How to Solar Power Your Home / House #1 – On Grid vs Off Grid

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In this video I go through the components that are part of a solar power solution. I explain the differences between On-grid vs. off grid.
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Thanks to Exsolar for the work on the solar installation –

Other equipment used or mentioned in this video:

* Solar panels: Tenesol Total Energy – TE250-60M+ – 250 watt monocrystalline
* Outback FlexMax 60 MPPT solar charger
* The solar array will be 2250 watts (9x 250 watt mono crystalline panels)
* The battery bank will be 8 x 150 Ah lead crystal batteries.
* A Victron Energy Quattro inverter
* A Victron Energy Grid tie inverter
* A Victron Energy battery monitor
* DC to DC converter
* Micro inverters
* Eskom power and cost of energy
* Reduce energy bill / costs
* Eskom solar pre-paid electricity / energy meter
* Renewable energy

In this series on how to Solar Power Your Home:

* What is "the Grid" – On Grid vs. Off Grid?
* What is the best type of solar panel to install?
* Do I need a battery bank….what battery technology should I use?
* A look at the different type of inverters?
* How much solar power do I need – sizing the array?
* Measuring your energy consumption with energy meters.
* How to make your home more efficient – CFL, LED lighting, solar geyser,
heat pumps…and more..
* Is solar power / energy financially viable in South Africa? How long does it take to pay off?
* Does power factor play a role in solar generated power.
* Solar Power for your Home – "Free Electricity"?
* Can I run my house entirely from solar power?
* How to Solar Power a Home
* How to Solar Power a House
* how to solar power my home

Post a comment on anything else you would like to see covered.

31 thoughts on “How to Solar Power Your Home / House #1 – On Grid vs Off Grid

  1. jgyrwa

    Im in US and I’m currently studying photovoltaic systems. This video by far
    is the most detailed and informative video I’ve seen on Youtube. thnx. I
    will subscribe!.

  2. Christopher Banacka

    15:58 actually in USA, most major cities who have a government run monopoly
    on the power system, they won’t give you money, they basically buy (in
    credits) your extra power at like 1/3 the cost they sell it to you.

    edit: on top of that, most charge you a FEE if you are off the grid…
    kinda bs yeah? :D

    1. John Fowler

      Please don’t spread lies like this. Power companies are public utilities,
      but they are NOT run by the government. And here in Virginia, Dominion
      Power pays us $0.15 per Kwh.. which is more than it costs to buy it (they
      sell it at $0.11 atm).

      So yeah, stfu if you can’t post the truth.

  3. Christina Rodriguez

    Hello Mr. Lorton…I am from the Philippines…Your explanation for on grid
    and off grid we’re very clear…Thank you…I am very interested on
    learning about solar panels…

    1. Icicle Fledglings

      That is a scam! Solar Sterling Plant sold someone else’s copyrighted plans
      as their own and it does not generate nearly as much power as advertised.
      It also set up a bunch of fake review sites giving itself good ratings.

      Warning flags should pop up whenever you see that type of advertising
      format used. Normally with some guy going on and on and on about how
      awesome it is quoting “what others say” and what junk you get for free if
      you “order now”.

    2. muwhalimu karim

      +Christina Rodriguez had built a mini solar system to generate enough solar
      energy to power my light bulb to test it out and it worked out fine. So one
      can go ahead to build a big one and save up to 80% of the electricity bill.*
      Have a look at ==>

  4. Barton Fisher

    I have a question. We already installed a grid tie in system a couple of
    years ago. We get a credit when we over produce. But what confuses me is
    when I send power to the grid, how does it get used? In my case we have a
    power poll outside with high voltage transformer. The lower side of the
    transformer serves my house and neighbor house. So, I would think that my
    over production may only provides power to the neighbor. However, if I
    didn’t have a neighbor and or his electricity was turned off, how could it
    be possible for my power to make it though the high voltage transformer to
    neighbors down the street? Seems like it would just dissipate in the
    transformer. Thanks

  5. Magan Patel

    Hi All I live in UK. I found this video to be of high content and I have a
    little understanding of it works. I am absolutely a novice my thanks to
    UTUBE for letting me watch this video. For oldy like me lt is a eye opener.

  6. resobelle

    realistically … on an average sunny day, how many amp hours would a 400
    watt solar panel system put out with a 30 MPPT charge controller? What
    size battery bank can I maintain at a 50% usage per day? How much power
    (amp hours) will actually be stored in the batteries? Can I produce enough
    power in one day to replace 135 watt hours and not ruin 3 110 amp hour 12
    volt batteries?

  7. Vincent Nkawu

    MjLorton, great video by the way, I am new to the domain of renewable solar
    energy and your video is very informative. My question is specific for
    those living in locations where we can’t connect the energy from a solar
    panel to an on grid system. If you have energy coming from the on grid
    (your electrical company) into your home, at the same time, energy coming
    from your solar panel system, does the energy from the solar panel system
    automatically get pushed to ones battery bank? Or does it get pushed to
    your home anyway, in which case one then potentially has excess energy?

  8. Passed High School Physics

    Anyone know the efficiency of a fixed angle solar system?
    From what I’ve read solar panels are at best 10 -18% efficient.
    If they are attached to your roof they are only 100% efficient for 30-45
    minutes of the day for only about a month or two out of the year. The rest
    of the time isn’t the efficiency about 5 to 10%?

    Then from what’s produced ins’t 10-20% of that lost by the inverter? So if
    you average how munch energy is being captured to what’s usable isn’t
    doesn’t that average out to 2 to 5% over the course of a year?

  9. Everett Leonard

    I live is the ” States” as you say. actually in the middle ( Iowa ) we all
    have 240v ac supplied to our home. the us has 240vac @ 60hz. Europe has
    220vac @ 50hz. Great video and very informative.

  10. Precivilization

    This indeed a great great video. I sure have better understanding of solar
    power now. Thanks you very much sir.

    Would it make sense to use a grid tie inverter in a complete off grid setup
    in order to feed power to house directly during day-time to minimize
    wastage of power during solar peak hours? I mean obviously in addition to
    having a DC to AC inverter and charge controller for the battery bank
    during night-time usage.

  11. TrueDesire Elements

    Amazing Video, your so Awesome. THANKS so much for sharing all that you
    shared. It was very informative, motivating, inspiring and all… Please
    Keep sharing…

  12. Himanshu Patel

    i am Himanshu from Gujarat, India. I seen your video and now how i can
    approach you as i want to install & convert my home as solar energy base

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