When the grid goes down, your solar power will go out, too.
Even during the day when your solar system is producing power, you won’t have access to it.
That’s because there’s an automatic shut off switch in these circumstances. The reason for this is simple: If your house is putting power back out onto the grid during an outage and there’s electrical work being done on the power lines, it could lead to a fatal shock.
If you’d like to be able to harness the energy your system produces while the grid goes down, you have a few solid options to prevent this from happening.
Option 1 : Battery
Invest in a Battery system.
2020 is probably the first year that batteries are finally making sense to invest in, however, you could still hold off until 2021 or 2022, until options get even better. Right now, the Tesla PowerWall 2 lasts about a day and a half on its own.
Option 2: SMA Inverter
There’s something called an SMA inverter, which has a secure power supply feature. When the grid goes down, this SMA inverter has a switch that you can flip to use energy that your system is producing. This will only work during the day and the amount of energy will be relatively small.
However, it will be enough to keep your refrigerator running or charge your phone and other devices.