

Green Living – Tips for Choosing Solar Panels

Are Solar Generators Worth Installing for One’s Home?

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