Beginner’s Guide to Off-Grid Solar
Are you thinking about taking your home off the grid? An off-grid solar system is a great option for Arizona homeowners who want more control over their own energy production and don’t want to rely on their utility company.
Whether you live in a rural area or you’re right in downtown Phoenix, you can go off-grid with solar. In this guide, we’ll walk you through the basics of living with off-grid solar panels to help you learn more about going off-grid with solar in Arizona!
What Is an Off-Grid Solar System?
An off-grid solar system is a type of solar energy system that is not connected to the electrical grid.
Most residential solar panel systems are attached to the grid, which allows the owner to use power from the electrical grid if and when they need to. By taking your system off the grid, you completely cut ties with your utility company—this means you won’t ever have to pay an electric bill again or worry about demand response and time of use rates.
However, it also means you don’t have the grid as a backup power source if your solar system is not meeting your needs. To mitigate this, Arizona off-grid solar homes have solar batteries and generators to keep them running at night as well as if a problem arises with their solar panels.
How Does Off Grid Solar Work?
Off-grid solar systems work the same way grid-tied solar systems work—they capture energy from the sun and convert it into electricity that can be used in your home. The only difference is that off-grid homes do not have a grid connection.
Because off-grid solar systems are not attached to the electrical grid, they need to produce 100% of the electricity needed to power a home. To manage this, they are typically bigger than grid-tied systems. They also rely heavily on solar batteries and backup generators for extra power when the sun is not shining.
How many batteries you need for off-grid solar depends on how big your home is and how much backup power you want to have. However, you will need significantly more batteries to go off-grid than you would to simply maintain power during an outage with grid-tied solar panels.
SouthFace Solar & Electric specializes in off-grid battery design and can size your battery system to best meet your needs. Off-grid batteries qualify for the solar tax credit (or ITC), which can make your installation costs more manageable.
What Are the Benefits of an Off-Grid Solar System in Arizona?
Arizona is one of the best states for off-grid solar because of the impressive number of sunny days we have every year. This allows off-grid solar systems in Arizona to generate and store enough electricity to keep your home running on solar year-round.
The benefits of off-grid solar in Phoenix and other Arizona communities include:
No more electric bills
Reliable power 24/7
No grid-related power outages
No fossil fuel use for power
Total energy independence
How Much Does an Off Grid Solar System Cost?
The cost of an off-grid solar system depends heavily on the size of your home and the amount of power you use to run it. The bigger your home is and the more power it uses, the more solar panels and batteries will be required to meet its energy demands.
Other factors, like where your home is located, can also affect installation costs. If you live in a rural, hard-to-reach area, for example, your solar installation costs may be higher due to the extra time and effort it will take to get the equipment out to your property. Installing an off-grid solar system will still, however, be more affordable than having a utility company bring a grid connection to your property.
To get an accurate off-grid solar cost estimate, reach out to SouthFace Solar & Electric. We are a highly experienced off-grid solar company in Arizona with over 35 years of combined experience. Our team can help you decide whether off-grid solar makes sense for your home. We take care of everything for off-grid solar, from sizing and design to permitting and installation. Our systems are built to last 20+ years and are warranty-protected for your peace of mind.