Hybrid Solar Systems

Battery inverters vs hybrid inverters for home solar energy storage - Solar  Choice
A hybrid solar inverter

What is it? #

A Hybrid System is solar system that uses hybrid inverters and batteries for energy storage. This also allows most hybrid systems to operate as a backup power supply. Hybrid Inverters have a built-in battery charger and connection, allowing a battery to installed easily. This is important because typical string inverters do not have the capability to connect a storage battery to the solar system, and would require a storage inverter or hybrid inverter to enable energy storage.

Advantages #

  • Allows you to store excess solar
  • Most hybrid inverters have backup power capability
  • Reduces power consumption from the grid
  • Enables advanced energy management such as peak shaving

Disadvantages #

  • Higher cost as Hybrid Inverters are more expensive than String Inverters, also the cost of additional batteries
  • Longer payback time
  • Backup power may limit how many appliances that could be run at the same time
IES - Hybrid Systems
Diagram of grid-tied solar system. Image from IES Solar solutions

What is a solar battery and what does it do? #

Solar batteries can help you make the most of your solar panels and increase your independence from the grid.

Solar batteries capture excess, unused energy produced by your solar panels, and store it ready for use at night, during cloudy periods, or during a blackout. Storing your self-generated solar energy means you can power your home with clean, green electricity 24/7. You’ll be protected from rising electricity costs from retailers, could have power in a blackout, and you’ll be helping to protect the environment from greenhouse gases from coal-generated electricity.

How does home battery storage work? #

Create and store electricity #

Solar panels generate electricity from sunlight. This energy is used then and there to power your home or, if your home doesn’t need it straight away, it’s sent to your battery to be stored ready for use later on.

Use your energy when you need it #

You can start using your battery stored electricity when your home’s energy needs become more than what your solar panels can deliver on their own. This could be on cloudy days, at night, or – most importantly – during a blackout.

Enjoy the benefits and lower your bills #

Powering your home with solar panels and battery storage delivers you benefits for years to come. You’ll be making the most of your solar panels, maximising your energy independence, and lowering your ongoing energy bills.

Is a battery right for me? #

If you already have solar or are thinking about making the switch, adding a battery system could help you get the most out of your solar system. Different systems suit different needs so it’s important to talk to one of our staff in order to help you make a more educated choice.

How much will I save? #

How much you could save on your energy bills depends on a number of factors including the output of your solar system and capacity of the battery, as well as the amount of energy your household uses and what time of day you use energy the most. We can help you calculate your potential savings when we do an analysis of your bill.

Can I afford it? #

It’s important for all households to consider whether the savings they expect to see on their energy bills cover the cost of the purchase of the battery, over the life of the battery. System Providers can provide you with an idea of your anticipated savings. To get an idea of how much a battery system can cost, download the HBS System Price Guide.

If you want to be as independent from the grid as possible, you might opt for multiple batteries and a large solar panel system to go with it, to maximise the amount of time your home can run from your solar panels and your battery instead of relying on the grid.

However, if your motivations are financial, you will need to balance your budget with how much you would like to save on your energy bills as well as your daily electricity usage. You might choose to go with just a single battery to suit your budget and maximise your payback, but this might also mean that you can’t cover off as much of your electricity bill: you may still be relying on a good amount of energy from the grid.

SUBSIDIES REDUCED 15 APRIL 2020 #

Home Battery Scheme subsidy levels
Energy Concession Holder$400 per kilowatt hour (kWh), up to $4,000
All other Households$300 per kilowatt hour (kWh), up to $4,000