The importance of selecting a good quality inverter
The inverter is a piece of electronic equipment that in most cases is installed outside and is exposed to all weather conditions. It is really important that a high quality and robust inverter is used as electrical components fail particularly in the heat, and lower quality inverters do not have good electrical componentary therefore they will fail prematurely.
You wouldn’t expect a cheap television to last in the hot sun, so why would a cheap inverter last in the hot sun?
A 2015 survey by Australian Consumers' Association, published in Choice Magazine, found that 25% of solar PV system owners have had issues since installation, and the inverter is the component most likely to have a problem.
If the solar panels are the skin that is collecting the sun, then the inverter is the brain of your solar panel system: it doesn’t matter how healthy your skin is if your brain is not functioning properly. A reliable inverter is the key to a healthy solar panel system.
So how do you know if you have the right brain?
It is quite simple.
The inverter is made up of electrical components similar to what you may have in your television, computer, DVD player. These common household appliances are inside your home and therefore are not exposed to the heat and radiation from the sun. The inverter is outside and is exposed to the elements; therefore the electronic components must be robust.
Higher quality inverters also have smarter programming and tend to have better monitoring options. Monitoring helps protect your investment and a clear monitoring system can help save losses in the future as it can help maintain performance.
Risks of cheaper inverters
Cheaper inverters do not have robust components, meaning that they will generally fail before their warranty period is up. If the company you have selected is still around then you should be okay, but if they're not then you will more than likely not be able to claim the inverter under warranty.
It is vital that you ask your solar provider if the warranty is with the installation company or with the original manufacturer: if it is with the manufacturer then you will have to deal with them, and this can be difficult as they may be in a different country.