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Detailed reviews and information of the best solar panels, inverters and batteries. Plus hybrid and off-grid solar system reviews and information articles on how solar and battery systems work.


Reviews and information on the best Solar panels, inverters and batteries from SMA, Fronius, SunPower, SolaX, Q Cells, Trina, Jinko, Selectronic, Tesla Powerwall, ABB. Plus hybrid inverters, battery sizing, Lithium-ion and lead-acid batteries, off-grid and on-grid power systems.

Filtering by Tag: solar energy storage

Victron Energy Review - Smart solar battery systems

Jason Svarc

Victron Energy has the largest variety of solar products of any manufacturer with everything from tiny solar controllers to large grid-interactive inverter/chargers. But it's the clever monitoring and smart control systems where they really shine.

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Solar and battery storage systems

Jason Svarc

Solar battery storage systems for homes and businesses are becoming increasingly popular and affordable but with the huge array of different types of batteries and systems available it can be very overwhelming for those who are not familiar with solar and energy storage. Here we help explain the different types batteries used for off-grid systems and the many different options used for home solar battery storage.

Off-grid Solar Power Systems

Off-grid solar systems also known as stand-alone power systems (SAPS) have advanced rapidly over the last decade with a wide variety of smart inverter and lithium battery systems now available.

A modern AC coupled off-grid solar power system with Fronius Primo solar inverter coupled to the powerful Selectronic SP PRO 7.5kW inverter/charger.

A modern AC coupled off-grid solar power system with Fronius Primo solar inverter coupled to the powerful Selectronic SP PRO 7.5kW inverter/charger.

The shift from traditional DC coupled lead-acid batteries towards more advanced scalable lithium battery systems over the last 2 years has provided much more flexibility and options when sizing off-grid systems. In addition the reduced cost of solar panels has made it more cost effective to oversize the solar array and reduce back-up generator run time during times of prolonged bad weather.

Click here to See our best off-grid solar systems article

What is a hybrid solar system?

Hybrid solar systems are connected to the grid and generate power in the same way as a more common grid-feed solar system but use lithium-ion batteries to store excess energy for later use. This ability to store energy enables most hybrid systems to also operate as a backup power supply during a blackout, similar to a UPS system... READ MORE

How to select a solar battery or off-grid power system?

Many people new to solar can become overwhelmed by the number of options and complexity of the various solar and battery systems available. Here we try to explain the reasons why people choose home solar batteries and the costs involved. Going completely off-grid is also considered by many people who are sick of being ripped off by electricity retailers or by those who have chosen to live in a more remote location.

Some of the reasons people choose to install batteries or go off-grid:

  • Reduce cost - save money by using less energy from the grid

  • Reduce emissions - reduce pollution from coal/nuclear/gas power generation

  • Be blackout safe - Have power available during a blackout or emergency

  • Become energy independent - operate off-grid where possible

  • Reduce peak demand - peak lopping and grid stability **

Read the full article here including the costs involved - Click here to continue

In-depth Solar battery review

The Tesla Powerwall compared to leading lithium and sodium based batteries LG Chem and Aquion, plus proven lead-acid and advanced lead-carbon batteries in the solar hybrid battery challenge!

Below is a comparison chart of the most popular lithium and lead-acid battery systems available on the market in 2019. Read the full details and cost comparison in our complete solar battery review article.

Performance and lifetime comparison of the leading home solar battery systems - Including the Popular Tesla powerwall 2, LG RESU range and high performance Simpliphi PHI lithium LFP battery.

Performance and lifetime comparison of the leading home solar battery systems - Including the Popular Tesla powerwall 2, LG RESU range and high performance Simpliphi PHI lithium LFP battery.

Hybrid & off-grid solar inverter reviews

With the new generation of hybrid solar inverters, complete hybrid energy storage systems and battery storage options now available on the market, we at CER have put together a summary of what's available and what's up and coming.


Video Reviews

Review the Australian made Selectronic SP PRO multi-mode off-grid and hybrid inverter. AC-coupled system with ABB solar inverters and gel VRLA battery bank.

The high-end Schneider Conext XW+ solar hybrid system with large 24kWh battery bank.

Redback Technologies hybrid solar inverter with the Pylon Tech (LFP) 2.4kWh battery module.

The MPP Solar hybrid solar inverter from Voltronic with seal Lead-acid battery bank.

AC Vs DC coupled solar battery systems

AC or DC coupling simply refers to the way solar panels are coupled or linked to a battery system. Most home battery systems like the LG chem RESU are DC coupled using a hybrid solar inverter but several popular batteries such as the Tesla Powerwall and Sonnen ECO are AC batteries meaning they have an integrated inverter and are connected to the AC supply which is known as AC coupled. Being AC coupled makes it easier to add a battery storage to homes with an existing solar system.

For more technical information about the types of solar, hybrid and off-grid configurations here - AC Vs DC coupled Solar battery systems

how solar works Off-grid v4.png

More information and reviews

Solar battery system types - AC Vs DC coupled

Jason Svarc

AC coupled is the preferred battery configuration for larger solar installations while DC coupling works very well for smaller systems. We explain the advantages and disadvantages of each along with the new generation High Voltage DC batteries and AC battery systems.

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Hybrid Solar Inverters

Jason Svarc

The simplest and most economical way to add battery storage to a home is using an all-in-one hybrid Inverter. The all-in-one inverters contains a solar inverter, charger and battery inverter with wifi software monitoring and metering.

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Hybrid Solar Inverters and Systems

Jason Svarc

This review has been updated. Please follow the link below for the latest hybrid inverter and energy storage systems:

Hybrid Solar Inverters and Energy Storage systems review 2016