Fires Caused By Inverters With Inbuilt DC Switches

Over the past few weeks we’ve had several customers ‘worried’ about fires being started by inverters. So, to put your mind at rest we thought we’d write a blog about it.

All solar installations should adhere to strict wiring regulations and should be tested by a fully qualified electrician. Post installation a certificate should be issued showing the full testing results and a copy of the wiring diagram should be sent out with the handover pack.

However, in recent months there has been speculation in the press that certain inverters have been catching fire causing a considerable amount of damage.

Looking back, inverters were manufactured with an inbuilt DC isolator switch, it was only after a great deal of research and testing that building regulations changed the requirements. Gone were the inbuilt DC isolators and in came separate DC isolator switches. Adding to this, there are a large number of manufacturers that now offer remotely operated isolators – these essentially turn off the home made electricity (or AC current) if power to the property is lost or should a smoke /fire alarm system become active.

To add further protection to the property there are now detectors that seek out arc faults on the AC circuit. However, as these are still in the early stages there are many people that are still sceptical about them raising questions like “Under what circumstance they should be installed” “Are they fit for purpose?” and “Do they achieve the desired increase in safety”.

Because the solar pv market is for ever changing, new products are tested to ensure safety before being released to market. If you’re unsure about your inverter, need further information or would like a quotation in regards to a potential solar pv installation give one of our friendly and approachable renewable experts a call on 0800 201 4527

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