6 Best Solar Inverters in 2021 [Including Buying Guide]

Solar inverters are instrumental when it comes to solar energy harvesting and increasing the efficiency of the system. While some solar panels and installations come with their inbuilt inverters, such as the Tesla Powerwall 2, they still require an external solar inverter to function as a solar array fully.

Here are six of the best solar inverters that you should check out as well as what to look for when buying one.

1. SolarEdge HD-Wave Inverter

SolarEdge inverters have increasingly gained popularity globally, more so, in the United States and Australia. In recent years, the awakening of solar energy production, as well as its sleek design using DC optimizers, has made SolarEdge a global icon. The DC optimizers enable solar panels to be monitored and controlled at individual levels.

The SolarEdge HD-Wave inverters are one of the lightest inverters manufactured by SolarEdge. The HD-wave series is available from 2.5Kw inverters to 10Kw inverters, which makes it suitable for use within residential premises.

Regarding efficiency, they are among the finest, with a 99% efficiency mark. This mark is made possible by the fact that the inverter uses digital processors and advanced-thin-film capacitors to convert DC to AC with very minimal losses.

2. Fronius Primo Solar Inverter

Fronius is another global leader in manufacturing photovoltaic products, that is, from solar inverters to smart meters. The release of their snap-in design in 2014 brought the company to public stunt, but what is currently raving most people is the Fronius Primo. This solar inverter has attracted extremely positive feedback from all around the globe, thanks to its active cooling system.

Fronius Primo Solar Inverter

The Fronius Primo has an active cooling system that is in-built, and which increases the inverter's reliability and durability. The cooling system contains a fan that expels the generated heat, hence reducing thermal stress. Overheating reduces the efficiency of any electronic device, and it has the potential to cause irreversible damage.


Monitoring the system can be done remotely as well, using the Fronius Smart Meter or a free smartphone app provided by the manufacturer. Due to the increased demand in residential installations, there have been some supply issues and some minor faults.

However, Fronius offers a 5-year warranty. Better still, if you register this solar inverter online, you get a warranty extension by five more years, which makes it a 10-year warranty. Read more about Fronius in our smart meter review.


3. GIANDEL 1200W Solar Inverter

GIANDEL 1200W Power Inverter is an ideal solar inverter for both off-grid applications as well as a tight budget. The inverter is easy to install, and one can easily plug it into a home electric grid. It has two alternating current outlets as well as a USB port, which allows connection to other devices.


Their solar inverter has a durable aluminum alloy casing that shields the device from any external impact. Additionally, the inverter has a fan fitted to it that minimizes overheating as it increases efficiency. Both factors make it fit for both indoor and outdoor environments.


The GIANDEL 1200W Power Inverter is quite affordable than most quality inverters in the market. It is portable and light, thus making it an excellent option for residential installations.

The battery size is sufficient enough to support common appliances in your household. However, it is not quite as powerful as other solar inverter options.


Therefore, this might not be an ideal option if you have some powerful machines within the household. It may fail to start-up high demanding tools hence necessary to put this factor into consideration. The other downside of this solar inverter is the short warranty period by GIANDEL, which is 18 months.


4. SMA Sunny Boy 3.8-US 3800W Grid Tie Inverter

SMA inverters are considered to be among the best solar inverters available in the market with a proven track record for durability as well as reliability. Most of the SMA inverters are suitable for use as string inverters. They used to dominate the market before the Fronius Snap-In series posing stiff competition.


SMA Sunny Boy 3.8-US 3800W Grid Tie Inverter

SMA is a German-based company that is well known globally for the manufacture of string inverters. SMA Sunny Boy pricing varies depending on the kilowatts produced, which range from 3kW to 7.7kW. The average input voltage for the Sunny Boy series is 600V DC, while the output voltage is 240V AC.

The SMA inverters provide free and accurate monitoring options. With the smart monitoring techniques, the solar inverter can connect to Wi-Fi and send data collected to a centralized system. The user would then get access to the data from the Sunny portal.


One downside of this inverter with regards to monitoring is the smartphone app, which appears outdated as well as poor feedback.

This model is fit for anyone looking for a durable yet affordable solar string inverter. SMA provides a warranty for 10-years, which can also be extended to 20 years for any end-user. Extension of such stretched warranty proves that SMA is confident that what they release to the market is durable and of high quality.



5. ABB UNO Solar Inverter

Although ABB sold its solar inverter division to FIMER, which is an Italian company, and that will take over in 2020, it remains to be a major manufacturer of quality solar inverters. ABB has built a colossal reputation using the new series of UNO solar inverters, which are lighter yet more compact.

These solar inverters have incorporated modern technology with their new integrated intelligent home features. Additionally, they have the plug and play interfaces that make it easy for the installation and setup processes.


The inverter can work under any environmental conditions; whether indoors or outdoors, thanks to the natural convection cooling system as well as the outdoor enclosure casing.

ABB UNO inverters are one of the most affordable inverters that are built in Europe. The solar inverter poses excellent value for anyone seeking to acquire a mid-range priced, European build. Additionally, the solar inverter is TÜV Rheinland certified, but it is advisable to confirm it before purchasing it.

ABB UNO inverters are perfect for residential installation from 5kW. They can connect to Wi-Fi and send data to a centralized system that can be accessed remotely.

The system also has an intelligent algorithm that enables real-time tracking of energy harvesting as well as detection of power loss. ABB offers a 10-year warranty.

6. Enphase IQ7 Solar Inverter

Enphase is a company based in the United States, and that is well known for its solar inverters.  These inverters are micro-inverters that are installed on each solar panel. Although the installation of micro-inverters is not the cheapest, the reputation of Enphase IQ7 precedes it.

Enphase IQ7­ Solar Microinverter

Enphase solar inverters have a long life-span and are a great option as a grid-tied solar inverter. These inverters are easy to install, shade tolerant, and are flexible to any array design. If you wish to install a  micro-inverter in your solar system, the Enphase IQ7 solar inverter is an advisable option.

The Enphase IQ7 is designed to output 290watts, but one can also pair it with panels of up to 325-335 watts. Primarily, the added range caters to the natural efficiency losses within the system.

On average, 10% of the total wattage from the panels gets lost. This loss is due to inefficiencies emanating from factors such as temperature and resistance.

Despite the sleek design and its simplicity, the monitoring system is not included upon purchase. One has to buy the monitoring module and software for them to be able to monitor the system. Secondly, setting up the monitoring system is another task that requires expertise and more labor.

Comparing this solar inverter to the others, the lack of a monitoring system is a big blow to Enphase IQ7. However, even though monitoring is not all easy, Enphase IQ7 offers a 25-year warranty; the most extended warranty period compared to the other inverters on the list.


What is a Solar Inverter?

Within the power industry, an inverter is a device that helps to convert direct current (DC) into alternating current (AC). Solar inverters are devices that convert the electricity from the solar panels, which is generally in direct current, into alternating current. Most appliances, lighting, and household electronics use the alternating current hence the conversion need.

As sunlight hits the solar photovoltaic system, electrons within cells in the solar panel move around to produce direct current. Circuits within the solar panels collect this energy, but unfortunately, most homes use AC rather than DC. Well, that's where the solar inverters come into play.

When the cells in the solar panel produce electric energy, the electric current flows to the solar inverter. The inverter then converts the DC into AC. From the inverter, the AC energy is ready for use to power the various appliances and lighting within the building.

As more people embrace the use of solar energy, it is crucial to ensure that you have an efficient solar system, that can meet all your power needs. The efficiency of a solar system not only depends on how powerful the solar panels are but also solar power inverters.

With a grid-tied solar inverter, if panels harvest excess energy, more than you need, you can always feed it back to the grid. This way, you will have electricity from the grid, when your panels are not active.

Purchasing a solar inverter might be an uphill activity sometimes. This is because one may get confused about which are the best solar inverters in the current market. This is why it helps to know what to look for.

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