PROPERLY UNDERSTANDING HOME AND COMMERCIAL SOLAR
Grid-Tied Versus Battery Storage Solar PV systems
Grid-tied, or connected solar PV power has far better economic advantages, provided utility power is reliably available. Consumers can use their grid-connected PV system to supply most of the power they need during the day, and then use utility-generated power if there is a shortfall, at night, or on very cloudy days.
These PV systems reduce the amount of electricity that customers purchase each month and are “clean” energy sources as they consume no fuel and generate no pollution. The amount that you save, and/or feed in relates directly to the number of panels you install
Electricity generated by the PV system can be used on site or fed back through a meter into the utility grid, often referred to as “reverse metering”. When your home or business requires more electricity than the PV array is generating, the shortfall is automatically met by the grid or utility. When your home or business requires less electricity than the PV array is generating, the excess can often be fed (or sold) back to the utility through net metering, which is becoming more and more common throughout the Philippines. At the end of the month, a credit for electricity sold is deducted from charges for electricity purchased.
Grid Tied systems are much cheaper to initially purchase than Battery or “Off-Grid” systems. You immediately save money, there is little maintenance required, and you don’t need to worry about replacing batteries over the longer term.
Off-Grid PV systems, with batteries for storage, are excellent for supplying reliable electricity when and where you need it. These systems are especially suited to areas where utility power is unavailable, unreliable, or utility line extensions are too costly. The ability to store PV-generated electrical energy makes this type of PV system a reliable source of electric power both day and night.
These systems work by connecting the photovoltaic modules to a battery, and the battery, in turn, to the load. During the day, the PV modules charge the battery, and then the battery supplies power to the load as needed, generally through an inverter. A simple electrical device called a charge controller keeps the batteries charged properly and helps prolong their life by protecting them from overcharging or from being completely drained.
While these systems are very appealing, the reality is that providing enough reliable long term power using batteries as the main source of energy is very expensive. It’s important to size the storage correctly to ensure that your battery storage can properly cope. Batteries come in various forms, and are improving their capabilities every day. However when deciding to purchase the type of system that best suits your needs, it’s very important to consider the genuine economic life of your system. Batteries often last a very short period of time, especially if they are undersized.
Hybrid PV systems are becoming ever more popular. In simple terms, these are systems designed to provide the benefit of both of the above. Both feed in and battery storage at the same time. For example, it is possible to design a system so that your power needs are met regardless of the grid connection status, and that any excess power is fed in while you remain connected.
Whatever you choose, options are becoming ever more technically advanced as time goes by. Very basic systems are available, as well as very advanced technology that even actively manages your energy use. Many people find that cost is the primary driver when deciding which type of system to purchase.
You can contact us to help you decide the best choice for your situation. We only supply the best quality equipment, and you can be assured that correct design considerations will be made before recommending the type of system that best suits your circumstances