Load Shedding Explained

Rachel explains load shedding for Hawaii solar users. 

What is Load Shedding?

Load shedding is a process that only takes place in the event of a power outage, and it affects which of your electric breaker boxes are active and running on your solar system at that time. To put it simply, each 40A+ breaker can only be assigned to one Solar battery at a time while the grid is down, so if you have more large breakers than batteries one of them will have to remain inactive during that time, or be “shed”.

An example:

You have three breakers but only two solar batteries, and there is a power outage. The first two breakers power your kitchen and your AC respectively, and the third powers your EV charging station. In this example, your third breaker (EV charging station) will remain inactive for the duration of the outage.

Why does load shedding happen?

Both manufacturers of solar batteries and state electrical code allow only one 40A+ breaker to be assigned per Solar battery. This is to reduce stress on the battery during power outages, and to conserve power for essential loads. The system will still power all of your devices so long as the electrical grid is up and running.

What runs on a 40A+ breaker?

Typically larger devices such as stoves, central A/C and EV charging units run on 40A breakers.

What does load shedding NOT affect?

Load shedding will not affect what are referred to as “essential loads”, things like your lights, refrigerators, water heaters, small outlets and other low wattage devices.

Who chooses which 40A+ load gets shed?

You do! During the pre-installation process, we’ll consult with you on which load (if any are applicable) gets shed. We’ve had customers choose their hot tub over the stove. It’s your choice!