does a solar powered house still have electric in an area outage?

with a house with solar panels on the roof, does that house stay powered when people who have old fashioned electric lose power in the neighborhood (ie due to a storm).

how much power?  can they use electric normally, or would they have to use it sparingly (ie only the fridge, minimal light)

Update:

I assume if they use a solar farm they will also lose electric when their neighbors with old fashioned electric do.

8 Answers

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  • james
    Lv 7
    6 days ago

    Only if you have a battery for storage of the electric. Then often only enough for lights at night. Unless a lot of battery's & plates. 

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  • Willie
    Lv 7
    1 month ago

    Yes, because people don't know. if solar will keep their house warm forever.

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  • 1 month ago

    I wouldn't - but then again, I extremly rarely lose grid power, and then it's not due to a local storm. Wiring around here is underground.

    Whether a grid-tie setup will work in standalone mode is up to the specific setup. My inverters could, but to switch over, they require a sepcial code entered on the panel which I don't have - for a good reason. Because working without the grid connection would mean that you'd have to isolate your house from the grid, through a hefty isolation switch. Otherwise, your inverters would give their best to try to power up all the part of the grid that is on your side of the fault - up to and including the linesmen working on fixing that fault. Not exactly a good idea.

    As for the power - that again depends on the power of the solar array, the solar incidence and, if you have them, the capacity of the batteries and the power of the batttery inverter. Again, in my case, my panels can generate close to 7 kW in full sun - enough to run the the stove and the washing machine (or the dishwasher), but not enough to run the heat pump (which does require 3-phase, while the inverters are only connected to two phases). But since I don't have any batteries, I'd have to do that while the sun is shining. Afterwards, I'd sit in the dark.

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  • 2 months ago

    We have solar panels, but are still connected to the grid. We use our power during the day when we make power, sell the excess to the power company, but have to buy it back at night. We only have a light bulb and an led TV

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  • 2 months ago

    Hey Simply, good question, and one I wish people would ask before they buy the solar array. There are 3 basic types of systems: Stand alone, grid tie and interactive. Stand alone are generally used where no grid power reaches, a remote cabin for example. They only have how much power the array makes, or what the batteries hold. Many use backup generators as well when needed.

    Grid tie in it’s pure form uses power from the array and a synchronous inverter to feed solar power to the grid. The home has no idea where the power comes from, solar or utility. When a grid shuts down, so does this type of inverter, so no power to the home even if the sun is shining. Distant solar farms people buy into have this same limitation since it’s the grid that carries the solar power to the home.

    Interactive is like a hybrid, the inverter can synchronize to the grid and feed excess power out to the house or grid, but switch in a micro second to stand alone if the grid goes down. We have such a system here, and yes, if there is a grid outage, power must be used judiciously since we only have what the array makes plus what battery capacity remains. We had such an event recently, that night we let the refrigerator and freezer run, watched TV for a while and ran a few lights in the evening. Our power lasted through the night until the sun came up, and later the grid came back on. During those times we don’t do laundry, run power tools, vacuums and other items that can wait a day. Costs more for this type of inverter and for a small battery bank, maybe an additional 15% over a simple grid tie. You have to decide what you need, like buying a car. Take care, Rudydoo

    Source(s): Home power.com AWEA.ORG. Midwestrenew.org
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  • Mr. P
    Lv 7
    2 months ago

    It depends on the inverter and system they have. The cheaper systems are grid-tied, so it needs the timing signal from mains power to add to it. If it was cut off it couldn't supply it's own.

    Off-grid systems work as a standalone system so they will continue to work in a power outage. the downside of these is that you have to swap between the two supplies, so is usually on or off and not variable like a grid tied systeIf you had batteries you could always have both styles of inverter, and only use the stand alone type for essentials like fridges and freezers.

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  • arther
    Lv 4
    2 months ago

    in most systems that use a grid-tie inverter with out battery's, no it shuts down and they lose power also

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  • oikoσ
    Lv 7
    2 months ago

    If they generate their own solar power, they should still have electricity, either from the panels or from their backup batteries.

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    • arther
      Lv 4
      2 months agoReport

      Rudydoo any ideas on an isolation box that will allow the customer to use what they make will the grid is down? Can a grid tie invertor make its own sine wave?

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