Are you contemplating installing solar panels and inverters on your home by yourself? Well, you have come to the right place! There is nothing frustrating like experiencing a power outage when you need it most. I know this because I have had several power interruptions just when I was watching my favorite television program or running home appliances.
Luckily, the advancement in technology has seen the development of solar panels which convert solar energy to electricity. An inverter is useful in converting the battery power from solar panels while a charge controller protects the batteries and panel from overheating. In this article, we will look at how to connect a solar panel to battery and inverter.
Supplies You Will Need:
- Solar panels
- 1 battery charger
- 1 power inverter
- Mechanical lugs
- 2 AWG cable
- Cable cutters
- Red electrical tape
- Crescent wrench
Table of Contents
Steps to Connect Solar Panel to Battery and Inverter
Once you have all the supplies and tools ready, proceed to the steps below:
Step 1: Prepare the Batteries
The first step is to prepare the batteries by charging them with a charger. You need to ensure that your batteries are charged to full capacity before placing them in the container. The positive (+) terminals should be on one side while the negative (-) terminals on another side.
Step 2: Create the Jumpers
Once the batteries are in place, the next step is to measure them from terminal to terminal in order to create jumpers. The batteries are usually wired in parallel to help preserve the voltage of the panels. To do this, you need to measure between terminals and use a 2 AWG cable to make the jumpers.
Alternatively, you can also wire the panels together in a series. This increases the voltage so that it conforms to that of the battery bank. Just ensure that the output voltage of the panels is similar to that of the battery bank.
Step 3: Prepare the Lid
Create holes in the lid to connect the panel’s leads to a charge controller and inverter. You can opt to put your charge controller inside or outside, depending on your preference.
Step 4: Connect Charge Controller and Inverter to Battery Cables
The next step is to connect the charge controller and inverter to the battery cables. Before doing this, make sure that the charge controller isn’t connected to the solar panel and the inverter is not turned on.
When connecting your solar panel to your charge controller, it is advisable to connect first the adapter kit of the panel. Then connect the positive (+) or negative (-) leads of the panel and match them to those of the charge controller. See to it that the panel is well inserted; otherwise, you are likely to experience reverse polarity and a short to the system, which can damage the controllers and panels.
It is also important to note that a reliable charge controller will help to average the panel’s voltage fluctuations and give the batteries a steady charging voltage. It also comes in handy in preventing an overcharge of the batteries as well as protecting the panels from the risk of current back flow that comes from the batteries.
Step 5: Connect Battery Bank to Inverter
The last step is to attach the battery bank to the input lugs of your inverter. Afterward, attach the inverter to the house panel and check to see if it works properly. At this step, the inverter will change the batteries’ DC current and convert it into 110 volt AC current that will be used in the house panel.
Additionally, the inverter can be programmed in order to produce excess power to the power company in the event that the house panel is attached to the power grid.
Steps for Connecting Batteries in Parallel Position
When it comes to battery wiring, there are two ways of doing it; parallel wiring and series wiring. Hooking up the battery in parallel position helps to increase the power or current while the series wiring helps to increase voltage wiring. Here are some simple steps for using parallel wiring:
Put the batteries step by step such that you have battery 1 and battery 2. Ensure that the positive (+) sign of battery one and battery two matches together while the negative (-) side of the two batteries is on the other side.
Step 2: Connect Red Cables
Use a red battery cable to connect the red positive terminal of both batteries.
Do not make the mistake of connecting a positive terminal of one battery to the negative terminal of another.
Step 3: Connect Black Cables
Then use a black battery cable to attach the black negative terminal of both batteries. It is also recommendable to use the cables of the same polarity, for instance, black to black and red to red.
Step 4: Attach Battery Bank to Solar Panel
Once you have done that, now connect the battery bank to what you want to power and then to the solar panel.
To know how to connect your battery bank to an inverter, be sure to watch this video:
I hope that the steps above will help you to wire your solar panel to a battery and inverter with ease. This way, you can say goodbye to power interruption, so you can enjoy adequate power supply for running your home or business. Did you find these steps helpful? Well, I would be glad to hear how you incorporated them into your DIY solar installation project. Also, do not forget to share with friends and family!