Going solar without compromising

Until quite recently, going off-grid used to be inconceivable. This is because the installation costs were too high compared to the public power grid prices. But thanks to decreasing installations costs, increasing energy prices and the unpredictability of the public grids stability, going off-grid makes more and more sense in many parts of the world.

What does it mean to be off-grid?

Being off-grid means that you are producing your energy locally, rather than being supplied by your local electric public grid. Although off-grid residences can be found anywhere, they are typically located in areas where the access to the public grid is impossible, unaffordable or unstable. The energy is usually produced through renewables energies sources, solar energy being the most common one, but it can also be produced through fossil fuels combustion. Needless to say, renewable energies are much more interesting, both economically and environmentally.

Many people say that living off-grid comes with many sacrifices, but this is only true when you buy low-quality components. This is because such components have a low efficiency, high idle power consumptions and limited (or inexistent) monitoring features. But when your solar energy system is well sized according to your needs, off-grid life is definitely stress free!

The interactive diagram below gives you a brief overview of the components needed for off-grid living. Feel free to reach out to us if you do not find an answer to your question(s).

System Sizing

Now that you know which components are needed in an off-grid photovoltaic solar energy system and you understand their usefulness, here comes the sizing part. For more in depth information, feel free to have a look at our learn tab!

1.

The first component to size are the batteries. The quantity of batteries you need depends on how many appliances you want to run on solar and how much energy those appliances consume while running. The amount of batteries needed also vary depend on the battery type you desire (Lead-Acid, AGM, Gel or Lithium).


2.

The second component to size are the solar panels. Typically, their sizing is done according to the amount of batteries that you need, the goal being to recharge them completely in one day. The quantity of solar panels that you need also varies from your geographical location.


3.

The third component to size is the charge controller. Its sizing depends on your battery bank voltage and your solar array cumulative power. The more solar panels you have, the more power your charge controller has to be.


4.

The fourth component to size is the inverter. Its sizing depends on what appliances you want to run on solar and how powerful these appliances are. The inverter can also be an inverter/charger, meaning that it can charge your batteries with the help of a generator.


5.

Several monitoring components can be added to your system if you wish to obtain energy data from them. These components can be battery balancers, battery monitors, battery protectors and/or system monitors.

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