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Do Solar Panels Keep Producing When the Power Goes Out?

September 4th, 2018 | By Roger Kuznia


For safety reasons, solar systems typically do not keep producing electricity in the event of a power outage. However, you can limit the effects of a blackout when you combine solar panels with a battery backup system. Keep reading to learn more about what happens if you have solar and the power goes out.

Why won’t my solar panels work during a power outage?

Safety reasons prevent grid-tied solar systems without a battery from producing power during a blackout. Here’s why:

Once an outage occurs, your solar system’s inverter — the device that turns the direct current (DC) electricity your panels produce into the alternating current (AC) electricity that powers your home — will automatically switch to a mode that will prevent power from going back into the grid. If the inverter did not do so, it could create a dangerous situation for utility workers making repairs. They can’t have power still coursing through the lines while they’re trying to make any fixes.

So once your inverter enters this mode, there’s no way for your panels to keep feeding your home’s energy needs. The inverter signals to the power optimizers/PV links connected to your panels to enter a state of safety that prevents the electrical load from building up. 

Normal solar production resumes once power to the grid is restored and the inverter switches back to the appropriate mode.

Can solar panels help offset the effects of grid power going down?

Solar panels alone won’t work during a power outage — a battery backup system will need to provide extra support. With the battery, you can store excess solar energy for use at night or during a grid failure. This allows you to keep portions of your home running while your non-solar neighbors are left in the dark.

Pink Energy allows you to customize your battery backup system with four modes to ensure your battery meets your specific needs. In the Clean Backup Mode, your battery stores energy that can power 3-6 protected loads in your home during an outage. You can choose the priority devices to keep running such as a refrigerator, oven or electronics. 

Enjoy Peace of Mind During Outages With Solar

Solar panels alone won’t power your home when the grid fails, but they can supply enough power to keep parts of your home running when paired with a battery backup system. For added peace of mind, contact Pink Energy today to request a free quote.

Visit our how solar panels work page for more information.

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