How to Convert a Normal Inverter Into a Solar Inverter? (Guide)

Today’s feature is going to cover a very interesting topic that will be very useful for those who are planning to convert their normal inverter to a solar one.

A normal inverter, meaning the inverter that we use on a daily basis, which is run by batteries could actually be converted into a solar inverter.

Types of Normal Inverters:

Normal Inverters

There are various types of solar inverters which varies depending upon several criteria.

These are:

1- String Inverters:

These inverters are connected directly to the grid.

They do not come with the facility of a battery pack and are the most commonly used inverters for business and household purposes.

2- Central Inverters:

These are highly efficient with distinct features of the grid such as balancing and fluctuations management etc.

They are huge and generally have their storage room or an exhaust system.

 3- Micro-Inverters:

They are smaller in size and capacity as compared to the string and Central inverters. These inverters generally have a capacity within a range of 200 to 350 W. They are costlier but more effective.

4- Off-grid Inverter:

They are also called stand-alone inverters because of their independent syncing with a solar panel.

These inverters receive energy from the batteries that are charged with the photovoltaic arrays. They are most commonly used in remote areas where people live off the grid.

 5- Grid-tied Inverters:

These inverters are capable of feeding the converted energy to the main power grid.

They do it by matching corresponding frequencies and phases. They can automatically shut down for safety reasons.

However, as intriguing as it sounds, there are certain ways, by following which you could execute it and these steps are to be followed with accuracy. Otherwise, you wouldn’t be able to do it.

Solar inverters have their own perks. They save a lot of energy, are cost-efficient, will save you a lot of money, and will give you power that is equivalent to the power gathered by electricity.

Before we start, let us have a look at the types of solar charge controllers.

Types of Solar Charge Controller:

Solar Inverters

The solar charge controller controls the current or voltage which charges the battery and takes care of the electric cells from overcharging.

The current or the voltage that is coming from the solar panels are delivered to the electric cells with the help of these solar charge controllers.

Generally, a solar panel/board of 12V gives you and energy of 16 to 20V.

So if there is no charge controller in between the Solar panels and the electric cells then and the electric cells will get damaged due to overcharging.

There are many e types of solar charge controllers depending upon different features, costs, and sizes.

They range from 4.5A to 80A.

The Solar charge controllers are of three types.

These are:

1- Simple 1 or 2 Controls:

This type of solar charge controller has a shunt transistor that can control the voltage in one or two steps. It’s working is very simple.

This solar charge controller just shorts whenever the solar panel reaches a certain voltage.

It has become very famous and the reason behind its notorious reputation is its unwavering quality.

Moreover, this controller cannot have many segments so there is very little to break.

2- PWM (Pulse Width Modulated):

This is the most traditional type solar charge controller that is in use nowadays.

The name of some of these solar charge controller anthrax, blue sky, and many more.

They are used in industries nowadays.

 3- MPPT (Maximum Power Point Tracking):

This type of solar charge controller is considered as the sparkling star in the solar systems nowadays.

These are the best type of charge controllers which truly identify the best working voltage and amperage of the solar panel.

Then it matches this voltage and amperage of the solar panel with the electric cell bank.

It provides you an extra 10 to 30% more power from your solar panel as compared to the pulse width modulated (PVM) controller.

It is considered the best controller for any solar electric system over 200 watts.

That is why the usage of solar energy is creasing by each passing day. Because it will serve you for all the right reasons and are very productive in nature.

So let us have a look at some ways that you could turn a normal inverter into a solar inverter.

Things Needed:

Before you start the process, there are a few materials that are essential in order to complete this process.

So the things that you will have to collect would be, a solar panel, of course, then you will need a dc converter, which should be able to charge batteries in MPPT.MPPT means maximum power point tracking.

And this particular feature is crucial in order to work or associate with the solar panel itself. So it is advised to have all these materials before proceeding.

Things To Do:

First of all, find the grid and the current charger, that is used to charge the battery and cut loose of all connectivity or any active operations from the grid.

After disconnecting it, you have to develop a new connection. And the new connection will be between the solar panel itself and the battery but through the MPPT by activating the dc-dc converter charger.

Make sure that you are using the MMPT based charger only because failing to do so will result in failure of the project.

Now, the inverter that you already have, which is the ordinary inverter, is no longer an ordinary inverter. After you have disconnected it, or simply have successfully done the process mentioned above, it has now become a very basic version of a solar inverter.

Because it won’t be able to make any connection with the grid anymore. Which is why you will now need a switch. The switch will basically help to reconnect the solar panel with the grid again.

But be careful about not using both of them at the same time because the inverter will not be able to handle the grid connection.

If any situation or occurrence of overloading takes place in the middle of the process, it will be very messy and could result in cancellation of the whole project as it might hamper the solar panel and the other devices involved.

So, maintaining the capacity is very necessary and important for a smoother projection.

When processing, if you seek to have the inverter that would connect the grid, it should be kept in an account that it will not be very easy to access or even practical.

Because the whole idea was to change the existing control and operating strategy to something completely new and different.

And on top of that, you will need to reconnect multiple sensors to figure out the grid voltage and electricity and send them back to the main control panel.

So as you can see it will need way too much customisation so it will not at all be efficient to go through all of that unnecessarily.

How Does It Work?

There are many solar cells which are also familiar by the name “photovoltaic” or a PV. The solar cells convert or transform the sunlight into electricity directly.

In fact, the reason why it is called a PV is because of the process itself that how it converts the light that is “photons” into electricity that is “voltage”. The whole process is called the PV effect in short or if summarised.

The solar transformation supplies bring two extra parts to the current inverter system that you have. Among them, one is the PV panel itself and the remaining one is the main solar converter.

The solar panels are usually installed and set up on the rooftop of the house where the sun exposure is at its maximum and preferably facing south as it is the ideal side because it assures maximum sunlight absorption from morning till the evening.

The total amount of energy stored will be transferred to the solar converter which is set up next to the inverter as well as the battery.

Once the sunlight gets to the solar panel, the dc current is produced that goes to the battery via the solar converter and in the meantime, the batteries get charged.

Solar Panel And Power Generation System. Solar Panel, Battery

The solar panels make sure that an accurate quantity of charge goes to the battery. The reason is if the power is vigorous, there is a possibility that the batteries present will be hampered or even could be damaged for good.

The solar converter charges the battery in many separate phases so that there is no immense pressure or load created on them.

The composed and controlled amount of charging makes sure that the charge is full and also makes sure that lasts through the desired time.

So, this is the ideal and easy way to convert your regular normal inverter to a solar inverter. As you can see that the process is not very complex. If you are already familiar with the solar devices then it should be even easier for you to execute.

And even if you are not, there are many guidelines including this feature itself, that will be more than enough of help for you to turn your normal inverter into a solar inverter in no time!

Robert