A Solar Inverter is a device that converts the direct current (DC) from the solar panels into alternating current (AC) which is used by domestic and commercial appliances. It is one of the most critical components of the solar power system as it converts power from the sun into more useful energy and is often referred to as the brain of a solar system. Solar inverters are a crucial part of a solar system since power from the sun cannot be directly used to run electrical appliances. Starting out as just boxes converting DC into AC, today, solar inverters have evolved to become much more smart and intelligent units, performing other functions such as data monitoring, advanced utility controls, etc.
A much-known function and description of the inverter is to convert the DC current into AC current by using SMPS module or thyristor-based pulse converter technology. The converted DC to AC current by inverter will run all the electrical appliances in the house after the power goes out. Solar Inverters in India are mostly imported through a few domestic and international manufacturers that have set up manufacturing operations in India. String inverters can be used for both rooftop and utility solar, while the central inverter is used exclusively for utility-scale applications. Microinverters are the best option for residential solar but they are not yet very popular in India.
What is 'VA' in inverter?
VA defined the rating of Inverter. Most of the electrical rating defines in terms of voltage and current (VA) because of AC power factor of current is decided by the load connected. AC Power = V X I X pf. Since the load power factor is not known while the Electrical equipment is manufactured, that’s why the rating of Transformer and other equipment is defined in VA instead of Watt.
Inverter Market Size & Trends
In India, approximately 1crore inverters are selling every year in India. Inverters are being sold which have both normal inverters and solar inverters. A normal inverter means that it will be used for charging of the battery by using electricity only, whereas a solar inverter has the facility of both electricity and solar charging of the battery.
What is the Requirement of a Solar Inverter?
We are all aware of the use of electricity now a day’s & it’s an important part of our life. We are using Grid Electric Power supply provided by Government or by some Private agencies in multistoried apartments. In India due to frequent power supply interruption/cut generally, we are using Diesel Generator set and Inverter as Backup Power supply at home as well as industries to avoid shut down conditions. Now a day’s Solar is one the best option as a Main or Backup power supply for home & small-scale Industries & One of the best options for Ruler areas where the electrical power supply is irregular very much.
How to Select the Best Inverter for Home?
While you are planning to buy a heavy capacity inverter for big homes where the average power consumption is 2,000 watts (2KW), below are the main decision-making factors, you should keep in the mind.
Technology - Normal Inverter & Solar Inverter
Type - PWM & MPPT
Capacity - 1kW, 2.5kW, 3kW, 5kW, 7.5kW & 10kW
Battery Support - 12V, 24V, 48V, 96V, 120V
Features - Digital Display, IoT Based
Pricing - Starts Rs. 7,000 to 1,00,000
Brand - Luminous, Microtek, Smarten, & Loom Solar
Service - On Door Service
Reviews - 4.4 Starts
How does Inverter work?
An inverter is like a converter of the power supply DC power into AC power supply. It will take 110V / 220V DC input voltage and convert into AC power supply of 230V, 50 Hz. The inverter also may be three phases or Single phase output AC supply type and also can operate under & voltage condition up to a range of minimum 190V and a maximum of 250V for single phase Inverter.
Basically, a Full bridge or Six pulse converter is used to convert DC voltage into AC voltage The device can produce output voltage, and frequencies are controlled by the inversion process & the output voltage is connected to a transformer matching system it is feeding power into. Thyristor bridges are designed with a combination of diodes/rectifiers in forwarding & revere mode or blocking mode.
If you have brought a normal inverter for your home, then your inverter will charge the battery with electricity only and bypasses the supply to the home appliance. But when the power supply goes off then the inverter will feed the supply in your home appliance with help of charged battery.
Now if you have brought a solar inverter to your home, then your inverter will provide a power supply to your home appliances during the day as well as charge the battery with the help of solar module/ solar plates. During the night the inverter will charge your battery with electricity and bypass supply for home appliances but in case of power supply goes out then your charged battery will take care of your home load with help of an inverter.
Types of Solar Inverters
Based on the required load and space availability for Solar System, you can choose the Solar Inverter. There are the following Solar models described here to understand the working function & that will help you out to choose or invert on the solar inverter.
Basically, three models are there to understand the solar function.
Grid-Interactive/ Connected System
Inverters can be broadly classified into three major types:
i) Off-grid/ Standalone inverters– works independently off the grid and requires battery storage
ii) On-grid/ Grid-tied inverters– are dependent upon the grid
iii) Hybrid inverters – incorporate both battery and grid connection and have an inbuilt solar charge controller
Grid-tied solar inverters are further categorized into micro, string, and central inverters.
1. Grid interactive/ connected system
The most common, low-cost, economic, and better operation we use Grid interactive/ connected system. This system will operate only when both solar and grid power is available & the first load feed from solar & balance will be imported from the grid. If case of excess solar power is either exported or trimmed (No export). Based on the application of both the supply one as Main & other as Backup or as load sharing depend upon the conditions.
PV /Solar available & Grid available
PV Energy<Load Requirement
Load supplied through PV Energy + Grid
In that case, both supply available and solar-generated power is lower than the required Load (due to low capacity of installed solar, heavy loads, space constraint for solar or due to budget issue) then first load feed though PV and balanced will feed on Grid supply.
PV available & Grid available
PV Energy> Load Requirement
Load supplied through PV Energy
In that case, both supplies available and solar-generated power is greater than the required Load that complete load will feed through PV, and excess supply will trim or feed to grid.
PV Not available & Grid available
Load supplied through Grid Energy
In that case, PV/Solar Power not available (during the bad weather, at night duration, or due to maintenance of PV System), and then complete load will feed through grid power.
PV Not available & Grid not available & Emergency DG available
Load supplied through Emergency DG set
This is the case in which required electricity very essential like Hospital, Office, Bank, Hotel, multistory apartment, etc. and PV/Solar Power, Grid power not available then emergency Diesel Generator (DG Set) will feed to complete load.
Advantages of Grid-Interactive/ Connected System
Most Commonly use and adopted model by the customer due to working philosophy
You can make money by through off the generated excess power to Grid/Government
Low Investment Cost
Will cuter the complete load during the office's peak hours
Grid supply available as Backup in case of nonavailability of PV
Storage Battery Not required
No maintenance cost
Low Generation losses
Payback time is good it will return the total investment cost within 3 to 4 years (approx.)
The drawback of Grid-Interactive/ Connected System
Cannot store the electricity for the duration of nonavailability of PV/ solar.
Required grid power supply during unavailability of the PV system (like during the night, rainy season.
2. Off-Grid System
This is a battery-based system, and grid supply is not available basically this is used for remote areas or in which location where grid supply is not available as Backup supply during the night hours or rainy season. This is used for battery charging & load sharing during availability of the PV system & feed load through charged Battery during unavailability of the PV system refer below diagram.
Case –I During the availability of PV/solar system Battery will charge with the parallel of power supply to loads as shown in the below diagram with the flow of energy power.
Case –II During the unavailability of PV/solar system Battery will feed to loads as shown in the below diagram with the flow of energy power.
The drawback of Grid-Interactive/ Connected System
The investment cost is High due to the use of Battery
Not able to cuter the complete load during unavailable of PV system, generally Battery capacity design based on the Three (3) hours Backup as per IS/IEC standard. However, we can increase the backup time duration by increasing the capacity of the battery but it will impact the total investment cost.
Grid supply not available as Backup in case of nonavailability of PV & Battery system
Maintenance cost is high due to Battery
Generation losses higher as compare to Grid-connected systems.
Payback time is long will take time to return complete investment cost.
Required additional space and closed room for battery storage
The small scale used only
3. Hybrid System
This is similar to the Grid-connected Model, In which multiple sources of supply such as solar/PV, Grid, Battery Storage, DG set, Hydro plant any other power source connect parallel to feed load.
This is a complicated system and is not used at the domestic level. Synchronization is required between all connected systems and loads.
Inverter Vs Solar Inverter
The Inverter does not work without a battery, adding a battery is a must
It has dual-use 1) It can operate with a battery and 2) without battery
It supplies 230 Volt AC power to home from battery when power fails
It supplier 230 Volt AC power to the home from a battery and solar panels both
It charges the battery from Grid power,
It has a dual facility to charge battery 1) Grid Power and 2) solar Panels
Highest Power rating Home Inverter 10 KVA
Highest power rating home Inverter 100 KVA
PWM Vs MPPT
PWM Solar Inverters – The smaller rating inverters less than 2 kW to be used in Rural areas and to make it affordable, it is made with PWM (pulse width modulation) technology.
MPPT Solar Inverter – It is the best charge controller technology with the highest efficiency between 95-97%. All high-efficiency inverters, grid-connected inverters are built with mppt (maximum power point tracker) technology. An inverter built with MPPT technology takes 30% less time in charging a battery using solar panels.
Pulse width modulation
Maximum power point tracker
Features of a Solar Inverters
MPPT – MPPT Inverter is always a good choice as it charges battery 30% faster compared to PWM technology-built inverter.
LCD display- A LCD Screen helps Homeowners understand Inverter operation such as real-time analysis of power generation, power consumption, battery charging status, and reason for Inverter failure.
Mobile App (IoT)- All the features available in LCD Display can be monitored, controlled, serviced online through the mobile app if Inverter has Wi-Fi functionality.
By Pass Switch- When the Inverter fails, the power supply to the home will be disturbed, Bypass Switch allows homeowners to use electricity even if the inverter is faulty.
MCB Protection: the grid power always has voltage fluctuations, chances for short circuit, MCB Saves Inverter from High Voltage and Short circuit failures.
Solar Inverter Price List | 2021
A solar inverter accounts for approximately 25-30% of the total solar system cost. Given below is the price list of the best solar inverters in India. The price of the solar inverter varies from ₹ 6 - ₹ 20 per watt based upon technology such as whether it is off-grid, grid-tied, or Microinverter.
There are multiple factors that affect solar inverter prices such as inverter technology, efficiency, warranty period, and the quality of the brand. Below is the prevailing prices of solar inverter brands in India.
Solar Inverter Model
Solar Inverter Msun 1435 – 12 V with Digital display
Solar Inverter MSUN 2335 VA - Off-Grid with digital display
Solar Inverter – 2500 / 24 Volt
3.75 kVA /48 V Off Grid – Mppt Solar Inverter
5 kVa / 48 V – Mppt, Wall mount off-grid inverter with Mobile app
7.5 kVA / 96 V – Mppt Solar Off grid inverter
10 kVA / 120 V – Mppt solar off grid inverter
How to Install Solar Inverter?
Identify space near to Power distribution box > Make a stand in case of surface mount inverter, > Make wiring change for Inverter connection in power sockets > Connect Output Wire with Home Wiring > Connect inverter with battery (off-grid) using 10 mm DC wire,> Make a power socket for on-off for battery charging from Grid > Connect Inverter AC wire with power socket> Give Grid Supply
Maintenance, Efficiency & warranty
Solar Inverter is an electronic component, hence it should be kept away from water and dust, in case of power fluctuation, short circuit, inverter gets dead, Only the Manufacturer can repair and service it.
Grid-Connected inverters have efficiency higher than 97% while Off-Grid inverters, have efficiencies ranging between 80%-87%. In India, there is up to 5 years warranty on a Grid-Tied inverter, whereas off-grid inverters have for 1-2-year warranty.
Top 10 Solar Inverter Companies in India
In off-grid Microtek, Luminous, V-Guard, Havells, and Tata Power Solar are some of the top solar inverter companies in India while In on-grid, Enphase, Solar Edge, and Fronius, are the leading solar inverter manufacturers (brands) supplying in India, commanding double-digit market share. Selection of Top 10 solar Inverter manufacturers depend upon multiple factors including, years of presence in the market, Sales Revenue, Nos. of Inverter sold, Inverter performance review and How is the post-sales service.
Best Solar Inverters in 2021-25
India is a large market with the demand for Solar inverters with batteries due to frequent power failures, the list of top10 best solar inverters is complied after researching the data and feedback from an online and offline store.
Based on the output rating MCB/MCCB of Inverter or Based on the load current we can select the adequate copper/aluminum cable size for connection between Inverter to AC distribution board.
How to Install Inverter at Home?
Fix the solar plate on the roof with the support of base frame and connect plates with Inverter terminal (with help of guide book provided along with Inverter plate) through cable leads/cable. Inverter output supply connects to load directly in case no battery.
How to Connect Inverter to Battery?
To understand the connection of the inverter easily, we have kept the inverter in two categories. First up to 2500VA capacity of inverter and second up to 3kW to 10kW. For up to 3 kW inverter installation follow the below-mentioned steps
In Battery, there are two terminal Positive (+) and Negative (-) and the same Terminal shall be mentioned in Inverter DC Input Side Positive and Negative. Connect the positive and negative of the battery to the positive and negative of the inverter by using cable lead or copper flat.
Connect the output of the inverter to the distribution box of the house.
Connect the wire coming from the solar panel to the inverter.
Now connect the input of the inverter to the grid.
Now check by running load on it
For the above 3 kW rating of Inverter with multiple battery cells, technical experience is required & you can take the support of the loom solar expert team for installation. However, we can add Batteries cell in series with one cell Negative terminal into another cell positive terminal and both end cell negative points can connect into inverter Negative, and the last Battery positive terminal can connect Inverter positive terminals.
How to Check Inverter is charging Battery?
In today's time, the technology of inverter is increasing very fast as like,
IoT Based Technology
Lithium Battery & Lead Acid Battery Compatible
Basic Input & output displace, protections provided in each of Inverter as like, Overload trip, Short circuit protection, LED display of Battery charging status, Battery health supervision, Outgoing feeder healthiness, etc. The entire features you can compare with the Inverter catalog and General Technical Particular (GTP).
What is the difference between ups and inverters?
UPS comes with an inbuilt battery and a complete charging set of modules for small applications & low ratings only. UPS takes AC input for battery charging & feeds the load while in normal condition. An inverter is a separate part without an inbuilt battery that converts DC Input supply into AC output supply also charges the battery during the healthy condition.
Solar Inverter – FAQs
#1. How to calculate solar panels, batteries, and inverters?
To calculate the size of your solar system, first, you need to figure out, your daily peak power consumption, In the process of selecting a solar system, an Inverter is selected first, buy a solar inverter that needs your daily peak power consumption. After that, Battery is selected, in the off-grid solar system, the Number of batteries that will be connected is fixed. Lastly, a Solar panel up to the capacity of the inverter should be connected.
#2. What is the price of a solar panel with an inverter and battery?
An off-grid solar system consists of solar panels, a solar inverter, and a solar battery. At Loom solar, the price of the solar system starts from INR 19,000 and it depends on the capacity of the solar inverter, higher the capacity of the inverter, the higher will be the price.
#3. How to connect the solar panel to the battery and inverter?
You may need the help of a professional installer to install solar panels on your rooftop. Once the panels are installed on the mounting structure, connect it with a solar inverter (positive to positive). Next, connect the batteries to the inverter taking care of the terminals. Once all connections are established, power on your inverter to check the load. It is advisable to do installations in front of an electrician to avoid unnecessary accidents
#3. How to charge an inverter battery without electricity?
Power from solar panels cannot be directly used to charge the batteries as the current is variable. Hence a solar charge controller is used to control the current we receive from solar panels and eventually charge the batteries. Batteries can be charged from the power of the sun and keep supplying charge to the inverters, simultaneously.
#4. How does a solar power inverter work?
A solar power inverter is a hybrid inverter that charges the lead-acid battery from Grid and Solar both. There are two types of charge controllers inbuilt in solar power inverter having a grid charger and solar charger. It is like a conventional inverter but uses energy from the sun. Solar energy is converted into electrical energy and is stored in batteries. The inverter then inverts this direct current from the batteries into alternating current.
#5. How and where to buy a solar inverter for home?
It is easy to buy solar inverters for homes online if you know what you are looking for. There are few websites offering online shopping options for inverters. You can avail of significant discounts and easy returns when buying online from reliable sellers. Otherwise, you can visit physical stores and take the advice of sales experts and buy the product.
#6. How to make a solar inverter from a normal inverter?
Any normal inverter can also be converted into a solar inverter with the help of solar conversion kits. The main difference between a solar inverter and a normal inverter is the presence of a solar charge controller and some switching circuits in a solar inverter. Su-Kam Solarcon conversion device, Tata Solar Sunjeevni, and Luminous Solar Retrofit Solution are leading conversion kits available in the Indian market.
#7. How to install a solar inverter?
After you have bought a solar system and installed solar panels, batteries and a charge controller, you will need to connect your solar inverter with your batteries. To do that you need to connect the positive and negative terminals of the battery and inverter together i.e. positive to positive of battery and inverter and vice versa.
#8. Can I connect the inverter directly to the solar panel?
Since the power from the sun is always fluctuating and not constant, it is not advisable to connect the inverter directly to the panels. Instead, we can use a device called the solar charge controller to control the flow of current into the inverter/ battery. Nowadays, inverters with inbuilt solar charge controllers are also available in the market, but they are expensive.
#9. How much does an inverter cost in India?
If you are planning to buy an inverter for your home, then there are two types of inverter: Non-Solar Inverter and Solar Inverter. A non-solar inverter is also known as a Normal Inverter and its starting range is 650VA – 1800VA and Its price range is Rs. 3,500 to Rs. 9,500 depends on brands, performance, and warranty. The second type of inverter is Solar Inverter. The benefit of buying a solar inverter is that the battery can charge grid power as well as solar power both. Its starting range is 1100VA – 2250VA available in the market and its average cost is Rs. Rs. 6,500 to Rs. 9,500. If you want to buy a high capacity inverter for running a home water pump, air conditioner, deep freezer, medical appliances, you can choose a 3kW to 10kW MPPT solar inverter and Its price range is Rs. 45,000 to Rs. 2,00,000.
Download Off-Grid Inverter Product Catalogue from here
Download On-Grid Inverter Product Catalogue from here