ask the electrician
Electrician Training Electrical Certification wiring recessed light fixtures Electrical Wiring Electrical Troubleshooting and Electrical Repairs wire outdoor light fixture Home Electrical Wiring Diagrams
wiring home generator and transfer switch wiring a 220 volt range cord outlet Wiring for GFCI Outlets Wiring Outlets and a Switched Outlet Wiring and Installing Ceiling Fans and Remote Controls wire dimmer switch wiring diagrams for switches wiring a dryer cord and 220 outlet circuit breaker panel
Electrical Wire and Cable

Off-Grid Power Systems and Surge Protection

Is my off-grid solar system and back-up generator connected right? Surge Protection for an Off-Grid System.

Home Electrical Wiring Video

Hooking Up a Generator to the House Panel
Using a Circuit Breaker Interlock Kit
for Backup Power

NOTE: A List of All my Helpful Videos
Will Display at the End of This Video
So Keep Watching So I Can Help You Wire it Right!

Check out my YouTube Channel:
» AskTheElectrician «
and Subscribe!

Learn more about Home Electrical Wiring
with my online Video Course:
Basic Home Electrical Wiring by Example

Circuit Balancing and Surge Protection
Electrical Question: Is my off-grid solar system and back-up generator connected right?

Additional Comments: Great!
Background: Peter, a Homeowner from Potter Valley, California.

Dave’s Reply:
Thanks for your Electrical Question Peter.

Surge Protection for an Off-Grid System

Surge Protection for an Off-Grid System – electronic circuitry can be damaged if the voltage from the generator is not stable. This happened to us a few winters ago while on generator because the refrigerator and the septic pump turned on at the same time and created a power surge that burned up a surge protector that was installed for a computer.

Important Circuit Balancing and Surge Protection for an an Off-Grid Solar System

Power Surges and Electrical Problems

More about Alternative Power for the Home

Renewable Energy Tips to Help You Power Your Home Naturally.

Power Your Home with Solar
Renewable Energy Tips


Install a Home Generator
Home Generators
This series covers a wide variety of topics all about home generators including sizing, selecting, connecting and safely operating this all important addition to your home.

The following may also be helpful for you:

Dave's Guide to Home Electrical Wiring:

» You Can Avoid Costly Mistakes! «

Wire It Right with the help of my Illustrated Wiring Book
Great for any Home Wiring Project.
  electrical wiring  

Complete Guide to Home Electrical Wiring

Perfect for Homeowners, Students,
Handyman, Handy Women, and Electricians
Wiring GFCI Outlets
Wiring Home Electric Circuits
120 Volt and 240 Volt Outlet Circuits
Wiring Light Switches
Wiring 3-Wire and 4-Wire Electric Range
Wiring 3-Wire and 4-Wire Dryer Cord and Dryer Outlet
Troubleshoot and Repair Electrical Wiring
Wiring Methods for Upgrading Electrical Wiring
NEC Codes for Home Electrical Wiring
....and much more.

Learn more about Home Electrical Wiring
with my Online Video Course:
Basic Home Electrical Wiring by Example

Be Careful and Be Safe - Never Work on Energized Circuits!
Consult your Local Building Department about Permits and Inspections for all Electric Wiring Projects.

Electrical Tips to Help You Wire it Right

The Safest Way to Test Electrical Devices and Identify Electric Wires!

The Non-Contact Electrical Tester
This is a testing tool that I have had in my personal electrical tool pouch for years, and is the first test tool I grab to help identify electrical wiring. It is a Non-contact tester that I use to easily Detect Voltage in Cables, Cords, Circuit Breakers, Lighting Fixtures, Switches, Outlets and Wires. Simply insert the end of the tester into an outlet, lamp socket, or hold the end of the tester against the wire you wish to test. Very handy and easy to use.

The Quickest Way to Check for Faulty Electrical Wiring!

The Plug-In Outlet Tester
This is the first tool I grab to troubleshoot a problem with outlet circuit wiring. This popular tester is also used by most inspectors to test for power and check the polarity of circuit wiring.
It detects probable improper wiring conditions in standard 110-125 VAC outlets Provides 6 probable wiring conditions that are quick and easy to read for ultimate efficiency Lights indicate if wiring is correct and indicator light chart is included Tests standard 3-wire outlets UL Listed Light indicates if wiring is incorrect Very handy and easy to use.

Strip Off Wire Insulation without Nicking and Damaging the Electric Wire!

The Wire Stripper and Wire Cutter
My absolute favorite wire stripping tool that I have had in my personal electrical tool pouch for years, and this is the tool I use to safely strip electrical wires.
This handy tool has multiple uses:
The wire gauges are shown on the side of the tool so you know which slot to use for stripping insulation.
The end of the tool can be used to grip and bend wire which is handy for attaching wire onto the screw terminals of switches and outlets..

The wire stripper will work on both solid and stranded wire. This tool is Very Handy and Easy to Use.

More articles about Off-Grid, Solar, Solar Panel System and Home Electrical Wiring:
« Previous Next »
How to Wire a Honeywell Thermostat Kitchen Electrical Circuit Wiring

FAQs Frequently Asked Questions and Comments

2 Responses to “Off-Grid Power Systems and Surge Protection”
  1. Adam says:

    I have ordered an 8kw solar panel system. It is a DC system which I plan on installing a battery back at some point in the future for islanding. I recently won a free whole house surge protector which will be installed before my solar panels. Problem is, I don’t know where in the system the surge protector should be installed? Before or after the solar panel Equipment?

  2. Dave Rongey says:

    Hi Adam,
    Congratulations on the whole house surge protector. The point where the installation of the surge protector will be installed will depend on the voltage that the unit is designed. Since it is a whole house surge protector it may be best to install it at the main panel of the home circuits. Be sure to consult the installation manual for complete details. As for the solar panel system, make sure the installation is well grounded and bonded.
    Enjoy your islanding – (that sounds like life as it is meant to be). Be sure to share your experiences as you are able. I will be working more with another site that I have ( ) which will be a place to share life thoughts and experiences, it would be good to hear from you there.