Home Battery Backup – A helpful look at the Enphase Encharge System for Residential Solar in Oklahoma

Solar Panels on Residential Rooftop

Interested in implementing residential solar in Oklahoma? As a homeowner, selecting a battery backup system can seem overwhelming.

You may have questions like these:

  • How do battery backup systems work?
  • How long will battery backup power my devices?
  • Which devices can battery backup power?
  • How do I switch to battery backup power?
  • How does battery backup work with solar panels?
  • Can I control my battery backup system with an app?
  • Which solar and battery backup system should I choose?

At Solar Creations, we can help you answer all of these questions and more.  We hear from many homeowners who are interested in residential solar power in Oklahoma. The Enphase product line is one of our favorites for residential applications for several reasons, one of which is their extremely powerful and easy to use app for monitoring and system management.  This application gives the user full visibility of the solar panel array production, the home’s current electricity usage, grid status, and more – all in real time. Settings can also be changed on the fly to prioritize certain capabilities depending on current needs. The recent addition of load control functionality for battery backup makes the application even more powerful. 

Residential Solar in Oklahoma

Traditional battery backup systems

First, we should look at how your residential solar in Oklahoma electrical loads are connected to the battery backup system.  Many home battery backup systems rely on a critical loads subpanel, which is essentially a second electrical panel where certain circuits are moved so that only these circuits receive power from the batteries during a utility grid outage.  This ensures that the battery system doesn’t get overloaded, and it also provides maximum backup time by removing power-hungry devices that aren’t critical from the scenario when using the battery bank.  With a properly sized solar panel array, these systems can provide backup power for many days in the event of an outage. 

One drawback of traditional systems has been the lack of “smart” functionality when it comes to controlling the loads that are connected to the battery bank.  Systems without advanced monitoring and control features will simply provide power to all of the circuits that are connected to the battery bank – then it’s up to the homeowner to manage which appliances, lights, etc. are on and for how long. In some cases, this limits which circuits are selected for backup in order to make sure that it won’t be possible to drain the batteries too quickly.  This is where next-generation systems like the Enphase Encharge system and its newly announced load control feature come in.   

The Enphase system

Below is a screenshot from the Enphase control app showing several high-usage devices that can be enabled or disabled from within the app.  One great feature of the application is the ability for the homeowner to do things like run an air-conditioner until the battery is drained to 30 percent, then automatically disable it so that power continues to be available for refrigerators, lighting, and modems/routers.  This gives the homeowner ultimate control over which devices are available for use during an outage, and it is a huge step up in capability for residential battery backup systems with solar integration. 

Screenshot of Enphase control application. This is where homeowners can view their load control settings.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In the event of an outage, the Enphase system automatically switches over from grid to battery power instantaneously, with no interruption in power.  You won’t even notice a flicker in your lighting when the batteries kick in.  From there, you can monitor and control your usage from the Enphase application.  One of the great things about this system is that you can use the smart control features to automate load control during the outage – this way you can go on enjoying reliable power without constantly worrying about which devices are on and how long you should be using them. 

Since the Enphase system is truly grid independent (not all backup systems are) you can continue to use your solar panels’ production to charge your battery bank and provide power to your home with no reliance on the utility grid.  This can provide indefinite power to backed up devices during a residential solar outage with proper sizing and typical weather patterns, and this power will be available with no noisy generators that require fueling. 

Check out all of the details here on the Enphase website.

Homeowners who want to learn more about residential solar in Oklahoma, should give us a call or contact us  to learn more about the full line of Enphase products and how they can transform the way you generate and use electricity in your home!

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