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What are the different types of home solar power systems?

There are three main types of solar power systems for home:

Grid-tied systems
Grid-tied systems are the most common home solar power system. Grid-tied solar systems are made up of rooftop solar panels that produce DC power, and inverters that convert that power into AC power that can be used in your home. Excess solar energy that is generated during the day flows back into the grid. At night, or during times when solar production is low, your home will be powered by the grid. These systems do not provide backup power when the grid goes out.

Hybrid systems
Hybrid home solar power systems are similar to grid-tied systems, except they include a battery to store excess energy the solar panels produce that your home doesn’t use. You can use the energy stored in your battery instead of drawing from the grid when your solar panels aren’t producing.

Homes with hybrid solar systems will have backup power in the event of a grid outage, which makes them popular in places that experience frequent power outages. They are also popular in areas with time-of-use electric rates, like California. Batteries can qualify for the solar tax credit, plus your area could have additional solar battery rebates.

Off-grid solar systems
Off-grid home solar systems are not connected to the public electric grid at all. In this case, all of your power needs must be met with solar panels and batteries. These systems are usually more expensive, as you need more solar panels and energy storage in order to cover all of your usage, as the grid can’t be used during times of low solar production. When designing an off grid solar system, it is usually also necessary to strictly control and measure loads and have some kind of backup generator.

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