What Is Off Grid Solar Power?

What Is Off Grid Solar Power
Off-grid solar means meeting all your energy needs from the power of the sun — with no help from the electrical grid. To make this possible, you need to install a solar power system paired with an energy storage system, like a solar battery, at the site of power consumption (your home).

Installing an off-grid solar system was once a fringe concept due to its large space requirements and prohibitive costs. But advances in solar tech over the last decade have made solar equipment more efficient and less expensive, helping to push them into the mainstream. It’s now a fairly common sight to see RVs and country cabins powered entirely by off-grid solar systems.

If you’re thinking of buying an off-grid solar system for yourself, you’ve come to the right place, In this blog, we’ll tell you what you need to know about off-grid solar systems before buying one. We’ll help you figure out if an off-grid solar system is right for you, and tell you how to buy the right system for your needs.

What is an off-grid solar power system?

An off-grid solar system is designed for the power needs of mid- to large-size homes. Unlike grid-tied solar systems, off-grid systems have no connection to the utility grid, and must make all the electricity necessary to power your home. Off-grid solar systems operate from the stored energy in a battery bank.

Solar panels generate power to charge the battery bank. Your off-grid solar system must be sized properly to meet your daily power needs and replace the stored energy pulled from the battery bank. The custom-designed kits below include the major components needed for your off-grid system. Questions? Give us a call at 877-878-4060 and talk to one of our solar pros who will work with you to design an off-grid home solar system that meets your needs.

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Product Name ↓ Price
Base Kit 1 Off-Grid 4.3kW Residential Solar Power System $8,207.41
Base Kit 2 Off-Grid 5.76kW Residential Solar Power System $9,907.37
Base Kit 3 Off-Grid 8.64kW Residential Solar Power System $16,848.92
Off Grid Kit 1 – Ground Mount Option $1,192.21
Off Grid Kit 1 – Lithium Battery Option $7,630.97
Off Grid Kit 1 – Roof Mount Option $712.92
Off Grid Kit 1 – Sealed AGM Battery Option $3,963.04
Off Grid Kit 2 – Ground Mount Option $2,108.02
Off Grid Kit 2 – Lithium Battery Option $7,660.25
Off Grid Kit 2 – Roof Mount Option $890.14
Off Grid Kit 2 – Sealed AGM Battery Option $5,919.04
Off Grid Kit 2 – Top Pole Mount Option $5,159.58
Off Grid Kit 3 – Ground Mount Option $3,135.31
Off Grid Kit 3 – Lithium Battery Option $15,398.50
Off Grid Kit 3 – Roof Mount Option $1,524.87
Off Grid Kit 3 – Top Pole Mount Option $6,189.48

What is the difference between on grid and off-grid solar power?

Off-grid or on-grid solar power system, which one should you choose? On-grid system is one in which the solar power system is connected to the utility’s power grid while being off-grid means the system works independently and the consumer is not connected to the utility’s power system.

Amid an unprecedented expansion in the renewable energy sector, a number of businesses and individuals are shifting to solar power systems. Solar energy has also received a solid push from various governments. Oct 13, 2610 IST 2 Min(s) Read Oct 13, 2610 IST 5 Min(s) Read Oct 13, 2610 IST 5 Min(s) Read Oct 13, 2610 IST 4 Min(s) Read Between 2014 and 2021, India’s capacity increased 15-fold.

By 2022, the government aims to increase the solar capacity of 37 GW, installed in 2020, to 270 GW, reported The Hindu. Commercial and industrial buildings that source grid electricity at higher rates from power utilities are now weighing options to offset the cost.

However, a common dilemma is whether to connect to an off-grid or on-grid solar power system. Before making the choice, here’s a look at the difference between the two systems On-grid systems On-grid system is the one in which solar power system is connected to the utility’s power grid. The excess power generated is sent to the utility grid and the consumer gets compensated for it.

Similarly, when the system underproduces power, the consumer can draw electricity from the grid and pay for the units used. Being tied to a grid is beneficial as the consumer does not need to buy an expensive battery backup to store excess energy. This makes on-grid systems more popular in residential spaces.

  1. Businesses also use the system to meet their daily requirement and earn income from the excess power generated.
  2. However, being connected to the grid means the consumer may have to face power outages.
  3. A consumer can use net metering for on-grid systems.
  4. Also Read: According to the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy, the government targets to install 100 GW grid-connected solar power system by 2022.
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To achieve the target, the Centre has launched schemes and undertaken several policy measures to encourage use of solar power systems such as Solar Park Scheme, VGF Schemes and Grid-Connected Solar Rooftop Scheme. As a result, the cumulative capacity of grid-connected solar power projects has increased from 932 MW in 2011-12 to 6762.87 MW in 2015-16 and 28180.68 MW in 2018-19.

Why one should choose on-grid systems? Easy to install, cost-effective Offer residential users and businesses the opportunity to earn passive income from surplus energy produced by the systems Private, commercial or industrial buildings can avail of ‘Accelerated Depreciation Benefit’ by setting up PV rooftop systems, which is currently 80 percent in a year, according to an Economic Times report.

Off-grid systems Being off-grid means the system works independently and the consumer is not connected to any utility’s power system. This system uses batteries to store generated solar power. Although off-grid systems are self-sustaining, they involve higher expenses as the consumer has to buy a battery pack, solar panels, grid box, inverter, charge controller, mounting structure and balance of systems.

The panels generate and store power during the day and use it at night. The system is ideal for places that suffer frequent power outages. In rural and remote areas, off-grid solar systems can facilitate independent and sustainable electricity generation. One of the oldest programmes under the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy is the Off-grid Solar PV Applications Programme through which the ministry has set up solar home lighting systems, solar street lighting systems, solar lanterns, solar pumps and solar study lamps.

Also Read | According to the ministry website, solar pumps are an important component of the solar off-grid programme which gives small and marginal farmers a reliable irrigation facility. These pumps are being installed in rural areas to replace existing diesel pumps used for irrigation.

Apart from this, the government has set up 65,17,180 units of solar lamps and lanterns and 6,71,832 units of solar street lights. Why one should choose off-grid systems?

Makes consumer self-reliant, independent of grid Consumers do not have to face power outages due to grid failures and shutdowns First Published: Jan 19, 2022, 02:02 PM IST : Off-grid or on-grid solar power system, which one should you choose?

Which is better off-grid or on grid solar system?

On Grid vs Off grid – Which one is better? Planning to install a solar energy system at your home or business but getting confused between off-grid versus on-grid solar systems? For making the right choice, we need to understand the key differences between off-grid and,

  • On-grid solar systems generate power only when the utility power grid is available and directly connected to the utility feed.
  • On-grid systems send excess power generated to the utility grid when you are overproducing.
  • These are the most cost-effective and simplest systems to install.
  • Such systems will pay for themselves by offsetting the bills in 3-8 years.

On-grid systems can either be put into place with or without net metering. In the case of an on-grid system with, while calculating the monthly bill, the solar power fed to the grid is netted at the same tariff at which the grid power is sold to the consumer.

  1. In the case of systems without net metering, the rate at which solar power fed is credited can be different from the normal utility tariff.
  2. The biggest downfall of an on-grid system is that it does not provide power during a grid outage.
  3. Off-grid systems allow you to store and save your solar power in batteries for use when the power grid goes down.

It is meant to be entirely self-sustaining. The best part about off-grid solar plants is that they provide power for critical loads when the power grid is down. The biggest downside for is that they cannot cater to the power demand of all your loads since the cost and volume of batteries would be prohibitive.

  • Such systems require a lot more specialized equipment to function.
  • These systems are not only costly and complex to install but are also not very environment-friendly.
  • Another major con of an off-grid system is that one cannot completely rely on the power company as backup.
  • So, before you make your choice, make sure you consider whether your property can sustain itself without power at certain intervals.

The main point boils down to the fact that off-grid systems are not recommended for the average homeowners. They are neither cost-effective nor easily installable and manageable. One will have to pay 3-4 times the cost of a grid-tied system for a similar off-grid system with suitable battery power for your needs.

Most of the solar developers recommend installing an on-grid solar system and invest in a backup DG if required. Nevertheless, in the case of remote areas where the grid is unavailable or unreliable, the off-grid system might seem an appropriate alternative. Amplus Solar plant at Hilton Resort, Lonavala is an off-grid PV Plant.

With the onset of policies such as net metering and, on-grid solar projects are on a boom in India. However, take a close look at the pros and cons mentioned above to make the right choice. Tying up the grid with your renewable energy will not only benefit you but also the environment and the community.

How long do off-grid batteries last?

How Long Does a Solar Battery Last? – Home solar battery units last anywhere between 5 and 15 years. If you decide to install a solar battery today, it’s almost certain you’ll need a replacement in the future to match the 20- to 30-year lifespan of your solar power system.3 Certain factors may prolong your solar battery’s life. Here’s a simple list:

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How much does it cost for off-grid solar?

How much does an off-grid solar system cost? – The prices of off-grid systems range from about $50 (for a phone or tablet charger) to tens of thousands of dollars. That’s because off-grid solar has such a huge variety of applications. If we talk specifically about off-grid solar kits that can power an entire home, then prices range from $12,000 to $50,000.

You can get an idea of pricing from the table below; it shows popular off-grid kits for different end-use requirements: Please note that the costs mentioned are only for the off-grid solar panel kits, i.e. just the equipment. If you use a professional solar company for installation, there will be additional labor charges; whereas with a DIY, there may be some extra costs for permitting and tool requirements.

Learn more: DIY solar: Pros, cons, and 6-step installation guide

What is the drawback of off-grid solar system?

Off-Grid Solar System – Many people like the idea of installing an off-grid solar system because of the independence and the stability the solar system will bring to their lives. However, this is only achievable with the appropriate equipment and batteries. Pros of a Off-Grid Solar System:

Completely independent from the grid A great solution for remote locations and underdeveloped communities

Cons of a Off-Grid Solar System:

They are more costly Batteries are required to deliver electricity consistently throughout the day and night It could require a lifestyle change to reduce energy consumption Surplus energy production could go to waste Cannot rely on the grid at night or on cloudy days Batteries require maintenance, have a relatively short lifespan, and degrade rapidly

Which is better hybrid or off-grid?

Hybrid solar systems: What is it, and what does it mean for homeowners? – A hybrid solar system is grid-tied with battery storage. They come with a special ‘smart’ inverter that can transmit direct current (DC) power to and from your batteries, and channel alternating current (AC) power between the grid and your home when necessary.

  • Key benefits of hybrid systems
  • Here are some of the perks of a hybrid solar system:
  1. You’ll use less grid electricity than you would with a traditional grid-tied system. While hybrid setups are grid-tied, they come with solar battery storage, which means you can maximise consumption of the power generated from the panels.
  2. A hybrid system is possibly the most expandable, future-ready home solar setup. With some customisable hybrid systems, you can expand capacity by buying more panels or batteries. Hybrid systems may also be compatible with newer solar technologies — for example, an electric vehicle (EV) might function as one of the ‘batteries’ in a hybrid setup.
  3. For even lower costs, you can use a power management system. These technologies can automatically optimise your power usage. (For example, larger appliances like dishwashers can be switched on during peak daylight hours.) The result: bigger utility savings and a quicker ROI.

Some cons of hybrid systems:

  1. There’s a lot to install upfront, making the initial investment bigger. While you can budget for a smaller battery bank than with an off-grid setup, the cost still needs some thought. Specialised equipment, such as a smart hybrid inverter, adds to the price tag.
  2. Lots of space might be necessary for the required parts. With grid access, you’re likely not in an isolated rural area – even so, you’ll need space for hybrid solar equipment, including the battery bank and inverters.

Is an off-grid solar system worth it?

Advantages and Adjustments: Is Going Off-Grid Worth It? Going off-grid using solar panels might have been unthinkable a while back, but thanks to decreasing installation costs and increasing power prices, more homeowners are choosing or at least considering solar panels. GO Green Air, one of the top in the state, lists the advantages of going off-grid as well as some of the things you’ll need to adjust to. Going Off-Grid Makes Financial Sense in the Long Run The cost of solar panels and battery systems have decreased over the years.

  1. Some may find the initial investment costs to be a bit intimidating at first, but the savings you’ll get in the long run make it a financially sound choice; an off-grid homeowner can save an average of around $20,000 in over 20 years in most states.
  2. You can recoup your initial investment on solar panels in as little as 3-5 years.

The investment on the battery systems that will be used to store solar energy will take longer to recoup, though; the payback periods for battery systems usually last 10 years. Off-Grid Homes Have Mixed Appeal In the event that you decide to put your home on the market, an off-grid power system will have mixed appeal for prospective buyers.

On the one hand, eco-conscious buyers will find a home with minimal carbon footprint extremely appealing, but on the other, more conventional buyers will be hesitant about living off-grid. Addressing Power System Issues Might Be Slightly Challenging Going off-grid means you’re responsible for the maintenance of your power system.

Luckily, solar panels need minimal maintenance. However, fixing an off-grid system isn’t as easy as fixing your HVAC system. With HVAC systems, you can simply call contractors, but with off-grid systems, you’ll need more specialized help. Luckily, as the popularity of solar energy increases, more energy solutions providers are offering services for solar energy power systems.

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What is the difference between off-grid and hybrid solar system?

Batteries – Batteries used for solar energy storage are available in two main types, lead-acid (AGM & Gel) and lithium-Ion. There are several other types available such as redox flow batteries and sodium-ion but we will focus on the most common two. Most modern energy storage systems use rechargeable lithium-ion batteries and are available in many shapes and sizes which can be configured in several ways explained in more detail here, Battery capacity is generally measured is either Amp hours (Ah) for lead-acid, or kilowatt hours (kWh) for lithium-ion. However, not all of the capacity is available for use. Lithium-ion based batteries can typically supply up to 90% of their available capacity per day, while lead-acid batteries generally only supply 30% to 40% of their total capacity per day to increase battery life. Off-grid solar systems require specialised off-grid inverters and battery systems large enough to store energy for 2 or more days. Hybrid grid-connected systems use lower cost hybrid (battery) inverters, and only require a battery large enough to supply energy for 5 to 10 hours (overnight) depending on the application. Learn more about batteries in our complete solar battery review

Can you run a home entirely on solar power?

Can I Run My Whole House on Solar Energy? – With a modern solar energy system, including power storage, you can definitely run a whole house completely on solar power. Today’s high-efficiency solar panels and solar batteries make it cheaper than ever before to power an entire home exclusively using solar energy.

  • Solar panel systems and solar panel installation costs have continued to drop over the past two decades since the broad introduction of residential and commercial solar energy use.
  • This is even though local and federal government rebates and tax credits, and utility company incentives continue to decline with each passing year.

The major drop in solar costs is partly due to the broader national and global adoption of solar energy and partly due to the rapid advancements in solar energy systems technologies. To determine the cost-effectiveness and other feasibility factors in operating a fully solar-powered house, start with these initial basic assessments:

Can I go off-grid with solar?

– Grid independence: The alternative to going off the grid In summary, it may not be practical for many people to go completely off the grid. However, there is a middle ground between complete grid dependence and disconnecting from the grid entirely. We like to call this “grid independence.” By adding a home solar battery to your solar installation, or even just adding a home battery without solar, you can stay on the grid while becoming independent from the negative aspects of the grid as needed.

  1. Here’s how grid independence with a battery can help most homeowners: 1.
  2. Never lose power again.
  3. With a home battery, you can disconnect from the grid when it fails and turn your home into a self-sufficient energy island.
  4. If there is a power outage, a home battery will provide instant backup power to your home.

When paired with solar panels, you can survive “off grid” until the utility grid is fixed, with the solar panels providing power and charging your battery during the day, and your battery providing power at night.2. Save money. When your utility power is fully operational, your solar battery can also take in and store power when it is at its cheapest (usually between 2AM and 6AM) and then use it later when cost-per-watt is higher.

The cost-per-watt is often 3x more at 4PM vs.4AM. In some states, adding a battery to solar panels can also enhance savings from solar.3. Make money. The electrical grid is going through rapid, fundamental changes, and home batteries will soon be able to make money for homeowners. During times of high demand, like on the hottest summer days, utilities will pay homeowners for the electricity stored in their batteries.

Around the country, utilities are creating the compensation mechanisms to allow homeowners with batteries to make money. Soon, there will even be a shared energy network where individuals and businesses can buy and sell power to each other, making and saving more money and creating a sharing economy for energy, just like Airbnb and Uber.

Do solar inverters turn off at night?

What happens to solar panels at night? Solar doesn’t work at night. But that’s okay! At night your solar panels and inverter power down. The inverter isn’t running overnight because it doesn’t want to draw power. Instead it’ll wake back up when the sun shines in the morning.

  1. Your home and solar system are connected to the utility grid.
  2. On long, sunny days, your solar panels pour power past the meter – running it backwards – racking up credits on your utility bill.
  3. You draw down those credits overnight or during the darker, winter months.
  4. This is all thanks to a process called net-metering.

It’s that simple. : What happens to solar panels at night?

What is the best off-grid battery?

1. Battle Born LiFePO4 – Battle Born LiFePO4 lithium-ion batteries are the top pick because each battery is versatile, cost-effective and easy to install. You can also use them for other off-grid or off-road applications, including powering campers, golf carts and boats.


1.2 kWh$949