inverter systems

The Definition of an Inverter for Dummies

Inverter systems are devices that convert DC current into AC current. It converts direct current into alternative current through an inverter.

The inverter will then supply your house or building with alternating current. The output voltage, input voltage, frequency, and power depend on the inverter design. They also depend on the circuitry of your inverter.

What Is the Purpose of Converting DC Power to AC Power?

Most modern electrical appliances we use need far more AC output than DC power to function well. Many modern devices operate on 12—volt AC power supplied to our homes from the utility. Most work well on high voltage.

What Are the 3 Different Inverters? 

You can get 3 different inverter systems. They are sine wave or pure sine wave systems, and modified sine wave systems. We also call pure sine wave systems true wave systems.

We often refer to modified sine wave systems as modified square wave systems. When buying an inverter, the idea is to get as “pure” or “true” a current wave as possible.

What’s the Difference Between a UPS inverter, backup Inverter, and Solar Inverter?

There is a distinction between UPS, backup inverters, and solar inverter systems. They function differently to produce different results. Uninterruptible power supplies usually contain a built-in converter able to handle the power demand.

A solar inverter has a charge controller, which we refer to as an MPPT. They are specifically designed to transform solar power into the correct voltage form. We can add MPPTs to inverters that do not already have them. We can also use solar inverters as backup without solar panels.

Pure Sine Wave and Modified Sine Wave Inverters Explained

The primary difference between pure sine wave Inverters and modified wave inverters is the price. Pure sine wave inverters are normally more costly than modified sine wave inverters. Your sensitive equipment will fare better with pure sine wave inverters.

You might experience some challenges with modified sine wave inverters. These could include noise or inferior quality. The main pointers when selecting any type of inverter are size and type of installation.

How DC Current and AC Current Differ from One Another

Electrical charges in direct current (DC) flow in a single direction. The electric current in alternating current (AC) could change from time to time. The voltage in AC circuits reverse when the current direction changes.

Inverters Are Brilliant for Emergency Backup Power.

Commercial buildings carry a large electrical load. Large commercial buildings, hospitals, schools all use an overabundance of power. Relying on the power grid is not enough to keep the lights on. Commercial entities need backup systems, like inverters, during power outages.

A battery inverter system is a necessity in emergency situations.

Is It a Good Idea to Use an Inverter to Power My Home?

Inverters providing modified sine waves can power electronics safely in the home. Inverters that produce low wattage could prove problematic.

Appliances like television sets and microwaves draw high amounts of wattage. Powering a home will need an inverter with a continuous rating of 1500 watts with a peak of 3500 watts. The size inverter and its capacity will influence whether you should use it to power your home. 

What Size Inverters are Best for a Home Inverter System?

There are two questions you need to ask yourself when buying an inverter. Firstly, what is the maximum load that will run off my inverter? Secondly, what is the average load that will run off my inverter?

Choose modern inverters with a capacity greater than the peak load for home inverter systems. You could damage your inverter if you try to run a load capacity greater than the rated load of the inverter.

If the load capacity is greater than that of the inverter, it will shut down or it will break. Certain inverters cannot run continuously. They could have a lower continuous rating than a rated peak load.

What Are the Different Installations & Which is Best?


1. Grid-Tied Systems

Grid tied inverters are inverters connected to the power utility. They need power from the electrical grid to function. We use grid-tied inverters to lower our power consumption and the amounts of energy consumed during off-peak periods.

During a power outage, your grid tied inverter shuts down. It isn’t useful as a backup for load shedding. You either need a separate battery backup system, or you will need a generator for power.

Large commercial plants use grid-tied inverters. Commercial plants use the bulk of their power during the day. Grid-tied inverters can reduce the cost of power significantly. The reason is that grid-tied systems produce power during peak periods.

We recommend you get a detailed analysis of your power consumption. What capacity per day do you consume? Do this before investing in a grid-tied system. A detailed report with a breakdown of hours, days, and maximum peak consumption is ideal. It will give you a clear sign of what inverter is best for your individual needs.

Why a Grid-Tied Inverter Is Not Ideal as a Home Backup System in South Africa

Grid-tied systems are not ideal applications for home use in South Africa. The reason is that most South African homes’ consumption is less during daytime hours. Grid-tied inverters don’t store power. This makes them cheaper than off-grid and hybrid inverter options.

2. Off-Grid Inverters

Off-grid inverters work independently from the utility. They supply power to charge the batteries of a battery inverter system.

Off-grid inverters fulfil the demand of the load to maintain loads in poor weather. They also supply the demand for night time consumption. An inverter home back-up system off the grid works well where there is no power from the utility.

Off-grid systems are also perfect where the demand for power is less. They are often more costly per KW than your grid-tied inverters. The reason for the higher price is that longer periods of runtime need more storage.

They are also to maintain the solar batteries and supply your battery bank. If you need additional power when the mains power is out (for example, during load shedding), these types of inverters are ideal, although pricier.

3. Hybrid Inverter Systems

A hybrid inverter is a brilliant choice for the average household. A hybrid inverter is perfect for users looking for a self-sufficient solar and battery option without disconnecting completely from the grid.

For households that don’t have too many blackouts, a hybrid inverter is the perfect solution. It can help you with a backup power source when there is a blackout or power failure, but it also connects to the grid when the power supply is stable. It’s the best of both worlds.

Still Got Questions About Inverters?

Are you looking for a battery backup system or an inverter? Are you new to this and would like to find out more about inverters? One of our experts will advise you on the best solution best suited to your individual needs.