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What’s a Hybrid PV System?

Ashleigh AngellSeptember 27, 20185370

What’s a Hybrid PV System?

Hybrid solar systems are something a lot of people don’t really consider doing when they install solar energy. They include both backup power sources and a connection to the grid. This also makes them a more complicated system, which is why you’ll need to decide if it’s the right choice for you. In this article, we’ll look at a more detailed overview of how exactly a hybrid PV system works to figure out if the complexity is something that’s worth it for your lifestyle.

How Do I Know What the Right Choice Is?

First, perhaps we should ask how exactly you’ll know what the right choice is in the first place. By looking at two main factors, we can figure out which ones better apply to each system when it comes to your lifestyle.

Budget

The first thing to consider is your budget. These systems are the best for a budgeting consumer. The reason? Not only will you have backup power to use at night and during outages, but you’ll also be receiving power from the grid. What this means is that you’ll have an abundance of extra energy to sell back to your utility company.

On the flip side, a hybrid system is generally a more expensive system, with off-grid being the second most expensive, and on-grid being the least expensive. The reason a hybrid system costs more is because of batteries and a hybrid inverter. Batteries are fairly expensive on their own, and a hybrid inverter is the most expensive thing because it has both on-grid and off-grid functions. Though all this is true, you’ll likely also save more money in the long run, so it really depends on your budget in the short term.

Location

The next thing that you’ll need to consider is your location. This is because there are some areas where you’ll have no choice but to be an off-grid user. If you’re located in a remote area with no electrical grid around you, you’ll have no choice but to be fully off-grid.

Another thing you’ll want to factor in is how stable your grid is. For example, Puerto Rico doesn’t have a very stable grid, so investing extra into a hybrid system makes a lot of sense for them. When the grid is down, they’ll always have backups in place to make sure they never lose power. But if you live somewhere with a stable grid, you might not want to spend the extra money when you aren’t constantly worried about your grid going down.

You also may want to think about the weather and how many storms you regularly experience. If you live somewhere with frequent storms, having an emergency backup system will probably benefit you greatly. Every time you deal with several days of nonstop clouds and rain, you’ll ensure you don’t have to worry about losing out on using your larger appliances and won’t have the stress of dealing with your power company and having to pay for that extra energy. After all, every time you use more energy than you actually generate, you’re going to have to deal with charges from your power company.

All in all, deciding which system is right for you is a personal decision, but you’ll definitely want to consider these two main factors when making your final choice.

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