How does it work?

Although it seems complicated, a photovoltaic system is simple and requires few components.
Here we recount the energization process from start to finish:

Solar panels are made up of silicon cells. These cells absorb sunlight and create electricity that then flows as direct current. Most homes do not run on direct current. That is why the current flow needs to pass through a solar inverter.

The solar inverter plays a key role because it not only converts direct current into alternating current, but it also manages the energy flow by transferring it to various destinations. The main destinations are your property's energy loads, the utility grid or to an energy storage system.

An energy storage system may be used for various applications, and is designed according to your goals, which can be the following:

  • Peak Reduction: to reduce your consumption from the grid during peak demand hours.
  • Demand shift: to store your PV production in order to use it at other times when your consumption is higher or during peak demand hours.
  • Backup: in situations when there is a grid outage and you need to power critical loads or your entire property.
  • Off Grid: If access to a stable utility grid is very difficult or the cost of your alternative energy source is very expensive, becoming energy independent with renewable energy plus a battery system may be the most economic option.

A main service panel is a component that many properties have as it is responsible for delivering power to all the loads that exist on your property. Energy coming from your solar system will flow into the panel as you turn on your loads. In the event that you need more energy than what you produce, your panel will demand more energy from the utility grid.

This component is necessary only when your solar system includes batteries or a generator. The purpose of this device is to separate the loads that you want to maintain access to electricity in the event of a blackout. These loads will work regardless of whether the power grid is working or not.

These are all the electric devices that exist on your property that are plugged to an outlet. We recommend you using them when your PV system is producing in order to maximize energy savings.

Properties with a photovoltaic system require a bi-directional meter to keep track of your energy balance. This device measures how much energy has been produced and sent to the grid, as well as how much energy has been received from the utility in case your property has needed it.

Any energy that you have not used is sent to the grid. In regions like Florida or other states, when you send your electricity to the grid, you receive a credit on your next electricity bill, called a feed-in rate. You will notice on your next bill the electricity you consumed from the network, as well as the credits that will be applied to your consumption.

However, in countries like El Salvador, this program is not in place. In fact, there is a self-consumption regulation that requires that all the energy produced by your solar system to be used exclusively by your property, minimizing the energy you contribute to the network. All exceed energy sent to the grid will be credited to your bill, however you have 3 months to use up those credits before they go away.

Don't worry about keeping track of how much you produce or consume. In fact, the technologies that we offer at Maya Power include sophisticated monitoring systems that have access to this information and optimize your electricity consumption with your available energy sources.