You would like to increase your energy production? The power of your autonomous solar installation does not cover your needs anymore? No problem! You can always enlarge your existing solar installation to adapt it to your needs. But which aspects should you definitely bear in mind in doing so? How does an enlargement work? We tried to answer the main questions that arise when wanting to adapt the size of your solar installation.
Can I add solar panels of another brand to my installation?
A solar installation is not only a financial investment but also an investment in time, especially if you have decided to build it yourself. Also, expansion projects often take shape a few years after the first installation. However, given the rapid evolution of technologies in the photovoltaic sector and the upheavals that the sector is experiencing, particularly at this time, it is sometimes impossible to find the same panels for its expansion.
Please note that it is possible to connect panels that are not of the same brand. First of all, it is important to ensure that they have the same electrical characteristics. In absolute terms, however, it is much better to maintain a brand identity in your facility.
Should I replace my solar inverter or add another one?
If the added power is minimal, it is possible that the capacity of your initial inverter is sufficient and you do not need to change it. Otherwise, it will be necessary to either connect a more powerful one or add one. If you have chosen to build two separate installations, the solution is self-evident. Similarly, if the conditions for placing your additional panels (slope, orientation) and the brand of the panels are identical to the first one, a more powerful inverter is sufficient. If some of these conditions differ, it is better to use a second inverter.
How does the network operator bill power increases?
It all depends on the total installed capacity after the expansion of your installation. In the case where your final installation does not require any modification of your metering device, i.e. if its power is less than or equal to 6kVA for single-phase or 6kVA per phase for three-phase, you benefit from advantageous rates. Only the circuit-breaker setting and index reading will be charged.
In other cases, a modification of the connection and/or an adaptation may be necessary, and invoicing is then based on an estimate because a new proposal for a modification of the connection will be made.