Everything You Should Know About the StorEdge+LG Power Pack
As you explore the possibilities of a solar photovoltaic array for your home, it is only natural to want to know what the various component parts of a PV system are. While the panels themselves are the most obvious, the system that channels and converts energy from sunlight into usable power is important as well. One way to feel comfortable with the investment involved in a solar power system is to investigate the possibilities to expand or add features such as battery backup at a later date.
At Mountain View Solar, we care about every element of your system. Lower-quality parts can be a dangerous problem, so we carefully select only the best equipment to install. Consider the inverter and battery system, for example, and some of the questions people frequently ask about them.
What is a Solar Inverter?
Many may believe that a solar array links directly to the incoming power lines of a house with no need for additional equipment. However, the electrical current generated by solar panels is not actually usable immediately by household loads. Alternating Current (AC) and Direct Current (DC) work in different ways, necessitating an inverter to change the solar generated energy from DC into usable AC electricity for use by the household. Solar inverters perform this task, but each inverter isn’t created equal: some designs offer more options, customization, and ease of support, with the SolarEdge “StorEdge” model leading the pack.
Why Have a Battery?
If you know about connecting your photovoltaic system to a power grid, you might wonder why it is worthwhile to also have a battery storage system. In California, Hawaii and other states further west, one of the major reasons to choose a battery storage system is to time shift electricity consumption, because electricity prices change throughout the day. You can store your solar energy when electricity is cheap, and draw from the battery when the price is high. In fact, this is one of the primary motivators for most residential battery systems currently installed. However, in the mtvSolar service area, residential electricity rates are flat, so this use doesn’t apply.
The big benefit you gain with battery storage in the mid-Atlantic is power during a blackout. When outages happen in the midst of severe storms, the StorEdge+LG system is a great way to keep the lights on and the refrigerator cold. These hybrid systems are still technically grid-tied, however these battery storage systems can island themselves and provide power to certain loads during an outage to give you peace of mind when others in your area may be without power. Given that StorEdge+LG have a reputation for safety and reliability, you can rest assured about your energy stores in times of crisis.
Ready for the Future
With StorEdge+LG, if time of use metering ever comes to the area, or net-metering is changed to be something other than a 1-to-1 buy/sell ratio, a simple programming change can enable you to utilize time of use shifting or self consumption without purchasing anything new! In other words, having a battery puts you in the position to control your power should the utilities’ rate schedules become unfavorable to straight grid-tied solar.
As a bonus, when mtvSolar installs a StorEdge inverter, we also install a SolarEdge consumption meter, which permits the homeowner to see all power coming from and going back to the utility grid (shown in screenshot at right).
Why use StorEdge with LG RESU Battery?
In the industry, this particular combination of solar inverter system and battery storage is well-known and well-respected. StorEdge is from a leading manufacturer of solar inverters, SolarEdge, and LG Chem has a long proven track record with electronics and specifically with lithium-ion battery systems, as they are popular in a variety of solar power markets around the world. While panels and other components certainly matter, these two brands, especially in combination, provide a trustworthy system. With great support, these companies give your experienced solar installers all the information they need to address any unique cases that may arise with your particular solar power system installation and maintenance. StorEdge is SolarEdge’s brand name for their battery storage inverter. LG refers to their wall mounted lithium battery pack as the RESU10H.
The StorEdge inverter with the LG battery manages the flow of energy into the inverter as well as allowing energy to be stored in a battery system. The StorEdge+LG system is DC coupled and is much more efficient than other systems that are primarily built around being grid-tied without storage. To retrofit those systems for backup power, some components must be replaced to properly and efficiently integrate batteries at a later date. StorEdge, with less power conversions and designed from the ground up for storage, is super efficient and helps you use as much sun power as possible.
Benefits of a ‘Battery Ready’ System
If you don’t immediately purchase the battery itself, the StorEdge system makes it easy to add a battery later on. The battery ready system avoids wasted equipment by preparing your system to eventually have a battery without needing to replace anything in the process of adding the battery. To do this, mtvSolar will install a StorEdge inverter without battery or critical loads panel, and it will function as a purely grid-tied system.
StorEdge+LG is a Safe Solution
There are many things that have made StorEdge+LG the popular and reliable solar and battery inverter system it is today. However, one of the biggest benefits is that they provide safety and efficiency at the core of the design.
Efficiency matters because using every bit of energy generated ensures that your system’s ROI is as expected. The DC coupled design of StorEdge+LG ensures that every kilowatt hour you generate works to power your home rather than be lost in extra DC/AC/DC conversations. At the same time, safe systems truly matter: with electricity, you want to make sure that there is an absolute minimum risk of danger to first responders, and SolarEdge’s optimizer based system accomplishes this well. With the flick of just one switch, firefighters can shut down both the solar array and battery in seconds.
StorEdge+LG offers customizable configurations without compromising the overall ease of install and maintenance, which makes it a system that works well and stays safe. Mountain View Solar is highly experienced in solar+battery solutions and will utilize only the best equipment and battery options available. We install premium quality systems that we all can be proud of many decades from now.
Are you ready to pursue your solar and battery storage system and want the most efficient and safe system available? Contact us for a free consultation today!