Sometimes it is good to manually shutdown and restart your solar inverter, or reboot, as it may be called. You may want to do this if you have an error message on your inverter, or just to check that all the switches are on, as sometimes they will go off for no apparent reason.
Hopefully you have a user manual from the company that supplied your inverter, but if you don’t just follow these steps.
Step 1 – AC off
Switch off the AC isolator. You will always have one in your switchboard, or meter box, and you may also have one by your inverter. This could be labelled up as ‘AC switch’ or ‘Solar Supply Main Switch’.
Step 2 – DC off
Switch off the DC isolator which should be located underneath the inverter.
The screen should go blank, and the lights should go off. Leave it like this for 5 minutes or so, and then switch back on.
Step 3 – DC on
It is very important that you restart by switching the DC isolator on first, as you shouldn’t switch DC under load (ie with the AC on), as the isolator could arc.
Step 4 – AC on
Put the AC switch (solar supply main switch) back on, and then wait. All inverters take at least one minute to restart, and you may see the lights flashing while the inverter does internal testing. There will also be a variety of messages on the screen again as it tests. This is quite normal.
Examples of AC and DC switches
We often get calls from people who get confused about which is on, and which is off, when to comes to switches, and I totally understand. Look at this example here:
If you look at the bottom of the switch there are little windows showing either red or green.
Most people when they see these, think of traffic lights, and that green is ‘ON’ and red is ‘OFF’, but that is not the case.
RED = ON (danger, it is live)
GREEN = OFF (it is safe)
These DC isolators you see here are not often installed now.
It is very likely you have a rotary DC isolator. These are switched on and off by turning the dial in the middle. Here is the on and off position on the isolator: