Solar Power – Inverters

What Are Inverters?

Basically an inverter is a device which converts the electricity from your solar panels to a form that can be used by normal domestic appliances, and lights.

The electricity generated by the solar panels is Direct Current (DC) but the typical home runs on Alternating Current (AC)*.

*It is possible to run a home on DC electricity without an inverter but you will need to buy special appliances, such as those designed for caravan use. The wiring requirements are also quite different!

Types of Inverter Applications

There are three types of inverter applications which all require different types of inverters, which are:

Stand Alone Inverters

These are used for houses that are not connected to the local power grid. The solar panels charge a bank of batteries by Direct Current. When an appliance is switched on the inverter converts the DC electricity from the batteries into AC power.

This is a relatively simple form of inverter, and the system as a whole has the following characteristics:

  • No power bills.
  • Unaffected by power cuts.
  • Initially expensive due to the cost of a large bank of batteries.
  • You may need an auxiliary power supply such as a generator for long periods with little sunlight.

Grid Tie Inverters

The most common form of inverter these days. The solar panels feed Direct Current into the inverter which converts the electricity into AC power. The power is then used by any appliances that are on, with excess electricity being ‘pushed’  into the grid. (You will be credited for this electricity) If electricity demand greater than the solar panels can provide power is taken from the Grid.

  • Reduced power bills.
  • A power cut will result in complete loss of power.
  • Lowest cost solar power system.

Dual Inverters

Also called Battery Backup Inverters. The solar panels charge a bank of batteries by Direct Current with the batteries providing power to the house in a similar manner to the standalone system. When the batteries are fully charged any excess  power is ‘pushed’  into the grid. (You will be credited for this electricity)

This is the most complex and expensive type of inverter, The system as a whole has the following characteristics:

  • Reduced power bills.
  • Unaffected by power cuts for several hours (depending on battery capacity).
  • Mid range cost. Although the inverter is expensive there are typically far fewer batteries than a stand alone system.


See Solar Electricity for more posts


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Do you want to know more? . . . . Why not buy ANEWHOUSE Guide? ONLY $4

Creating A Gorgeous Outdoor Patio With Spectacular Paving

Guest post by Hubert Dwight

The patio is that part of the house that is dedicated for relaxation and rest. It is a great place to get away from it all and just enjoy a setting sun after a long stressful day.

There is no better way to make the treasured patio an even more perfect get-away than making it a fully paved affair.

Creating a gorgeous outdoor patio with spectacular paving isn’t a matter of just laying a bunch of slabs.

A number of guidelines have to be adhered to if this project is to be successful.

Below is a brief description of what needs to be done before embarking on the project

Choose  the Right Pavers

These days there are a wide range of pavers to suit most peoples tastes. These range from more natural looking limestone pavers to special finishes such as exposed aggregate feature.

Advances in material science has allowed for the large scale manufacture of pavers that can even withstand sub-zero freezing as well as intense solar radiation ,so most pavers can be used in both temperate and tropical zones.

The best way of making sure that only the best tiles are used is to consult a major supplier that has a good reputation. . . . . Don’t skimp as a well paved patio can last for several generations.


A good base makes a good patio!

Initially the area must be first dug out, set to the correct levels and compacted.

Make sure you dig out and back fill with compacted gravel any soft spots like trench lines aiming for a well compacted gravel base approximately 100mm deep .

Between the pavers and the base there are a couple of options:

  • A fine sand bed (I prefer stabilised sand which is sand with cement added at a proportion of 1 part cement to 20 parts sand)
  • Mortar

Ensure Sufficient Drainage

You need to make sure the paving falls away from the house at an appropriate gradient so the water runs off the paving rather than penetrating the joints and damaging the base.

If you have a roofed patio a fall of 25mm in 1m should be fine, however in the case of an open patio the first 1m from the house should slope away at 50mm.

Plan the Job

Laying pavers without having thought about the layout can waste time and effort.

Decide whether you are going to have a consistent tile size or a range of sizes. (The less consistent the more planning, and cutting of the pavers will be required)
Paving 2

Think about using different materials such as contrasting border pavers around the edge of the patio.

Allow for expansion joints against buildings and other solid structures as pavers do expand and contract more than you might think.

Use a Professional?

I’ve worked a lot with professional masons over the years, and there is a lot of skill and heavy lifting in achieving a good result that will stand the test of time. . . . .Get someone in to do it if you’re not sure.


See Paving for more posts


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Outdoor Bathrooms – Win

I have often though that on a nice day it would be great to have a shower outside, preferably with a view.

So here are a couple of bathrooms that have gone that little bit further:

Outdoor Bathroom 2

Both pictures are from


Outdoor Bathroom1

For more Unusual House Photos, Wins, and Fails, have a look at: What the………………….?



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Blogger For Hire

Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)photo

Everybody is talking about SEO. . . . but to get GOOGLE to like you takes more than a few SEO tricks.

When GOOGLE refers someone to your site it checks:

  • How many pages the visitor looks at;
  • Which pages they look at
  • How long they Stay;

Google also checks to see how old the information is, and whether or not it is unique.

A Blogging Solution

One way to keep Google happy is to provide regular new content in the form of a Blog.

Sounds simple, but not everyone has the time to write and post regular articles for their website.

If your website is suffering from reducing clicks perhaps its time you thought about adding a blog.

This would be based on content tailored to interest people visiting your site.

If you like the content at perhaps I am the blogger you need.

For discussions contact me at



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Do you want to know more? . . . . Why not buy ANEWHOUSE Guide? ONLY $4

Concrete Cracking – Pattern of Fine Cracks

Some people refer to these as  ‘spiderweb’ cracks but the technical name is ‘mapping cracks’.Mapping Cracks

That’s because they can look like a street map.

Generally they are much more obvious after rain as water seeps doown into the cracks.

These cracks are typically only 2-3mm deep and are as a result of the surface concrete shrinking more, and sometimes faster, than the underlying concrete.

The reasons for this greater/faster shrinkage include:

■ Adding water to the mix, when the delivery truck arrives on site, to improve concrete workability.
■ Starting finishing while ‘bleed water’ (standing water after placed concrete levelled) is on the surface
■ Sprinkling cement powder to soak up ‘bleed water’.
■ Letting the surface dry without Proper Curing .

Although the cracking does spoil the look, it is a cosmetic issue and it doesn’t significantly affect the strength of the concrete.

See Concrete for more posts.



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Bridal Expo – Free Wedding

Getting Married Soon?

Live in Melbourne’s West?

Would you like a Free Wedding?


Bridal fair photo

Visit the Bridal Fair at Point Cook on Sunday 3 May 2015


D’Olive Reception Centre

454 Point Cook Road

Point Cook

Vic 3056


Here is a chance to meet with over 40 suppliers of wedding services:

Celebrants, Photographers,Cakes,  Stationery,  Bridal Shops, Florists, Reception Centres and much more.


Entry by Gold Coin Donation


One Lucky Bride will win a FREE WEDDING for 40 guests

 For more information. . . click on this link: Hoppers Crossing Rotary Club Bridal Fair


All funds raised go to assist with Hoppers Crossing Rotary Club’s work in the Community

Disclosure: Brian Ashworth, Author of this Blog, is a member of Hoppers Crossing Rotary Club

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