The ‘Inverter’ is the device used to change the Direct Current (DC) electricity from your solar panels into the 240 Volt Alternating Current (AC) electricity that your home and business appliances are designed for. By matching the specifications of the electricity grid, the inverter also allows you to sell excess electricity that you have generated back into the grid for others to use.
Grid Connect Inverters are designed to connect your solar system to the grid and to shut down into a safe mode when there is a grid fault such as a blackout.
Hybrid Grid Inverters are also designed to connect your solar system to the grid, but are able to disconnect your system from the grid and run in an off grid mode when there is a blackout. These system usually come with a small battery and allow users to store the excess power they have generated during the day to use in the evening and at night. Hybrid Grid Inverters are relatively new to the market and are more expensive than standard Grid Connect Inverters, but are a good option for those people that want blackout protection. As costs come down Hybrid Grid Inverters are likely to become the most common form of inverter.
Off Grid Inverters are designed to work standalone without any grid connection, although some of these inverters are able to work in hybrid or grid connect mode as well. Off Grid systems generally have a much larger battery than Hybrid systems because they cannot access the grid for additional energy during times of high energy usage or days of poor sun.