Solar Inverters and High Grid Voltage

Posted by Sam Quennell on 29-Jan-2020 15:51:14

Is your solar inverter tripping throughout the day and you have no idea why? We have been asked this question a lot lately from our customers. The good news is it isn’t the inverter that is causing the issue. It’s high grid voltage and it’s becoming an ongoing problem not just in Victoria, but across Australia.

The heart of the issue is rather simple. When the gird voltage is too high feeding into a household, your solar inverter will switch off (as a safety precaution), however, it may seem as if it’s tripping when it’s not. The Australian standard is 230 volts but there is a little bit of wriggle room on either side.

If the grid voltage is higher than the voltage produced form your solar system, then your solar will not be able to export back to the grid. This is a safety measure. The reason for this is that if solar inverters had no limit on exporting back to the grid, local voltage would be significantly higher and would inevitably cause a lot of issues with electrical appliances in a lot of households.

It’s a lot more common in summer than winter as the solar output during the colder months is a lot lower than it is during the hotter months. We understand it can be frustrating as it can cost hundreds of dollars (annually) in lost generation.

The good news is it can be prevented. The slightly annoying issue is that you will have to speak with your local distributor. However, there are times when it might not necessarily be the fault of the distributor as contributing factors can include your solar installation or existing grid connection. If it is a fault with the distributor, you will most likely need to provide evidence such as data from your monitoring device.

It’s always a good idea to give us a call first, as our customer service team are trained and experienced in determining whether your solar inverter has tripped because of a fault with the product, or if it is actually because of higher voltage issues.


Topics: grid connection, demand response, voltage, electricity price