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The Difference Between Off-Grid and On-Grid Solar Energy

When you install a solar power system, you will be presented with various options. Choosing the proper one is based on your expectations or requirements. A solar investment will continue for years and provide you with an ROI that you could never have anticipated. As a result, selecting the best alternative is critical.

The only way to make the best decision is to partner with a suitable solar energy company in Botswana. On a broader level, there are two types of solar power installations: on-grid and off-grid. Studying both types and distinguishing between them will help you make the best installation decision.

What is an On-Grid Solar Power

On-grid solar power systems generate electricity using solar panels and are designed to connect directly to the utility power grid.

The system is configured to send any excess electricity or generated power to the utility grid. Customers profit financially due to it, and they are reimbursed for the additional power that is returned.

These systems work in tandem with the electrical grid. When sunlight fails to achieve its intended purpose due to its short duration, the system is supposed to depend on grid power.

An on-grid system is suitable for spaces with higher energy demands and lower power costs. They are simple to install and cost-effective, and it provides residents and business owners with a source of passive income. It is a fantastic investment that offers a two-pronged benefit plan.

Solar Power Off-Grid: What You Should Know

An off-grid power system is a self-contained system that uses batteries to store the solar energy it generates. Solar panels, batteries, grid boxes, charge controllers, mounting structures, and system balancing make up an off-grid system.

These panels are intended to preserve enough sunlight generated during the day, and it makes use of the extra electricity generated at night.

Because they can run in critical load locations where a power grid fails to meet its intended purpose, these systems are known as autonomous systems.

Installing these can be expensive, and these are for business needs that are only temporary.

These technologies are also appropriate for rural and distant places. They're also in high demand in locations with frequent and brief power outages. They are self-sufficient and do not rely on the grid.

On-Grid Vs. Off-Grid: A Quick Comparison

Basis of Comparison




Because of the benefits it provides, the cost of building an on-grid system would be substantially cheaper and cost-effective.

Off-grid solar solutions are more expensive than on-grid solar solutions and only serve short-term needs.

Access to electricity

By installing an on-grid, you will always have access to electricity, regardless of whether or not the solar system is producing electricity.

​After installing an off-grid solar system, you become utterly dependent on the sun and the energy stored in the batteries.

Power outages

Once connected to the grid, the on-grid technology provides access to electricity in the event of a power outage.

When there is a power outage, an off-grid solar system is self-sustaining and works independently from the power grid.

Excess production

The excess produced is determined by the time of day, and extra electricity is generated. Instead of keeping the excess energy, it might be sent for compensation.

​Excess production from the off-grid system is directed to the battery for storage. The battery might be used for power generation when the system isn't producing due to changing weather conditions.


You would be responsible for some of the expenditures or modest charges on your electricity bill, and it appears as a demand charge or an extra charge.

If your PV system isn't linked to the grid, you won't have to pay any additional fees. They are, however, more expensive than those on the grid, even without the expense of electricity.

Needs Fulfilled

An on-grid power system is typically used in locations with high power demands and a desire to save money on electricity when it comes to requirements.

Off-grid systems are meant to address temporary demands and are used frequently in locations where power outages occur.

Choose Yours Wisely

Now that you've distinguished between the two systems, you can make a more informed decision based on the environment, budget, and power requirements.

Have it met by Apex Solar, the leading solar energy company in Botswana.

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