A Solar Inverter converts DC energy to AC energy. Once you have energy from the panels, you can’t use it in your homes yet. Direct Current (DC) electricity is generated by the panels which is then connected by an electrical cable to a Solar Inverter, installed near the switchboard. Most appliances in the home use Alternating Current (AC) electricity, the amount of energy you can use depends on the inverter, make sure the you buy an inverter that suits your solar panel array.
The solar inverter is a box, that converts solar panel output from DC to AC electricity, which is suitable for use by home appliances and feeding into the mains grid. The problem with solar inverters is that while they are arguably the most crucial component of any solar power system, as without a functioning inverter your panels won’t work. They are subject to high and varying voltage levels, high temperature ranges and moisture and dust. The inverter is the component that is most likely to fail and thus typically have lesser warranty periods than solar panels. See here for our guide to choose quality inverters
In a solar system, phase refers the distribution of an energy load. Single phase refers to a power circuit with two wires, the power wire and the neutral wire. Three phase refers to a power supply with three power wires that are 120 degrees apart.
Residential homes usually run on a single-phase power supply, meaning they have only have one wire coming in from the grid. Three phase systems are meant to accommodate higher loads such as: large air conditioning, pool heater, spa, sauna etc. A three phase also means you can send more solar energy back into the grid, for those with a battery system or has a big system.
In South Australia, you can currently have up to a 5kw Solar system on single phase whilst up to 30 kw Solar system on three phase. A three-phase circuit is more efficient, as you are spreading the load over more wires, this means it can avoid voltage-rise related solar issues which is caused by too much voltage at a time.