When researching solar energy power systems, homeowners have two options to consider: on-grid and off-grid solar energy systems. Both of these systems are helpful if you live in a state like California with ample sunlight. But on cloudy days or at night, these systems alone won’t continue to power your home and you’ll need other energy options. This is where hybrid solar energy systems shine. They will provide seamless backup during an outage and will help power your home when the sun isn’t shining.
A hybrid solar energy system is when your solar is connected to the grid, with a backup energy storage solution to store your excess power.
Advantages of Hybrid Solar Energy Systems
The hybrid solar energy systems have various advantages. Let’s examine a few of them:
Continuous Power Supply
A key advantage of the hybrid solar system over a traditional one is that it delivers continuous power. Because the batteries connected to hybrid solar systems store energy, they provide continuous power without interruption. During power outages, the batteries work as inverters to provide you with backup power for your home and important appliances. When the sun goes down or when there’s a power outage, batteries provide backup power to keep things running smoothly.
Utilize the Renewable Sources in the Best Way
Because the batteries are connected to a specially designed system that stores excess solar energy, there is no waste of unused power. So, these systems make use of the renewable energy in the best way, store energy on sunny days and utilize that stored power on cloudy days or at night.
Low Maintenance Cost
Another benefit is the system is cost-effective in the long run. Although the initial cost may be high, you will eventually save money because you will not have to pay for fuel (like you do with generators) and these systems don’t require frequent maintenance.
Unlike traditional generators, which can waste fuel under certain conditions, hybrid solar energy systems work more efficiently and sustainably. Hybrid solar systems generate power efficiently in all types of weather, storing extra energy for later use without wasting fuel.
Traditional generators provide high output only when they are turned on. On the other hand, hybrid solar power systems store energy during the day and distribute it at night. A hybrid solar system may have technology that automatically adjusts the energy supply according to the power requirements of specific devices, whether it’s an air conditioner or a fan.
Disadvantages of Hybrid Solar Energy Systems
As with many things in life, there can also be some disadvantages to hybrid solar energy systems. Here’s a few of them:
Complicated Controlling Process
Because different sources of energy are used, it is helpful to be knowledgeable about those systems. The operation of different energy sources and the interaction between them can become complicated. The great thing is that by working with a trusted contractor, we will handle those complications for you.
High Installation Costs
While the maintenance cost is low, the initial investment for a hybrid solar energy system is higher compared to solar systems alone.
Less Battery Life
Home batteries connected to the system are often exposed to heat, cold or rain, so the system may have a shorter life span. This is less of a challenge if you choose the correct location for installation. (Another reason it’s important to work with an experienced installation team!)
The Number of Instruments Connectable is Limited
You can connect a limited number of devices to a hybrid solar energy system, and the amount varies from system to system.
Frequently Asked Questions About Hybrid Solar Systems
What is a Hybrid Solar System?
A grid-tied hybrid solar system includes home batteries that can store excess energy. A unique “smart” inverter in the system sends direct-current (DC) power to and from your batteries and channels alternating current (AC) between the grid and your home automatically. This allows for seamless backup power during an outage.
What are the Advantages of Hybrid Off-Grid Systems?
A hybrid system is less expensive to install and maintain than an off-grid one and you don’t need a backup generator to power it. Plus, you can decrease your battery size. Furthermore, compared with the high cost of diesel fuel, off-peak grid electricity costs much less.
Is a Hybrid Solar System Worth It?
Hybrid systems will save you money on your utility bills in the long run, making up for their higher upfront costs. Instead of selling your excess electricity back to the utility company, most (if not all) solar-generated power is stored in your home battery for future use.
What’s the Difference Between a Hybrid and Off-Grid Solar System?
Off-the-grid solar systems incorporate specialized off-the grid inverters and battery packs to store energy for two or more days. On the other hand, grid-connected hybrid systems employ less expensive, battery-based inverters and require a home battery with an overnight capacity of 5 to 10 hours.
Investing in a Solar + Home Battery System
With both advantages and disadvantages, more hybrid solar energy systems are being installed around the world in homes and businesses. Because energy storage is the key to unlocking the full potential of solar and wind power, it’s also the key to a clean energy future.
To determine if a Tesla Powerwall or SunPower SunVault home battery is right for your home energy needs, our certified Solar Technologies representatives can answer all your questions. If you’re ready to change the way you power your home and start saving more with solar, contact us today for a free customized quote.
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Article Updated: December 2022. Originally posted in April 2018