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How Does A Hybrid Inverter Work?

Investing in a PV system offers countless short and long-term benefits. With energy security, cost savings and government incentives, solar panels are an incredibly rewarding addition to any home. 

But how do they work? More specifically, how does a hybrid inverter work? These devices are the heart and soul of your PV system and are responsible for converting DC into AC.

What is a hybrid inverter? 

Hybrid inverters convert direct current (DC) electricity generated by your solar panels into alternating current (AC) and they can also reverse the process by inverting AC power back into DC. This electricity can then be stored by a solar battery for later use. 

If you need to boil the kettle or charge your phone during a power outage, a hybrid inverter gives you the power to do so. They are an excellent addition to PV systems because they offer homeowners reliable backup power via excess energy storage. 

As a power inverter for solar cells and solar panels, hybrid inverters maximise your available energy and make PV systems all the more efficient. 

What do hybrid solar inverters do? 

Hybrid inverters can perform several exceptional functions, such as 

  • Corresponding with the National Grid
  • Converting AC electricity into DC, and vice versa
  • Maximising your PV system’s power output
  • Keeping your PV system running safely 
  • Providing evaluations of power output 

How does a hybrid inverter work?

All solar panels are composed of photovoltaic cells (which are made up of several layers of semiconductors). Semiconductors absorb the energy from direct and indirect sunlight, and the dislodged electrons begin flowing through the material as a DC electric current. 

For conversion, the DC energy flows to the hybrid inverter, which is either converted into AC and supplied to the home or redirected to the battery for storage. 

What are the different types of inverters?

  1. String inverters 

These are the most established types of hybrid inverter. For a string inverter to work, multiple panels connected in rows or groups must operate at the same orientation and pitch. You can connect multiple ‘strings’ of solar panels to one inverter.  

  1. Micro inverters

Micro inverters are a new technology that aims to solve some problems with string inverters.

The performance of a string inverter is dependent on the weakest panel in the string.  If one panel is shaded or underperforming, the output of the entire string can be affected.

However, micro inverters are installed directly on each solar panel. With a dedicated inverter, even shaded panels or those covered by vegetation can operate independently. 

  1. Hybrid solar inverters

At their core, hybrid inverters are designed to manage power input from solar panels and a battery bank. 

They also control the charging and discharging of a connected battery system.

This capability allows homeowners to store excess solar energy during peak production times and use it during low solar power generation or grid outages.

  1. Power inverters

Power and micro inverters are similar in that they are installed on individual panels. Their differences lie in how they move DC power. Rather than converting DC to AC on the roof, power inverters use a string inverter to move the DC. 

What are the benefits of hybrid inverters? 

  1. DC coupling options

Conversion loss can often cause power loss when an inverter repeatedly converts DC into AC. However, hybrid inverters offer DC coupling options. Instead of converting DC power back into AC to feed it into the battery, the energy is immediately directed to the battery. 

  1. Cost-effective

Hybrid inverters offer you multiple advantages, all wrapped in one convenient package. With battery-integrated chargers, charge control and performance monitoring, these cost-effective devices offer excellent performance and AC/DC inverter functionality. 

  1. Continuous power supply

Unexpected power outages can be scary. 

But with a hybrid inverter and a solar battery, you have a reliable power supply to fall back on. In the event of a grid failure or other disruptions, the inverter can switch to battery power almost instantaneously. 

The Solar Takeover 

Hybrid inverters are just one of the many electrical components of solar panel technology. With their power storage abilities, they can give you extra peace of mind in an energy emergency. 

They’re highly efficient and one of many ways to improve your current PV system. But if you haven’t invested in solar technology yet, why not start your journey with us? As the UK’s most widely accredited solar installers, we can help get you started. 

Contact us to find out more about what we offer.