Solar PV systems for the residential market is a combination of Solar panels, inverters, and batteries, which allows you to reduce your monthly energy bills and have back-up power during power outages. The system prioritises solar produced over Eskom power reducing your reliance on Eskom.
System sizing is important to lower any energy wastage and ensure you have sufficient back-up during power outages. With residential systems, you need to consume all solar power that is produced as it is not economically viable to push extra power back into the grid. The other option is to use your battery at night and re-charge it during the day, which brings us onto the subject of batteries.
Battery type selection plays a crucial role in how much your system will cost, longevity of the battery and robustness of the back-up system. This is where the most significant technology improvements are happening and with the lowering of Lithium Ion and flow technology pricing, the term going off the grid is becoming more affordable. Lithium Ion batteries are generally more robust than Lead Acid / Gel batteries as they can operate at higher and lower temperatures and you can discharge them to a lower percentage i.e. you can use 80% of the battery every day if recharged to 100% and the battery should last 10 years.