Sunny Covers Now Shipping Newcastle-Made Inverter Shade-Box

Sunny Covers - inverter shade cover

Good ideas can come from little things.

When solar installer Perry Borg wanted to protect customers’ inverter warranties with extra sun protection, he couldn’t really find what he wanted, so he decided to design and manufacture purpose-built protectors. [Read more…]

String Inverters Vs Micro-Inverters: Which Is Better With Shade? It Depends…

String vs micro inverters - shaded solar panels

The micro-inverter debate has been stirred with two YouTube videos looking at the marketing claim that microinverters outperform string inverters when solar panels are shaded. [Read more…]

Audit Finds Electromagnetic Radiation From Solar Inverters At Safe Levels

paranoid man

ACMA audited solar inverters for electromagnetic compliance. The worst thing they found? Missing stickers.

We’re so accustomed to seeing electrical products with compliance stickers and certificates, it’s a safe bet that most of us barely notice them. So here’s a handy reminder that those stickers and certificates matter. [Read more…]

Best Solar Inverters In Australia? Here’s What Installers Trust In 2021

Best solar inverters in 2021 as voted by Australian installers

There are a lot of solar inverter brands on the Australian market in 2021. But which ones are the best?

That’s a tough question to answer. So we asked installers we trust what they thought. [Read more…]

It’s Time For All Solar Manufacturers To Take Cyber Security Seriously

Solar power devices and cyber-security

With this week’s launch of the Internet of Things Alliance Australia’s (IoTAA) security awareness guides, this seems a good time to remind the solar industry that we’re part of the Internet of Things – and so far, we seem to take a pretty relaxed attitude to security. [Read more…]

Bigger Inverters Are Much Better Value – So When Buying Solar, Go Big!

Bigger solar inverters are better value

Big inverters are much cheaper per Watt. Another reason to go big with your solar power system.

When people ask me how much solar they should put on their roofs, I usually reply along the lines of…

“As much as you bloody well can.”

I’m not saying you should borrow money from the mafia or a dodgy finance company to do this. Still, I recommend putting on as many solar panels as is reasonable given the constraints of budget, roof space, and how much they’ll let you install in your area. [Read more…]

Solar Export Limiting — What It Is & Why It’s Useful

Solar export limiting explained

Many Australian homes are not allowed to export more than 5 kW to the grid. If they want a big solar system with an inverter larger than 5 kW, they must ‘export limit’ the inverter. Here’s what that means. [Read more…]

Solar Analytics’ Nigel Morris Talks Sungrow, Distributed Control & Interoperability

Nigel Morris - Solar Analytics - Sungrow

When I asked Solar Analytics’ head of business development Nigel Morris for a chat about the company’s partnership with Sungrow, I didn’t expect to end up in a conversation about system interoperability and standardisation. [Read more…]

SMA Inverters Will Meet SA’s Remote Disconnection Rules At No Extra Cost

SMA inverters and remote solar disconnect and reconnect in South Australia

If SA needs to hit the big red button and shut down rooftop solar installed after 28 September 2020, SMA inverters can comply – at no extra cost to the owner.

On Thursday I was invited to a webinar on SMA’s response to South Australia’s new solar inverter requirements.  It seems that SMA — the maker of Sunny Boy inverters — was on the ball as all their residential inverters are on SA’s approved installation list. [Read more…]

New SA Inverter Rules Add $165 To Price Of SolarEdge Systems

Yesterday in SA solar met 100% of demand for a short time. Hence the need for remote solar shutdown. SolarEdge inverters have this capability. Image: Rob Morris

Yesterday in SA, solar met 100% of demand for a short period. Hence the need for remote curtailment of new solar. SolarEdge inverters can meet this requirement. Image: Rob Morris

Update 14th December 2020:  Good news!  SolarEdge has informed me they no longer charge an additional $165 to cover the cost of meeting South Australia’s new inverter requirements.  SolarEdge instead now absorbs the cost, which is obviously good news for anyone thinking of getting a SolarEdge system in SA.

On Thursday at 3:58 pm I was invited to a SolarEdge webinar that started at 4:00 pm.  I was glad to get the invite, but the lack of notice meant I missed out on the first 5 minutes because I didn’t have time to set up my laptop/internet properly beforehand.  This was very appropriate because the webinar was about how SolarEdge had responded to new South Australian solar inverter requirements that were rushed in before the industry had time to properly prepare.  [Read more…]