Solar Spotlight: From Net-Metering to Zero-Export With Sunny Boy Storage

Solar Spotlight: From Net-Metering to Zero-Export With Sunny Boy Storage

The SMA Sunny Boy Storage offers an AC coupled architecture, enabling installation at any point in time. This provides greater flexibility and gives installers the opportunity to generate new business with existing customers. Davis Electric experienced this first-hand with one of their customers in Wichita Falls, Texas.

In 2017, a homeowner contacted Davis Electric asking for a grid-tied ground mount PV system for net metering. At that point, Davis Electric installed a 15kW solar array composed of JA 330W modules and two SMA Sunny Boy 7kW inverters.

Changes in the rate structure motivated the customer to call the installer again, this time for a retrofit with zero-export capacity. Davis Electric contacted CivicSolar asking for the most cost-effective, versatile and innovative residential storage solution available. The SMA Sunny Boy Storage was the perfect fit for this task.

In late 2018, Davis Electric paired an SMA Sunny Boy Storage inverter along with an LG Chem battery to reduce the export on nights and weekends.

The AC coupled design architecture for new PV systems or retrofitting existing ones is one of many benefits of the SMA Sunny Boy Storage. The quick and easy installation is also a huge help, especially for installers. ” We could install one in a half-day,” explained Davis Electric Director of Solar Nick Gilleland.

Other great features include multiple configuration options and the ability to expand. This client, for example, installed one battery but could ultimately install up to two more batteries for a total of three. This would allow for more power and energy capacity.

A high level of system integration provides unmatched monitoring and control and the energy management functions for many different applications are additional advantages of this SMA residential storage solution.

Visit our gallery to see pictures of this solar system, the second Sunny Boy Storage project installed in the United States.

1.5/5 - (2 votes)
  1. tj
    tj says:

    What did you use to limit the pv export to the grid? In RSA you can use a sunny home manager etc, but what is available in the USA to limit PV export to the grid to 0% for those that can’t have net metering?

  2. Aaron Schattl
    Aaron Schattl says:

    I currently have 2x sunnyboy5.0 and 2x sunnyboy 6.0 sma inverters with 114 solar panels
    i am wanting to add LiFePo4 (lithium iron phosphate batteries) (48V)
    i was planning on using 3x SBS6.0
    and one SBS-ABU-200 auto backup unit

    possible problem…
    install sheet for auto backup unit says 50A limit input for PV inverter and battery
    does this mean i will need 2x backup units and 3x sma storage’s

    the auto backup unit may be made for only 1x battery or inverter not stackable

  3. Maksud
    Maksud says:


    We want to design a system which will run by the grid power when the power is available and the battery will be charged by the solar power but during crisis of solar power it should be charged by the grid power. And battery will give back up when battery isn’t available. How can I do this? Only sunny boy inverter is sufficient for this? Or do I need any extra set up. Waiting for your kind reply.

  4. Kenny Cruz
    Kenny Cruz says:

    Hello, and what is the approximate amount of the installation? How do they measure the energy consumed and the energy they export to the grid, or is it just self-consumption?

  5. William Brown
    William Brown says:


    We are planning on installing on a residential house. It has a 200amp main panel the customer wants to back up with LG chem batteries and the sunny boy storage auto back up unit. I reviewed the terminal sizes for the “load” terminals and they are not large enough for a 200amp wire. (4/0 Aluminum 107mm2)
    Please let me know what I am missing about the 200 amp whole house transfer switch


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