Manitobans are notorious for their love of nature and leading their lives in a sustainable manner. It’s no surprise that solar is trending across the province, we are seeing more and more rooftops shining with new panels and we are here for it.
But what is solar?
For a little history lesson check out our past blog. When we are talking about solar energy, we are talking about using technology to convert the sun’s energy to make it useful.
According to the Britannica dictionary:
Solar energy is the radiation from the Sun capable of producing heat, causing chemical reactions, or generating electricity. The total amount of solar energy received on Earth is vastly more than the world’s current and anticipated energy requirements.
Selecting the right type of solar energy system comes down to what your needs truly are, the overall two categories are Grid-tie (on-grid) solar and Off-grid.
What is the biggest difference between grid tie and off-grid solar?
While it seems pretty complicated, it’s actually quite simple.
Grid tie solar (also known as on-grid solar) literally means your solar system is tied into the grid. This allows your system to sell back your excess energy produced directly to the utility, if you are in Manitoba the utility is Manitoba Hydro. Grid tie also gives you the ability to still rely on the grid for power when your system is not producing electricity, like in the evening or on a really cloudy day.
Off-grid solar means your solar system is not connected to the grid whatsoever. With this type of system you are able to store your excess power in batteries to use on demand.
The biggest difference between these two systems is the way the energy is stored and how it will be used at a later time.
When it comes to power outages these two types of energy systems work very differently. The off-grid system works independently from the grid, this means your service from your system will not be interrupted. When it comes to grid tie solar, you have a few different case scenarios. If you have chosen to include an additional energy storage system to your on grid system you’ll continue to have access to your basic needs. If you have not chosen to add storage to your system, in the case of a power outage you will have to wait for the utility to be back up and running to access electricity.