Purchasing a Solar Generator for Your House – The Definitive Guide
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With each passing year, a greater number of people choose to embrace residential solar technology. While many homeowners choose to go with one of the major solar installers, which can cost tens of thousands of dollars for a basic solar power system, technological advancements in the solar industry are now making it more affordable than ever to run a home off of clean, renewable solar power.
This leads us to solar generators, which have made major strides over the past year. Where solar generators were once seen as little more than portable power banks that were only suitable for charging phones and other small-scale electronics, some models are now powerful enough to be a practical power source for even the most demanding electrical appliances.
In fact, more people than ever are now beginning to use multiple solar generators to supply power to their entire home! Whether you are interested in solar backup for emergency preparedness, or you want an off-grid or grid-tied solar power system that can help you save money and do your part to reduce greenhouse gases, a solar generator can now help you achieve these aims!
How Can We Help?
To help give you a better understanding of your options, we are going to explain everything you need to know about using a solar generator as a power source for your house! Not only will we explain what type of specifications are required from a solar generator if it is to be used for whole home backup, we will even make our top recommendations for the best solar generators for a full-sized house.
Once you understand what type of solar generator you need, we will explain how you can set that solar generator up for the best results. For those that do not value the many advantages solar generators offer, such as portability, we will recommend a few custom backup solar power kits you can install as a solar generator alternative.
What Type of Solar Generator Will You Need for Your House?
Solar generators come in many different shapes and sizes. They also have a wide variety of specifications, so it is important to choose one that is actually practical for a whole house, rather than just for charging a few portable electronics.
Significant Storage Capacity:
For starters, you will need plenty of storage capacity, so only solar generators that have a large, built-in deep-cycle battery will be appropriate for a whole house. Not only does the solar generator need a large and efficient battery, it will be much better if that battery is expandable. In other words, you should choose a solar generator that is compatible with expansion batteries.
Not only do the appliances in your home require plenty of power, if you are looking to run your home off of solar power, you need to account for days when the sun is not shining. If it is cloudy, your solar panels will not be able to generate electricity at a rate that can keep up with your home’s power needs. This is why you need a battery that can store more than just your immediate power needs.
Serious Output Power:
If you are planning to use a solar generator to back up your entire home, you will also need to choose one that has a powerful inverter. The inverter is the component within the solar generator that converts the DC power your solar panels generate into the AC power that your electronic appliances and devices need.
If the inverter is underpowered, it will not be able to supply the level of power required to run demanding electronic appliances, like your refrigerator, stove, dishwasher, and microwave. Those that rely on a well for their water will also need to take their well pump into consideration, as these are also very demanding pieces of electronic equipment.
Given that most of these appliances draw power at 240V, you will need a solar generator that can operate at this voltage. Fortunately, there are now several solar generator models that have this voltage rating.
What Solar Generator Do We Recommend for Your House?
Up until recently, it would not have been possible to use solar generators to backup an entire home; however, there are now several options on the market. To make things easy, we will highlight two great options. From there, we will go over our top pick and explain how you can use it to supply power to your entire home!
First up, the new Bluetti EP500 Solar Power Station can be used for an entire home. This is because it features a 2,000W power inverter, a 5,100Wh internal battery, and a 240V C output port. On top of that, it can be connected to your home’s power system for seamless backup. When the power fails, the EP500 will automatically kick in and supply power to your essential loads, like your lights and refrigerator.
While the Bluetti EP500 is certainly a practical option, we are a little disappointed that the battery is not expandable. While the built-in 5,100Wh battery would be impressive in any solar generator, it can be frustrating if you need more power.
The Hysolis MPS 4500 was specifically designed to be an alternative to a gasoline-powered generator. Unlike a traditional generator, the Hysolis MPS can be used indoors. With its impressive 4,500Wh lithium-ion battery and 3,000W pure sine wave power inverter, the Hysolis MPS 4500 can power just about anything you can throw at it.
It also comes equipped with a built-in MPPT charge controller. This efficient charge controller means the internal battery will charge quickly and more of the power your solar panels are able to generate throughout the day will end up as useable stored electricity. For added convenience, the Hysolis MPS 4500 supports pass-through charging, which means you can pull power from it at the same time that the battery is being charged.
While it is certainly a much better alternative to running your home off of gas-powered generators, the Hysolis MPS is not our top pick because it cannot always support high voltage appliances.
Our Top Pick – The EcoFlow Delta PRO Solar Generator
While the previous two solar generators certainly can be used for whole home applications, when it comes to choosing the best solar generator for your home, we find there is only one clear winner – the highly anticipated EcoFlow Delta PRO!
Why the EcoFlow Delta PRO?
The reason we recommend the EcoFlow Delta PRO above the other options is simply because its features align perfectly with the requirements for whole home backup. When you consider the fact that EcoFlow designed the Delta PRO specifically to be a whole home solar generator, it really is no surprise that it works exceptionally well for this purpose.
Outstanding Storage Capacity:
Where the Delta PRO really shines is it storage capacity. A built-in 3,600Wh LiFePO4 battery means that the Delta PRO can store enough power to reliably keep your electronics and appliances running, but what really puts the Delta PRO in a league of its own is the fact that the battery is expandable to an industry-leading 25,000Wh, or 25kWh!
25kWh almost doubles the storage capacity of Tesla’s popular and expensive Powerwall 2 Home Battery System. Simply by connecting the Delta PRO to multiple 3,600Wh smart expansion batteries, you can store enough power to keep an entire home operating as if it was connected to the grid.
25kWh is far above what you can expect to store with any other type of solar generator, but it is certainly not the only reason why the Delta PRO works so well for supplying power to full homes.
Seamless Home Integration:
Not only can the Delta PRO’s 3.6kWh battery be expanded to 25kWh, it can integrate directly into your home’s circuits by connecting it to EcoFlow’s Smart Home Panel.
EcoFlow markets the combination of the expandable Delta PRO and their Smart Home Panel as the world’s first home battery ecosystem. Whether you want to use your Delta PRO as a backup power system for blackouts and emergency situations, or you are looking for full off-grid capabilities, connecting two Delta PROs, several Smart Expansion Batteries, and the Smart Home Panel will allow you to achieve your aims.
Industry-Leading Charging Capabilities:
The Delta PRO also features unprecedented charging capabilities. Not only can you charge the Delta PRO’s internal battery in six unique ways, you can even multi-charge the internal and expansion batteries, which means you can plug them into more than one power source to charge their batteries even faster. When multi-charging, it is possible to charge the Delta PRO’s enormous 3,600Wh lithium-ion battery in as little as 1.8 hours!
If you were running a grid-tied system, you could have your Delta PRO and any connected expansion batteries plugged into your solar panels and an AC wall outlet at the same time. If your local power company has varying electricity rates for peak and off-peak hours, you would have the option top up your batteries when the prices are low for use during peak hours.
Part of the reason why the Delta PRO can charge so quickly is its efficient MPPT charge controller. This ensures more of the power your solar panels generate gets stored within the internal battery. When you are depending on solar power to meet all of the electricity needs in your home, efficiency is key, as you only have so many hours in the day to generate the power you need.
Long-Lasting Life Cycle Rating:
The state-of-the-art battery contained within the Delta PRO also has a life cycle rating of 6,500 complete charges. This means you can fully charge and discharge the battery 6,500 times before you will notice any significant loss of storage capacity. When you are using a solar generator for your entire home and rely on that stored power daily, it is incredibly important to choose a solar generator that has a high life cycle rating. In this regard, the Delta PRO is really tough to beat!
The battery also has a lengthy lifespan, which is a term used to describe the amount of time a rechargeable battery can hold a charge. Unfortunately, all batteries lose stored power over time; however, the quality of the battery will determine how quickly the power is drained. Given that the Delta PRO contains an advanced LiFePO4 battery, it has a truly impressive lifespan.
Where some generators will lose their charge in a matter of months, even if they are not used, the Delta PRO and its matching expansion batteries can retain a charge for nearly an entire year! This is really important for emergency preparedness. Even if you do not use your Delta PRO on a daily basis, you can still count on it to be fully charged when you need it!
The Delta PRO’s inverter offers 3,600W of output power, but it can be boosted to 4,500W thanks to EcoFlow’s unique X-Boost Technology.
However, what is really exciting about the Delta PRO is the fact that you have the option to pair two of them together with the EcoFlow Double Voltage Hub to achieve 7,200W / 240V of output power, which is enough to power everything from a convection oven to a well pump!
This level of output power is truly unique for a solar generator, which is why the Delta PRO is the perfect option for anyone that is looking to use solar generators to supply power to their entire home.
A voltage rating of 240V means that you can pair two Delta PROs and supply power to any of your appliances, including the most demanding, like your dishwasher, oven, microwave, full-sized refrigerator, washing machine, clothing dryer, and more!
The Delta PRO is also Wi-Fi-enabled and compatible with EcoFlow’s smart app, so you can monitor and control your solar generator system from a smartphone or tablet. This is really useful if you are planning to use solar generators to supply power to your entire home, as you can keep an eye on things remotely.
Each Delta PRO also features 12 built-in output ports, so you can even choose to charge your electronics directly from your solar generator. Even if you have your Delta PROs plugged directly into your home’s circuit box through the Smart Panel, you would have the option to disconnect them and take them where they are needed. If, for example, you were taking a family camping trip, you could remove a Delta PRO and take advantage of the unit’s built-in output ports and overall portability.
How to Use the Delta PRO Solar Generator for Your House
If you are simply looking for a solar generator that can be used in the event of blackouts and power failures, a single Delta PRO is a really practical option. While these solar generators were designed with whole home backup in mind, they also work exceptionally well for emergency preparedness.
On the other hand, if you are hoping to use solar generators to convert an entire home over to solar power, we recommend a more robust system than a single Delta PRO. For starters, pairing two Delta PROs using the EcoFlow Double Voltage Hub would allow you to achieve 7,200W / 240V of continuous output power. This is enough to power even the most heavy-duty and demanding electric appliances, so you can truly satisfy your home’s electricity needs with solar power.
Using two Delta PROs would also double your storage capacity to 7,200Wh. While this is certainly impressive, it may not be enough if you are planning to meet your entire home’s power requirements. This is why we also recommend adding EcoFlow’s 3,600Wh Smart Expansion Batteries. The batteries are less expensive than the Delta PRO itself, so you can greatly increase your total storage capacity, without having to break the bank.
You have to remember that your solar panels cannot generate power at night, or even on really cloudy days. This is why it is important to have enough storage capacity to meet your home’s power needs even when the sun is not shining. Adding expansion batteries can help you achieve this.
What Do We Recommend?
Fortunately, there are EcoFlow Delta PRO kits that package everything you need together. Since the individual components are bundled, the total price is less expensive than it would be if you chose to buy each piece of equipment on its own.
The EcoFlow Delta PRO 21.6kWh 7,200W / 240V Complete Off-Grid Solar Kit is the ideal option!
This Complete Off-Grid Solar Kit packages two Delta PROs with the EcoFlow Double Voltage Hub. You also get two of the EcoFlow Smart Expansion Batteries. This takes the total storage capacity up to an impressive 21.6kWh!
To supply power to the Delta PROs and expansion batteries, you get x8 high-efficiency 335W monocrystalline solar panels! Each solar panel has a 25-year power output warranty, so you can rest assured that your new solar power system will last for many years. In fact, over the course of 25 years, the solar panels could easily pay for themselves with the power they generate!
You even get all of the cables and connectors required to wire everything together and get your home’s new off-grid solar generator system up and running!
Other Options and Honorable Mentions
For those that are not interested in a solar generator-based system for their home, there are more fixed solar power systems that you can choose to install. While these systems lack the portability and flexibility you get with solar generators, they can meet your home’s power requirements and help you make the transition to solar power.
These kits combine a massive battery bank / power wall with a powerful and versatile inverter. They also come with an appropriate number of solar panels to keep your battery bank fully charged.
One of the best things about these kits is they are specifically designed for simplicity. They come with everything you need, as well as beginner-friendly wiring diagrams and installation instructions, so you can easily switch your home over to solar power in as little as a day.
The kits are available with different power ratings, so you can find the exact solar power system to meet your home’s power requirements.
For example, the Complete Hybrid Whole Home Solar Power Kit pictured above offers 10.6kWh worth of storage capacity, x12 360W solar panels, and a Sol-Ark 120V / 240V hybrid inverter and charge controller.
Whether you choose to integrate solar generators into your home’s power system, or you opt for a more traditional whole home solar power system, making the decision to embrace solar technology can be one of the best investments you ever make.
Not only can solar power save you money, it can help you achieve true energy independence. By ending your reliance on the grid, you can make sure you and your family will not have to worry about losing power during blackouts, lengthy outages, and emergency situations.